Two hundred years of history in Kalavaç

Kalavaç village, is a history passing down from the 1800 to our time and ta house, that carries the memories of five generations, passed down the years from Koca Yusuf, who was a forester and was practically the agha of the village.

   Two hundred years of history in Kalavaç
During the festival period in Kalavaç, Tezer familiy, being in the first place, many individuals open their houses to the visitors, with out any hesitation and let themexperienceseveral hundred years of history.




A house with its inner walls made of mud-bricks, outer walls overlaid  by Stones, the ceiling  constructed from beams and with its wooden doors, defying the past several centuries.


The building which was constructed in the 1800’s, being home to five generations, has managed to survive up till to day. 

This house, which is one of the historic houses in Kalavaç, a classic Turkish village, descended to Koca Yusuf, who lived in the 1900 period, from his grandfather.Koca Yusuf Pasha's daughter Süheyla Tezer and her husband Emin Tezer, has opened this nearly 200 years old houses, door to North Cyprus UK newspaper.


They  find peace on holidays.


The Tezer family, in order to give value to their past, restored the dilapidated house. The unusable, old house wares were, repaired and brought  to day light one by one, by Tezer family’s son Ahmet, because of his respect to his ancestors. Ahmet Tezer and his father Emin Tezer, rolled up their sleeves, and in a short time, gave a new appearance  to the house.

This historic Cyprus, house consist of , a common living area in the center, a kitchen  on the left, a bedroom on the right and a hamam and fire place outside the house.

Tezer family is a resident of Kalavaç, altough they stay in Lefkoşa during the week, they escape from Lefkoşa’s hustle and bustle and find peace in this ancestral century old house. 


Century old house wares, looks like they are on exhebition


The goods  characteristic to Cyprus, in the house, draw attention. A bed with  a snow White, mosquito net(namsiye), left over from the 1930’s. There are flower motifs on the iron bedhead. The bridal gown in a frame, at the most important place of the house, belongs to Hayriye Yusuf Paşsa. The bridal gown, with silk motifs, despite  the chest stains, is living history. The bridal veil, Hayriye Yusuf wore on the bridal  gown, is carried to recent times.


The copper coin with the sultans signature is framed and hung on a wall in this

 abundatly history smelling house. The wire belt, Koca Yusuf Paşa gave Hayriye Yusuf on her wedding day, along with the hand made pouches, she made, are decorating the bedroom doors. Tezer familiy due to the respect for their ancestors, made their home almost like an exhibit, they are a very hospitable family.During the festival period in Kalavaç, Tezer family,being in the first place, many individuals open their houses to the visitors, with out any hesitation and let them expirince  several hundred years of history.

 Ahmet Tezer, grandson of Koca Yusuf, while describing the historic building, said that ‘’ The title deed of this building, which descended to us, from my grandfathers, grandfather, is written in old Turkish alphabet. There are old Turkish letters in most of the tıtle deeds, of the houses in Galavaç.


Koca Yusuf and Hayriye Yusuf with 7 childeren


Koca Yusuf who was a forester, was known as ‘’Paşa’’ because of his firm stance and courage and was considered, the Agha of the village. Koca Yusuf had nine children from his marriage to Hayriye Yusuf, but lost two of them in early age. Koca Yusyfs daughter Süheyla Tezer describing her childhood  years : ‘’ My father was the only forester, getting paid by the government. We did not struggle to make a living, but because of his work, we could not see our father very often. He came home almost, once in evry three  months. After my mother lost two children, she raised the remaining seven children all by her self.We had a garden and we grew our fruits and vegetables there. We kept the provisions my father brought from Lefkoşa, in a store room, in our house. To obtain flour, we placed the bulghour, in the house on a donkey and went to the grain mill. We made our bread in stone ovens. I learned baking bread, when I was fifteen.’’


Stone ovens are still  being used


Süheyla Tezer said that, they used to get olives and olive oil from olive trees and pekmez from the karob trees, owned by them, she states that they still get yield, from these trees.

Tezer familiy achiving to stick to Cyprus tradition, uses the ston oven, in the villge house, to bake bread and cook meat meals in casseroles. Süheyla Tezer speking of the bee hives in yhe house, recalls that, they had a lot of yield from the bee hives in the garden of the house, in her childhood years and despite being a large family, they could share the honey they obtained with people in the neighborhood.


The covers and linen are centurial too


 Süheyla Tezer is saying that, specially the linen covering the bed with the mosquito net(namsiye), alot of things were woven by her mother, on old fashion weaving machines, which in Cypriot dialect was called’’dezzah’’ .The age old covers and linens are still solid and snow white.

Sühetla Tezer speaking of the Fire House in one part of the house, said that ‘’ Fire was lit in the fire house, to obtain hot water. The boiling water in the big caldron was used for, having baths and also uses in the kitchen. Ashes would be thrown , from the stone oven, in to the boiling water, befor  taking a bath. Thus our hair would become very soft and did not have dandruff.’’


Ther is tranquility here


The Tezer family, takes great pleasure in passing their time, in this historical house in Kalavaç. Süheyla Tezer while renewing her childhood memories, adds new ones to them. Family members, at the end of our conversation, stated that ‘’ The calmness of our village, makes us very happy. There is tranquility here.’’

Güncelleme Tarihi: 10 Ekim 2018, 08:58