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© Benaki Museum

Ioannis Capodistrias (1776–1831). The first Governor of Greece
19th century
Benaki Museum, Athens, Greece

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The emerging Greek state

For the first time, during the Vienna Conference in 1815, European leaders were faced the Greek Issue. Conte Ioannis Kapodistrias, with the approval of the Tsar, submits a question about the liberation of the Greeks from Ottoman rule. Twelve years later the same man becomes the first Governor of the newly established Greek State. In 1832, Othon (Otto), the son of King Ludwig of Bavaria becomes the King of Greece, with Athens declared the capital of the Greek State. In 1864, the Ionian Islands transfer from Great Britain to Greece. A turbulent political period ensues, one dominated by the modernising efforts of the politician Charilaos Trikoupis, but his attempts for expansion and organisation of the state are held back by the state’s bankruptcy in 1895 and by the Greek defeat during the Greek–Turkish War of 1897.