Located in the mountains of Kionia (about 40 km from the capital of Cyprus, Nicosia) you will find the Machairas Monastery or Panagia Machaira overlooking the slopes on the valley of Machairas Mountain. The monasteries name comes from the Greek word ‘Μαχαίρι’ which mean knife. It was given this name due to the history behind how they came to find the hidden icon of the Virgin Mary.
So, according to history it was said that an unknown hermit brought over to Cyprus an icon painted by Luke the Apostle. The icon was of the Virgin Mary and he had hidden it in a cave on the mountain. In 1145, two other hermits stumbled upon this cave but they had to machete their way in. This is how the name Machairas came to be. Since they needed to cut the thick plant growth in order to make a passage to get into the cave. This is also how they named the icon; Machairiotissa.