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Agios Amvrosios is situated on the northern foothills of the Five Finger mountains. It lies 23 kilometers east of the town of Kyrenia, and is one of the largest villages in the Kyrenia region. Before 1974, it was exclusively inhabited by Greek Cypriots. The name means “Saint Amvrosios” in Greek. It was also called Aygurush during the Ottoman and British periods. It was renamed Esentepe by Turkish Cypriots in 1975, after the home village (Agios Nikolaos) of those displaced Turkish Cypriots who were resettled there. In 1958 Esentepe was adopted as the alternative Turkish name of Agios Nikolaos(287) village in the Paphos district.
As can be seen from the chart above, in the Ottoman census of 1831, Christians constituted the sole inhabitants of this settlement. At the turn of the century there were only one or two Muslim inhabitants living in the town. The population steadily increased during the British period, rising from 566 in 1891 to 1,543 in 1973.
All of Agios Amvrosios’s inhabitants were displaced in 1974, as between July and August 1974 they fled from the advancing Turkish army to the southern part of the island. Currently, like the rest of the displaced Greek Cypriots, those of Agios Amvrosios are scattered throughout the island’s south, with some pockets in Nicosia and Limassol. The displaced population of Agios Amvrosios can be estimated to be around 1,550 since its population was 1,543 in 1973.
In 1975, the village was used for the settlement of displaced Turkish Cypriots from the southern part of the divide. They came mainly from the village of Agios Nikolaos/Esentepe(287) in Paphos. There are also displaced persons from Kidasi/Ceyhan(310) and Marona/Uluçam(323), villages in Paphos, and a small number of people from the town of Limassol(269). The 1996 Turkish Cypriot census showed that 274 Turkish Cypriot citizens living in this small town declared their birth place as Turkey. They are mainly from eastern Black Sea areas such as Çaykara and Trabzon. There is also a small community of Turks from Bulgaria residing here. During the last ten years, many European citizens have bought property and settled in the vicinity of the village. The 2006 census puts the village’s de jure population at 1,575. This number can easily go up to 2,000 during holiday months.
Books and Reports:
Colonial Office (1893), “Cyprus: Report on the census of Cyprus, taken 6th April 1891,” Mediterranean, No. 39. London: Colonial Office.
Department of Statitstics and Research, 1997. Estimates of Turkish Cypriots and Settlers from Turkey, Ministry of Finance [Republic of Cyprus], Nicosia.
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- KKTC Başbakanlık Devlet Planlama Örgütü Müsteşarlığı, “15 Aralık 1996 Genel Nüfus Sayımı Sonuçları (Özet), 26, November 1997,” Nicosia.
- Mavrogordato, Alexander (1901), “Report and general abstracts of the census of 1901, taken on the 1st April, 1901,” Nicosia: Government Printing Office.
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Perry, Frederic W., 1884. Report on the Census of Cyprus 1881, Eyre and Spottiswoode, London.
- Republic of Cyprus, 1961. “Census of Population and Agriculture, 1960: Volume I: Population by Location, Race, and Sex,” Nicosia
- TRNC 2006 census preliminary results can be found at: www.devplan.org
TRNC Prime Ministry State Planning Organisation Statistics and Research Department, Census of Population: Social and Economic Characteristics of Population, December 15, 1996, TRNC Prime Ministry, Nicosia, 1999.
- Standing Cypriot Commission for the Standardization of Geographical Names (2007), “Οδηγος Τυποποιησης Ονοματων (Guide to Standardized Names),” Nicosia: Ministry of Education and Culture.
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- Percival, D.A. (1949), “Census of population and agriculture 1946 report,” Nicosia: Cyprus Government Printing Office.
- Republic of Cyprus (1962), “Census of population and agriculture, 1960,” Nicosia: Government Printing Office.
- Republic of Cyprus (1984), “Census of population 1982,” Nicosia: Department of Statistics and Research, Ministry of Finance.
- Republic of Cyprus (2003), “Census of population 2001,” Nicosia: Department of Statistics and Research, Ministry of Finance.
- St John-Jones, L. W., 1983. “The Population of Cyprus: Demographic Trends and Socio-Economic Influences” (with a foreword by W. H. Morris-Jones), Maurice Temple, Smith Limited, London.
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- Yorgancıoğlu, Oğuz: Kıbrıs’ta Türkçe Yer Adları ve Veriliş Yöntemleri Üzerine Bir Araştırma Kıbrıs Araştırmaları Dergisi, Cilt : 2, Sayı : 3, Yıl : 96