HOW THE ARCHBISHOP OF SMYRNA WAS MARTYRED

The Barbarous Turks Captured the Foremost Christian Ecclesiastic of Asia Minor and Had Him Torn to Pieces with Wild Horses on a Public Square in Smyrna.

The Washington Times
Oct 29, 1922, page 9.


   The destruction of over 200,000 lives
at  Smyrna   by   massacre,   fire,  hun-
ger,   suicide   and   other cruel   forms
of death is such a vast tragedy that it is
difficult to fix one's attention on any par-
ticular incident of it.
   The disaster is so great that the mind
cannot  hold  it all.  There was, however,
one tragedy which in its wickedness and
barbarity exceeds anything that has hap-
pened in modern  times,  and  therefore
should receive attention from Americans.
   The  tragedy   was the   martyrdon of
Monsignor Chrysostom, the Greek Metro-
politan (or Archbishop) of Smyrna.  It  is
evidently  the  purpose of  the  Turks  in
their present  campaign  to  wipe out all
Christians in Asia Minor. The  deliberate
torture and murder of the  leading eccle-
siastics of  the proscibed  religion was a
terrible earnest of their intention.
   The  manner  in  which the Archbishop
of Smyrna met death has not yet been re-
ported in the  American press.  The  Paris
Figaro, which is a warm supporter  of the
French policy of backing the Turks against
the Greeks, and  cannot be suspected  of
being prejudiced against the Turks, prints
the facts briefly.
   The  Figaro  states  that  the  news   of
Archbishop    Chrysostom's    death   was
brought to  Athens by the Bishop of Ephe-
sus, who escaped from the sack of Smyrna
disguised as  a sailor and  reached Athens
on a French  ship.  The  facts  told  by him
are beyond question.
   Monisgnor Chrysoistom, who was a very
courageous  man and an aggressive leader
of the Greek  Christians, bravely remained
at his post when the  victorious   Kemalist
army   entered   Smyrna.  Massacre   and
atrocities by the Turks  were  regarded as
certain  by the terrified   inhabitants,  few
of whom were able to escape.  A host   of
more  than  300,000  panic-stricken  refu-
gees (Greeks, Armenians and Jews)  from
the interior , who had fled before the  vic-
torious Turks and seen their relatives  tor-
tured and massacred, poured into the city,
which already had  a population  of  450,-
000.   These  conditions  alone  produced
famine and misery.
   When  the Turkish  army entered, Arch-
bishop Chrysostom  begged  the  Turkish
commanders  to  maintain  order  among
the  followers,  and  he  exhorted his own
panic -stricken  coreligionists  to  be  calm
and  sensible.  Turkish  officers disregard-
ed  him  entirely  and  insolently,  and  al-
lowed him to be seized  by  a band of the
most savage and fanatical Mohammedans.
He was especially hated for his bold cham-
pionship  of his religious followers and his
nation. With him they captured his faith-
ful dragoman.
   The   Turks began  by   tearing  out the
Archbishop's beard,  which like  all  Greek
priests,  he   wore  full   and uncut.  Then
they tore his clothes off and subjected him
to many  dreadful  tortures,  such  as  tear-
ing   out  his tongue  and  pulling  out  his
finger and toe nails.  
   Finally, while   there was still  life in his
quivering body, he was carried to the Iki-
Chesme Square  for  the  supreme  agony.
Four horses were   secured.   The   Arch-
bishop was placed on his back, and   one
horse was  tied by a   long rope to one of
his feet,  another   horse to  another foot,
another horse   to  one of his  hands  and
another horse to the other hand.
   Four   Turks mounted   the four horses,
one on each, and with their  whips drove
the animals in   different directions.   One
Turk drove his horse to the north, the next
drove to the   west, the next to the south,
and the remaining one to the east.
   The  archbishop was slowly torn in four
parts by the animals.   The fanatical   mob
watched  the   proceeding   with   hideous
pleasure, urged on the horses and howled
with rage  and   satisfaction.   At  last they
seized  the   remains of   the victim.  The
Archbishop's   dragoman  suffered  practi-
cally the same fate.

[continued] 


The Washington times. (Washington [D.C.]), 29 Oct. 1922. Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers. Lib. of Congress. <http://chroniclingamerica.loc.gov/lccn/sn84026749/1922-10-29/ed-1/seq-66/>

 

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