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Nauplion had a long and fascinating history long before the first head of the independent modern Greek state, Ioannis Kapodistrias, was assassinated here in 1831 and the young Bavarian prince Otho, appointed King of Greece, arrived in 1833. Finds dating to the Mycenaean period have been excavated near the city and during the classical period Nauplion served as a port for the more powerful city state of Argos. Macedonian, Roman, and then Byzantine rule were followed by the Crusaders, then the Venetians and Ottomans. The city is sprinkled with buildings, churches, statues, and fountains from these periods and the two large fortresses of Akronauplia and Palamidi testify to the city's strategic importance.
All this is carefully described by Timothy Gregory's 81 page guide, Nauplion, with plans and black and white photographs, paperback.