Favorites in Archaeology: Salamis, Cyprus

I had the opportunity to explore the extensive Roman ruins of Salamis, which is considered one of the best archaeological sites on Cyprus, while traveling around North of the UN Buffer Zone. While wandering around the ruins, it is easy to imagine the bustling city it once was. Salamis became the ancient capital of Cyprus as far back as 11 BC by the Greeks and was subsequently occupied by a number of civilizations (i.e. Egyptians to Romans). Roman emperors Trajan and Hadrian commissioned some of the buildings; construction was conducted primarily after an earthquake in 76 AD. There are Romans baths, mosaics, an amphitheater etc. The city was destroyed by an invasion around 674 AD, forcing the occupants to the area around Famagusta/the southern half of Cyprus.

The site was looted constantly until 1952, when excavations by the Department of Antiquities began. Excavations were halted in the summer of 1974, when Turkish forces invaded Cyprus and subsequently occupied the area. Government officials of the Republic of Cyprus have long been concerned about the treatment of this archaeological site, since it is located in the Turkish Republic of Cyprus. Hopefully, UNESCO can declare Salamis a World Heritage Site someday. Archaeological sites tend not to fare well when it comes to war and politics.

Links:

http://www.mcw.gov.cy/mcw/DA/DA.nsf/0/2A17F73DAB6246A3C225727600322BA3?OpenDocument

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salamis,_Cyprus

http://www.herts.ac.uk/heritage-hub/history-on-the-move/articles/salamis

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