History of sponge diving
References - More Info
We would like to thank Mr Kyrannis, the Kalymnos Archives, the Maritime Museum and local authors of books related to sponge diving for the valuable information and images we got provided.
You can learn more, by visiting the following links:
Also, you 'll find a vast amount of relevant information, by searching the web.
There are several ways of shipping, depending on the quantity and the transportation duration.
Our products can be sent either compressed (to reduce the volume and the shipping costs) or at their natural size, depending on your preferences.
You can have them unpackaged or you can choose the packaging that you like (elegant box or plain bag), carrying our logo or yours.
Means of shipping:
- Mail office (small and medium quantities)
- Airplane (medium and large quantities)
- Container (very large quantities).
In any case, we choose the best solution, according to your needs and preferences.
Our enterprise exports its products to all countries, providing the documents necessary for customs clearance.
The sponge was first mentioned in the works of Aristotle, Homer and Plato. Since ancient times, the life and culture of Kalymnos Island has been linked to this sea creature. Due to this fact, Kalymnos even to nowadays is known as the "Sponge Diver's" island. Sponge diving has long been a common occupation in Kalymnos and sponges were the main source of income of Kalymnians, bringing wealth to the island and making it famous throughout the Mediterranean.
Even today, sponge diving, with all its traditions and history still forms the very soul of the people of this island. A celebration called “Sponge Week” takes place on the island each year one week after Easter, to honor the relationship between the people of Kalymnos and the sea sponges, which are also known as “Kalymnian gold”. On these occasions, people sing, dance and eat traditional food.
The first days, after the arrival, the sponges were being scattered under the sun. There, the sponge traders made the deals and buy the merchandise.
Sponges were then carried to the place of processing, where specialized staff started the procedure.
However, we should observe that the sponges where pre-processed on the boats. There, the sailors stepped on them to get rid of the fluids (called “milk”) and then beat them with wooden sticks. The latter process was taking place for a couple of days.
When the sponges were arriving to the warehouses, they got clipped in order to have a better and more symmetrical shape. Afterwards, the sponges were submerged in acid liquid and sea water, in order to get cleaned from the sand. Last, they were submerged in water and lime so for the nice white-yellow colour to appear.
It is considered to be the most resistant out of all the sponge species. Its origin is the Mediterranean Sea (the Aegean Sea and the North Coast of Africa). The best quality elephant ears are fished in South Italy.
Its appearance is similar to Silk, but it is thinner.
Due to its durability, it is mainly used for industrial use, abrasion and cleaning of surfaces like leather, glass, porcelain, pottery etc. Most of these sponges are perfectly rounded, by nature, and look like funnels or hats and consequently are used as decorative elements.
Most of the buyers prefer it in its natural brown color.
It is the second most popular sponge species. It originates from Aegean Sea, Ionian Sea, Adriatic Sea and South Italy.
Its size varies from 2 to about 5 inches. It is harder and more compact than Honeycomb, because it has smaller holes. Most of the buyers prefer it bleached.
Despite the fact that it is a very durable sponge, its use is limited, because of its small size. It is mainly used for facial and baby cleaning.
This is the most popular sponge type. Its origin is the Mediterranean Sea (the Aegean Sea and the North Coast of Africa).
Its size varies from 3 to about 13 inches and can be found in two types.
- Forms. They have their natural, perfectly round shape (as fished)
- Cuts. Sponges that have been created from carving larger sponges.
They can be found either at their natural colour (brown) or bleached, depending on your choice.
It is mainly used by adults and children for bathing. It is extremely skin-friendly, does not cause allergies and, apart from being used for skin cleaning, it also removes dead cells. Many people also use it for general cleaning, because it soaks up large quantity of water and cleans at the same time itself, by shedding soap suds and dirt, without the need of much water (like synthetic sponges do). Also, it can be used for painting surfaces (e.g. wooden surfaces, walls). Its cellular surface creates harmonic and artistic shapes.
Our company has been engaged in the processing and wholesale of sponges since 1930. We are the largest sponge exports company in Greece, we process several thousands of kilos every year and we can fulfil any order, no matter how big it is.
Generally, sponges originate from the Mediterranean Sea, the Caribbean Sea, the Philippines and the Gulf of Mexico. We specialize in the Mediterranean sponge, which is characterized by its great durability, exquisite quality and special characteristics.
Our basic products are "Honeycomb", "Silk" and "Elephant ears" types of sponges, which originate from the Mediterranean Sea (the Aegean Sea and the North Coast of Africa) and are considered to be the most widespread species.
Our export activity stretches all over the world and we supply the largest firms involved in the sponge trade.
We combine the great quality of and the really competitive prices of our sponges, with the aim to offer our customers major satisfaction.
Important: Sponges from other origins do not differ much from the Mediterranean sponges, as far as appearance is concerned, a fact which could be misleading. Therefore, it is very important that you always ask for the best and most reliable suppliers.