The seahorse-shaped island of Evia—Euboia in classical history and Negroponte for many centuries—is the second largest in Greece, yet it is almost completely undiscovered by tourists. Separated from the mainland by only a sliver of sea, Evia has had a turbulent history. Today, it encapsulates the Greece of decades ago—unspoilt and pristine, a haven for the more discerning traveller.
Sara Wheeler. Evia: Travels on an Undiscovered Island, 2007
The main attraction of Euboea is its fine scenery.
Baedeker's Greece, 1894
The scenery of Euboea is perhaps the most beautiful in Greece.
Encyclopedia Britannica 11th Edition, 1911
Evvoia is a beautiful island with dramatic scenery and forests, but is little visited.
Mediterranean Islands, Survival Books 2008
The grandeur and beauty of Euboea's landscapes are matched only by their constantly unfolding variety. The island is like a microcosm of all of Greece: the northern tip has the feel of the wooded and bucolic landscapes of Corfu; the mountainous gorges of the centre are like parts of Epirus and Roumeli; the valleys inland of Kymi have a gentleness and a wealth of painted churches which remind one of parts of the Peloponnese; the area around Dystos feels uncannily like Boeotia; and the south of the island, hemmed by windy beaches, is wild and rugged in the grandest Cycladic manner.
Nigel McGilchrist. Euboea, 2010
Much the greatest of the Venetian possessions was Euboea, which the Greeks call Evvoia nowadays, but which was known to the Venetians as Negroponte, Black Bridge. Jan Morris. The Venetian Empire, 1980
The main attraction of Euboea lies not its history, nor in its architectural beauties (which are few) so much as in its scenery. The best of this is to be found along the western coast, where Euboea swirls away from the mainland, and where the mountains overhand the ten-mile wide Talanta channel. ... Despite its proximity to Athens, and despite the ease with which it can be reached, Euboea remains curiously lonely and remote. It is only just an island. But it is likely to remain, for a long time, one of the more unspoiled places in the Eastern Mediterranean.
Ernle Bradford. The Greek Islands, 1975
There is perhaps no country of the same extent where nature is so varied as in the island of Euboea... The mountains which stretch through the whole island are extremely lofty, and of fine forms... precipices of gigantic magnitude are elevated from the sea.
Edward Dodwell. A Classical and Topographical Tour Through Greece, 1819
...as far as Politika, a village near the sea, distant four hours; a little beyond which begin those great cliffs which are so conspicuous from many parts of Boeotia, and which border the sea for several miles, admitting of no road along the shore. William Martin Leake. Travels in Northern Greece, 1835
Nor must we forget the importance of Euboea itself, which, from its position and its produce, its quarries, its timber, and its corn, was of inestimable value to Athens.
Wordsworth's Greece, 1839
Negropont est une des plus belles Iles de L’Archipel: elle est abondante en toutes choses.
Paul Lucas. Voyage du Sieur Paul Lucas, 1714
In Attica the land is not good, but Negroponte, besides being the most beautiful island in the Archipelago, resembling as I have been told Switzerland in its finely wooded mountains and fertile valleys, intersected by streams of water, has always been noted for its general fertility and in ancient times was considered the granary of Attica. Edward Noel. Letter to Lady Byron, 1832
La nature a tout fait ici pour l’homme, mais l’homme manque à l’Eubée.
Jean Alexandre Buchon. Voyage dans l’Eubée, les îles Ioniennes et les Cyclades en 1841
Central Evvoia is by far the largest part of the island, and possesses the highest mountains and the greatest plains… Rising from the shores of the Gulf of Evvoia between Limni and Politika, some 18 miles apart, is the longitudinal range that contains Mount Kandhilion (4,019 ft). Its great fault-scarp is one of the most imposing precipices in Greece…
The verdant lowland is one of the most favoured spots in Greece. The trees—plane, poplar, willow, walnut, cypress and olive—grow to an unusual size; the production of grapes is enormous, and that of olives and many other fruits is also remarkable.
The author declares his conclusion to be a possibly surprising one—that a single man, perhaps from the island of Euboea, invented the Greek alphabet specifically in order to record the Iliad and the Odyssey of Homer.
Barry Powell. Homer and the Origin of the Greek Alphabet, 1997
The forging, in the eighth century BC, of contact with the West by Greeks from Euboea was by any standards a remarkable feat. The ensuing large-scale transfer of technology and culture from the Aegean to the Central Mediterranean was of greater lasting significance for Western civilization than almost any other single advance achieved in ancient times.
David Ridgway. The first Western Greeks, 1992
We know one thing for sure: it [the Greek alphabet] arose from an individual Greek's contact and discussions with a Near Easterner, a Phoenician from the Levant, it still seems, rather than someone from the north Syrian zone of Aramaic writing. It arose, therefore, in a place where Greeks and Phoenicians had personal contact and on the evidence of its early diffusion and of the style of its earliest known examples its inventor is most likely to have been a Euboean Greek.
Robin Lane Fox. Travelling Heroes, 2008
...further, although close within reach of Attica there lay Euboea, which was by nature well adapted for the mastery of the sea, and in other respects possessed superior merits to all the other islands... Isocrates. Panegyricus
There is current, also, an oracle which was given out to the people of Aegium, Thessalian horse, Lacedemonian woman, and men who drink the water of sacred Arethousa, meaning that the Chalcidians are best of all, for Arethousa is in their territory.