Greek merchant settlement of the northern coast of the Black Sea extends back to classical and Byzantine times. After the founding of Odessa in 1794, Greek and other foreign merchants played a major role in transforming this provincial backwater into one of the leading grain emporiums of Europe, a cosmopolitan city of ethnic diversity and cultural vitality. Dēmētrios Spyridonovich Inglezēs (1773-1844) is a concrete example of the prosperous Greek trader who assimilated to his new environment and engaged in numerous civic endeavors promoting the commercial and urban growth of Odessa during its formative decades. He also retained a sense of Greek identity and participated in the Russian philhellenic movement during the Greek revolt of the 1820s. The experience of this prominent merchant typified that of other successful Greek traders in Odessa and contributes to recent scholarship on that city's Greek community and on the broader theme of historical connections and contacts between Russia and the Greek east in the post-Byzantine era.
Prousis, Theophilus C., "Dēmētrios S. Inglezēs: Greek Merchant and City Leader of Odessa" (1991). History Faculty Publications. 6.