The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia

 

in short

The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia depicts, studies and collects the history and social life of Nicosia, the last divided capital of Europe, from antiquity to present day.
Museum courtyard
© The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia
Logo: The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia

The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia

in detail

The history of the city of Nicosia, from antiquity to the present era, unfolds in a complex of traditional buildings on Hippocrates Street no.15-17. The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia is located in the old city within the walls, not very far from Eleftheria Square. The idea of creating a museum dedicated to the history of Nicosia was that of the former mayor of the city, Lellos Demetriades. The Museum was founded in 1984 by the Anastasios G. Leventis Foundation and was inaugurated in 1989. Two years later, in 1991, the Leventis Museum was honoured with the European Museum of the Year Award. Today, entirely refurbished and with the new “Constantine Leventis” wing, the Museum aims to continue in its mission of contributing to the protection of Nicosia’s history. The permanent exhibition spaces are home to exhibits which take the visitor on a journey through Nicosia’s history, a history that began 1.800.000 years ago when the sea between the Troodos and Pentadactylos range gave birth to a fertile plain called the Mesaoria.

The permanent exhibition includes: the Nicosia Gallery, with objects dating from the birth of the region and the ancient city (3900 BC-325 AD); the Byzantine and Mediaeval Galleries (325-1489 AD) which have a unique collection of glazed vessels from the 13-16th century, as well as other objects presenting the city when it was capital of the Mediaeval Kingdom of Cyprus; the Venetian Period Galleries (1489-1570 AD) which showcase the single most important collection of mediaeval and modern maps of Nicosia; the Ottoman Period Galleries (1570-1878 AD) presenting the city as travellers saw it in the difficult years of the Ottoman occupation; and the British Period Gallery (1878-1960 AD) offering the social development of the city during the English occupation. Special mention is also given to the recent history from 1960 until today.

The Museum also offers organized educational programs, tours and other events. The temporary exhibition space hosts exhibitions from other museums and foundations from Cyprus and abroad, while, at the same time, it organizes exhibitions aimed at the promotion of the history and social development of the city. In the Museum’s shop publications and memorabilia are on sale and the profits go towards the enrichment of the Museum’s collections.

The visitor has the opportunity to learn about the history of Nicosia and the objects that represent the life of Cypriots in both the Greek and English languages. Maps of the museum are available in Greek, English, Italian, French and German. Admission to the Museum is free since it operates on a system of voluntary donations.

The history of Nicosia unfolds not only in the galleries but also on the official Museum website www.leventismuseum.org.cy.

The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia
Main Building – Hippocrates Street No. 17
The first building of the Leventis Municipal Museum was housed in a late 19th century home which belonged to the Evangelides family and was given as dowry to Elenitsa Evangelides when she married the Athenian doctor Nicolaos Dervis, in 1885. In honour of Doctor Dervis, the Nicosia Municipality named the road in front of this building Hippocratous Street. The building had two floors until 1915. A third was added when the couple’s daughter, Ioanna, married. In the same year, the son of the family, Themistocles finished his medical studies in Europe and set up his own medical practice and clinic. Other than having a successful career as a doctor, Themistocles was also very active. His keen interest in politics led him initially to the position of Nicosia mayor, a post he held for 28 years. He was also effectively the founder of the Cyprus National Party and contributed in his own way to the establishment of the Republic of Cyprus.
Converting the building into a museum was no simple task, but the experience and sensitivity of architect, Pefkios Georghiades, bore fruit. Restoration work began in late 1986.
Constantine Leventis Wing – Hippocrates Street No. 15
The building at 15 Hippocrates Street was the dowry of Aspasia Evangelides, sister of Elenitsa Dervis.  Aspasia married Christodoulos Severis, who was appointed first mayor of Nicosia in 1892. The neo-classical building on 15 Hippocrates Street was converted into the Victoria Hotel during the decade 1930-40, but any glamour eventually disappeared and the building was very far from a modern hotel after 1974. The building was bought by the Nicosia Sewage Board, in 1984, again at the prodding and encouragement of then mayor and chairman of the Board Lellos Demetriades. It was renovated and converted into offices by the late Alexis Theodosiades. On December 31, 2001 an agreement was signed between the board and the A.G. Leventis Foundation which bought the building. Under the agreement, the building was to be transferred to the Foundation with a view to expanding the Museum once the new headquarters of the Board were completed. Thus, in November, 2007, the building was handed over to the Foundation and work began to convert it and to link the two buildings. With the completion of the project in 2009, the Constantinos Leventis Wing now provides a significant and much needed expansion of the exhibition space of the Museum and of the area housing the library and archives, as well as the offices.
The House of Educational Programmes – Solon Street No.18
In 2001, a small 18th century building where one of the town’s best known teachers, Nicolaos Tsikkinis, was born and lived was purchased, again with funds from the Foundation. Once renovated, it has been in operation since 2006, serving as the home for educational programmes, but also hosting small periodic exhibitions and specialized educational programmes.
Admission
Admission FREE The Museum operates on a system of voluntary donations
The museum on google maps:

keywords

Visitor entrance

The Leventis Municipal Museum of Nicosia
15-17 Hippocrates Street
1500 Nicosia
Cyprus
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Opening Times

Sun
10:00 - 16:30
Mon
-
Tue
10:00 - 16:30
Wed
10:00 - 16:30
Thu
10:00 - 16:30
Fri
10:00 - 16:30
Sat
10:00 - 16:30
Closed: Monday and Public Holidays

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