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LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros – Love

Summer Courses in Modern and Ancient Greek at ERESOS, LESVOS

LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love

In this painting by Lawrence Alma-Tadema, Sappho, the famous Greek poetess from Eresos, (Lesvos) gazes at the poet Alcaeus.


  •  Modern and Ancient Greek Language and Culture
  •  Seminar: “Eros – Love in Greek Literature and Life”





Modern and Ancient Greek Language and Culture24/08 – 29/08390 €
Seminario “Eros – Love in Greek Literature and Life”17/08 – 21/08

-390 €
Combined course: Greek Language and & Seminar 16/08 – 29/08690 €-
Paradise Studios at Skala Eresou16/08-29/0850€ per night 55€ per night



The Greek language and culture program, organized this summer in Eresos on the island of Lesvos is designed for students who want to make rapid progress in Modern Greek and expand their knowledge of Greece and its culture. It offers an intensive course for students at the beginner, intermediate and advanced levels. It lasts 40 hours, to be spread out over 10 days, and it will include grammar, reading, speaking, and writing. It also will provide an insight into Greek culture and civilization.

In addition, the Alexandria Institute will  continue this summer an exciting partnership with Nikos Dais, a teacher of modern and ancient Greek language and culture, who will give a seminar on “Eros – Love in Greek Literature and Life”. The seminar is addressed to the general public and does not require any prior knowledge. Its aim is to help the participants explore interesting aspects of ancient Greek and Modern Greek culture, in ways so as to make them relevant to their own lives. Nikos, a highly qualified teacher, will use English (or French if needed) in his analysis and discussion of a variety of important ancient and modern Greek sources, working from texts translated into English. These will include poems, extracts from tragedies and comedies, passages from the works of historians and philosophers, songs and local folktales. Vase paintings and sculptures will also be examined. The idea is to understand the ancient and Modern Greek spirit through the very words and artistic creations of Greek writers and artists.

The Modern Greek language and culture course and the seminar on “Eros – Love in Greek literature and Life” are two separate programs. However there will be a third option for those students who prefer to combine the language course and the seminar (combined course)  by attending the first week the Modern Greek language and culture course and the second week the seminar Eros-Love in Greek literature and life.
Special courses in Ancient Greek will be offered on request. Our Greek teachers are highly qualified, and specialized in teaching Greek as a foreign language. Moreover the course is combined with lectures, outdoor activities and various tours which will help students become more familiar with contemporary Greek culture.

This summer “We Learn Greek” will travel on Lesvos, the island of the ancient poetess Sappho, of the philosopher Theophrastus and of the modern poet Odysseus Elytis, winner of the Nobel prize. Together we will discover its ancient and mediaeval history, the stone-built villages, the mansions of the rich merchants, the castles of the Ottoman occupation, the Venetian fortresses, the neoclassical and modern buildings. We will discover the broad expanses covered by olive trees, amazing gorges, calm sandy beaches; we will taste new dishes and we will enjoy the incomparable beauty of this unique island.


Seminar on “Eros – Love in Greek Literature and Life”

• Sunday, August 16, 2020. Arrival in Lesvos, Skala Eresou and check-in.
• Monday, August 17 – Friday, August 21, from 09:00 to 13:00. Lectures in Skala Eresou at the “Paradise Studios”.
• Saturday, August 22. Sightseeing excursion to Lesvos.

Modern and Ancient Greek Language and Culture Course

The Modern and Ancient Greek Language and Culture program in Lesvos will be held in August at the Paradise Studios in Eresos (Skala Eresou). Classes will take place from Monday to Friday, from 09:00 to 13:00. The weekend will be dedicated to various cultural activities (optional). The Alexandria Institute reserves the right to make changes in the schedule or the location of the lessons if necessary.

• Monday, August 24 – Friday, August 28, from 9:00 to 13:00. Lessons in Skala Eresou at the “Paradise Studios”.
• Friday, August 28, 2020. Graduation with representatives of Alexandria Institute and a farewell dinner in a local tavern.
• Saturday, August 29, 2020. Check out and departure from Lesvos.


Alexandria Institute offers intensive courses in the Modern Greek language and Culture for beginners, intermediate and advanced-level students. In addition to the general courses, the following special courses are offered:

Ancient Greek Language and

Seminar on „Eros – Love in Greek literature and life“

The main topic of the seminar will be ‘Eros – Love in Greek Literature and Life’. The main language of communication will be English.

What were the attitudes of the ancient Greeks towards love, marriage and sexuality? What was the erotic life of gods and goddesses? What was the significance of Aphrodite as goddess of love, and of her divine attendant Eros? How free were women compared to men? Might the ancient experience of love, as expressed by ancient poets and writers, affect our thinking and our attitudes?

Such questions we will discuss through the study of important passages from poets, tragedians, comic playwrights, historians and philosophers. We will give special attention to the poems of Sappho, who was born in the ancient city of Eresos. She was one of the greatest poets and song-writers of antiquity, and the first in European history who devoted her poetry to her own intimate feelings.

We will also read love poems by modern Greek poets and listen to love songs from the different musical traditions of modern Greece. Etymologies of important Greek words used in European languages and lists with useful phrases of modern Greek will complement our survey of Greek culture. If the members of our group already have a basic knowledge of modern Greek, we may read and speak in this language as well!

Good literature has dealt with the pleasures and problems of love, and has offered valuable insights. In our meetings we will try to understand the experience of great poets and writers. Our conversation will proceed by question and answer, and we will encourage all members to contribute their ideas. Besides serving an educational purpose, our interactive seminar might also be seen as a collective search for what gives meaning to our own lives.

Nikos Dais is the teacher of the seminar. He received his BA in Classical Studies at the University of Athens. Then he received his Master’s degree in Classical Studies at the University of Toronto in Canada. He also did doctoral research at the University of Cambridge in England and the Ecole des Hautes Etudes en Sciences Sociales in Paris, France.
He has taught at Athens College, English ‘A’ Levels in Ancient Greek Literature and History to high-school students, who were then admitted to the best British and American universities. He has also taught modern Greek literature to IB Diploma students.
For more information please visit


Eresos is about 95 kilometres from the modern city of Mytilene and the airport, and a one and half hour drive by car. It consists of two settlements: the beach village (called Skala of Eresos) and the upper village, which is four kms inland in the hills. The sandy beach of Eresos is very beautiful, quiet and clean; it is very long (2,5kms) and has a very good orientation, since it faces the south. It also has marvelous sunsets.
The program will be held at the Paradise Studios (Paradise Studios, Skala Eresos, 81105 Lesvos.)

Students are offered accommodation at the Paradise Studios, which are very close (less than a 5 minute walk) to the picturesque beach of Skala Eresos and the main square of the village, and very close to the supermarkets, coffee houses, bars and taverns.
The studios are bright, spacious and air-conditioned, and have their own bathrooms with shower. They are equipped with TV, free Wi-Fi, a fridge, a kitchen and kettles to enjoy your coffee or tea on the balcony or in the garden. They also offer free on-site parking. Prices don’t include breakfast.

Lesvos has managed to keep package and mass forms of tourism at bay. It remains largely untouched, offering hidden treasures to those who seek them out. The inland regions, densely wooded with pines and numberless olive trees, are ideal for mountain biking and trekking. Lesvos is rich in archaeology, culture and natural scenery. It is also very famous for its birdlife and attracts birdwatchers from around the world. For further information visit: USEFUL LINKS RELATING TO LESVOS TRIPS AND TOURS – EXCURSIONS
Our teachers will be available to accompany and guide you in the most historical and important places of the island. The cost per person is 20 € and a minimum of 4 persons is required. You can choose one or more of the following excursions: EXCURSION 1: Visit the remains of the ancient city of Eresos and its port, the archaeological museum, the Pythari monastery and the upper village of Eresos. EXCURSION 2: Visit Sigri, the biggest natural port of Lesvos, famous for its Petrified Forest, its Museum of Natural History and its castle; also the impressive monastery of Saint John and the village of Antissa. EXCURSION 3: Visit the beautiful village of Molyvos, with its houses constructed of stone and wood, and closely concentrated along a network of cobbled streets (kalderimia); its mediaeval fortress and the Archeological Collection from the ancient city-state of Mythemna. Also the healing hot-springs of Eftalou, the taverns in Vafeios or the beautiful village of Petra with the monastery of Virgin Mary situated on a high rock. EXCURSION 4: The nearby village of Mesotopos and the beach of Tavari. EXCURSION 5: Visit the capital city of the island, Mytilene, and its castle, the archaeological museum and the Teriade – Theophilos museums.

The course is organized by the Alexandria Institute (Athens) and by Nikos Dais (

For registration or information about the Greek language and culture course on Lesvos, please fill in the registration form or contact or +306972526788 (Greece). Please describe in detail your previous knowledge of Modern Greek, both written and spoken, as well as whether you have any knowledge of Ancient Greek. Additionally you may also add any preferences and interests regarding history, music, dance or other aspects of Greek culture. Please also indicate the package and the type of course you desire (beginners, intermediate, advanced, Greek literature and culture, ancient Greek):


  • The course: 20 hours of lessons divided into 5 days, with teachers experienced in teaching Greek as a second language. After the 5 days of tuition there is one free day devoted to various cultural activities and excursions (these are optional).
  •  All teaching material (books, photocopies, CD).
  • The farewell dinner.

• 20 hours (spread over 5 days) of lessons and group discussions, combined with guided tours to the remains of the ancient city of Eresos and its port, the archaeological museum, the Pythari monastery, the upper village and the valley of Eresos; also one dancing lesson. Teaching materials will be offered.
– One welcoming and one farewell dinner in local tavernas.
– One optional excursion on Saturday to the village of Antissa, the impressive monastery of St John, the village of Sigri and its famous Museum of Natural History.

As mentioned above, The Modern Greek language and culture course and the seminar on “Love in Greek literature and Life” are two separate lessons. However there will be a third option for those students who prefer it: it will be possible to combine the language course and the seminar; you can attend the first week the seminar on  “Love–Eros in Greek Literature and Life” and the second week the Greek language and culture course.

A minimum number of 4 participants per level and a maximum of 8 students per class is required. However, it is up to the Institute whether to run courses with fewer students. If a class has 3 or 2 students the teaching hours will be reduced to 3 hours per day. If there is only 1 student the teaching hours will be reduced to 2 hours per day (private lesson) for the same course fee.

For friends or for couples who wish to attend the TWO-WEEK COURSE there is a discount of 10% in the tuition fee. Group enrolments (3 or more participants) of the same level have a discount of 15%.

Deadline for registration and payment TWO MONTHS before the beginning of the course.

LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love
LESVOS (ERESOS) Greek language course & Seminar on Eros - Love