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Psychiko (Greek: Ψυχικό) is a suburb of Athens, Greece. Since the 2011 local government reform it is part of the municipality Filothei-Psychiko, of which it is the seat and a municipal unit.[1]


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Psychiko is located to the south of the Olympic stadium. Psychiko is a strictly residential suburb of Athens, with commercial businesses allowed only within two small designated zones, the "Nea Agora" (New Market) and the "Palaia Agora" (Old Market), with current regulations also restricting buildings to full detachment, and a maximum of 3 floors. Psychiko was historically the home of aristocrats, members of the Greek royal family, and generally old money people. The area remains one of the wealthiest suburbs of Athens, with very high land value, and a number of embassies, particularly of rich Middle Eastern countries, to be found located in Psychiko, Neo Psychiko and neighbouring Filothei. This was once home to Queen Frederika of Greece, until the military coup d'état of 1967. Andreas Papandreou and his wife Margaret also lived in Psychiko before the dictatorship. Later, when he became Prime Minister he left Psychiko and moved to Ekali. In recent decades however, many prominent families choose to build their houses in the southern, seaside suburbs, like Glyfada or Lagonisi. A number of Greek private schools are located in the area: the Athens College, the Moraitis School, the Arsakeio, and the area's most historic public school, the Varvakeio, in Neo Psychiko is also the prestigious Greek/French School "Ursulines". Public municipal facilities, for their part, include a very active cultural center, a 6-court tennis club, an indoor basketball/volleyball stadium, an outdoor basketball and volleyball venue, and a rollerskating rink.


Name

The name literally means "an act of charity".[2] A popular legend[3] about the battle of Marathon and the Marathon run was recorded by Andreas Karkavitsas in the 19th century, and also by Linos Politis.
“ On the plain of Marathon a major battle was once fought; Persians with large fleets came to enslave the land and from there pass to Athens...the blood turned to a river, and reached from the roots of Vranas to Marathon on the other side; it met the sea and painted the waves red. Much lamentation and evil took place. Finally the Greeks won... and two men ran to bring the news to Athens; one travelled on horseback and the other on foot in full gear. The rider headed towards Halandri and the messenger of foot towards Stamata; swift-footed he ascended Aforesmos and down towards the village. As women saw him, they ran towards him:

"Stop", they shouted, wanting to know the outcome of the battle. He stopped a moment to catch his breath and then took the road again. Finally, he reached Psychiko; there he was almost near death, his feet were shaking, he felt like falling down. But he composed himself, took a deep breath, continued, and finally reached Athens.

"We won," he said, and immediately fell down dead. The rider had yet to come. But there where the foot runner stopped and took a breath his act was recorded. The first village remained a 'stop' (Stamata) and the second Psychiko.

Office, stores and open air cinema building in Psychiko.

3790 : Grave stele of Phylonoe. Pentelic marble.

Historical population
Year Population
1981 10,775
1991 10,592
2001 10,901

Notable people

Constantine II of Greece, former King of the Hellenes; also competed in the 1960 Summer Olympics in Rome, winning a gold medal.
Sofía de Grecia, princess of Greece and Denmark and Her Royal Highness of Spain, daughter of the King and Queen of the Hellens.
Nikos Dimou, writer.


Embassies and consulates

Psychiko is home to many embassies.[4]

Bulgaria
China
Croatia
Czech Republic
Georgia
Hungary
Indonesia
Iran
Iraq
Israel
Jordan
Kuwait
Lebanon
Libya
Morocco
Philippines
Poland
Romania
Russia
Saudi Arabia
Slovakia
Slovenia
Syria
Thailand
Tunisia
Vatican City State
Venezuela


Consulates

Iceland
Libya
Poland
Turkey


See also

List of municipalities of Attica


References

^ Kallikratis law Greece Ministry of Interior (Greek)
^ "ψυχικό", Λεξικό της κοινής νεοελληνικής, ed. Institute of Manolis Triantafyllidis, 1998
^ Science of Folklore By Alexander Haggerty Krappe Page 84 ISBN 0416809901
^ Ministry of Foreign Affairs: GTP Business directory

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