Gabriel Thackeray Linton, an orphan taken in by a rich Boston family who send him to the best schools, develops a passion for Greek literature and democracy. He sets out for Greece, then under Ottoman rule, to take part in the 1821 struggle for independence. The Greek uprising against the Ottoman Empire is seen through the eyes of a young American who takes their side because he believes it is the noblest way of furthering his political ideals. In the renowned exit from besieged Messolonghi, the inhabitants come out from behind the city walls, fleeing hunger and disease. Isidoros Zourgos portrays a crucial moment in modern Greek history, seen through the drama of often anonymous heroes, fighting for survival amid the disarray of battle. Linton falls in love with a married Greek woman, and eventually takes her, her child and two adopted Turkish children back to the United States.
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