It is a custom held on December 25th every year in one of the oldest villages of Tinos, Tripotamos. According to that custom, each year, a family undertakes some duties to the church of the village. The head of that family , is called “ Kavos” and has the duty to keep the oil lamp, which is upon the icon of Jesus’ Birth, lighted, during all the year from the 1st of January to the 31st of December. In addition, he has to keep the church clean and to pay for all the costs of Christmas’ service. In Christmas day, the “ Kavos” invites the men and the priest of the village to his house for lunch. All of the men are heads of their families and they bring their bread, their spoons, forks and some wine, all in a towel. The “ Kavos” provides veal soup, braized and boiled meat as long as stuffed vine leaves. That day, the wine is not drunk in conventional glasses, but in “ tasia”. It is a kind of cup made of bronze, used only that day. After the lunch, some of the men and the priest bring the icon of Jesus’ Birth in the house of “ Kavos”, singing Christmas hymns. The icon is being placed on the table, next to the priest. Then, the priest gives to everyone holly bread and everybody lights a candle. After that, the priest asks who is going to be the next “ Kavos”. Sweets are being offered, everybody wishes good luck to the new “ Kavos” and they return the icon to the church, singing Christmas hymns. The next day, the 26th of December, the old “ Kavos” offers a lunch with the rest of the previous day’s food. At the 31st of December the icon is carried about all the houses of the village. Nobody is allowed to visit a house before the icon.
That custom is very old and it will exist for a lot of years. The list of “ Kavos” reaches the year of 2025.


Every year, on Monday after Easter, the icon of Jesus’ Resurrection is carried about the entire village. At noon, the bell of the church is ringing and invites all the villagers to the altar. The women of the village cook veal soup, grilled meat and various snacks. When the food is served, the priests say the hymn of Jesus’ Resurrection three times and they begin to eat. After the lunch, they all sing hymns and then the priest makes a short memorial service. Finally, they all offer some money in order to keep up the custom of love’s day.


"VEGGERA" is an ancient custom which is kept up till our days in the village Isternia, during the cold evenings of the winter. This custom makes the villagers more sociable, brings together the friends and families and offers to children endless joy. Each family plans who is going to visit and prepares the oil lamp in order to be able to see. They all have dinner at their houses and then the father of each family gives the order to visit another house of the village. Then, the woman of the family lights the oil lamp and the family departs. Arriving to their final destination, the children enjoy themselves, playing around with various toys. The elder chat around of the specially decorated table. The evening party ends at about 20.00 o’ clock.


During the autumn, in the village Isternia, the villagers kill pigs in order to revive the custom of the pigs’ massacre. By the month of September, the villagers begin the appropriate preparations. The women collect spices and they dry them under the sun. The elder women of the village are occupied with the spices, while the young girls clean the houses as long as the meat and the fat that they have already elaborated. The men collect wood which ist used for the slaughter. During the October, the villagers choose the pig which is going to be killed. It usually weights at about 150- 200 kilos. The head of the family slaughters the pig with the help of his friends and relatives.
During the proceeding, the woman of the family offers tsipouro, raisins and nuts. Then, they bring the animal into the host`s house, they hang it and the woman offers sweets and drinks to everyone once again. The hostess prepares the dinner for everyone invited. A big table is being decorated and the food is being served. The priest prays for everyone and then the wining and dining starts. There is live traditional music and everybody enjoys himself.

Photo album - THE PIGS’ MASSACRE at the village Agapi

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