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The Douglas Column, Corfu






Corfu column
The memorial today
Corfu memorial
View of the Citadel on hillside, centre, with sea on right visible over sea wall. Left, obelisk erected to memory of Sir Howard Douglas, Lord High Commissioner of the Ionian Islands (1835–1840).

St. George's Church can be seen on the right of the view. It was built in the classical Doric style by the British in the early 19th century to serve as an Anglican church for the military.

Photo in the Queens collection
The Douglas column can be found on the intersection of Alexandras and Dimokratias Avenue, Corfu, dominating the area which surrounds it. It is build in 1843 but originally was placed near Aktaion cafe. In 1907, because of fears of possible collapse of the ground, it was moved to the present day location.

The column itself is a work of honour to Howard Douglas, who was the Lord High Commissioner the Ionian islands from 1835 until 1841 and responsible for founding Ionian Bank, Ionian gymnasium, the prison and constructed the psychiatric and general hospital as well as many roads.
 Douglas coat of arms
Douglas coat of arms on the memorial

At the four sides of the column's base, copper anaglyphs ornate the monument made by corfiot painter and sculptor Ioannis-Vaptistis Kalosgouros (1794-1878). There is one depicting Douglas' own coat of arms, one with a diadem, one depicting Britannia holding a olive branch and a corn full of goods sitting on an ancient corfiot boat and a last one with a commemorative text written in archaic greek by Christophoros Filitas, an Ionian Academy professor of philosophy. The text commemorates all the good things Howard Douglas did for Corfu and express the gratitude of local people towards him.

The momument is known colloquially as "η κολώνα του Ντούγκλα" ("Ι kolóna tu Dúgla"). It gave its name to the whole area around it. Unfortunately, like most of corfiot monuments, the columns needs a clean up and the copper anaglyphs need to be restored and protected against corrosion made by humidity and sea salt.






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Last modified: Friday, 17 May 2024