The Walls And The Kyrenia Gate (Porta del Proveditore)
In 1571, when the Ottomans were about to take Cyprus, the Venetians built new walls around the city of Nicosia in order to defend the city, in place of the older Lusignan Walls. These walls form a circle, with a circumference of three miles, furnished with 11 bastions, each of which could be considered a castle, and three gates. The city walls are constructed of thick earth walls faced with stone. In order to construct these city walls, the Venetians demolished all houses, palaces, monasteries and churches both within and outside of the three miles to provide stone for the construction. In order to fortify the defense, the Venetians changed the course of Kanlıdere (Pedieos) River that flew through the city. One of the three gates on the walls which surround old Nicosia is the Kyrenia Gate, which is an important point of entry to the city. This gate, known as the Porta Del Proveditore gate of the government from the architect Proveditore Francesco Barbaro, was repaired in 1820-21 by the Ottomans who added a domed watchbox on top. The Gate bears inscriptions of verses from the Koran. On the southern side of the gate the tuğra (signature or seal) of Sultan Mahmut II was also added.