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Cape Matapan
Cape Matapan
(Greek: Κάβο Ματαπάς, or Ματαπά in the Maniot
Maniot
dialect), also named as Cape Tainaron (Greek: Ακρωτήριον Ταίναρον), or Cape Tenaro, is situated at the end of the Mani Peninsula, Greece. Cape Matapan
Cape Matapan
is the southernmost point of mainland Greece, and the second southernmost point in mainland Europe. It separates the Messenian Gulf
Messenian Gulf
in the west from the Laconian Gulf in the east. History[edit] Cape Matapan
Cape Matapan
has been an important place for thousands of years. The tip of Cape Matapan
Cape Matapan
was the site of the ancient town Tenarus, near which there was (and still is) a cave that Greek legends claim was the home of Hades, the god of the dead. The ancient Spartans built several temples there, dedicated to various gods. On the hill situated above the cave, lie the remnants of an ancient temple dedicated to the sea god Poseidon
Poseidon
(Νεκρομαντεῖον Ποσειδῶνος). Under the Byzantine Empire, the temple was converted into a Christian church, and Christian rites are conducted there to this day. Cape Matapan was once the place where mercenaries waited to be employed. At Cape Matapan, the Titanic's would-be rescue ship, the SS Californian, was torpedoed and sunk by German forces on 9 November 1915. In March 1941, a major naval battle, the Battle of Cape Matapan, occurred off the coast of Cape Matapan, between the Royal Navy
Royal Navy
and the Italian Regia Marina, in which the British emerged victorious in a one-sided encounter. The encounter's main result was to drastically reduce future Italian naval activity in the Eastern Mediterranean. More recently a lighthouse was constructed, but it is now in disuse. As the southernmost point of mainland Greece, the cape is on the migration route of birds headed to Africa. See also[edit]

Battle of Matapan Battle of Cape Matapan Alepotrypa cave

External links[edit]

Wikimedia Commons has media related to Cape Matapan.

Images of Cape Matapan

Coordinates: 36°23′06″N 22°28′58″E / 36.38500°N 22.48278°E /

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