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Lapithos and the art of pottery making go together from Ancient times, in particular from the 5000BC as shown by pots surfaced after archaeological excavations in Lambousa. Legend has it that the Art of Pottery making was found by Κινάρα-Kinara, son of Αγρίππα-Agrippa, or by Κινύρα-Kiniras, and was preserved generation after generation. On the photo, Aristophanis Hadjicharalambous, one of the most well-known potters of Lapithos while shaping the pots before the 1974 barbaric Turkish invasion.

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The Αλειφτά-Alifta Pots and plates made Lapithos famous. After "baking" them in the oven, the process of γριάλιασμα-graliasma took place. Using the rust of the copper, and with an ancient method of dissolving the rust in the sink and adding some other igredients, they manage to create different colors. Then, they dip their hands in the "paint" and use it as a brush to give these magnificent color shades.

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Among other things Lapithos was also famous for its pottery decoration. A traditional pottery maker is drawing a scene from Greek Mythology on a vase. The decoration was made after the pots were baked in the oven for 24 hours to harden. The most famous painter of pots and plates was Costas Patsalides who worked for many years at the pottery of Aristophanis Hadjicharalambous and possessed great talent in decorating pots and plates.

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The development of pottery making in Lapithos was due to three main reasons:
1. Because of the argile that is reduntant in the area of Lapithos and Mount Pentadactylos.
2. Because of the reduntancy of water supply that poured all day long.
3. Because of the skills and progressiveness of people of Lapithos.

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Famous Potters of Lapithos:
1. Demetrios Tsimouris (1855-1935). His father Tooulis, and his grand-father Pantelis Tsimouris were also well known potters from Lapithos. For his work he participated in many competitions abroad and he was honored by Queen Victoria of Great Britain.
2. Costas Christodoulakis (1870-1931). Found his pottery in 1914 with the aid of Greek and Armenian potters from Asia Minor Alecos Piperides, Yiannis Eliades, and the Armenian Giagkoup Outzourian. These people brought all new "technology" and secrets of pottery-making in Cyprus from Asia Minor and helped that the trade is expanded throughout Lapithos and the entire Cyprus.
3. Kypros and Aristophanis Hadjicharalambous. 4. Costas N. Aggioplastis - Kalamaras 5. Theoklis and Komitis Hadjisavvas Brothers 6. Pamparides, 7. Masonos, 8. Savvas Yiannaki, 9. Arestis Pachtaouros, 10. Yiannis tous Giorkou from Ayios Theodoros, 11. Pavlos Katshepavlis,  11. Yiannis Nicolaou, 12. Kouroumbis, 13. Pantechoudkia, et al.
The Lapithos pots, after being baked in the oven and then decorated either by paint, or brushed by the rusted copper to get this distinguished green color, they were brushed with special recipies to become shining and easy to wash and clean. This special recipe was applied ALWAYS in the inside / interior of the vases and sometimes on the exterior as well, wherever was needed.

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Last updated:  June 03, 2002 03:42:28 -0700 Pacific Time