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Morphou is a small town in the northwest of Cyprus, situated forty kilometers west of the capital city of Nicosia near a bay named after the town itself. Morphou means “beautiful” in Greek. According to Goodwin, the first settlers of this town came from ancient Sparta, where the goddess Aphrodite was called “Morphou.” Turkish Cypriots changed the name to Güzelyurt in 1975. Güzelyurt means “beautiful country.” It is one of the richest agricultural areas of Cyprus, particularly known for its citrus fruits, including oranges, lemons, and grapefruits. However, after the 1974 war, due to the non-recognition of the political entity in the north, exports to Europe and production in the region dropped significantly. Every year the Morphou area still produces tons of citrus fruits for local consumption or export to Turkey and other third countries. 
Historical Population:

Although there were always Muslim (Turkish Cypriot) inhabitants in the small town of Morphou, the town was always predominantly inhabited by Greek Cypriots. The Turkish Cypriot population remained steady at around 150 persons. Throughout the British period the population of the village increased significantly, from 2,420 in 1891 to 6,480 in 1960.


Most of the Turkish Cypriots fled Morphou in January 1964, although almost one-third of the town’s Turkish Cypriot inhabitants stayed there throughout the entire conflict. In 1971, Richard Patrick recorded 44 Turkish Cypriots still living there. In August 1974, all the Greek Cypriots of the village fled from the advancing Turkish army. Currently, like the rest of the displaced Greek Cypriots, the Greek Cypriots of Morphou are scattered throughout the island’s south, with large pockets in towns. The number of Morphou Greek Cypriots who were displaced in 1974 was around 7,500 (7,465 in 1960).

Current Inhabitants:

Currently the town is mainly inhabited by displaced Turkish Cypriots from the towns of Paphos(Ktima)/Gazi Baf(329), Limassol(269), Episkopi/Yalova(262), Polemidia/Binatlı(278) and Polis/Poli(332). There are also a number of families from the following villages in Paphos: Akoursos/Akarsu(288), Pitargou/Akkargı(331), Axylou/Aksu(297), Agios Ioannis/Aydın(285), Agia Merkur, Melandra/Beşiktepe(325), Lapithiou/Bozalan(316), Kidasi (Jiyas)/Ceyhan(310), Lempa/Çıralı(317), Vretsia/Dağaşan(342), Agios Nikolaos/Esentepe(287), Androlikou/Gündoğdu(292), Pelathousa/Karaağaç(330), Prodromi/Karşıyaka(334), Agios Georgios/Kavaklı(284), Timi/Ovalık(340), Polis(332), Souskiou/Susuz(337), Marona/Uluçam(323), Gialia/Yayla(307), Mandria/Yeşilova(322) and Galataria/Yoğurtçular(305). One can easily call Morphou/Güzelyurt a refugee town. In the 1996 census, 5,715 out of 10,845 Turkish Cypriot citizens living in Morphou showed their birthplace as south Cyprus. In addition, there are also some families from Turkey who settled in the village in 1976-77. During the orange-picking seasons, the village hosts many seasonal agricultural workers from Turkey. They are usually lodged in tents or prefabricated accommodations specifically erected for them, usually located in the orange orchards where they work.  

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