Greeks in Germany

Greeks in Germany
Staatsangehörigkeit Griechenland in Deutschland.png
Distribution of Greek nationals in Germany
Total population
394,000 (2014.)[1]
Regions with significant populations
Frankfurt Rhine Main Region, Munich, Stuttgart Metropolitan Region
German, Greek
Predominantly Greek Orthodox Church

The Greeks in Germany form a significant community with a population of roughly 400,000 people according to the Federal Statistical Office of Germany, on December 31, 2014.[2]


Early Greek workers in Germany, in 1956

The first Greeks came during the time of the Roman Empire to Central Europe.

Significant immigration from Greece to Germany started around 1700, when the Ottoman Empire opened its borders. The first community was found in Leipzig at this time.

The second wave of immigration was when Otto of Wittelbach became King of Greece as Otto of Greece. Many Greeks came as students to Bavaria.

The Greek population of today came mostly after World War II. West Germany needed employees for their expanding industry. In East Germany, Greek communists came as political refugees until 1973.

Many Greeks were relocated to German Democratic Republic during the Greek Civil War.


The place where the Griechenhaus stood, a court of Greek merchants in Leipzig

The first Greek schools were created because of the number of Greeks immigrating over to Germany. Since the first Greek school built in 1960 and up until 1990, over 1 million Greeks had immigrated to Germany. About 800,000 of those Greeks had after either a long-term or a short term stay had gone back to Greece. Nowadays, every fifth of an estimated 47,000 students of Greek origin attends one of 35 Greek schools in Germany.

The Greek are a successful minority. Second-generation Greek students were more likely to attend a Gymnasium (college preparatory school) than their ethnic German counterparts.[3]


The Greek Salvator church in Munich

The population of the Greek community in Germany was estimated by the Federal Statistical Office of Germany to be 294,891 people on December 31, 2007.[1] The number increases significantly in other estimations, as the Federal Foreign Office of Germany gives an estimated population of 320,000 people,[4] while the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece steps it up to 380,000.[5]

Year 1967 1970 1973 1976 1979 1982 1985
Persons 200,961 342,891 407,614 353,733 296,803 300,824 280,614
Year 1988 1991 1994 1997 2000 2001 2003
Persons 274,973 336,893 355,583 363,202 365,438 390,843 486,543

Among the major German cities Offenbach am Main and Stuttgart had the highest share of Greek migrants in 2011 according to German Census data. [6] Munich was home to the largest Greek community in Germany.

Greek Muslims

There are some members of the Muslim minority of Greece among the some 350,000 Greeks living in Germany who are ethnic Turks or who espouse a Turkish identity.[7] The majority of Turks immigrated from Western Thrace.[8] In the 1960s and 1970s, the Thracian tobacco industry was affected by a severe crisis and many tobacco growers lost their income. This resulted in many Muslims leaving their homes and immigrating to Germany with estimates suggesting that today there are now between 12,000[9] and 25,000[10] residing in Germany.

Notable people

This Greek tavern was founded 1882 in Neckargemuend near Heidelberg

See also


  1. ^ a b "Foreign Population". Federal Statistical Office of Germany. Retrieved 2009-01-18. 
  2. ^ Migrationsbericht 2014
  3. ^ Panagiotis Kouparanis: Migrantenkinder mit Bildungserfolg retrieved 20 January 2008
  4. ^ "Greece". Federal Foreign Office of Germany. Retrieved 2009-01-18. 
  5. ^ "Germany". Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Greece. Archived from the original on 2009-08-01. Retrieved 2009-01-18. 
  6. ^ "Kartenseite: Griechen in Deutschland - Landkreise". 2017-03-26. Retrieved 2017-04-23. 
  7. ^ Westerlund & Svanberg 1999, 320-321.
  8. ^ Council of Europe: Parliamentary Assembly 2007, 118.
  9. ^ Clogg 2002, 84.
  10. ^ International Assembly of Western Thrace Turks. "POLITICAL AND CIVIL ORGANISATION COMMISSION". Retrieved 2010-05-19. 


  • Clogg, Richard (2002). Minorities in Greece: Aspects of a Plural Society. C. Hurst & Co. Publishers. ISBN 1-85065-705-X. .
  • Council of Europe: Parliamentary Assembly (2007). Parliamentary Assembly: Working Papers 2007 Ordinary Session 22–26 January 2007. Council of Europe. ISBN 92-871-6191-7. .
  • Westerlund, David; Svanberg, Ingvar (1999). Islam Outside the Arab World. Palgrave Macmillan. ISBN 0-312-22691-8. .

Further reading

Greeks In Germany

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