Riviera Beach Bungalows, Studios & Superior Hotel Rooms, Kyrenia, North Cyprus

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THROUGH CYPRUS


WITH THE CAMERA,


IN THE AUTUMN OF 1878


By
JOHN THOMSON F.R.G.S.

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[Kyrenia] [Famagusta] [Nicosia] [Lefke] [Limassol] [Paphos] [Larnaca]

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INTRODUCTION

The objects I had in view when—in spite of dangers, some real, some imaginary—I determined to visit Cyprus were two-fold. The first was to obtain a series of photographs of the island and its people; and the second to so supplement these pictures by personal observation, as to present to the public a faithful reproduction of what I saw and heard during my travels.

Had I allowed first impressions to influence me, I should have set my face homeward soon after landing at Larnaca; for in that town I found a number of assembled immigrants bewailing the want of forethought that had brought them and their wares to an “exhausted island, never free from pestilence, and to a poverty-stricken people.

Gloomy forebodings thus greeted me on all sides; but in the end I took what turned out to be the right course. I thought that, after all, I would wait and see things for myself, and pursue my original plan of exploring Cyprus with the “camera,” taking views (as impartial as they were photographic) of whatever might prove interesting on the journey.

The expedition was not accomplished without some toil and discomfort, but I confess to feeling some hope that the labours undergone will not prove to have been altogether wasted, The present work will afford those of my readers who have not visited Cyprus a fair notion of the topography of the country and its resources; and, on the other hand, those who have themselves travelled through the island will find in these volumes a faithful souvenir of their wanderings.
The photographs have been printed in permanent pigments, and therefore, while they supply incontestable evidence of the present condition of Cyprus, they will also afford a source of comparison in after years, when, under the influence of British rule, the place has risen from its ruins.

Although the island has been woefully wrecked by Turkish maladministration, my readers will perceive that it is neither barren nor “exhausted,” and that at no distant day it may regain something at least of its old renown as a centre of commerce in the Levant.

As to its unhealthiness, I have had my own experience of the Famagosta (Famagusta / Gazi Mağusa) fever, which is of a kind that may be set down as akin to the malarious maladies of the Nile Delta, and of all other hot and marshy regions. There is this difference, however, to distinguish the case of Cyprus, its marshes are well defined and limited in area, and in all probability, therefore, may be rendered innoxious by drainage and by the planting of trees.

There is no harbour worthy of the name on any part of the coast; but it appears to me that a spacious haven may be constructed at Famagosta, by making use of a natural breakwater in the shape of a partly-submerged reef of rocks. The old basin is silted up, probably by the joint action of the sea and the alluvial deposit from the mouth of the river Pedæzus.

[Kyrenia] [Famagusta] [Nicosia] [Lefke] [Limassol] [Paphos] [Larnaca]

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