Tuesday, June 2, 2009

PKAP Photos (Tour Day)

These three images are from the Agios Neophytos monastery. Neophytos (1134-1220) was a reclusive monk who moved to this area before it was inhabited. His plan backfired slightly when his reputation drew followers. I was not allowed to photograph anywhere inside the buildings, but outside in the compound was fine. Up the hill to the west of the courtyard was a cave hermitage with brilliant paintings and icons dating back to around 1200.

These two shots are from the ruins of an early basilica with impressive animal mosaics that include tigers and lions to fish, birds, and octopodi. Are these later present because of the their proximity to the sea? Could it be a Ark reference? Other symbolism? Also note the large baptistry below surrounded by a wonderful mosaic design.

These 3 shots are from the Tombs of the Kings in Paphos. While not really for kings, it was for the local elite. This necropolis was begun in the 3rd C. BC and was carved out of the soft stone.

These are exquisite mosaics near Paphos that were unearthed by a plowing farmer in 1960. Since then it has been under continuous excavation. The once home of a wealthy merchant is now called House of Dionysos. With many of the mosaics covered on this winding self guided tour it was an impressive display of historical artistry and wealth needed to complete such a huge project. The site seems to go on and on.

Also included in this section are shots of the Agora located just steps away from the House of Dionysos.