Lorenzo Warriner Pease, an American missionary in Cyprus, takes note of his first Christmas in Cyprus:
Tomorrow will be Christmas according to the Greek method of computing time. The Greeks are making great preparations for it, and will engage in no labor during the day. It is time of several festivities far more religiously observed, if I may use the term of feasting etc., than among us. At the same time the Ramadan feast has been observed among the Turks for some time. This continues during 40 days, I believe in which time they neither eat, drink nor smoke from sunrise to sunset. At sunset a cannon is fired from the castle which gives the people notice that they are at liberty to commence eating. They then take a glass of water and wet their mouths, a cup of coffee and a pipe and sweetmeat follow — rice and meat. They continue the eating operation during the great part of the night and sleep from morning till some time in the afternoon, those of course who are able to spend their time in such a manner.