The History of Cyprus is certainly a very interesting one. Cyprus is one of the most popular tourist destinations within the Mediterranean. It is the third largest island within the Mediterranean and it started off as a former British Colony. Whilst over 2 million tourists flock there each year, hardly anybody knows the true history behind the country. By understanding the history it allows you to appreciate the way of life and the culture of Cyprus a whole lot more.
How Cyprus Has Evolved
Cyprus has always been a country full of love and war. According to a myth, the goddess Aphrodite was born within the country and she represented beauty and love. If you think of the word “Aphrodisiac” you will see that it closely matches the goddesses name and it is thought that was where the word actually came from.
Aphrodite is actually the reason why so many couples now flock to the island. They believe that the island is one of the most romantic of them all and it is a particular favourite when it comes to wedding destinations. The myth is that if you get married in Cyprus you will have a happy and everlasting marriage. Of course whether that is true or not remains to be seen but there is no denying that the setting is very romantic.
It has only been in the last twenty years that evidence has been found regarding ancient Cyprus and what might have gone on. According to research and finding, the earliest people to be in Cyprus were known as “Aetokremnos” and they lived mainly on the islands south coast. That was roughly in the year 10,000 BC. At the same sort of time there were findings that have suggested that there were two quite short lived populations on the east and the west coasts of the island too. However not much is known about the two or how they died out.
The most interesting thing about Cyprus’s history is that there seems to be a gap between the ancient population and the more settled population in 8200 BC. It is a mystery what happened to them and it is something that archaeologists would love to find out.
Generally the history of Cyprus involves people capturing the island, purchasing the island and fighting over the island. In 1192 “Guy of Lusignan” a French knight, purchased the island because he had recently lost his own kingdom to the Templars.
It wasn’t until 1960 that Cyprus actually gained independent status. By this time there were two main populations living happily on the island and they were the Greeks and the Turks. The Cyprus flag was developed in the same year and it represents two olive branches under a picture of the island and that is to symbolise peace. Before the independence of the island it was packed full of violence and war.
However the peace did not last long and there was a Turkish invasion of the island in the 1970’s. They were not happy living side by side with the Greeks and so they took the law into their own hands.
These days however Cyprus is a much more peaceful country. The days of war are long over and the culture and the history of Cyprus is now celebrated by its local people. The history is definitely an interesting one and it is worth knowing if you are planning on moving to the country.