SEISMOGRAPHS OFF THE WALL: At 4.18 p.m. yesterday, a strong earthquake lasting 12 seconds shook Athens and the surrounding areas. Residents of the city panicked, with the destruction in the Ionian Islands fresh in their minds. Many rushed out of their homes and stores into the streets. At about 7 p.m., the Athens Observatory reported that the epicenter had been to the southwest or west of Athens, but this could not be ascertained with any accuracy as the seismographs had become dislodged by the quake. The observatory reported that the quake had been measured at about 5 on the Richter scale. In Corinth about 50 homes were reported damaged. PANAGIS PAPALIGOURAS: In the presence of His Majesty the King (Pavlos) and the prime minister, Field Marshal Alexandros Papagos, Archbishop Spyridon of Athens and All Greece yesterday officiated at the swearing in of Mr Athanassios Kapsalis as deputy to the minister for coordination (Spyros Markezinis), Mr Panagis Papaligouras as trade minister and Christos Evangelatos as deputy minister for reconstruction on the quake-stricken Ionian Islands, to be based in Argostoli. STEPHEN SPENDER: A few days ago, the British poet and theater critic Mr Stephen Spender arrived to visit friends in Athens.