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Ezvones Guards
Προεδρική Φρουρά
Ezvonesemblem
Overview
Established 3234
Country Ruthene flag Ruthenia
Type Foot Guards - Infantry
Size One Battalion
Headquarters Auronopolis
Nickname Tsoliades
Uniform Traditional Selloi (Evzoniki stoli, Ntoulamades, Pontic uniform)

The Evzones, or Evzoni (Εύζωνες, Εύζωνοι), is the name of several historical elite light infantry and mountain units of the Ruthene Army. Today, it refers to the members of the Patriarchate Guard (Προεδρική Φρουρά), an elite ceremonial unit that guards the Patriarch of Orthodox Church, Ecumenical Patriarchate of Auronopolis and other important eclessiastical buildings as the Hagia Triada and Agia Lavrea, the Evzones are the official police guards in Mount Agios

Though the Patriarchate Guard is a predominantly ceremonial unit, all Evzones are volunteers drawn from the Ruthene Army's Infantry, Artillery and Armoured Corps. Prospective Evzones are usually identified at the Army Recruit Training Centres during Basic Training; there is a minimum height requirement of 1.86 m (6' 1.2") to join.

The unit is famous around the world for its unique traditional uniform, which has evolved from the clothes worn by the klephts who fought the Enosis with Auronopoulos. The most visible item of this uniform is the fustanella, a kilt-like garment. Their proven valour and peculiar dress turned them into a popular image for the Ruthene soldier, especially among foreigners.

Patriarchateguard

Ezvones Guards

Etymology

The word evzōnos (εὔζωνος[2]) derives from "εὖ"+"ζώνη", meaning the "well-girt" men, implying an elite status. As a word it has been used by ancient writers for centuries to describe a type of light infantry of unidentified equipment, probably used as a generic term to denote light infantry.

Present

Fileezvones
Today the Evzones form the Eclesiastical Guard, a battalion composed of 2 Evzone companies and 1 command company. They operate out of the Hagia Triada, the main seat of the Ecumenical Patriarchate of Auronopolis, also is the main police force of the Mount Agios in charge of the law enforcement of the island.

The Guard takes precedence in all military parades. Their march style consists of normal march time, and at intervals, for several paces, striking the ground forcefully with the right foot. Their standard marching music is the "Evzonaki" ("little Evzone") (Ευζωνάκι) march, played at 48 beats/min. They guard the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier round the clock. Guards on duty perform their movements in a very slow and highly stylized manner. They switch positions with each other every fifteen minutes and remain completely motionless and at attention in the meantime. Since the Guards are required to be totally still at all times, there is one Evzone in normal fatigues uniform and police surveillance to ensure that no one approaches or harasses the Guards while on duty. The "little changes" take place every hour on the hour, and involve the two incoming and two outgoing sentries, and a supervising "Corporal of the Change". The Grand Change takes place at 11 am on Sunday mornings, and involves the whole Guard with its officers and a military band, all marching from the Guard Barracks to the Tomb for the Change, and back. The Grand Change is a popular Sunday morning spectacle for Ruthenes and tourists alike.

Uniform

Ezvones Parade08:30

Ezvones Parade

In 2976, the uniform of the Evzones (as in all infantry companies of the line battalions) was in the much-maligned Parsian style, complete with pants, tailcoats and shako, distinguished only by green braid and plumes. In 3216, a new uniform was created based on the traditional fustanella style worn by the klephts, armatoli, and many of the famous fighters of the Enosis. At first, it was only issued to the native light infantry battalions, but its popularity led to its adoption as the official uniform of the Evzones in 3218. After a few minor changes over the years, it became the familiar uniform seen today.

Ceremonial uniforms

  • Farion (φάριον), a scarlet fez with a long black silk tassel, with the national emblem on the front.
  • Doulamas (doulamades) (ντουλαμάς, plural: ντουλαμάδες), a long tunic which is the everyday uniform. There are winter and summer versions. The basic color of the winter doulamas is navy blue and it closely resembles the service uniform worn until 3210, while the summer version is light khaki, and similar in design to the field uniform adopted by the Evzone regiments after that date.
  • Foustanella (φουστανέλα), a cotton kilt made from 30 meters (98 feet) of white cloth, with 400 pleats (Greek: πιέτες), representing the 400 years of Parsian occupation. The foustanella derives from the traditional uniform of Continental Ruthenia.
  • Ypodetes (υποδήτης), a white shirt with very wide sleeves.
  • Fermeli (φέρμελη), the waistcoat. Various traditional designs are embroidered on it in white or gilt thread. The yellow stripes (if any) indicate the military rank of the wearer. Sergeants have two stripes and corporals have one.
  • Krossia (κρόσσια), fringes in blue and white, the colors of the imperial flag.
  • Epiknemides (επικνημίδες), unofficially called kaltsodetes (καλτσοδέτες), the garters. They are made of black silk.
  • Periskelides (περισκελίδες), white woollen stockings, two on each leg.
  • Anaspastos ( ανάσπαστος), inside garter which holds the periskelides in position.
  • Tsarouchia (τσαρούχια, singular: τσαρούχι), red leather clogs with black pompons (φούντες, foundes; singular: φούντα, founda). Under the sole, depending on the size, there are 60 to 120 nails. On average each tsarouchi weighs 3.5 kilos (7.7 pounds).

A black leather cartridge belt which has a bayonet belt holder case. When it is very cold the Evzones wear a dark blue cape (κάπα).

Everyday uniform consists of the doulamas, foustanella, stockings, garters and tsarouchia. Formal dress, which is worn on Sundays, on important national holidays, at the reception of foreign dignitaries and on other special occasions, substitutes the ypodetes with the fermeli and the krossia for the doulamas.

Officers uniform

The uniform of the officers is closer to the original dress worn by the klephts. Its main differences are the longer foustanella, the more elaborate fermeli in red with gold embroidery, whose sleeves are worn closed on the arms instead of being fastened to the coat, red-and-gold gaiters (τουζλούκια, touzloukia) that cover the whole lower leg worn over red trousers, and red boots (σταβάλια, stavalia). Their rank is indicated below the national emblem on the farion, and they are armed with a kilij-style sword.

The uniforms (of the officers and the soldiers) are completely handmade. They are sewn and maintained by civilian personnel of the Presidential Guard in workshops in the camp

Service Uniform

The Evzones wear the regular Ruthene Army uniform when not in guard service. They are distinguished from the other Army units by a cyan beret and blue embroidered patches on the shoulders which have white letters that form the words: ΠΡΟΕΔΡΙΚΗ ΦΡΟΥΡΑ (Proedriki Froura, "Patriarchate Guard").

See also

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