CYPRUS: Southern Nicosia – Ethnological Museum – House of Hadjigeorgakis Kornesiso

The House of Hadjigeorgakis Kornesisois is located at Patriarchou Grigoriou 20 near the Archbishopric in the neighbourhood of Saint Antonios. It was the area where the rich Greek used to live and the mansion is the most important example of urban architecture of the last century of Ottoman rule that survived in old Nicosia. It is quite interesting and worth a visit, the entrance is free.

The interior arrangement of the Ottoman houses is generally standardized and uniform. It is probably a continuation from Byzantine architecture, but unfortunately only limited data have been preserved concerning this issue.

On the upper storeys of the houses, where the family spent most of their time, the architectural design follows the everyday ds of the household, such as rest, entertainment, work, hospite tc. The wooden carved decorations of ceilings form part of the architectural design and their function is to subdivide the rooms into smaller spaces. In particular, the ceilings in the kalos-odas (reception room), bas-odas and kafe-odas, divided the room inio two decorative areas, while in the other rooms, like the hall, into three decorative areas. Thus, there were two or three individually decorated ceilings within the same area.

Undoubtedly, the interior decoration contributed to the welfare of those living in the house, especially the women who spent most of their time in the house. Moreover, the rich decoration was indicative of the wealth and prosperity of the owner. In the house of the Dragoman Hadjigeorgakis Kornesios, there is a wooden carved decorated ceiling in the kalos-odas. It is the most elaborate, gold-plated and painted carved ceiling preserved in Cyprus.

Some other wooden carved decorations of ceilings from urban houses of Cyprus are also presented in this section of the exhibition. The elaborate decoration and intricate patterns, the style and the colours still in a good state of preservation are impressive. Even in their simplest form, the geometric motifs and plants or fruits are remarkable because of their harmony and cohesiveness as well as the skill of craftsmanship.  –  Ethnological Museum


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