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The Castle of Penteskoufi stands almost 1,5 km southwest of Acrocorinth. It is built on a pointy rock, separate from the mountain of Acrocorinth, therefore constituting, in a way, its pre-mountain. Built on a rocky pointy steep mountain top, it is a miniature castle. There are a few ruins, there is a square tower encircled by a two-level irregularly-shaped yard that are surrounded by walls.

In the early 19th century, Buchon and Ant. Bon visited the castle. Bon claims that the tower of the castle was built by the Franks in the 13th century, and that the smaller tower, the fallen bastion, the walls and the 6 long-range guns are of either Venetian or Turkish origin. He disagrees with Buchon, who believes that they were constructed during the Greek War of Independence. On the inside of one of the old doors, on, the cross of the Villehardouin is still visible. According to Bon, the Franks built the castle, when they besieged Acrocorinth in the early 13th century, and the building features verify this viewpoint. There are certainly later additions to the castle by the different conquerors.

The origin of the castle name is controversial since there are a lot of different opinions about it. One of these opinions, claims that the Frankish Mont Escovee or Montesquinon is only an alliteration of the Greek word Penteskoufi, which is the name of the hill where the castle is built. Others believe that the name comes from the French word eschiveri meaning disbelief. The second name of the castle is “Malvicino”, which means bad neighbor, attributed to the reason why it was built. It was built during the siege of Acrocorinth by the the Great Lord of Athens, Othon de la Roche, an ally of Guillaume Villehardouin, at the suggestion of the latter. It was mainly built to cut off the assistance to the besieged Leon Sgouros as well as supplies to Acrocorinth. After the Franks conquered Acrocorinth, it remained under the rule of the Villehardouin family, and then it was handed over to Acciaiuoli family and constituted one of the castles of Castelania of Corinth. Theodore Paleologos in 1395 took all the castles of Corinth and among the others ones, Penteskoufi as well.

It appears that this small castle didn’t play a very significant role during the occupation of Morea by the Turks until the Greek War of Independence. According to Buchon, during that period the castle was property of the Notaras family who also repaired it.

#mythicalpeloponnese

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