Greeks profess to be bored by their history, resolutely uninterested in the steady flow of foreign historians, classicists and writers who come to pore over the sliver of greatness that was the fifth century BC, the time of Pericles and Sophocles, Herodotus and Socrates, Protagoras, Athenian democracy. A natural port of call for these studiously unmodern types is the splendid British School at Athens, a bastion of squeaking floorboards, academic rigour, Spartan rooms and afternoon tea. Greeks have had nationalist governments banging the “glory that was Greece” into them at school for so long most of them couldn’t give a hoot. They have moved on but many visitors to Athens – perhaps most, myself included – haven’t. After a few days idling in the super-swish comfort of the King George with its ravishing Parthenon views, I check into the British School quicker than you can say Themistocles.
... so what do "most" Greeks think about, say, the Parthenon/Elgin Marbles thing? the Art Deco house thing?