May 10, 2014

Omis + Almissa + Telepil = Odyssey

(Picture found on

Always looking for interesting details about the area we now live in,
I stumbled over an amazing theory.
The town called Omis today, where the Cetina River enters the Adriatic Sea, was called Almissa in ancient times.
Before that however, in Greek times,  it was called T(h)elepil.

And there a most remarkable theory begins.
As Zlatko Mandzuka (and other writers),
researched the myth of Odyssey's travels.
To keep things easy, I'll use the current town's name Omis.

Omis always was (and still is :-) a pirates nest.
Through history the Omis people used to benefit from the fact ships were following this coast, navigating to and from Venice.
I call it benefiting but in fact is was simple looting.
As ships passing carried valuable cargo, so why not take what you can get, still leaving enough for wealthy Venice.

Town and it's fortresses still clearly show the remains of those days, and the proud people of Omis organise a sort of historic battle every summer to commemorate those "glorious" days.

But.... deeper into history, is still the myth about Odyssey,
which cleverer people than me try to demystify.
Based on research and good thinking the myth slowly becomes
plausible theory.
As a hobby sailor I can imagine the logics of the theory:
it simple makes sense !

Sailors did not sail into the blue when they could follow the coast, and the Adriatic coast offers and offered a safe passage, with plenty of secluded harbours, and a fair amount of usable winds.
Therefore it makes sense they did not sail the Mediterranean,
but the Adriatic !
And with evidence based prove of Greeks having been on Hvar, Brac and other islands, all of them near Omis, it also makes sense Omis was a hideout when storms made navigating impossible.

Which brought some sailors into the mouth of the Cetina River, where, like I said, them Omis' pirates ruled. 
And as the theory goes, that is where Odyssey got in trouble.

Well, not being a historian, if interested you'd better buy the book and read the story.
Or even better, buy the book, and book a boat trip from the offer of
as they sail you to Omis and many other historic locations.
And moreover, they won't stuff you with a pizza
or some grilled minimalistic food,
as their organic standards are truly very high.
As yes, Dalmatia is thé place to be if you prefer a healthy lifestyle.

About Omis/Almissa/Telepil,
you can see it today, much preserved in original shape, especially the landscape,
so come and see it for yourself.
As landscapes hardly ever change, it's possible to imagine what our hero saw in those ancient times.

And those pirates, oh well, today everybody is most welcome, and them pirates only make a lot of noise once a year,
in a bit of theatrical show.
So don't be afraid you will be eaten or looted like in those days,
unless you buy some souvenir,
as than you'll discover they are still after your money :-).

Much to my surprise the official Tourist Service in Omis 
seems to be unaware of this fantastic opportunity to make use of this amazing history. 
Their website still needs some "veliki bura",
as they seem to be like those old pirates:
just wait and see what treasures are passing, 
in stead of being pro active.

Wake up Telepil !
You are in a UNIQUE position, still not making proper use of it !

(And as always, if you want to comment, my email address in the header of this blog).