The first settlers are thought to have arrived in Cyprus from the Middle Eastern mainland (Syria,Palestine,Anatolia) around 8,000 BC.
Encompassing approximately 9,251 sq/km (of which north Cyprus is 3,355 sq/km) Cyprus is the third largest island in the Mediterranean Sea after Sicily and Sardinia.
Cyprus has had many different rulers over the centuries because of its geographic, geopolitical, commercial, religious and strategically critical position in the Eastern Mediterranean. It is located at the crossroads of the European ,Asian and African continents. Many historical powers captured Cyprus and each leaving heritage that is today part of Cypriot culture. During its 10,000 years of history, Cyprus was occupied by the Assyrians, Phoenicians, Persians, Greeks, Egyptians, Romans, and the Byzantine Empire in ancient times, as well as Crusaders, Lusignans, Venetians and the Genoese in the Middle Ages and more recently the Ottomans and the British.
According to historians there are five primary interpretations of the origin of the name Cyprus. One was derived from copper that was discovered on the island during the Bronze period (2500 B.C -1050 B.C). The pre-Greek word for copper was kypros , which could have been an origin of the modern day Cyprus. Another possibility is that Cyprus was named for a plant called kypros (henna) . For a long period it was believed that Cyprus acquired its name from a shrub called kypros ( Lawsonia alba ). The plant which is native to North Africa, Arabia, Persia and India, has never been found in Cyprus in a big number ,From Kypros , the son or daughter of Kinyras . Kirynas was the king of the whole Cyprus. It was a habitual matter to name the islands after the sons of kings. From a town of Cyprus named Kypros . the name of the island is derived from a town lying between Kyrenia and Akanthou. However, such a town has never been historically traced, and the probability of existence of such a town is minimal. From Kypris , a name which many of the ancient writers, (including Homer) gave to Aphrodite(Kypris)(Goddess of Kypros-Cyprus)
Cyprus has a rich cultural heritage that reflects 10,000 years of history
Neolithic settlements, ancient cities, gothic cathedrals, Venetian city walls, Roman theatres, breathtaking mosaics, fresco-adorned churches, mideval castles, and museums are just a few of the attractions that make Cyprus unique.. In fact, the countrys history is still being played out as it has been divided since 1974. The population of north Cyprus, according to the 2006 census, is 264,000. Its major towns are.Nicosia-Lefkoşa (capital city of Cyprus,only divided city in the Europe), Morphou(Güzelyurt), Lefke(Lefka) Kyrenia(Girne), Famagusta( Mağusa) and İskele-Karpaz(Trikomo-Karpas).