1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Aegina
|←Aegeus||1911 Encyclopædia Britannica, Volume 1
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AEGINA (EGINA or ENGIA), an island of Greece in the Saronic Gulf, 20 m. from the Peiraeus Tradition derives the name from Aegina, the mother of Aeacus, who was born in and ruled the island. In Shape Aegina is triangular, 8 m. long from N.W. to S.E., and 6 m. broad, with an area of about 41 sq. m. The western side consists of stony but fertile plains, which are well cultivated and produce luxuriant crops of grain, with some cotton, vines, almonds and figs. The rest of the island is rugged and mountainous. The southern end rises in the conical Mount Oros, and the Panhellenian ridge stretches northward with narrow fertile valleys on either side. From the absence of marshes the climate is the most healthy in Greece. The island forms part of the modern Uomos of Attica and Boeotia, of which it forms an eparchy. The sponge fisheries are of considerable importance. The chief town is Aegina, situated at the north-west end of the island, the summer residence of many Athenian merchants. Capo d'Istria, to whom there is a statue in the principal square, erected there a large building, intended for a barracks, which was subsequently used as a museum, a library and a school. The museum was the first institution of its kind in Greece, but the collection was transferred to Athens in 1834.