Agia Napa is mentioned for the first time by Leontios Mahaeras
(a Cypriot choreographer) in 1366 A.D. and a second time by
the same in 1373 in his account of the shipwreck of five Venetian
ships loaded with booty, which the Venetians had stolen during
the looting of Cyprus. The next mention of Agia Napa is encountered
in Venetian documents and maps of the 16th century. Due to
the lack of sufficient historical evidence, this study is
based mostly on archaeological findings and the local tradition.
The area around the monastery of Agia Napa was not inhabited
until 1790 when (according to local tradition) there arrived
from Thessaloniki a group of people who left their homeland
fleeing an outbreak of cholera (the plaque). Finally, only two
of them survived the deadly disease, a man by the name of Nicholaos
Kemitzis and his son. Later the son married a Cypriot girl from
a small village called Panayia which was found on the hills
north of the monastery where the water of Agia Napa comes from.
The young couple did not settle in Panayia because of a bitter
conflict between the inhabitants of Panayia and Turkish authorities
of Famagusta concerning the supply of water. Instead, they sought
to establish a safer home outside the monastery thus beginning
the village which was to also be named "Agia Napa"
after the shrine.
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