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Maria Rousou (1902-1957): The Trailblazing Physician

Born in 1902 in Limassol, Maria Rousou studied medicine at the University of Athens with a scholarship from the then Archbishop of Cyprus, at a time when the field of medicine was strictly male-dominated. She married Heracles Michaelides. On her mother's side, she hailed from the Mavromichaleos family of the hero of the Greek Revolution of 1821, Petrobey Mavromichalis, from the region of Mani in Laconia.

During the 1930s, she maintained her clinic in Limassol but also visited patients in surrounding villages when they couldn't come to the city. She always worked with altruism and philanthropy, often treating the poor without accepting payment, and sometimes leaving money under their pillows. She founded and served as the president of the first Association of Women Scientists in Limassol, contributing significantly to the social education and emancipation of women in our region.

She passed away at a young age of 55 and was buried in the Cemetery of Agios Nikolaos in Limassol.


Special thanks to journalist/researcher Chrysanthos Chrysanthou for providing the photos and valuable assistance.