Hanialis Tower at


Hanialis Tower in Magoulas
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The tower of Magoulas, in Lassithi plateau, was the summer konak (house) - tower of Chanialis, who stayed there during summers. Chanialis was a Turk janissary who oppressed a great region of East Crete. He was the founder of the family of Chanialis and was an Islamized Christian from Chania (Chania -> Chanialis). His real name was Zade Ahmet Aga.

He was the richest melikianaga (feudal lord) of the Ottoman Empire, as he had seized vast land areas from the poor Christians of Eastern Crete. His property extended from the small plain of Pediada to the valley of Mirabello, from the Ierapetra plains to the lowland coastal parts of Malia and Hersonissos and from Lassithi Plateau to the little valley of Sarantapihos river and Myrtos area (in Myrtos there was the winter house of Chanialis).

In the tower of Magoulas, Chanialis found shelter with his secretariat Dolapsis, when the commander of Heraklion, Mustafa Resit Kioutahis, tried to arrest and kill him. Finally, Kioutahis misled Chanialis and convinced him to come to Heraklion, where he strangled Chanialis with his own hands, on 25 December 1815. This incident was saved in a church book by the priest of Magoulas.

Today nothing remains of the tower, except an Ottoman fountain that is considered to be a part of the house of Chanialis.

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Additional Info

  • Location: Lassithi Prefecture
  • Type: Fortress / Tower
  • Peak Period: Venetian Era (1204 AD - 1669 AD)
  • Accessibility: Paved road

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