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  • The famous epitaph on Kazantzakis' tombThe famous epitaph on Kazantzakis' tomb© Cretazine
Crete as we Live it

Kazantzakis’ Tomb (Bastion of Martinengo)

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Published in  What to see



If you are a fan of Nikos Kazantzakis (1883-1957) a visit to his tomb is mandatory! If you don’t know his work, this is a good chance to get to know it. The tomb of the great Cretan writer is situated at the Bastion of Martinego, over the Venetian walls. A humble stone made tomb with a wooden cross and the famous epitaph that Kazantzakis himself ordered, stating: "I hope for nothing, I fear of nothing, I am free". The writer who became known worldwide for his books ‘The Last Temptation’, ‘Christ Recrucified’ (aka The Greek Passion) and ‘Zorba the Greek’ was nominated three times for the Nobel Prize and was almost excommunicated by the Orthodox Church because of the religious references in his work. At the end, he avoided the excommunication but not the curse and condemnation of the Church... In his funeral there were no priests. A bit further from his tomb lies the tomb of his wife Eleni Kazantzaki

A visit to his tomb is also a good chance to take a stroll over the Venetian city walls. The surrounding area is well preserved, with flowers and lawn, and from there you can have a nice overview of the city. Try to track down the bell towers of Agios Minas and the sea, beyond the high buildings with the antennas and the black water tanks. From the opposite side you can see the summits of Yuchtas and Psiloritis. 

We also suggest that you visit the Museum of Nikos Kazantzakis in Myrtia to learn more about this great man and to better understand the words on his epitaph.