- Notara’s mansion and Dasios’ mansion in Ano Trikala
- In the region of Corinthia, two of the oldest mansions are situated in Ano Trikala: the one belonged to the Notaras and the second to the Dasios family. They were constructed approximately during the same period, -as far as Dasiou mansion was concerned, a plaque found above the main entrance door, signified the date of its construction, -“May 1806” was inscribed, as well as on a cornerstone.The Notaras mansion is formed in a U shape plan, while Dasiou mansion followed a L shape plan. The Notaras has recently (2014) undergone serious structural problems, as the northern longitudinal wall has collapsed. The second residence (Dasiou) was damaged by a fire in 1946 and only a few remaining walls evidenced its former existence.
- Their architecture was simple and imposing, as they were built with a fortress-like character.
Τhe façade had small openings, which became smaller as they reached the highest levels. Only the top floor. which had a wooden open balcony -in Notaras mansion- opened outward (collapsed in 1981), while the rest of the house remained enclosed. A distinctive trait of these mansions was the differentiation of the external walls of the body of the house (the ground and first floor) from the top floor, which was of white washed çatma (light structure composed of wooden vertical and horizontal beams, mortar and other connective materials) with large, numerous openings. The biggest and most interesting mansion was the one belonging to the noted Notaras family, as its history is directly connected to the historic evolution of the area -Corinthia. The mansion was originally enclosed by a wall for defensive purposes and inside it outbuildings were found. Its façade consisted of the ground floor and two upper storeys, while its rear part, because of a difference in ground elevation, had only a ground floor. The entrance is traced on the interior wing of the U plan, although now this wing has collapsed.
The storage spaces were on the ground floor and originally the only openings there were small embrasures. On the middle floor (metzopatoma), the spaces for residence and storage were situated. The family mainly resided at the top floor, which was flooded with light. It consisted of one large space, the “sala”, with an excellent view. All the rooms in the house, the “ondades” (odalar in Turkish), communicated one with the other through this space.
Notaras mansionA characteristic feature of this mansion is that a special space was constructed on its middle floor and used as a hiding place. It could be entered only by a trapdoor on the top floor and once inside it, one could survey the surroundings to a great distance.
The austerity and spareness that dominated its exterior form were also found in the interior: the only decorated colored feature in the house was the ceilings, which displayed bright color combinations. They were made either of panels surrounded by a grid of wooden strips, where the center of the room was stressed, or more rarely. Receding levels in relief where depth was stressed boards and stripping were the most common structure in all the houses. Unfortunately these examples of woodcut ceiling art have been damaged as the wall collapsed. The furniture was bought in various places, mainly in Europe.
It was worth mentioning, that according to the testimony of Lord Byron, who stayed in the house as a guest of doctor Panousos Notaras by 1806, this mansion possessed the only private library he had seen in Greece.
Chrysafi-Zografou Metaxoula, “Corinthia”, in Greek Traditional Architecture, vol. 5, Melissa, Athens 1987.
Chrysafi-Ζografou Μetaxoula, «Κορινθία. Παραδοσιακή Αρχιτεκτονική», στο Ελληνική Παραδοσιακή Αρχιτεκτονική, τ. 5, Μέλισσα, Αθήνα, 1988.
Chrysafi Ξένια, “Τα αρχοντικά των Τρικάλων και της Γκούρας”, Αίπυτος, τ. 2-3, 1993.
Chrysafi-Zografou Xenia, 1η Έκθεση Αρχιτεκτονικού έργου Κορίνθιων Αρχιτεκτόνων και Κατάλογος Έκθεσης, Corinth 1996.
Dimakopoulos Ιοrdanis, «Πύργοι»: Οι οχυρές κατοικίες της Προεπαναστατικής Πελοποννήσου”, Πρακτικά του Γ’ Διεθνούς Συνεδρίου Πελοποννησιακών Σπουδών, Καλαμάτα 8-15 Σεπτεμβρίου 1985, Πελοποννησιακά. Περιοδικό της Εταιρείας Πελοποννησιακών Σπουδών 13, Αthens 1985, τ. 1 (1987-1988).
Sketch of the mansion by I. Dimakopoulos (….)Architectural survey of Notaras’ mansion, drawing by the NTUA School of Architecture («Κατασκευαστική Ανάλυση και Επέμβαση σε Παραδοσιακά Κτήρια: Αρχοντικό Νοταρά, Άνω Τρίκαλα Κορινθίας», φοιτητική εργασία 8ου εξαμήνου των Βουκια Μαρία, De Zorzi Roberto, Zαμάνη Γραμματική, Θεοδώρου Δημήτριος, Kanatova Petra, Καπέρδα Ελένη, Κορωνάκη Αντιόπη, Μηλιδάκη Ελένη, Μιχαλοπούλου Ιωάννα, Μπαλφούσια Φραντζέσκα, Παναγοπούλου Μαρία, Παπαλυμπέρη Νικολέτα, Σκαλτσά Στέλλα, Στανίτσα Αυγούστα, Τσακίρη Δανάη. μάθημα «Ειδικά Θέματα Οικοδομικής Κατασκευαστική Ανάλυση και Επέμβαση σε Παραδοσιακά Κτήρια», Τμήμα Αρχιτεκτόνων Μηχανικών ΕΜΠ, επιβλέποντες καθηγητές Ειρήνη Εφεσίου, Βασίλης Τσούρας, Χρύσανθος Κιρπότιν, Αthens 2010.)