Church of St. George of the Greeks / church of St. Symeon

Built in the 1360s, this once magnificent cathedral presents a rare example in the East of an Orthodox Church built in the Cypriot Gothic style of the Lusignans. However, the virtue of its functioning as the Orthodox cathedral of the town, it also incorporates some minor functional elements borrowed from local Byzantine architecture. Moreover, incorporated relic-like into its south aisle is an older and much smaller Franco-Byzantine church. This is widely assumed to be St. Symeon’s chapel, due to the number of 16th century sources that refer to the existence of a church of that name in connection with the larger cathedral of St. George. It is also thought by some to be the original Greek cathedral and the medieval sea of Famagusta’s orthodox bishopric, possibly having once contained the tomb of St. Epiphanios.

 

Due to its location, the church was heavily bombarded during the siege of 1570-71. Note how the exterior of the apse has been pitted by cannon balls.

 

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