Five minutes’ walk north of the Hadjigeorgakis Kornesios Mansion stands a rather grand complex of buildings centred on the Archbishop’s Palace, official residence and offices of the Archbishop, and closed to visitors. Built in the early 1960s to celebrate independence, and rebuilt in the 1980s following virtual destruction during the 1974 Nikos Samson coup, it exudes a sense of spaciousness that is missing in much of the rest of the city. Until 2008 a gargantuan statue of Archbishop Makarios III stood before the palace, but it was moved (perhaps as a result of negative comments about its artistic merit, or as an attempt to signal a willingness to consider reconciliation) and now overlooks the car park at Makarios’s tomb. The two busts which remain in front of the palace are those of archbishops Kyprianos and Sopronios – the former was executed, together with over four hundred prominent Greek Cypriots, by the Turks in 1821; the latter was in office when the British took over the island, and was the first to articulate the demand for enosis (union) with Greece.

 

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