The Kingdom of Ledra

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The Kingdom of Ledra: 1050 BC – 330 AD

In the first millennium BC, City-Kingdoms were established in Cyprus. The Kingdom of Ledra or Ledrae is recorded around 672 BC, when it was ruled by King Onasagoras, appearing ninth in a list of kingdoms that paid tribute to the Assyrian King Esarhaddon.

Until recently, archaeological finds in the area have been limited mainly to cemeteries, discovered in the areas where the old city hall used to be, Koupati, Ayioi Omologites and Acropolis.

However, excavations at St. George’s Hill (next to the PASYDY building) brought to light a complex of buildings, ceramic and textile workshops and other rooms, proving that an important nucleus existed in this area during the Iron Age. A big olive press was also unearthed.

During the first quarter of the 4th century BC, a number of Cypriot soldiers engraved their names at the temple of Ahori in Karnak in Egypt. Some of the inscriptions bear the names of soldiers from Ledra. At the end of the 4th century, the King of Paphos, Nikoklis, had a temple built for the people of Ledra dedicated to the Paphian Aphrodite.
In the Roman period and up until the 4th century AD, the Kingdom of Ledra was nothing more than a small village.