THOUGH A FEW dwellings survived until recent times, Chrission is an ancient town which scarcely exists now except as broken stones, fragments of marble and a scattering of potsherds overlooking the bay of Kalamitsa on the island of Skyros. An uphill walk through the early heat of the day brings you along a track to the little church of the oddly hermaphroditic Ai Mamas, the Christian saint who rides a lion, carries a lamb and a crook, and presides over the annual festival held by the shepherds here on ground that has always been sacred to the god Pan.

Light a candle under the saint’s icons in ...


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