Classical Numismatics Discussion
  Welcome Guest. Please login or register. Please look at the RECENT ADDITIONS and PRICE REDUCTIONS at the top and bottom of the page. All items are guaranteed authentic for eternity! Thanks for supporting Forum with your PURCHASES! Welcome Guest. Please login or register. Point your mouse to a coin in RECENT ADDITIONS or PRICE REDUCTIONS on this page to see the the price. All items are guaranteed authentic for eternity! Thanks for supporting Forum with your PURCHASES!


FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board  |  Numismatic and History Discussions  |  History and Archeology (Moderator: David Atherton)  |  Topic: Graeco-Roman cities of Turkey 0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. « previous next »
Pages: [1] Go Down Print
Author Topic: Graeco-Roman cities of Turkey  (Read 4041 times)
PeterD
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1422


omnium curiositatum explorator


WWW
« on: June 11, 2012, 09:06:47 am »

As I said in my recent post “Diocletian’s Monetary Edicts”, last month I toured classical sites on the Aegean coast of Turkey accompanied by an archaeologist. I thought I would post some pictures of some of the less well-known sites I visited, together with a bit of description, which I hope will be of some interest.

ALINDA:
This site covers  the side of a mountain. To visit, you go by road to the top, where you are dropped off and then you walk to the bottom where you gratefully flop down in the café in Karpuzlu town square. We were the only visitors that day. The caretaker of the site must have been so bored that he walked down with us. The site has been very little excavated, but there is still plenty to see.

Little is known about Alinda before the 5th century B.C. but it may have been an important city since the second millennium B.C. and has been associated with Ialanti that appears in Hittite sources. It was one of the most strongly fortified cities of the Carian region.

In 340 B.C. Queen Ada, the sister of Mausolus of Halicarnassus (today's Bodrum) was banished by her younger brother Pixodarus to the city of Alinda. She awaited an opportunity to regain her lost kingdom. until, in 334 BC, Alexander the Great marched into Caria in order to clear the region from Persian threat. Ada visited the young conqueror with a proposal according to which she would surrender the city of Alinda to him and would help him in his campaign to conquer Caria. In return, Alexander was to restore the throne to Ada. But Alexander, pleased with her attitudes and perhaps enthralled just a bit by her feminine charms, refused to take Alinda from Queen Ada and instead, made her the ruler of all of Caria.

For a time Alinda was controlled by the Seleucids, Antiochus III sending a garrison here.

Alinda issued its silver coinage from the beginning of 2nd Century B.C. until the end of 3rd Century  A.D.


Roman Aqueduct near the top of the site.


2 storey Square Tower. A bit of an enigma since it doesn’t seem to have been a defensive tower. Maybe used to haul goods up the hill?


The Theatre from above. Built in the 2nd Century B.C. and modified in the time of Augustus.


Theatre from below.


Agora /Market building from above.


The Market building, which was 3 storeys high and 100m long, contained the Agora which was 30m square. The remains of the columns of the colonnade can be seen sitting on top of masonry bases. In other words, the paved area would have been level with where the picture was taken.


The outside of the market building - the other side of the picture above.
Logged

Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
PeterD
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1422


omnium curiositatum explorator


WWW
« Reply #1 on: June 11, 2012, 09:09:58 am »

DIDYMA:

The great temple at Didyma (the Didymaion), an oracular shrine dedicated to Apollo, was linked to the city of Miletus by a sacred road. Beginning at the Miletus Delphinion (dedicated to Apollo Delphinius), it runs in a southerly direction towards the coast at Panarmos Harbour, then south-east towards Didyma. Some stretches of its c 16.5 km have been excavated, but the point at which it approaches the temple from the north has not yet been revealed. The road appears to have been well-paved, about 5-7 m wide, flanked along its length by statues of crouching lions, sphinxes and priests and priestesses (branchids). Some of the latter are now in the British Museum, having been excavated in 1858.
There appears to have been a shrine at Didyma from the 8th century BC, but the first monumental stone temple was constructed about 560 B.C. Every four years the Megala Didymeia festival was held here, with races, musical shows and processions. This temple was destroyed by the Persians after the Battle of Lade in 494 B.C., and the bronze cult statue of Apollo and other treasures were carried off to Iran.

Historical records suggest that the ceremonies and processions continued after the first temple was destroyed, but it was nearly 200 years before rebuilding took place - donations made by Alexander the Great and King Seleucis I of Syria made this possible in 313 B.C. The cult statue was brought back from Ecbatana and replaced in the temple in 300 BC. The new temple was larger and more ambitious than the original – the architects who worked on the plans, Paionius of Ephesus and Daphnis of Miletus, also worked on the Artemesion at Ephesus and the Heraion at Samos. It was still unfinished when the advent of Christianity brought an end to oracular activities here, probably at the end of the 4th century A.D. The columns, now fallen, on the west facade have un-fluted drums – a clear sign that the work was never finished. Inscriptions have been found during excavation calculating the construction costs — one column cost 40,000 drachmae, as compared with the daily workman's wage of only 2 drachmae. In 1979 it was noticed that working plans of the layout of the temple and its architectural elements had been incised into the marble walls of the adyton — a rare feature, but very difficult to see unless the light is just right, as the incisions are only 0.5mm deep.

At the beginning of the 5th century AD the Emperor Theodosius had a church built in the sacred courtyard (adyton); this was destroyed by an earthquake and another was built during the 9th century. The oracle hall, used for storage, was destroyed by fire in the 10th century (traces of burning can still be seen) and the site was abandoned soon after. An Italian traveller reported that the temple was still standing in 1446, but a severe earthquake at the end of the 15th century reduced it to rubble. The first excavations took place during the 19th century, by both English and French archaeologists, then in 1937 and 1962 by German archaeologists.

I think the pictures below of this massive structure speak for themselves.












Logged

Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
PeterD
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1422


omnium curiositatum explorator


WWW
« Reply #2 on: June 11, 2012, 09:16:43 am »

NYSA:

The city of Nysa, which flourished and was famous in the early centuries of the Roman Empire, has a beautiful situation in the hills overlooking the Maeander valley. The city is built beside a ravine. Because of the necessity of building the theatre into a hillside, it had to be built on the opposite side of the ravine to the main city. To provide access, part of the ravine was ‘filled in’ and a 100m long tunnel provided to allow water to pass through.

The site has had only a little excavation and apparently few visitors as when I visited we were the only ones there.

The Greek geographer Strabo studied rhetoric and grammar at Nysa, and the city was internationally known as a centre of teaching and learning. It also had a shrine of Pluto, the god of the underworld, with which was associated a famous healing centre dedicated to the minor deity Charon.

In antiquity, Nysa was also known as Athymb. According to Strabo, Nysa resulted from the amalgamation of three towns that were founded by three brothers, Athymbros, Athymbrados, and Hydrelos. The townspeople were still called Athymbrianoi in a letter sent  in 281 B.C.

The city was finally abandoned after being sacked by Tamerlane in 1402.


The view over the Maeander valley.


The Agora or market place.


The Agora or market place.


The bouleuterion or council chamber with 12 rows of seats, offered room for up to 600-700 people.


The Theatre with capacity for 12,000 people.


The entrance to the tunnel that allows water to flow through the ‘causeway’ between the city and the theatre.


The Library dating from the 2nd century A.D. is considered to be Turkey's second-best preserved ancient library structure after the Library of Celsus at Ephesus.


The Library.

Nysa also boasts a 30,000 capacity stadium which has been badly damaged by flooding and is not shown here.
Logged

Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
PeterD
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1422


omnium curiositatum explorator


WWW
« Reply #3 on: June 11, 2012, 09:22:52 am »

SARDIS:

Sardis rose to prominence in the early 7th century B.C. as the capital of the kingdom of Lydia. It is situated at the southern side of the rich and extensive plain of the Hermus river, at the foot of the Tmolus Mountain range, where the gold-bearing gravels of the Pactolus could be panned.

The Lydian kingdom took its opportunity with the decline of the Phrygians, whose capital was further inland, at Gordion. Between 680 and 547 B.C. the kingdom reached from the Aegean coast deep into central Anatolia. Herodotus credits the Lydian kings with the invention of coinage, and with the construction of the great royal burial mounds at Bin Tepe, some 6 miles to the northwest of Sardis. The Lydian kings Gyges and Croesus were remembered for their lavish gifts to Greek sanctuaries. Indeed, Croesus consulted the oracle of Apollo at Delphi, asking if he should go to war with the Persian Empire, which controlled the rest of Anatolia. The response of the oracle was that, if he attacked the Persians, he would destroy a great empire. In 547 B.C. Croesus attacked the Persian royal centre at Pteria, some way east of modern Ankara, stormed the mountain-top city and destroyed it. Thinking that he had won he returned to Sardis, but he had won a battle and not the war. The Persian army hit the Lydians hard, and sacked Sardis. Croesus' Lydian empire was the empire that was destroyed.

Sardis remained under Persian control until 334 BC, when it was captured by Alexander the Great. The city continued to flourish during Hellenistic and Roman times, when ambitious construction projects were initiated, including the temple of Artemis and a bath-gymnasium complex. A section of the bath-gymnasium complex was later re-modelled to accommodate a synagogue. There was an early Christian community at Sardis, for St John in the Book of Revelations includes Sardis among the Seven Churches of Asia. Little of what we see today belongs to the time of the Lydian kingdom; most of the impressive remains belong to the Hellenistic and Roman periods.


The front of the magnificent Gymnasium – largely re-constructed of course.


The front of the Gymnasium.


Synagogue: Since 1958, both Harvard and Cornell Universities have sponsored annual archeological expeditions to Sardis. These excavations unearthed this impressive synagogue. Over eighty Greek and seven Hebrew inscriptions have been found, which together with inscriptions from Aphrodisias, provide indisputable evidence for the continued vitality of Jewish communities in Asia Minor, their integration into general Roman imperial civic life, and their size and importance at a time when many scholars previously assumed that Christianity had eclipsed Judaism.

The synagogue was a section of the large bath-gymnasium complex. Rooms originally used as changing or rest rooms were converted into a synagogue in the middle of the 2nd century A.D. The complex was destroyed in 616 A.D. by the Sassanian-Persians.


Part of the interior of the Gymnasium complex.


Baths inside the Gymnasium complex.


Temple of Artemis at Sardis.


Temple of Artemis at Sardis.


Temple of Artemis at Sardis.
Logged

Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
PeterD
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1422


omnium curiositatum explorator


WWW
« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2012, 09:27:34 am »

ASSOS:

Assos is located on a low volcanic hill on the south coast of the Troad, opposite the island of Lesbos. On one side, it is steeply terraced down to its two artificial harbours. On the other side, there are fine views down the more gradual slopes that lead down to a river and a large fertile plain.

Assos was occupied in the Bronze Age, but first began to expand in the 8th and 7th centuries B.C. when Aeolian colonists from Lesbos took control from its Carian inhabitants. In the 6th century B.C. the city was absorbed within the Lydian kingdom, and then became part of the Persian Empire. Following the successful repulse of the Persians by the mainland Greeks, Assos once more became independent and joined the Delian League, which was led by the city of Athens.

Around 348/47 B.C., after leaving the Platonic Academy in Athens, Aristotle (joined by Xenocrates) went to Assos, where he was welcomed by King Hermias, and opened an Academy in the city. Aristotle also married Pythias, the adopted daughter of Hermias. In the Academy of Assos, Aristotle became a chief to a group of philosophers, and together with them, he made innovative observations on zoology and biology. When the Persians attacked Assos, King Hermias was caught and put to death. Aristotle fled to Macedonia, which was ruled by his friend King Philip II of Macedon. There, he tutored Philip's son, Alexander the Great.

After the death of Alexander, Assos fell under the control of the Seleucids, then Pergamon, and finally in 133 BC it became part of the Roman Empire. It later declined until it became a small village.


The Doric Temple of Athena on the summit, founded in 530 B.C. This is a unique example of a Doric temple with a continuous  Ionic frieze.


Temple of Athena.


View from the top.


Road into the city passing through the Hellenistic/Roman necropolis.


Approaching the city gate. The walls date back to the 4th century B.C.


City walls.


The Bouleuterion or council house. Holes for floor supports can be seen and it would have had a roof.


Theatre with fine sea view.
Logged

Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
Kained but Able
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 727



« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2012, 10:54:45 am »

Thanks for sharing these outstanding pictures, Peter. This truly was an epic tour you went on!

I did a tour through Turkey that visited Ephesus, Perge, Pergamum, Aspendos, Troias and plenty of rock cut tombs in Cappadocia and Kaş - I thought that was a fair amount but soon after returning I discovered this fantastic blog on ancient Turkey - http://ancientcityofturkey.blogspot.co.uk/ (galleries on right). The sheer amount of ancient cities is insane!
 
Just on first glance, your pics of Alinda and Didyma confirm them in my eyes as some of the most spectacular ruins in Turkey. The sheer scale of Alinda's market walls appears mind boggling; your shot that dispays the exterior brickwork of the structure is fabulous.

I would be grateful if you could PM me the name of your tour company.
Logged

Dino
Procurator Caesaris
Quaestor
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1514


Anyone have change for a hemidrachm?


WWW
« Reply #6 on: June 12, 2012, 04:28:48 am »

Peter

What a wonderful experience.  Thanks for sharing with us.
Logged

mix_val
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1140


« Reply #7 on: June 12, 2012, 07:22:33 am »

Super post! 
Logged

Bob Crutchley
My gallery of the coins of Severus Alexander and his family
http://www.forumancientcoins.com/gallery/index.php?cat=16147
PeterD
Procurator Caesaris
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1422


omnium curiositatum explorator


WWW
« Reply #8 on: June 12, 2012, 10:51:18 am »

I don't think Joe does tours, so I don't think he will mind if I mention the travel company.
http://www.andantetravels.com/
Highly recommended.
Logged

Peter, London

Historia: A collection of coins with their historical context http://www.forumancientcoins.com/historia
David Atherton
IMPERATOR
Caesar
*****
Offline Offline

Posts: 4138


The meaning of life can be found in a coin.


WWW
« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2012, 03:24:31 pm »

Thank you for sharing these pictures with us. Truly outstanding!
Logged

Cheers, David

My Gallery: http://tinyurl.com/2cgd8r
wileyc
Caesar
****
Offline Offline

Posts: 1305



WWW
« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2012, 10:24:40 pm »

Thanks for sharing! I am hoping to visit next summer and I am at a loss of where to begin. This gives a glimpse and adds to my confusion!

cw
Logged

Pages: [1] Go Up Print 
FORVM`s Classical Numismatics Discussion Board  |  Numismatic and History Discussions  |  History and Archeology (Moderator: David Atherton)  |  Topic: Graeco-Roman cities of Turkey « previous next »
Jump to:  

Recent Price Reductions in Forum's Shop


Powered by MySQL Powered by PHP Powered by SMF 1.1.21 | SMF © 2015, Simple Machines Valid XHTML 1.0! Valid CSS!
Page created in 1.211 seconds with 43 queries.