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The island has been inhabited since the Neolithic Period, from approximately 4000 BC. The actual city of Rhodes was founded in 408 BC, and within the next few hundred years experienced a flourishing golden age of wealth and power. A catastrophic earthquake brought about the collapse of Rhodes' famous Colossus, and much of the city, in 226 BC. It came under Roman control in 164 BC, and later became an important trading center of the Byzantine Empire. The Knights Hospitaller conquered the city in 1307, and remained there for 200 years. It was later also ruled by the Ottoman Empire and by Italy before becoming its own Greek city.
Today, Rhodes is known for its beauty, island setting, architecture, blend of European, Middle Easter, and African culture, history, downtown, medieval inner city, citadel, ancient ruins, and beaches.
People Born in Rhodes
Rhodes in People's Lives
Lawrence Durrell: I recieved a press posting here in 1945, and traveled here from Alexandria. I took my muse and lover, Eva, with me, a fact that was conveniently ignored by my employer. We lived in a small gatekeeper's lodge beside an old Turkish cemetary, just across the steet from the British Administration building, where I worked (and which is today a casino). I wrote a book about my time here and my impressions of the lovely island, though I brushed over the political troubles it was currently facing. In 1947, I finally obtained my official divorce from Nancy, and married Eva. We left this city when I was promoted to director of the British Council Institute in Cordoba, Argentina in 1947.