The Cavafy Museum, Alexandria
In English
In Greek

Give back the Elgin Marbles -- an article by Cavafy
In English
In Greek

A selection of poems by Cavafy

Back to Alexandria Home Page

Constantine Cavafy was born in 1863, in Alexandria, Egypt, where he lived most of his life.

The apartment where he spent his last 35 years, in Lepsius Street - now renamed "Charm El Sheik" after the site at the entrance of the Bay of Aquaba, has been made over into a museum honoring the life and works of the great Alexandrian poet.

After Cavafy's death in 1933, his apartment was turned into a cheap hostel. A museum of sorts was later created on the upper floor of the Greek Consulate General within the Hellenic Quarter of Chatby, Alexandria.

Although the poet's furniture had all been sold by his heirs, his library was saved by the eminent Cavafologist Prof. George Savidis.

The Cavafy International Committee leased the poet's apartment in 1991 and the Cavafy Museum opened to the public on November 16th 1992.

With the help of Cavafy's friends, the apartment has been given some of the "atmosphere" of his life - photographs were used to help in the reconstruction of the furniture and the general surroundings.

The Cavafy Museum contains a wide range of bibliographical material, translations of Cavafy's poetry in 20 languages by 40 different scholars, and most of the 3,000 articles and works written about his poetry.

Tribute is also paid to the important personalities influenced by the Poet - a room in the house is dedicated to the author Stratis Tsirkas.

The Alexandria of Cavafy's time was very different to the city we know today -a city we see depicted in his works, but also in those of E.M. Forster, Lawrence Durell , and Stratis Tsirkas.

The poet lived in an area sandwiched between the red-light Attarin neighbourhood and the bustling commercial centre of a city recognised as the crossroads of civilization - what Cavafy himself called the "capital of memories". Cavafy's home was situated between the Greek Orthodox Patriarchate, the Greek Hospital and the bordellos of the City, characterised by the poet as "The Temple of the Soul" , "the Temple of the Body" and "the Temple of the Flesh".

A place of pilgrimage even before its transformation into a museum, Cavafy's last home is considered a "must" for all visitors to Alexandria.

The Cavafy Museum is run under the auspices of the Cultural Section of the Greek Embassy in Cairo and is open Tues -Sun 10.00 - 15.00, Thurs & Sun 10.00 - 17.00 For further information tel: ++ 203 4825205-4821598