PAOK Football Team
PAOK : Panthessalonikan Athletic Club Of Konstantinoupolis
PAOK F.C. Foundation: 1926
PAOK F.C. Team Colors: Black & White
PAOK F.C. Stadium: Toumba (Capacity: 28,701)
Paok Football Team History
Paok Thessalonikis is the club that represents and epitomizes the lost territories of the former Byzantine Empire. It was founded by Greeks from Constantinoupolis (Istanbul in Turkish), who had been forced to flee and seek refuge in Greece.
Indicative of the heritage of Paok, is the club’s emblem, the Two Headed Eagle, which represents the glory of the Holy City and the Byzantine Empire. The club was created by people who were not merely interested in sporting activities.
Paok is the historic continuation of Ermis, the Constantinopolitan Athletic and Cultural body which was created by the Greek inhabitants of Pera, in the heart of Constantinoupolis (Instanbul) in 1875. The desire of these people to express and support their Hellenism within Turkey, drove them to the creation of this body. In the aftermath of the 1922 Asia Minor catastrophe, the Greeks of Constantinoupolis, Ionia and the rest of Turkey renamed the club from Ermis to Pera Club in line with the new constitution imposed by Kemal Ataturk. Despite the constant attacks the Greek population was subjected to, which ultimately forced them to flee the lands of their forefathers, Pera Club continued to succeed while Greeks that remained in the city.
The first section to be founded was Paok football team in 1928, other sections (such as basketball, volleyball, athletics, swimming, water polo, boxing and cycling) were introduced later. Paok football team was placed in the second division of the local championship in Thessaloniki.
Paok football team first emblem was a four-leaf clover which represented hope in all its glory. The leaves were of a green colour and on the four leaves, the initials, P.A.O.K., were depicted. The historic Two Headed Eagle of the Byzantine Empire, symbol of glory and sovereignty was established as the emblem of Paok football team after April 1929. The Two Headed Eagle had a crown and was grasping a sword. The sword represented the readiness to encounter any enemies that may arise and the crown symbolized the city of the King, Cnstantinoupili.
Initially, the Eagle contained only one head, peering towards the east, where the permanent enemies of the Byzantine Empire resided. However, after the invasion of Constantinoupoli by the Franks, another head was added to symbolize that enemies existed on all sides, east and west.
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