Sofoklis Dousmanis
Sofoklis Dousmanis was a Greek naval officer. Distinguished in the Balkan Wars
Balkan Wars
The Balkan Wars were two conflicts that took place in the Balkans in south-eastern Europe in 1912 and 1913.By the early 20th century, Montenegro, Bulgaria, Greece and Serbia, the countries of the Balkan League, had achieved their independence from the Ottoman Empire, but large parts of their ethnic...

, he became twice the chief of the Greek Navy General Staff, and occupied the post of Navy Minister in 1935.

Sofoklis Dousmanis was born in Corfu
Corfu is a Greek island in the Ionian Sea. It is the second largest of the Ionian Islands, and, including its small satellite islands, forms the edge of the northwestern frontier of Greece. The island is part of the Corfu regional unit, and is administered as a single municipality. The...

 in 1868, a descendant of the Dushmani family
Dushmani family
The Dushmani family was an Albanian feudal family, which ruled during the 14th and 15th centuries a territory in northern Albania, from Zadrima plain to Albanian Alps.- History :...

 and brother of Viktor Dousmanis
Viktor Dousmanis
Viktor Dousmanis was a Greek military officer, who rose to the rank of Lieutenant General. He distinguished himself as a staff officer during the Balkan Wars and became a leading royalst during the National Schism, serving three terms as Chief of the Hellenic Army General Staff.- Life :A...

. He graduated from the Hellenic Naval Academy
Hellenic Naval Academy
The Hellenic Naval Academy is a military academy with university status and has the responsibility to educate and suitably train competent Naval Officers for the Hellenic Navy. Its full name is Hellenic Naval Cadets Academy and was founded in 1845. The academy is one of the oldest educational...

 in 1888. He was a very capable officer, with royalist convictions. Ranked Commander, he served as chief of staff (αρχιεπιστολεύς) for the Naval Exercises Squadron in 1910, and as Director of the Administrative Section of the Royal Navy General Staff (Γενικόν Επιτελείον Ναυτικού) in 1912. Upon the outbreak of the First Balkan War
First Balkan War
The First Balkan War, which lasted from October 1912 to May 1913, pitted the Balkan League against the Ottoman Empire. The combined armies of the Balkan states overcame the numerically inferior and strategically disadvantaged Ottoman armies and achieved rapid success...

 in October 1912, he was appointed captain of the fleet's flagship, the new cruiser Georgios Averof
Greek cruiser Georgios Averof
Georgios Averof is a Greek warship which served as the flagship of the Royal Hellenic Navy during most of the first half of the 20th Century...

, as well as chief of staff for the Aegean Fleet under Rear Admiral Pavlos Kountouriotis
Pavlos Kountouriotis
Pavlos Kountouriotis was a Greek admiral and naval hero during the Balkan Wars and the first and third President of the Second Hellenic Republic.-Family Background:The Kountouriotes was a prominent Arvanite family from the island of Hydra...

. In this capacity he participated in the two victorious naval battles of Elli
Naval Battle of Elli
The Battle of Elli , also known as the Battle of the Dardanelles, took place near the mouth of the Dardanelles on as part of the First Balkan War between the fleets of Greece and the Ottoman Empire...

 and Lemnos
Naval Battle of Lemnos
The Battle of Lemnos , fought on , was a naval battle during the First Balkan War, which defeated the second and last attempt of the Ottoman Empire to break the Greek naval blockade of the Dardanelles and reclaim supremacy over the Aegean Sea from Greece....


He was promoted to Rear Admiral in 1914 in recognition of his services and was appointed Commander of the Battleships Squadron. In June 1915, Dousmanis succeeded Kountouriotis as chief of the Navy General Staff. As a committed royalist, he chose the side of King Constantine I
Constantine I of Greece
Constantine I was King of Greece from 1913 to 1917 and from 1920 to 1922. He was commander-in-chief of the Hellenic Army during the unsuccessful Greco-Turkish War of 1897 and led the Greek forces during the successful Balkan Wars of 1912–1913, in which Greece won Thessaloniki and doubled in...

 in the National Schism. As a result, when the King's opponent, Eleftherios Venizelos
Eleftherios Venizelos
Eleftherios Venizelos was an eminent Greek revolutionary, a prominent and illustrious statesman as well as a charismatic leader in the early 20th century. Elected several times as Prime Minister of Greece and served from 1910 to 1920 and from 1928 to 1932...

 imposed his authority on the entire country in June 1917, Dousmanis was dismissed and sent to internal exile in Santorini
Santorini , officially Thira , is an island located in the southern Aegean Sea, about southeast from Greece's mainland. It is the largest island of a small, circular archipelago which bears the same name and is the remnant of a volcanic caldera...

. After the Venizelist electoral defeat in 1920 and the return of King Constantine, he was recalled to active service and served as Chief of the Aegean Fleet (January-April 1921) and again Chief of the Royal Navy General Staff (November 1921-October 1922). He retired with the rank of Vice Admiral in January 1923.

When the Plastiras coup attempt
Greek coup attempt of 1935
The attempted coup of March 1935 was a Venizelist revolt against the People's Party government of Panagis Tsaldaris, which was suspected of pro-royalist tendencies....

 erupted in March 1935, Dousmanis was appointed by the government of Panagis Tsaldaris
Panagis Tsaldaris
Panagis Tsaldaris was a revered conservative politician and leader for many years of the conservative People's Party in the period before World War II...

 as Minister for Naval Affairs (March-October 1935) and was promoted to full Admiral. During the same period (March 1935-January 1936) he was Chairman of the National Fleet Donation Fund, whose aim was to collect money for the purchase of a big battleship and the repair of damaged fleet ships resulting from the repression of the Plastiras movement. Dousmanis received a large number of both Greek and foreign decorations. He died in Athens on 6 January 1952. He was married to Maria Vouros; they had no children.

In 1939 Sofoklis Dousmanis wrote a book about his experiences as Captain of the Georgios Averof.
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