Moscho Tzavelas

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Moscho Tzavelas was the wife of Lambros Tzavelas and mother of Fotos Tzavelas. She was born in 1750. In 1792 she commanded 400 Souliote women against the Albanian forces of Ali Pasha. Her bravery was immortalised in Greek demotic (country) music (see below).

She left Souli after it was subjugated by the Albanians and settled in the Ionian Islands with several of her countrymen. She died in 1803.

The song

Ωρε κορίτσια από τα Γιάννενα, γριά Τζαβέλαινα, νυφάδες απ' το Σούλι, αχ τα μαύρα να παιδιά μ' φορέσετε.

Αχ τα μαύρα να φορέσετε, γριά Τζαβελαινα, στα μαύρα να ντυθείτε, το Σούλι θα- παιδιά μ- χαρατσωθεί.

Αχ το Σούλι θα χαρατσωθεί, γριά Τζαβελαινα, χαράτσι θα πληρώσει, Τζαβελαινα -παιδιά μ' -σαν τ' άκουσε.

Τζαβελαινα σαν τ' άκουσε, γριά Τζαβελαινα, βαριά της κακοφάνη, ωρε πιάνει και ζώνει τ' άρματα.


You Girls from Giannena, old Tzavelas woman brides from Souli, dress in black, my children

Oh dress in black, old Tzavelas woman dress in black as Souli, my children, will be taxed

Oh Souli will be taxed, old Tzavelas woman taxes they will pay, Tzavelas woman, my children, as she heard it

The Tzavelas woman as she heard it, the old Tzavelas woman she took it badly and she picked up her weapons