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One of the Ionian Islands, northwestern Greece. With adjacent small islands, it forms the Corfu department (pop., 2001: 111,081) of Greece; the town of Corfu (pop., 2001: 39,048) is the departmental capital. Corfu occupies 229 sq mi (593 sq km). It was settled by the Corinthians about 734 BC. Off its coast the first naval battle in Greek history was fought, between Corfu and Corinth about 664 BC. About 435 BC it sought the aid of Athens against Corinth, precipitating the Peloponnesian War. A Roman possession in 229 BC, it later passed to the Byzantines, then to the Normans. It was ruled by Venice from 1386 to 1797 and was under British administration from 1815 until it was ceded to Greece in 1864. Germans and Italians occupied it during World War II. It is now a popular tourist destination and produces olive oil, figs, oranges, lemons, and wine.
Variants of CORFU
Corfu Greek Kérkira
This entry comes from Encyclopædia Britannica Concise. For the full entry on Corfu, visit Britannica.com.