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John Pettitt holding the “Ryder Cup” 1985

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Othello Castle

THE OTHELLO CASTLE

The castle, built by the Lusignans in the 14th century, was being used as one of the main entrances to Famagusta. It is surrounded with a deep ditch. Just above the entrance to the castle lies the St. Mark lion in relief, under which the name of captain ‘Nicolo Foscari’ -the captain who restored the tower- and the year ‘1492’ is inscribed. The castle comprises towers and corridors leading to artillery batteries. There is also a refectory, and a dormitory dating back to the Lusignan times. There are cannons, and iron and stone cannon balls belonging to the Spaniards and Ottomans in the castle yard. Part of Shakespeare’s famous tragedy, ‘Othello’ takes place in a harbour town in Cyprus. The main character of the play, Othello, is introduced as an Algerian (Moor). The playwright is thought to have been misled by the name of the governor of the period: Christophora Moro.

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Othello Castle

SINAN PASA MOSQUE (St. Peter & St. Paul Church)

The inscription on the wall indicating that the church was constructed by a Syrian merchant named Simone Nostrano is thought to have been due to misinformation, as it is now known that the church had been built by a Nestorian Christian named Simon. It has survived the 1571 bombardment because of its strong structure. The North entrance with its unequalled masonry is thought to have been transferred from another place. The interior of the building is quite plain; the ceiling resting on pillars with a flat capital. After conquering the island the Ottomans started to use the church as a mosque.

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Sinan Pasa Mosque

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Venetian Column

VENETIAN COLUMN & ATATÜRK SQUARE

The granite column in the Ataturk square was erected by the Venetians in 1550. It used to bear the St. Mark lion. The Ottomans removed the column and left it in the courtyard of the Sarayonu Mosque. The British re-erected the column in its present location in 1915. The grey granite column is thought to have been transported from a temple in Salamis. The insignia of six Italian families can be seen at the bottom of the column. The copper globe at the top is a later addition. The buildings to the West of the Ataturk Square (government buildings) were constructed during the British colonial rule in early 20th century. They therefore have a distinct look. There is a fountain and a platform with the insignia of Britain on the eastern side of the buildings. The platform was constructed to mark the coronation of Queen Elizabeth in 1953. The governor of Cyprus announced the coronation from this platform.

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