Tantso Sabanov, a Bulgarian who had participated in the revolution of 1876, was arrested and exiled with four others to Cyprus. He was taken to the Nicosia prisons:
When finally we realised that this is where we were going to live, we started occupying ourselves with whatever we could. In prison, there were workshops for the inmates. Ropes could be produced there, shoes, wooden sandals and wooden boxes for tobacco. Oton, Dimiter, Mumtziata and a Greek boy started producing hand-made small British knives and became quite good at it. Those working in the workshops went out at 2.00am and returned at 11.00 at night. They were escorted by two policemen every night upon returning all were reached so as not carry anything sharp into the prison. The rest of us, who did not go to the workshops occupied ourselves with other choirs. Some were weaving sacs, others socks, I wove sacs from hemp and painted boxes.