HISTORY ETHNOGRAPHY NATURE WINE-MAKING SITE MAP
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SIR SAMUEL WHITE BAKER
CYPRUS AS I SAW IT IN 1879
page 20

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upon the walls the British flag was floating. W e landed upon the quay. This formed a street, the sea upon one side, faced by a row of houses. A s with all Turkish possessions, decay had stamped the town : the masonry of the quay was in many places broken down, the waves had undermined certain houses, and in the holes thus washed out by the action of water were accumulations of recent filth. Nevertheless, enormous improvements had taken place since the English occupation. An engineer was already employed in repairing the quay, and large blocks of • carefully faced stone (a sedimentary limestone rock of very recent formation) were being laid upon a bed of concrete to form a permanent sea-wall. The houses which lined the quay were for the most part stores, warehouses, and liquor-shops. Among these the Custom House, the Club, Post Office, and Chief Commissioner's were prominent as superior buildings. There was a peculiar character in the interior economy of nearly all houses in Larnaca; it appeared that heavy timber must have been scarce before the town was built, as the upper floor was invariably supported by stone arches of considerable magnitude, which sprang from the ground-floor level. These arches were uniform throughout the town, and the base-of the arch was the actual ground, without any pillar or columnar support ; so that in the absence of a powerful beam of timber, the top of the one-span arch formed a support for the joists of the floor above. In large houses numerous arches gave an imposing appearance to the architecture of the ground floors, which were generally used as warehouses. Even the wooden joists were imported poles of fir, thus proving the scarcity of natural forests. The roofs of the houses Β 2

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