Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

Dr. Iannis is the only doctor in his unnamed village in Greece. He's also an amateur and hobby historian and spends most of his life working on "A Personal History of Cephalonia," which explores the history of Greece and how Greece's history of conquest influences the Greek people’s behavior in the present. He learned medicine on a ship as a young man and his wife, Pelagia's mother, died very young. Because of the loss of his wife and because he has no sons, Dr. Iannis raised Pelagia to think for herself and engage with the world like a man might. He's not particularly keen on Mandras as a husband for her, as he believes that Mandras won't want a wife that's smarter than him. Though he's a proud Venizelist, Dr. Iannis regularly encourages his best friends, Stamatis and Kokolios, to care for each other and treat each other with kindness and respect regardless of political differences. When the Italians invade, Dr. Iannis is initially rude and short with them. He torments Corelli and makes him feel guilty for invading Greece. However, as Dr. Iannis gets to know Corelli and the other soldiers, they become great friends. He worries when he recognizes that Pelagia and Corelli are falling in love with each other, as he's very aware that the Greeks would persecute his daughter were she to break off her engagement with Mandras to marry an oppressor. He encourages them to wait to marry until after the war. Dr. Iannis's medical knowledge is tested after the massacre, when Velisarios brings a bullet-riddled Corelli to him. Dr. Iannis is able to provide care until Corelli is well enough to be smuggled off the island. Before Corelli goes, Dr. Iannis gives him his blessing to marry Pelagia on the condition that Corelli allow her to become a doctor. Dr. Iannis is taken to a concentration camp during the Greek Civil War and though he returns, he's mute, shaky, and haunted by memories. He accepts his granddaughter Antonia without question and dies in the earthquake while making sure that Pelagia and Drosoula get out of the house.

Dr. Iannis Quotes in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

The Captain Corelli’s Mandolin quotes below are all either spoken by Dr. Iannis or refer to Dr. Iannis. For each quote, you can also see the other characters and themes related to it (each theme is indicated by its own dot and icon, like this one:
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). Note: all page numbers and citation info for the quotes below refer to the Vintage edition of Captain Corelli’s Mandolin published in 1994.
Chapter 1 Quotes

This would never do; why could he not write like a writer of histories? Why could he not write without passion? Without anger? Without the sense of betrayal and oppression? He picked up the sheet...It was the title page: "The New History of Cephalonia." He crossed out the first two words and substituted "A Personal."

Related Characters: Dr. Iannis
Page Number: 5
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 9 Quotes

"I have always been a Venizelist; I am not a monarchist, and I am not a Communist. I disagree with both of you, but I cure Stamatis' deafness and I burn out Kokolios' warts. This is how we should be. We should care for each other more than we care for ideas, or else we will end up killing each other."

Related Characters: Dr. Iannis (speaker), Stamatis, Kokolios
Page Number: 52
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 21 Quotes

As she reached for it she realized for the first time, and with a small shock, that she had learned enough from her father over the years to become a doctor herself. If there was such a thing as a doctor who was also a woman. She toyed with the idea, and then went to look for a paintbrush, as though this action could cancel the uncomfortable sensation of having been born into the wrong world.

Related Characters: Pelagia, Dr. Iannis, Mandras, Drosoula
Page Number: 134
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Chapter 25 Quotes

"It had 'To The Glory Of The British People' inscribed on the obelisk. I have heard that some of your soldiers have chipped away the letters. Do you think you can so easily erase our history? Are you so stupid that you think that we will forget what it said?"

Related Characters: Dr. Iannis (speaker), Pelagia, Captain Antonio Corelli
Page Number: 169
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 37 Quotes

"I should have brought her up stupid," said the doctor at last. "When women acquire powers of deduction there's no knowing where trouble can end."

Related Characters: Dr. Iannis (speaker), Pelagia, Carlo Piero Guercio
Page Number: 236
Explanation and Analysis:
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Chapter 61 Quotes

"You must allow Pelagia to become a doctor. She is not only my daughter. She is, since I have no son, the nearest to a son that I have fathered. She must have a son's prerogatives, because she will continue my life when I am gone. I have not brought her up to be a domestic slave, for the simple reason that such company would have been tedious in the absence of a son."

Related Characters: Dr. Iannis (speaker), Pelagia, Captain Antonio Corelli
Page Number: 350
Explanation and Analysis:
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Dr. Iannis Character Timeline in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin

The timeline below shows where the character Dr. Iannis appears in Captain Corelli’s Mandolin. The colored dots and icons indicate which themes are associated with that appearance.
Chapter 1. Dr Iannis Commences his History and is Frustrated
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At the end of Dr. Iannis 's day, he sits at home and chuckles about his medical successes of the day--namely,... (full context)
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Now, Dr. Iannis sits at his table and works on his history of Cephalonia. He struggles to write... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis reads over his work, takes a break to urinate on the mint, and then returns... (full context)
Chapter 3. The Strongman
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...around the corner and received an old nail in the shoulder. Velisarios carries him to Dr. Iannis 's house. There, Mandras falls madly in love with Pelagia at first sight. On Mt.... (full context)
Chapter 6. L'Omosessuale (2)
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...believe that the Greeks killed the Albanian Daut Hoggia. He explains that he learned from Dr. Iannis later that Hoggia was no patriot; he was a murderer, a thief, and a rapist.... (full context)
Chapter 7. Extreme Remedies
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...the iconostasis. He insists he doesn't feel well, so Velisarios apologizes and goes to fetch Dr. Iannis . Meanwhile, Father Arsenios empties and fills two more bottles, becoming so drunk he passes... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis doesn't feel comfortable going behind the iconostasis despite his atheism, but he slips behind when... (full context)
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Stamatis interrupts Dr. Iannis . He asks if Dr. Iannis can put the pea back in his ear--he can't... (full context)
Chapter 8. A Funny Kind of Cat
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A few mornings later, Dr. Iannis prepares to leave for the kapheneia to eat breakfast and argue with Kokolios about communism.... (full context)
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Lemoni and Dr. Iannis emerge in a clearing with a barbed-wire fence running through it. Lemoni points vaguely towards... (full context)
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At home, Dr. Iannis finds Mandras and Pelagia flirting. Mandras explains that his nail wound is giving him trouble,... (full context)
Chapter 9. August 15th, 1940
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On his way to the kapheneia, Dr. Iannis runs into Lemoni again. She's prodding a dog with a stick and the dog can't... (full context)
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At the kapheneia, Dr. Iannis sits next to Kokolios. They discuss the superiority of Cephalonia's water and Kokolios announces that... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis gives a brief rundown of what the countries involved in the war are up to... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis tells Mandras he's an idiot and asks if he's going to ask Pelagia to marry... (full context)
Chapter 11. Pelagia and Mandras
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...his boat, he hopes for a good day in which he can catch fish for Dr. Iannis and Pelagia. He imagines his conversations with Dr. Iannis later and thinks about touching Pelagia's... (full context)
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...he sings a song to call the dolphins. He wonders what people will say about Dr. Iannis not providing a dowry. Mandras thinks that he likes Pelagia, but he can't be himself... (full context)
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...too hot. Psipsina settles herself on Pelagia's chest, making her even hotter. Pelagia thinks of Dr. Iannis saying that Mandras had a backside like a classical statue and wonders when he'll ask... (full context)
Chapter 12. All the Saint's Miracles
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...they cannot be married until after the war, and Pelagia tells Mandras to speak to Dr. Iannis . She wanders around, feeling strangely unhappy. (full context)
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Mandras becomes extremely drunk before he can find Dr. Iannis . As evening approaches, everyone prepares for the race. Little boys ride goats, drunks sit... (full context)
Chapter 13. Delirium
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At dinner, Dr. Iannis suggests that Mandras hasn't come because he's still hung over. Pelagia is relieved that her... (full context)
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...Mandras at the door. He apologizes for being late and says he just spoke to Dr. Iannis . Pelagia feels numb and conflicted. She thinks that Mandras should've drowned and is still... (full context)
Chapter 16. Letters to Mandras at the Front
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Pelagia continues that Dr. Iannis , Stamatis, and Kokolios have banded together to praise the military and Metaxas despite their... (full context)
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...next letter by saying she's becoming accustomed to Mandras not replying. For St. Basil's Day, Dr. Iannis got her a book of political writings and poems, and the lucky coin ended up... (full context)
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...she hasn't seen his name on the list of the dead. Metaxas is dead and Dr. Iannis cut off his moustache so he doesn't look anything like Hitler. Everyone is hungry and... (full context)
Chapter 18. The Continuing Literary Travails of Dr. Iannis
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Dr. Iannis is lost in thought about goats, as it's nearly time to head up the mountain... (full context)
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It's clear that Mandras won't write and Dr. Iannis knows that Pelagia is becoming bitter and believes Mandras doesn't love her. He sends her... (full context)
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To make matters worse, Dr. Iannis is running short on supplies. Fortunately, people don't seem to be as sick now. He... (full context)
Chapter 20. The Wild Man of the Ice
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...she finds a strange, stinking man at the table. She's terrified and tells him that Dr. Iannis is out. The man says he's glad she's happy and says he'll never be warm... (full context)
Chapter 21. Pelagia's First Patient
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...scratches. Pelagia runs to fetch oil of sassafras and realizes that she's learned enough from Dr. Iannis to become a doctor herself. She instructs Drosoula to paint the oil on Mandras's head... (full context)
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The next morning, Dr. Iannis returns from the mountain and discovers Mandras in Pelagia's bed. He doesn't recognize him. Later,... (full context)
Chapter 22. Mandras Behind the Veil
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Mandras tells the reader that Pelagia, Dr. Iannis , and Drosoula all talk about him as though he's not there. He spent all... (full context)
Chapter 23. April 30th, 1941
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...God what he thinks he's doing and promises that if God won't help, he will. Dr. Iannis cuts an open letter to Hitler out of the paper and tacks it to the... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis turns to his history of Cephalonia and writes about how the Cephalonians have a habit... (full context)
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...planes overhead and races outside. She watches Italian soldiers parachute down and then runs to Dr. Iannis . He remarks that they're in the middle of history and fetches a pencil and... (full context)
Chapter 25. Resistance
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...in her kitchen. The officer smiles and Pelagia instructs them to wait while she fetches Dr. Iannis . (full context)
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Dr. Iannis greets the officer in Italian and the two shake hands. The officer is thrilled to... (full context)
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When the Italians leave, Dr. Iannis and Pelagia vow to be horrible to their officer. Corelli arrives that evening, driven by... (full context)
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Corelli anxiously insists he was joking with Pelagia, but Dr. Iannis wants to know about a defaced Greek monument--it used to read "to the glory of... (full context)
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...he'll sleep outside and then request new accommodations tomorrow. Pelagia is alarmed; she runs to Dr. Iannis and asks how she's supposed to make Corelli feel horrible if he leaves. Dr. Iannis... (full context)
Chapter 26. Sharp Edges
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Dr. Iannis passes Corelli on his way to the kapheneia. Corelli shows Dr. Iannis his "cat" bite,... (full context)
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Pelagia returns inside and studies the reproduction section in Dr. Iannis 's copy of The Complete and Concise Home Doctor. She does chores and thinks about... (full context)
Chapter 27. A Discourse on Mandolins and a Concert
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Dr. Iannis wakes early in the morning and passes Pelagia asleep on the kitchen floor. He kisses... (full context)
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That night, Dr. Iannis asks Corelli for a concert. Corelli spends minutes tapping the mandolin. Dr. Iannis finally asks... (full context)
Chapter 29. Etiquette
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...to say "good morning" in Greek so he can make her smile, so he asks Dr. Iannis for help. Dr. Iannis tells Corelli an obscenity but when he learns that Corelli wants... (full context)
Chapter 31. A Problem with Eyes
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...and finally, she laughs. He cries that he won and she accuses him of cheating. Dr. Iannis sighs and wonders how to best deal with the budding romance. (full context)
Chapter 32. Liberating the Masses (2)
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...and it's the king's fault that the capitalists profit from his work. He now resents Dr. Iannis for being bourgeois.  (full context)
Chapter 33. A Problem with Hands
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...his hands so she can wind her wool around them. Corelli continues the charade and Dr. Iannis informs both of them they look ridiculous. Corelli starts to howl and Pelagia jams a... (full context)
Chapter 37. An Episode Confirming Pelagia's Belief that Men do not Know the Difference Between Bravery and a Lack of Common Sense
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...glares in response to Corelli's polite greeting, prophetically recites some Bible verses, and walks away. Dr. Iannis , Pelagia, and Carlo interrupt Corelli again a few minutes later. Carlo is in a... (full context)
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...thing, which is why the entire island knows the same jokes about Mussolini. Carlo and Dr. Iannis worry that someone else will also figure it out, and, catching this, Pelagia drops the... (full context)
Chapter 41. Snails
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Dr. Iannis looks out the window to see Corelli sneaking up on Lemoni. Psipsina settles herself on... (full context)
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Lemoni and Dr. Iannis disappear into one tunnel and Corelli and Pelagia move down another. Corelli feels content until... (full context)
Chapter 43. The Great Big Spiky Rustball
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That evening, Dr. Iannis is angry and perplexed when a mass of sandy, unrecognizable people turn up in his... (full context)
Chapter 44. Theft
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...coop and beats them. Finally, he grabs them by their collars and drags them to Dr. Iannis 's house. Dr. Iannis, Pelagia, and Corelli all come outside and are shocked by what... (full context)
Chapter 46. Bunnios
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...talks back. After four days, Alekos motions to the angel and it follows him to Dr. Iannis 's house. Because the angel scowls when there are Italians or Germans nearby, Alekos understands... (full context)
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The angel introduces himself as Bunnios, but Dr. Iannis can barely understand anything he says. He invites Bunnios in and Pelagia is shocked to... (full context)
Chapter 47. Dr. Iannis Counsels his Daughter
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Dr. Iannis packs his pipe with nasty tobacco and vows to quit smoking. He writes that Cephalonia... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis squeezes Pelagia's hand and says that it's a simple fact that a family's honor is... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis tells Pelagia not to be ashamed, but says he's aware that she and Corelli are... (full context)
Chapter 48. La Scala
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La Scala is gathered at Dr. Iannis 's house and Weber tells Corelli that Italians are making off with Greeks' ration cards.... (full context)
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...bring one of the prostitutes to even out the gender divide. When Pelagia insists that Dr. Iannis would throw them out, Weber jokes that La Scala could bring armored cars and come... (full context)
Chapter 49. The Doctor Advises the Captain
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As Dr. Iannis and Corelli try to figure out an appropriate substitute for a mandolin string, Dr. Iannis... (full context)
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Dr. Iannis is touched but insists Corelli doesn't understand. He goes on to explain that all Greeks... (full context)
Chapter 51. Paralysis
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...sent troops to Cephalonia to prepare. Gandin doesn't order counter-preparations. La Scala stops meeting at Dr. Iannis 's house and all the Germans and Italians who had become friendly stop seeing each... (full context)
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...next day, General Barge moves troops and General Gandin attempts to contact Rome. Pelagia and Dr. Iannis prepare medical supplies and Corelli attempts unsuccessfully to contact Greek partisans to ask for help. (full context)
Chapter 52. Developments
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Corelli tells the reader that he asked Pelagia and Dr. Iannis to take care of Antonia. They put the mandolin in their trapdoor, along with writings... (full context)
Chapter 55. Victory
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...talking into his radio, trying to get his superiors to help the Italians. They refuse. Dr. Iannis and Pelagia sit in their kitchen, wondering if Corelli is dead. Stamatis and Kokolios knock... (full context)
Chapter 57. Fire
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...and so picks him up. He notices Corelli underneath, still alive. Velisarios takes him to Dr. Iannis . The narrator notes that between four and nine thousand Italians were massacred in Cephalonia... (full context)
Chapter 58. Surgery and Obsequy
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When Velisarios kicks Dr. Iannis 's door open, Pelagia thinks it's the Germans. She's shocked to see Velisarios. Velisarios deposits... (full context)
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Pelagia boils water, tears bandages, and shouts at Dr. Iannis when he suggests he's not qualified. He's too intimidated to resist again. He discovers that... (full context)
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Soon, Pelagia realizes how horrific this surgery is going to be: Dr. Iannis cuts wide holes around the bullet wounds and tells her to do the same. When... (full context)
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Just before dawn, Dr. Iannis and Pelagia bury Carlo. Dr. Iannis puts silver coins on Carlo's eyes and puts a... (full context)
Chapter 59. The Historical Cachette
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Soon, the Germans become interested in taking valuables from the Greeks. Dr. Iannis moves Corelli to the secret room under the trapdoor. They leave the door open unless... (full context)
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Corelli spikes a fever two days later. Pelagia watches for infection and Dr. Iannis assures her that he'll be okay, but he's privately sure that Corelli will die. Corelli... (full context)
Chapter 61. Every Parting is a Foretaste of Death
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On Corelli's last day in Cephalonia, he stays at Dr. Iannis 's. He looks enough like a Greek and speaks well enough that he'd likely fool... (full context)
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...the army and tells him to join the fire brigade or do something else useful. Dr. Iannis excuses himself and leaves Pelagia and Corelli alone. They hold each other and Corelli again... (full context)
Chapter 63. Liberation
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Dr. Iannis , Kokolios, and Stamatis are all taken away, and Pelagia considers committing suicide. She recalls... (full context)
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...his hatred slipping away. He asks for a kiss, grabs Pelagia's wrists, and asks after Dr. Iannis . When she explains that the communists took him, he scoffs that the doctor must've... (full context)
Chapter 64. Antonia
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...Drosoula and Pelagia find purpose in caring for Antonia, who never asks about a father. Dr. Iannis returns after two years in a concentration camp. He kisses Antonia before going to bed.... (full context)
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...that the sunshine was hurting his depressing poetry. During his stay, Pelagia, Drosoula, Antonia, and Dr. Iannis do well for themselves. Their only issue is that they adopt a cat that they... (full context)
Chapter 65. 1953
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...when she finds the water at the top of the well, though it quickly disappears. Dr. Iannis discovers his screwdriver is suddenly magnetic, and Antonia finds hedgehogs, owls, and other animals in... (full context)
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...Finally, Drosoula, Pelagia, and Antonia stand outside and look at what's left of the house. Dr. Iannis is crushed inside. (full context)
Chapter 67. Pelagia's Lament
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Pelagia remembers Dr. Iannis . She remembers how he'd put her to sleep as a child and then, during... (full context)
Chapter 68. The Resurrection of the History
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...closer, but Pelagia wallows in guilt and remorse. She fixates on the fact that while Dr. Iannis tried to save them, she only thought about saving herself. She spends all of her... (full context)
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At breakfast the next morning, Drosoula and Antonia brightly discuss that they had dreams about Dr. Iannis the night before. They tell a distraught Pelagia that he told both of them that... (full context)
Chapter 69. Bean by Bean the Sack Fills
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...the mail from all over the world. They're written in Greek and she wonders if Dr. Iannis 's soul is traveling or if they're from Corelli, but reasons they're both dead. She... (full context)