castle was built, along with St.
Hilarion and Kantara,
as a part of the defensive chain against the Arab raids. It is the
highest of the three castles, its summit being some 950m above sea
level. Like the other two it guarded an important pass through the
mountains and it had signal connections with the other two
strongholds. When Richard the Lion
Heart conquered Cyprus in 1191, the Byzantine despot king of
the island Isaac Comnenus is said to have fled there.
Like the other
castles of the island it is associated with a mysterious queen,
who once ruled Cyprus, a story probably connected with the goddess
Aphrodite. One of the popular stories about the castle is that
during the reign of the Knight
Templars a Byzantine princess noticed that the skin of her dog
had begun to heal. Following him she saw that the animal bathed in
a spring far below the castle. Doing the same, she was cured. In
gratitude, at the spot near the water source she founded the
Monastery of Ayios Ioannis Chrysostomos.
During the Lusignan
rule it was as a prison and called 'Chateau du Lion'.
later history, the Venetians
having relied on the coastal fortresses such as Kyrenia
or Famagusta for the defense
of the island, Buffavento fell into oblivion.
The name of the
castle means 'Defier of Winds'. However, some people think that
'buffeted' or 'blown' by the wind is a more appropriate
explanation for its name. Its lower section begins with an arched
gateway. The group of rooms beyond this entrance must have served
as barracks and store rooms. Under the rooms a cistern is located.
The door and the arches of some rooms in the upper castle show Byzantine
style red brickwork. In the upper castle the remains of a chapel
can be distinguished. This part offers a staggering view of Nicosia
and the Troodos chain in the south.
History & Music -
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