Theodore Kavalliotis

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Theodore Kavalliotis
Born 1718
Died 1789
Nationality Aromanian ancestry, Greek identity
Occupation Schoolmaster at the New Academy (Moscopole),
Cover of 'Protopeiria', printed in Venice, 1770.

Theodore Kavalliotis (Greek: Θεόδωρος Αναστασίου Καβαλλιώτης, Romanian: Teodor Kavalioti, 1718 – 11 August 1789[1]) was a Greek Orthodox priest, teacher and a figure of the Greek Enlightenment.[2] He is also known for having drafted an Aromanian-Greek-Albanian dictionary.[3]

Early life

Kavalliotis was born in the then important Ottoman town of Moscopole (now a tiny village, Voskopojë, in southeast Albania), where he also spent most of his life. He was of Aromanian ancestry[4] and with Greek identity.[5] Kavalliotis studied in Moscopole and later pursued higher studies in mathematical and philosophical sciences at the Maroutseios college in Ioannina (in 1732-1734), directed by Eugenios Voulgaris.[6]

Working period

He returned to Moscopole and was appointed teacher at the New Academy (Greek: Νέα Ακαδημία Nea Akadimia) in 1743.[7] In 1750 he succeeded his former teacher Sevastos Leontiadis and became director of the New Academy for more than 20 years (1748–1769).[8] His works, written in Greek, are Logic (1749, unpublished), Physics (1752, unpublished), Grammar of modern Greek (1760), Metaphysics (1767), Protopeiria (1770). They were used extensively and hand-made copies were found even as far as Iaşi, Romania. After the destruction of Moscopole at 1769, he probably went to Tokaj, Hungary, but returned at 1773.[8]

In 1770, he published in Venice, at Antonio Bortoli's printing press, a school textbook, called Protopeiria.[9] Protopeiria is a 104 pages textbook which in pages 15–59 included a trilingual lexicon of 1,170 Greek, Aromanian, and Albanian words.[10] This work aimed at the Hellenization of the non-Greek-speaking Christian communities in the Balkans.[11][12] The lexicon was re-published in 1774 by the Swedish[13] professor Johann Thunmann, who taught at the University of Halle-Wittenberg. Thunmann added a Latin translation to the words in Greek, Aromanian, and Albanian.[14]

Besides Eugenios Voulgaris, he was also influenced by the work of Vikentios Damodos, Methodios Anthrakites, René Descartes, and medieval scholastics.[citation needed]

Kavalliotis couldn't manage to reestablish the destroyed New Academy.[15] During his last months he witnessed another wave of destruction of his home place, in June 1789 by local Muslim lords. Kavalliotis died at August 11, 1789, aged 71.[16]

Sample from the first page of the Lexicon

Ῥωμαίϊκα (Romaic - modern Greek) Βλάχικα (Vlach - Aromanian) Ἀλβανίτικα (Albanian) English translation
Ἀββᾶς Ηγούμενου (Igumenu) Ηγκουμέν (Igumen) Abbot
Ἀγαλια Ανάργα (Anarga) Γκαντάλε (Ngadalë) Slowly
Ἀγαπῶ Βόη (Voe) Ντούα (Dua) (I) Love
Ἄγγελος Άγγελου (Aghelu) Έγγελ (Engjëll) Angel
Ἀγγεῖον Βάσου (Vasu) Ένᾳ (Enë) Pot
Ἀγγίσρι Γκρέπου (Grepu) Γκρέπ (Grep) Fish hook
Ἀγελάδα Βάκᾳ (Vaca) Λιόπᾳ (Lopë) Cow
Ἅγιος Σᾴμτου (Santu) Σσιέντ (Shenjt) Saint
Ἀγκάθι Σκίνου (Schinu) Γκιέπ (Gjemb) Thorn
Ἀγκάλη Μπράτζᾳ (Mbrata) Πουσστίμ (Pushtim) Embrace
Ἀγκοῦρι Καϛραβέτζου (Castravetu) Κραϛαβέτζ (Kastravec) Cucumber
Ἀγκῶνας Κότου (Cotu) Μπᾳλλίουλ (Bërryl) Elbow
Ἀγνάντια Καρσσί (Carsi) Κουντρέ (Kundër) Opposite


  • Εἰσαγωγὴ εἰς τὰ ὀκτω μέρη τοῦ λόγου. Ἐν Μοσχοπόλει 1760 καὶ Ἑνετίῃσι 1774.
  • Ἔπη πρὸς τὸν ἐξαρχικῶν ἐν Μοσχοπόλει ἐπιδημήσαντα Ἰωαννίκιον Χαλκηδόνος ἐν ἔτει 1750 Μαΐου 2.
  • Πρωτοπειρία. (Starting out) Ἑνετίῃσιν, 1770. Παρὰ Ἀντωνίῳ τῷ Βόρτολι. Superiorum permissu. Ac privilegio.


  1. The Codex of Saint John Prodromos' monastery, Moschopolis: 1789, Αὐγούστου 11 ἡμέρα ϐ ἐπλέρωσεν τὸ κοινὸν ὁ ἱεροδιδάσκαλος Πρωτοπαπᾶς Θεόδωρος Ἀναστασίου Καβαλλιώτης - Αἰωνία τοῦ ἡ μνήμη. (p. 29.)
  2. Asterios I. Koukoudēs. The Vlachs: Metropolis and Diaspora. Zitros, 2003, ISBN 978-960-7760-86-9, p. 335.
  3. Lloshi p.275
  4. Lloshi, Xhevat (2008). Rreth Alfabetit te shqipes. Logos. pp. 273–276. ISBN 9989582688. Retrieved 2010-06-01.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  5. Kahl Thede, Γλώσσα και στόχοι του πρώιμου αρμανικού, γραπτού λόγου (1731-1813), p. 71 (German original: Sprache und Intention der ersten aromunischen Textdokumente, 1731-1809) in Για την ταυτότητα των Βλάχων: εθνοπολιτισμικές προσεγγίσεις μιας βαλκανικής πραγματικότητας, Βιβλιόραμα (2009)
  6. Dieter Kremer: Actes du XVIIIe Congrès International de Linguistique et de Philologie Romanes; 1989. p. 122 [1]
  7. Tassos A. Mikropoulos. Elevating and Safeguarding Culture Using Tools of the Information Society: Dusty traces of the Muslim culture. Earthlab. ISBN 978-960-233-187-3, p. 316.
  8. 8.0 8.1 Κεκρίδης (1988), p. 283
  9. Greece and the Balkans: identities, perceptions and cultural encounters since the Enlightenment; ed. by Tziovas, Dimitris. [2]
  10. Lloshi p. 282
  11. Friedman A. Victor. After 170 years of Balkan linguistics. Wither the Millennuim? University of Chicago. p. 2: "...given the intent of these comparative lexicons was the Hellenization of non-Greek-speaking Balkan Christians...
  12. Horst Förster, Horst Fassel. Kulturdialog und akzeptierte Vielfalt?: Rumänien und rumänische Sprachgebiete nach 1918. Franz Steiner Verlag, 1999. ISBN 978-3-7995-2508-4. p. 35, 45.
  13. "Johann Thunmann: On the History and Language of the Albanians and Vlachs". R. Elsie.<templatestyles src="Module:Citation/CS1/styles.css"></templatestyles>
  14. Lloshi pp. 290-292 and p.317
  15. Kekridis (1989): p. 66
  16. Kekridis (1989): p. 68