Ancient Greek and Byzantine legacy
This category summarizes the notion of Greek cultural continuity through the centuries although ancient Greek art and culture is fundamentally different to the Byzantine. The common denominator of the Greek language covers a large part of the population in the Byzantine Empire. Together with the shared Orthodox creed turned into a culturally unifying factor especially during the Ottoman occupation period (1453-1821). This formed the notion of continuity of the Greek race and culture which was strengthened by the folk myths and, subsequently erased all the uncomfortable historical details.
Under romanticism during the 18th and 19th centuries that notion became a deep conviction; it aligned with the western romantic nationalistic ideologies; and nourished the Greek War of Independence in 1821. In the Greek arts cultural continuity was expressed through the domination of neo-classical aesthetics during the 19th century and a good part of the 20th. This was despite the gradual concerns and the critical approach on behalf of some intellectuals from the beginning of the 20th century.
Greek irredentist policy based on the Megáli Idéa (Great Idea) had the conviction of ancient Greek and Byzantine legacy continuity as a reference point. The Megali Idea implied the goal of reviving the Eastern Roman (Byzantine) Empire and dominated Greek foreign policy and domestic politics till the Asia Minor Campaign in 1922.