Timeline of Cypriot history

This is a timeline of Cypriot history, comprising important legal and territorial changes and political events in Cyprus and its predecessor states. To read about the background to these events, see History of Cyprus. See also the list of presidents of Cyprus.

This is a dynamic list and may never be able to satisfy particular standards for completeness. You can help by expanding it with reliably sourced entries.
Millennia: 1st BC · 1st–2nd · 3rd

Centuries: 10th BC · 9th BC · 8th BC · 7th BC · 6th BC · 5th BC · 4th BC · 3rd BC · 2nd BC · 1st BC

11th century BC

Year Date Event
1400 BC Hellenization of Cyprus after the colonization of Mycenaeans

10th century BC

Year Date Event
1000 BC Emergence of the City States and eventually the Ten City States.

8th century BC

Year Date Event
709 BC The lands of Cyprus were conquered and unified by the Neo-Assyrian Empire under Sargon II.

7th century BC

Year Date Event
669 BC The ten city-kingdoms of Cyprus declared their independence from Assyrian rule.

6th century BC

Year Date Event
570 BC Cyprus was conquered by the Egyptians under Amasis II.
526 BC Amasis died. His son Psammetichus III succeeded him as pharaoh.
525 BC The kingdoms of Cyprus pledged allegiance to Cambyses II of the Achaemenid Persian Empire in anticipation of his invasion of Egypt.
Battle of Pelusium (525 BC): The Persian army wiped out the Egyptian army at Pelusium.

5th century BC

Year Date Event
499 BC Ionian Revolt: Aristagoras, the appointed tyrant of Miletus, rebelled against Persian rule.
Ionian Revolt: With the support of Athens and Eretria, Aristagoras captured Sardis, the capital of the Persian satrapy of Lydia.
Ionian Revolt: The kingdoms of Cyprus joined the revolt.
498 BC Ionian Revolt: The Persian army reestablished control over Cyprus.
450 BC Kition increased in importance.
Phoenician rulers established themselves in Salamis.
411 BC The Teucrid Evagoras I regained the throne of Salamis.
400 BC Evagoras attempted to establish himself as an independent ruler on Cyprus with Athenian help.

4th century BC

Year Date Event
386 BC Under the Treaty of Antakidas, Persian rule over Cyprus was accepted by Athens.
380 BC Persia reconquered Cyprus.
351 BC Pythagoras of Salamis and other Cypriot kings went over to Alexander The Great during the beginning of the siege of Tyre.
350 BC A Cypriot rebellion began.
344 BC The Cypriot rebellion was crushed by Artaxerxes III.
332 BC The siege of Tyre ended.
331 BC Nicocreon began to rule.
325 BC The Archaic and Classical Period ended.
310 BC Nicocreon ended his rule.
Menelaos was made satrap of Cyprus.
306 BC Menelaos ended his time as satrap of Cyprus.
Antigonus began his rule.
301 BC Antigonus ended his rule.
The Ptolemaic Lagid Dynasty began.

2nd century BC

Year Date Event
116 BC Cleopatra sent her son Ptolemy Philometor
109 BC Cleopatra sent Alexander, her son and the brother of Ptolemy IX Lathyros, to Cyprus.
107 BC Alexander returned from Cyprus and was made king of Egypt. Ptolemy campaigned in Palestine.

1st century BC

Year Date Event
58 BC Cyprus became a Roman province.
51 BC Cyprus was placed under the rule of Cleopatra by Julius Caesar.
30 BC The Ptolemaic Lagid Dynasty ended.
Cyprus reverted to Roman rule.

Centuries: 1st · 2nd · 3rd · 4th · 5th · 6th · 7th · 8th · 9th · 10th · 11th · 12th · 13th · 14th · 15th · 16th · 17th · 18th · 19th · 20th

1st century

Year Date Event
45 Paul of Tarsus, St Barnabas and St Mark introduced Christianity to Cyprus and converted the Roman governor Sergius Paulus.

2nd century

Year Date Event
115 Kitos War: A messianic Jewish revolt began which resulted in the massacre of 240,000 Cypriots. Trajan intervened to restore the peace and expelled the Jews from Cyprus.
116 Kitos War: The revolt ended.

4th century

Year Date Event
335 The revolt of the usurper Calocaerus was suppressed by Flavius Dalmatius.
350 Salamis was rebuilt by Constantius II, the son of Constantine, after being destroyed by earthquakes and was renamed Constantia.
395 Cyprus became part of the Byzantine Empire.

7th century

Year Date Event
649 The Arabs under Muawiya invaded and occupied Cyprus.
683 The Arab garrison was withdrawn after its defeat at the hands of Constantine IV.
688 Emperor Justinian II and Caliph al-Malik signed a treaty under whose terms no garrisons were to be stationed in the island, and all taxes collected were to be divided between the Arabs and the Emperor.

10th century

Year Date Event
965 Cyprus was restored to Byzantine rule by Nicepheros Phokas

12th century

Year Date Event
1185 Cyprus became an independent Empire under Isaak Comnenus.
1192 Isaak Comnenus ended his reign.
Richard I of England captured Cyprus on his way to Acre. The island was sold to the Templar Order, who in turn sold it to Guy of Lusignan.
Guy of Lusignan and his descendants began to rule Cyprus as an independent kingdom.
1193 Altheides of Cyprus, the traveling philosopher, was born.

15th century

Year Date Event
1489 The descendants of Guy of Lusignan ended their rule of Cyprus.
Cyprus became an overseas colony of the Venetian Republic after having been purchased from the last member of the Lusignan dynasty.
9 June Ottoman Turks raid Karpas Peninsula.[1][2]

16th century

Year Date Event
1539 Ottoman Turks attack Limassol.[2]
1570 1 July Ottoman Turks invade Cyprus with 80,000 men.
25 July Ottoman army besieges Nicosia.
9 September Nicosia falls to the Turkish invaders. 20,000 Nicosians, Greek and Latin, are killed in the aftermath. About 1,000 survivors are bound and shipped out to be sold in the Constantinople slave markets.
1571 Cyprus ended its time as a Venetian colony.
Having been put under siege the previous year, Famagusta was captured and Cyprus was subjected to Ottoman rule. The first Ottoman settlers arrived.
The Ottomans took Famagusta; Cyprus became a part of the Ottoman Empire. Greeks on the island of Cyprus sided with Venetians to fight off the attacking Ottomans.
1572 A period began during which twenty eight bloody uprisings occurred.

19th century

Year Date Event
1821 The Cypriots sided with Greece in a revolt against Turkish rule. The island's leading churchmen and notables were executed as punishment. 20,000 Christians fled the island.
1869 The Suez Canal opened.
1878 12 July British occupation began. The British took over the administration of the island, by mutual agreement, in order to protect their sea route to India via the Suez Canal. In exchange, Britain agreed to help Turkey against future Russian attacks.
22 July Sir Garnet Joseph Wolseley became Crown commissioner.
1879 Sir Robert Biddulph became Crown commissioner.
1886 Sir Henry Ernest Bulwer became Crown commissioner.
1892 Sir Walter Sendall became Crown commissioner.
1898 Sir William Frederick Haynes Smith became Crown commissioner.

20th century

Year Date Event
1904 Sir Charles King-Harman became Crown commissioner.
1911 Sir Hamilton Goold-Adams became Crown commissioner.
1914 Britain annexed Cyprus in response to Turkey's alliance with Germany and Austro-Hungary in World War I.
1915 Sir John Eugene Clauson became Crown commissioner.
1920 Sir Malcolm Stevenson became Crown commissioner.
1925 Cyprus became a British Crown Colony. Sir Malcolm Stevenson was made governor.
1926 Sir Ronald Storrs became governor.
1931 Greek Cypriots demanding Enosis, the union with Greece, instigated their first serious riots. The government-house in Nicosia was burned down; martial law was declared afterwards and the legislative council was abolished. The Greek National Anthem and the display of the Greek flag were banned. The British invented the terms "Greek Cypriot" and "Turkish Cypriot" and used the latter against the "Greek Cypriots" so as to cease Enosis demands.
1932 Sir Reginald Edward Stubbs became governor.
1933 Sir Herbert Richmond Palmer became governor.
1939 Cypriots fought with the British in World War II, Greek Cypriots demanding Enosis at war's end. The Turkish Cypriots wanted British rule to continue.
Sir William Denis Battershill became governor.
1941 Sir Charles Campbell Woolley became governor.
1946 The British Government began to imprison thousands of displaced Jews in camps on Cyprus.
Sir Reginald Fletcher, Lord Winster, became governor.
1949 The British Government finished imprisoning displaced Jews.
Sir Andrew Barkworth Wright became governor.
1950 Archbishop Makarios III was elected the political and spiritual leader of Cyprus, the head of the autocephalous Cypriot Orthodox Church and leader of the campaign for Enosis with the support of Greece.
1954 Sir Robert Perceval Armitage became governor.
28 July Minister of State for the Colonies, Henry Hopkinson, says that there were certain territories in the Commonwealth 'which, owing to their particular circumstances, can never expect to be fully independent'.[3]
1955 Sir John Harding became governor.
1 April A series of bomb attacks marked the start of a violent campaign for Enosis by the National Organisation of Cypriot Fighters (EOKA) under George Grivas, a Cypriot ex-colonel in the Greek army. Grivas took the name Dighenis and conducted guerrilla warfare from a secret hideout in the Troodos Mountains.
1956 Britain deported Makarios to the Seychelles in an attempt to quell the revolt.
1957 Field Marshal Sir John Harding was replaced by the civilian governor Sir Hugh Foot in a conciliatory move.
1958 27 January First of 2 days of serious rioting by Turkish Cypriots. Seven were killed by British security forces.[3]
7 June Turkish press office in Nicosia is bombed. Inter-communal clashes as Turkish Cypriots invade Greek sector.[3] On 26 June 1984 the Turkish Cypriot leader, Rauf Denktaş, admitted on British channel ITV that the bomb was placed by the Turks themselves in order to create tension.[4] On 9 January 1995 Rauf Denktaş repeated his claim in the Turkish newspaper, Milliyet.[5]
12 June The first massacre between Greeks and Turks on Cyprus. British police released from arrest a group of 35 Greeks in the region of Guenyeli. A Turkish mob attacks the unarmed group, killing some of them.[3]
1959 18 October British minesweeper HMS Burmaston intercepts the Turkish registered boat, Deniz. Loaded with weaponry, the boat is scuttled by its 3-member crew. The crew, all Turkish nationals, are arrested for importing munitions without a permit.[6]
28 October Archbishop Makarios III and Dr. Fazıl Küçük appeal to their respective communities to hand over illegal weapons.[6]
15 November Deadline to hand over illegal weapons.[6]
1960 British occupation ended.
The British, Greek and Turkish governments signed a Treaty of Guarantee to provide for an independent Cypriot state within the Commonwealth of Nations and allow for the retention of two Sovereign Base Areas at Akrotiri and Dhekelia. Under the treaty, each power received the right to take military action in the face of any threat to the constitution. Cyprus became independent of foreign rule. The Greek Cypriot Archbishop Makarios became the first president, with Turkish Cypriot Dr. Kutchuk his vice president. Both had the right of veto. Turkish Cypriots, who formed 18% of the population, were guaranteed the vice-presidency, three out of ten ministerial posts and 30% of jobs in the public service. They were further guaranteed 40% representation in the army and separate municipal services in the five major towns. Overall, a very complex constitution was drafted, which demanded a majority of votes overall as well as within each community for many decisions.
1963 Greek Cypriots began to view the constitution as unworkable and proposed changes abolishing all veto rights and many ethnic clauses; these proposals were rejected by Turkish Cypriots and the Turkish government. Inter-communal fighting erupted. Tylliria was bombarded with napalm bombs. A UN Peace Keeping Force was sent in, but soon proved powerless to prevent incidents. Thousands of Turkish Cypriots retreated into enclaves where they were embargoed by the Greek Cypriots. The UN attempted to supply them with food and medicine. Akritas plan
1964 The Battle of Tylliria takes place. Greek-Cypriot forces storm the Turkish-held Kokkina enclave, prompting a Turkish military intervention and airstrikes on the Greek forces. However, Soviet pressure prevented the Turks from going any further, and when the battle ended after four days of fierce fighting, the Kokkina enclave had been reduced to 50-40% of its original size.
1971 EOKA B' is being created
1973 The Turks emerged from their enclaves.
1974 see Timeline of events in Cyprus, 1974
1975 Turks announced a Federate State in the north, with Rauf Denktaş as leader. UN Forces remained as buffer between the two zones.
1977 Makarios died. He was succeeded by Spyros Kyprianou.
1983 The Turkish Federated State declared itself the independent Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (TRNC), with Denktaş as President. The new state was not recognised by any country except Turkey and was officially boycotted.
Fearing a "second Cyprus", the Greek government adopts a policy of referring to the Turkish community in Greek Thrace as Greek Muslims or Hellenic Muslims, and does not recognise a separate Turkish minority.[7]
1992 UN sponsored talks began between the two sides.
1995 The UN talks ran into the sand, but with a commitment to resume.

21st century

Year Date Event
2001 The European Court of Human Rights found Turkey guilty of continuing human rights violations against the Greek Cypriots.
2003 Cyprus was set to join the European Union in May 2004. Renewed negotiations about the status of the island took place.
23 April The line which divided the two parts of Cyprus was partly opened. Thousands of Turkish and Greek Cypriots crossed the buffer zone to the "other side" after 30 years.
2004 24 April 2004 Annan Plan Referendum: The Annan Plan was accepted by the majority of Turkish Cypriots but overwhelmingly rejected by the Greek Cypriots.
1 May The sovereign Republic of Cyprus joined the European Union, however the EU acquis was suspended in the occupied north, Akrotiri and Dhekelia and the United Nations Buffer Zone.
2008 Demetris Christofias replaces Tassos Papadopoulos as president of the Republic of Cyprus. It was the first time that a leader of the Greek Cypriot communist party, AKEL, had entered the presidential race. He is currently the only communist leader in the European Union.

See also


  1. Har-El, Shai (1995). Struggle for Domination in the Middle East: The Ottoman-Mamluk War, 1485-91. Brill Academic. p. 172. ISBN 9004101802.
  2. 1 2 Mirbagheri, Farid (2010). Historical Dictionary of Cyprus. Scarecrow Press. p. 123. ISBN 0810862980.
  3. 1 2 3 4 "Cyprus Conflict Net".
  4. Arif Hasan Tahsin. "He Anodos Tou _Denktas Sten Koryphe". January 2001. ISBN 9963-7738-6-9
  5. http://gazetearsivi.milliyet.com.tr/Ara.aspx?&ilkTar=09.01.1995&sonTar=10.01.1995&ekYayin=&drpSayfaNo=&araKelime=Rauf%20Denkta%C5%9F%201958%20haziran&gelismisKelimeAynen=&gelismisKelimeHerhangi=&gelismisKelimeYakin=&gelismisKelimeHaric=&Siralama=RANK%20DESC&SayfaAdet=20&isAdv=true
  6. 1 2 3 Mirbagheri, Farid (2009), Historical Dictionary of Cyprus, Scarecrow Press, pp. 45–46
  7. Antoniou, Dimitris (2005). "Western Thracian Muslims in Athens". Balkanologie. IX (1-2).
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