Polycrates (Greek: Πολυκράτης), son of Aeaces, was the tyrant of Samos from c. 538 BC to 522 BC.
He took power during a festival of Hera with his brothers Pantagnotus and Syloson, but soon had Pantagnotus killed and exiled Syloson to take full control for himself. He then allied with Amasis II, pharaoh of Egypt, as well as the tyrant of Naxos Lygdamis. With a navy of 100 penteconters and an army of 1,000 archers, he plundered the islands of the Aegean Sea and the cities on the Ionian coast of Asia Minor, defeating and enslaving the navies of Lesbos and Miletus. He also conquered the small island of Rhenea, which he chained to nearby Delos as a dedication to Apollo.
He had a reputation as both a fierce warrior and an enlightened tyrant. On Samos he built an aqueduct, a large temple of Hera (the Heraion, to which Amasis dedicated many gifts), and a palace later rebuilt by the Roman emperor Caligula. In 522 BC he celebrated an unusual double festival in honour of the god Apollo of Delos and of Delphi; it has been suggested that the Homeric Hymn to Apollo, sometimes attributed to Cynaethus of Chios, was composed for this occasion. Polycrates was certainly a patron of the poets Anacreon, and Ibycus and of the Crotonian doctor Democedes.
According to Herodotus, Amasis thought Polycrates was too successful, and advised him to throw away whatever he valued most in order to escape a reversal of fortune. Polycrates followed the advice and threw a jewel-encrusted ring into the sea; however, a few days later, a fisherman caught a large fish that he wished to share with the tyrant. While Polycrates' cooks were preparing the fish for eating, they discovered the ring inside of it. Polycrates told Amasis of his good fortune, and Amasis immediately broke off their alliance, believing that such a lucky man would eventually come to a disastrous end.
Samos (Greek: Σάμος) is a Greek island in the North Aegeansea A great portion of the island is covered with vineyards, from which the famus Samos wine is made.The capital city is Vathy. The most important plains are that of Pythagorio, in the southeast, Karlovasi in the northwest, and Marathokampos in the southwest. The Samian climate is typically Mediterranean, with mild rainy winters, and warm rainless summers.The largest mountain is the Ampelos massif, which occupies the center of the island and rises to 1,095 metres (3,590 ft). The island's highest point is the summit of the Kerkis range, at 1,434 metres (4,700 ft). Famous Samians : Pythagoras ,Aristarchus of Samos,Polycrates see also this link : http://www.samos.gr/
2nd Antiracist festival of Samos
Help a Samian Family
Geneleos Group. The group of statues is a votive offering to the Heraion and consists of six figures (five female and one male), one of which (representing Ornithe) is now in Berlin. Dated to 560-540 B.C Lets help the reunion of this acient family !