How did the famous Cypriot phrase "The black hedgehog" come about?

sykia tou mavrou

It is one of the most beloved Cypriot expressions. We use it when we feel that someone is wronging us or that we are being charged with extra responsibilities without any recognition. There are many versions behind the well-known "black fig".

In all of them, however, two people play a leading role: Kkioroglou and his black slave. What is the story behind the thousand-word Cypriot expression, which hides the history of the slave trade.

According to tradition, both the fig and the black existed during the Turkish occupation.

The history of the phrase is sought in the personality of Kkioroglou, who was one of the greatest landowners. According to the elders, due to his large fortune, he converted and converted from a Christian to a Muslim.

Like most crypto-Christians, Kioroglou became a linen wool (linen wool) so that the authorities would not take his property. However, when he and the other linenmen wanted to become Christians again, the then Archbishop did not allow it.

Most of today's Lakatamia belonged to Kioroglou. His property extended from the monastery of Archangelos to Chrysospiliotissa and Kato Deftera.

On the other hand, it reached Lakatamia airport and Agioi Trimithias. The great landowner helped the people of his area and in fact it is said that he offered a large fortune to the church of Archangelos and Chrysospiliotissa on Monday. No family was hungry while he was alive. And in fact without any discrimination.

The most famous fig tree in Cyprus

The great landowner did not forget his slave, who was black and came from an African country. Kkioroglou stuck a large area to the Nicosia airport, which when it rained turned into a huge lake. So this particular piece of land was quite fertile. The area that the slave had inherited was permanently alive. Due to the fertile soil, it was used as a pasture with the result that many Cypriot shepherds meet there every day.

But in the whole area, there was also the famous fig tree. Enormous as it was, it offered a nice shade for anyone who wanted to rest.

Gradually, the fig tree became a reference point for the pasture, with many people taking advantage of its shade and its fruits. This is how the well-known expression for someone who "became like the black man" came about. The tree is not saved but according to testimonies until recently there were still roots from the black sytzia.