Patroklos (Attica)


Patroklos (Greek: Πάτροκλος) or Gaidouronisi (Γαϊδουρονήσι, "donkey island") is a small, private island located in the Saronic Gulf, Greece. It is situated about 65 km from Athens and 3 km from Sounion and is part of the Attica region.

Patroklos (Attica)
Native name:
Πάτροκλος or Γαϊδουρονήσι
Cape Sounion AC.JPG
Coordinates37°39′02.50″N 23°57′01.50″E / 37.6506944°N 23.9504167°E / 37.6506944; 23.9504167 (Patroklos Island)Coordinates: 37°39′02.50″N 23°57′01.50″E / 37.6506944°N 23.9504167°E / 37.6506944; 23.9504167 (Patroklos Island)
Adjacent toSaronic Gulf

In ancient times, the island was known as Patroklou Charax (Πατρόκλου χάραξ, meaning "Camp of Patroclus") or Patroklou Nesos (Πατρόκλου νῆσος, meaning "Island of Patroclus"), after the Ptolemaic admiral Patroclus, who established a fortified base there during the Chremonidean War.[1]

In the late Middle Ages, the island was notorious as a haven for pirates. The Byzantine emperor John VIII Palaiologos was nearly captured by Catalan pirates in December 1437, when his ship sought shelter from a storm on the island during his journey to the Council of Ferrara.[2]

On 12 February 1944, SS Oria sank in a storm on the south east rocks of Patroklos island with 4,074 killed, mostly Italian military internees.

It was also the island at the heart of the Israeli political scandal known as the "Greek island affair".[3] The island is operated under Greek administration but owned by the Prince Obolensky, Arnaud Henry Salas-Perez.[4]


  1. ^ Hauben, Hans (2013). "Callicrates of Samos and Patroclus of Macedon, champions of Ptolemaic thalassocracy". In Buraselis, Kostas; Stefanou, Mary; Thompson, Dorothy J. (eds.). The Ptolemies, the Sea and the Nile: Studies in Waterborne Power. Cambridge University Press. pp. 39–65. ISBN 9781107033351.
  2. ^ Koder, Johannes; Hild, Friedrich (1976). Tabula Imperii Byzantini, Band 1: Hellas und Thessalia (in German). Vienna: Verlag der Österreichischen Akademie der Wissenschaften. p. 160. ISBN 978-3-7001-0182-6.
  3. ^ Sharon the survivor: why Greek island affair could sink him, Guardian Unlimited, January 22, 2004
  4. ^ "The Rich and Famous Who Spent Big to Purchase Their Own Private Islands – Page 12 – Herald Weekly".