Photos of Salamis, an ancient Greek city-state, Cyprus

Flag of North Cyprus
Images of the World
Flag of Cyprus

Salamis, an ancient Greek city-state

Salamis (or Salamína, Σαλαμίνα, in modern Greek) was an ancient Greek city-state on the east coast of Cyprus, at the mouth of the Pedieos (Kanlı Dere) river, 6 kilometres north of the modern city of Famagusta. The site has been occupied as far back as the eleventh century BCE.

Triple Stone Archway, Salamis
Swimming pool, Salamis
Cupola, bath complex, Salamis
Gymnasium court, Salamis
Latrines, Salamis
Cupola, bath complex, Salamis
Fresco, bath complex, Salamis
Bath house, Salamis
Path and view, Salamis
View from the theatre, Salamis
Theatre, Salamis
Colonnaded Street, Salamis
Climbing snails, Salamis
Kambanopetra Basilica, Salamis
Mosaic floor, Salamis
St. Epiphanios Basilica, Salamis
Roman-era water reservoir, Salamis
Temple of Zeus, Salamis
St Barnabas' Monastery and Icon Museum
St Barnabas' Monastery Museum
St. John the Baptist icons
The Virgin (Eleousa) and child icons
The Virgin Mary icon
Painting, St Barnabas' Monastery

The ruins visible today date to the Roman period, around the 1st century CE. It is the cultural centre of the old city, with a gymnasium, a theatre, an amphitheatre, and public baths. Some mosaic fragments are still visible in cupolas that were roofing those baths. The hypocaust (underfloor heating system) can still be seen. The Theatre of Salamis is from the time of Emperor Augustus (31 BCE to 14 CE); it once could hold 15,000 spectators. Earthquakes destroyed much of it, but it has been partially restored.

There are the remains of two large 4th-century basilicas, the Kambanopetra and the St. Epiphanios Basilica, once the largest basilica in Cyprus. Like many Byzantine basilicas, it was destroyed during Arab raids in the 7th century. There are also still traces of a Roman temple, but not much of it remains.

Nearby, at the western edge of the Salamis necropolis, is the St. Barnabas’ Monastery, devoted to St. Barnabas, the patron saint of Cyprus who was born in Salamis. He is one of the founders of the independent Greek Orthodox church; the monastery and church date from the 1750s. Once the centre of the Cyprus Orthodox Church, it is now an icon museum, holding precious icons and paintings.