The Wedding of Koutroulis
The Carnival celebrations in Methoni of Messinia are closely linked to wedding of Koutroulis, a custom that has its roots in the early 14th century, when the area was under the Venetian rule. This is a real fact, revived in the form of parody at noon on first Monday in Lent and in the evening a feast takes place with pork, slices of bread with oil baked on fire and wine.
The story of the wedding of Koutroulis is as follows: The last Greek knight, Ioannis Koutroulis, fell in love with a local woman, but she was married. They eloped and he decided to live with her causing gossip and the excommunication of woman by the Church. For 17 years, Koutroulis, despite the reaction of society, was trying to marry her legally. Eventually the woman presented the divorce and they got married. After his wedding, in 1394 or 1404, the feast lasted several days for the satisfaction of Ioannis Koutroulis who waited so long. The feast went down in history as well as the phrase “we had a wedding like Koutroulis”!
The celebration of first Monday in Lent in Methoni every year… is equal to the wedding of Koutroulis!