Georgios Rallis

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Georgios Rallis
Γεώργιος Ράλλης
Prime Minister of Greece
In office
10 May 1980 21 October 1981
President Konstantinos Karamanlis
Preceded by Konstantinos Karamanlis
Succeeded by Andreas Papandreou
Minister for Foreign Affairs
In office
10 May 1978 9 May 1980
Prime Minister Konstantinos Karamanlis
Preceded by Panagis Papaligouras
Succeeded by Constantine Mitsotakis
Personal details
Born(1918-12-26)26 December 1918 [1]
Athens, Greece
Died15 March 2006(2006-03-15) (aged 87)
Athens, Greece
Political party New Democracy
Spouse(s)Lena Rallis (died 2015)
Alma mater University of Athens

Georgios Ioannou Rallis (Greek : Γεώργιος Ιωάννου Ράλλης; 26 December 1918 – 15 March 2006), anglicised to George Rallis, was a Greek conservative politician and Prime Minister of Greece from 1980 to 1981.

Greek language Language spoken in Greece, Cyprus and Southern Albania

Greek is an independent branch of the Indo-European family of languages, native to Greece, Cyprus and other parts of the Eastern Mediterranean and the Black Sea. It has the longest documented history of any living Indo-European language, spanning more than 3000 years of written records. Its writing system has been the Greek alphabet for the major part of its history; other systems, such as Linear B and the Cypriot syllabary, were used previously. The alphabet arose from the Phoenician script and was in turn the basis of the Latin, Cyrillic, Armenian, Coptic, Gothic, and many other writing systems.

Anglicisation, occasionally anglification, anglifying, Englishing, refers to modifications made to foreign words, names and phrases to make them easier to spell, pronounce, or understand in English. It commonly refers to the respelling of foreign words, often to a more drastic degree than romanisation. One example is the word "dandelion", modified from the French dent-de-lion.

Greece republic in Southeast Europe

Greece, officially the Hellenic Republic, also known as Hellas, is a country located in Southern and Southeast Europe, with a population of approximately 11 million as of 2016. Athens is the nation's capital and largest city, followed by Thessaloniki.


Ancestors in politics

George A. Rallis [el
], great-grandfather of Georgios Rallis Georgios Rallis.JPG
George A. Rallis  [ el ], great-grandfather of Georgios Rallis

Georgios has descended from an old, noble and political Rallis family. Before Greek independence, Alexandros Rallis was a prominent Phanariote (Greek from Constantinople). In 1849 his son George A. Rallis  [ el ] became Chief Justice of the Greek Supreme Court. Dimitrios Rallis (1844–1921), paternal grandfather of Georgios Rallis, was five times Prime Minister of Greece, for short periods in 1897, 1903, 1905, 1909 and 1921. His son, Ioannis Rallis (1878–1946), was collaborationist Prime Minister from 1943 to 1944, during the German occupation. After the liberation of Greece he was sentenced to life imprisonment for collaboration and died in jail in 1946. His maternal grandfather, Georgios Theotokis, was four times Prime Minister of Greece, between 1901 and 1907.

The surname Rallis, Ralli or Ralles refers to descendants or claimed descendants of the Frankish-Byzantine Raoul/Ralles family:

Constantinople capital city of the Eastern Roman or Byzantine Empire, the Latin and the Ottoman Empire

Constantinople was the capital city of the Roman Empire (330–395), of the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire, of the brief Crusader state known as the Latin Empire (1204–1261) and of the Ottoman Empire (1453–1923). In 1923 the capital of Turkey, the successor state of the Ottoman Empire, was moved to Ankara and the name Constantinople was officially changed to Istanbul. The city is located in what is now the European side and the core of modern Istanbul. The city is still referred to as Constantinople in Greek-speaking sources.

Dimitrios Rallis Greek politician

Dimitrios Rallis was a Greek politician.

Early life

Georgios Rallis was born on 26 December 1918 [2] in the prestigious Kolonaki district of Athens.

Kolonaki Neighborhood in Athens, Attica, Greece

Kolonaki, literally "Little Column", is a neighborhood in central Athens, Greece. It is located on the southern slopes of Lycabettus hill. Its name derives from the two metre column that defined the area even before a single house had been built there.

Athens Capital and largest city of Greece

Athens is the capital and largest city of Greece. Athens dominates the Attica region and is one of the world's oldest cities, with its recorded history spanning over 3,400 years and its earliest human presence starting somewhere between the 11th and 7th millennium BC.

After schooling he studied law and political sciences at the University of Athens. [2] Shortly after graduating he joined the fight against fascist Italy after the invasion on 28 October 1940 as an cavalry Second Lieutenant of the Reserve. [2] He was recalled to active service during the Greek Civil War of 1946–49, during which he served in the armoured corps. [2]

Greco-Italian War 1940 and 1941 conflict between Italy and Greece

The Greco-Italian War took place between the kingdoms of Italy and Greece from 28 October 1940 to 23 April 1941. This local war began the Balkans Campaign of World War II between the Axis powers and the Allies. It turned into the Battle of Greece when British and German ground forces intervened early in 1941.

Greek Civil War 1946-1949 civil war in Greece

Τhe Greek Civil War was fought in Greece from 1946 to 1949 between the Greek government army — backed by the United Kingdom and the United States — and the Democratic Army of Greece (DSE) — the military branch of the Communist Party of Greece (KKE) — backed by Yugoslavia, Albania and Bulgaria. It is often considered the first proxy war of the Cold War, although the Soviet Union avoided sending aid. The fighting resulted in the defeat of the DSE by the Hellenic Army. Founded by the Communist Party of Greece and supported by neighboring and newly founded Socialist States such as Yugoslavia, Albania and Bulgaria, the Democratic Army of Greece included many personnel who had fought as partisans against German, Italian and Bulgarian occupation forces during the Second World War of 1939–1945.

Political career

Rallis was first elected to the Greek Parliament as a member of the People's Party in the 1950 general election, and was re-elected in all subsequent elections until the end of his political career in 1993, except the 1958 election and the June 1989 election, where he did not run. [2] He was first appointed a cabinet minister on 11 April 1954 in the government of Alexander Papagos, as Minister for the Presidency of the Government). [2] [3]

The People's Party was a conservative and pro-monarchist Greek political party founded by Dimitrios Gounaris, the main political rival of Eleftherios Venizelos and his Liberal Party. The party existed from 1920 until 1958.

1950 Greek legislative election

Parliamentary elections were held in Greece on 5 March 1950. The People's Party emerged as the largest party in Parliament, winning 62 of the 250 seats.

1958 Greek legislative election

Parliamentary elections were held in Greece on 11 May 1958. The result was a second consecutive victory for Constantine Karamanlis and his National Radical Union party, which won 171 of the 300 seats in Parliament.

A close collaborator of Constantine Karamanlis, [2] he retained the position under the first Karamanlis cabinet (6 October 1955 – 29 February 1956), [4] and went on to serve as Minister for Transport and Public Works in the 1956–58 Karamanlis cabinet, [5] and as Minister for the Interior in the 1961–1963 Karamanlis cabinet. [6] He was also among the founding members of the National Radical Union (ERE) in 1956. [2] In 1958, he quarrelled with Karamanlis over the latter's adoption of a new electoral law, on which he had not been consulted, and for a few years left ERE, before returning to the fold in 1961.

The National Radical Union was a Greek political party formed in 1956 by Konstantinos Karamanlis, mostly out of the Greek Rally party.

Rallis was appointed to the post of Minister for Public Order in the caretaker cabinet of Panagiotis Kanellopoulos on 3 April 1967. [7] It was in this position that the coup d'état of the Colonels found him on 21 April 1967. Rallis managed to evade capture by the putschists and go to the command centre of the Greek Gendarmerie, from where by radio he tried in vain to get in contact with the III Army Corps and order it to descend onto Athens and suppress the coup. [2] Following the establishment of the Junta of the Colonels, he was arrested thrice, imprisoned and sent to internal exile to the island of Kasos. Among his anti-regime activities were his campaigning against the Junta-sponsored Republic referendum of 1973, and his criticism of the regime through his editorship of the magazine Politika Themata. [2]

In 1974, following the fall of the dictatorship, Rallis became briefly Minister for the Interior and then again Minister to the Prime Minister in the national unity government under Karamanlis, [8] and held on to the post (from 2 January 1975 as Minister for the Presidency of the Government) under the government formed by Karamanlis' new party, New Democracy, after the November 1974 election. [9] On 5 January 1976 he also assumed the post of Minister for National Education and Religious Affairs, which he held in tandem with the former post until the end of the cabinet term on 28 November 1977. [9] From the post of Minister for Education he oversaw the educational reform, the institution of the Demotic Greek as the formal language in schools and the administration, replacing the Katharevousa, and the reform of the school curricula. [2]

Following the 1977 election, he served first as Minister for Coordination, before becoming Minister for Foreign Affairs in May 1978. [2] [10] He was the first Greek Foreign Minister to visit the Soviet Union, in October 1978, and negotiated Greece's accession to the EEC, signing Greece's accession agreement in May 1979. [2] He also worked to restore relations with Bulgaria and Yugoslavia.

After Karamanlis was elected to the post of President of the Republic, on 8 May 1980 Rallis was elected by New Democracy's parliamentary group as the new party chairman, and was sworn in as Prime Minister on 10 May. [2] [11] During his tenure Greece rejoined the military wing of NATO.

He led the government until his defeat by Andreas Papandreou's PASOK in the 18 October 1981 election, resigning on 21 October. [2] [11] Shortly after, in early December, having lost the confidence of his party's MPs, he resigned from the chairmanship of New Democracy. [2]

In May 1987 he split from New Democracy and became an independent MP. He did not participate in the June 1989 election, but after a personal invitation by the new New Democracy chairman, Konstantinos Mitsotakis, he rejoined the party and was elected an MP for Corfu. [2] After a renewed dispute with Mitsotakis, now Prime Minister, over the handling of the Macedonia naming dispute, he resigned from his post and retired from politics in March 1993. [2] During his retirement, Rallis established and cultivated organically-farmed vineyards and olive groves at his family estate on Corfu.

Although Rallis became Prime Minister at a time when the fortunes of his party were in decline, he remained a popular figure because of his well-liked personal attributes of mildness, modesty and straightforwardness. A wealthy patrician by birth, he always made a point of living modestly, walking to work (even as a Prime Minister, much to the frustration of his security detail), and taking the time to greet and talk with those he met on the street. He died of heart failure at his home on 15 March 2006. He is survived by his wife, Lena Rallis (née Voultsou) and their two daughters, Zaira Papaligouras and Joanna Farmakidis.

Rallis spoke English, French, and German, and wrote 14 books. [2]

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  1. Note: Greece officially adopted the Gregorian calendar on 16 February 1923 (which became 1 March). All dates prior to that, unless specifically denoted, are Old Style.
  2. 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 "ΕΚΛΟΓΕΣ 9/2015: Οι πρωθυπουργοί μετά τη Μεταπολίτευση. 1980-1981: ΓΕΩΡΓΙΟΣ ΡΑΛΛΗΣ" (in Greek). 7 September 2015. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  3. "Κυβέρνησις ΑΛΕΞΑΝΔΡΟΥ ΠΑΠΑΓΟΥ - Από 19.11.1952 έως 6.10.1955" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  4. "Κυβέρνησις ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥ Γ. ΚΑΡΑΜΑΝΛΗ - Από 6.10.1955 έως 29.2.1956" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  5. "Κυβέρνησις ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥ Γ. ΚΑΡΑΜΑΝΛΗ - Από 29.2.1956 έως 5.3.1958" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  6. "Κυβέρνησις ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥ Γ. ΚΑΡΑΜΑΝΛΗ - Από 4.11.1961 έως 19.6.1963" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  7. "Κυβέρνησις ΠΑΝΑΓΙΩΤΗ ΚΑΝΕΛΛΟΠΟΥΛΟΥ - Από 3.4.1967 έως 21.4.1967" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  8. "Κυβέρνησις ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥ Γ. ΚΑΡΑΜΑΝΛΗ (Κυβέρνησις Εθνικής Ενότητας – De Facto) - Από 24.7.1974 έως 21.11.1974" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  9. 1 2 "Κυβέρνησις ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥ Γ. ΚΑΡΑΜΑΝΛΗ - Από 21.11.1974 έως 28.11.1977" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  10. "Κυβέρνησις ΚΩΝΣΤΑΝΤΙΝΟΥ Γ. ΚΑΡΑΜΑΝΛΗ - Από 28.11.1977 έως 10.5.1980" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
  11. 1 2 "Κυβέρνησις ΓΕΩΡΓΙΟΥ Ι. ΡΑΛΛΗ - Από 10.5.1980 έως 21.10.1981" (in Greek). General Secretariat of the Government. Retrieved 15 September 2015.
Political offices
Preceded by
Nikolaos Lianopoulos
Minister for the Interior
Succeeded by
Charalambos Panagiotopoulos
Preceded by
Vasileios Tsoumbas
Minister for the Interior
Succeeded by
Christoforos Stratos
Preceded by
Panagiotis Zeppas
Minister for National Education and Religious Affairs
Succeeded by
Ioannis Varvitsiotis
Preceded by
Panagiotis Papaligouras
Minister for Foreign Affairs
Succeeded by
Konstantinos Mitsotakis
Preceded by
Konstantinos Karamanlis
Prime Minister of Greece
Succeeded by
Andreas Papandreou
Party political offices
Preceded by
Konstantinos Karamanlis
President of New Democracy
Succeeded by
Evangelos Averoff