Ioannis Vilaras (1771-1823)
Ioannis Vilaras, poet and doctor, visited Larissa as a member of the court of Veli Pasha; he accompanied Veli to various foreign cities and Greek regions. A prominent figure of the intelligentsia, he attracted many important personalities around him and created his circle of intellectuals. These times, the dominating ideology was that to be a European meant to be necessarily a doctor. Ioannis Vilaras due to his charismatic personality and his revolutionary ideas represented European Enlightment.
Ioannis Vilaras initiates Larissians to lyrical poetry which revived the “traditional” paths of poetry. Moreover, he introduced them to the radical poetic work of Athanasios Christopoulos (1772-1847).
He stayed in Larissa for 3 years (1812-1815), probably, the most creative years of him. He was influenced by Dimitrios Katartzis and became a supporter of popular language. He reduced common logic -concerning the language issues- into a “heresy”, he proposed passionately the adoption of phonetic writing and the departure from traditionally methods of writing (with its rules of grammar). He published in Corfu, his “Romeiki Glossa” study and dedicated it, to one of great intellects of the Nation “Athanasios Psallidas” (1767- 1829).
Conservative archaists, moderate as wells as radical supporters of the popular language were getting involved in a big discussion about Greek language. Vilaras by his revolutionary thoughts rekindled, of course, all the above deliberations.
In this context, Ioannis Ikonomou the Larissian- Logiotatou met Ioannis Vilaras at 1815. It was only after the departure of the first, from Constantinople (Istanbul).
Ioannis Vilaras poems’ were lyrical, satirical and myths. He translated Kritonas by Platonas and part of the second book of Thoukididis, as well as the Frog-mouse battle.
Psyrras Thomas, Literature in Larissa (19th to 21st century), Draft, Larissa, 2008.
Source: TEDK N. Larissas, Guide - Region of Larissa, Publications "ella", 2002