Historical Retrospect

Historical Retrospect

Historical Retrospect

According to the historical facts and information gathered, Deryneia is 700 years old. Yet the archaeological sites and monuments prove that its history goes way back into time.

We do not know in fact how Deryneia got its name. According to Simos Menardos and also J. Goodwin in his book “A historical toponymy of Cyprus” (3rd edition: 1978, p.264) the first people who came here, probably after the Trojan War, were originally from the ancient town Geryneia, located close to Pylos in Peloponnese. The town was ruled by the noble king Nestor, who was referred as Gerynion by Homer, due to him originating from Geryneia. In his book “Choria ke polities tis Kiprou” (Villages and States of Cyprus) Nikos Kliridis seems to agree with this theory. What is more, another theory for Deryneias name would be that it got its name from a Franc or English general who camped in the region “Vounos” (mountain), close to Deryneia. The above facts have also been studied by the local music composer K. Katsantonis, whose study was published in 1991.

What we consider today as evidence of Deryneias name is the ancient settlement southeast of the town called “Therimeio” or “Therineio”. The name has later been changed into” Dryneio”, “Dryneia” and finally Deryneia.

Current Form

At the golf of Ammochostos, a historical and cosmopolitan city at the east coast of Cyprus lays the beautiful town of Deryneia; Just 5km away from Ammochostos and 2km away from the beautiful blue sea and its golden beaches.

The “Attilas Wire” prohibits since 1974 to achieve communication with Ammochostos and its sea, whereas 70% of the location is occupied resulting in locals losing their properties.

The population of the Municipality is 7.500, including 1.000 immigrants living there, whereas 3.000 immigrants of the occupied parish “Kato Deryneia” scattered around Cyprus and abroad are not included.

Even though the Turkish evasions have hampered the historical, trading and touristic progress and development of the Municipality, the residents have managed through progressiveness and hard work together with the efforts of local authorities to develop Deryneia to the greatest level.

The residents are farmers or work for the touristic industry of Agia Napa and Protario or at alternation and craft industry. The farmers are mainly occupied with the production of vegetables, especially strawberries. Deryneia has a long tradition concerning strawberry agriculture as it holds the first place in its production, reaching 60% in whole Cyprus. For this reason, every 2 years, in May, a Cypriot Strawberry Festival takes place, welcoming all the residents, visitors and tourists.

Moreover, as far as Culture is concerned Deryneia respects and preserves its traditions through music, dancing and theater groups. Furthermore, Deryneia has managed to show many achievements concerning athletics. The athletic association “Anagennisi”, established in 1920, is one of the most historical associations in Cyprus having football and volleyball teams for men and women. Additionally, the National Association “Dimitris Christodoulou” has a futsal team. Deryneia also accomplishes successes in racing circuit and shooting sports all over Cyprus.

Deryneias contribution in National Games is humongous. The new generation of the town, nurtured with the values of democracy and freedom, has managed to give life to the games, helping to regain the freedom of this small country.  

Deryneia preserves many monuments, attractions and reference points like the Byzantium Churches, the folkloric Museum, Heroes’ Monuments, the Amphitheater, the athletic center, the municipality park and Hall and the cultural center of the occupied city of Ammochostos.

Despite of the difficulties the people of Deryneia face because of occupation, their strength has helped them to progress and develop a local subsidiary. A council for improvement that took place back on the 6th of January 1994 resulted in the municipality upgrading into a town and at the actual referendum on 6th of June 1993 74, 70% of the people voted for this decision.