Medieval Museum and Fort of Larnaca

Trip Start Oct 25, 2009
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Trip End Nov 02, 2009


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Flag of Cyprus  , Larnaca,
Monday, October 26, 2009

THE CASTLE OF LARNACA

(The Medieval Museum of Larnaca found on the 2nd floor of the castle).



The earliest reference to the construction of the Larnaca Fort is 1380 A.D. During the Ottoman occupation a new renovation was made dating 1625 A.D.  It was used as a prison, as it was during early British rule.  It is now used as a local Medieval Museum, and  its inner courtyard is used as an open air garden-theatre during the summer months, by kind permission of the Director or Antiquities.





THE TOUZLA MOSQUE

(11th century)



It is situated near the Metropolis Square, and the Church of the Savior, on Metropolitou Nicomedias Street.  It was turned into a Mosque after the Ottoman occupation of 1571.



Before that it used to be the Catholic Church of the Holy Cross.  Built in the 10th or 11th century, this church was founded as an Orthodox Basilica, but, as can be observed, one of its characteristic three corridors was demolished. Its Byzantine origin is also indicated by recently discovered Byzantine wall paintings of Saint George.



The minaret is built on the foundation of the bell tower.  Opposite this mosque there is an elegant stone built public water fountain of the Venetian period reused by the Ottoman aquaduct of 1747.



It survives in a very good condition and it is decorated with an engraved –clock in Latin characters.  According to historical sources the Venetian governor's building was also there.  This part of the town known in Medieval times as Larnacho – Larnaca.






BEYUK OR KEBIR TZAMI                                                   Build in the 16th century to serve the Turkish community of Larnaka. It is situated at the end of Athens Avenue, just opposite the Larnaca Castle.

It is perhaps the first Ottoman mosque in Cyprus. 
The Ottomans landed their armies in Larnaca in 1570 without any Venetian resistance. Having Larnaca as their supply and naval base, the Turks conquered the whole of the island in 1571. 
Before it became a mosque, Beyuk Tzami was a Catholic Church devoted to Santa Katerina and it was probably built at the time of Catherine Cornaro, last Queen of the Lusignians (1468 – 1489).



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