What were the cities of the Bronze Age ?
This site aims to find the names of cities excavated by archaeologists, relying mainly on ancient texts. Conversely, it aims to geographically position the cities and countries of the oldest writings.
A cross-checking of the texts find at Ebla, Mari, Hattusa and Alalakh suggests that an ancient city named Hazuwan, Hassuwa, Hassum, Hessum or Hassu was located to the south of Turkey, north west of Aleppo, near the mountain formerly called Amanus.
Archologics perpectives on Cilicia and the Amuq plain
During the third millennium, the city was under the governance of Ebla, while having a local king. It appears under the name of Hazuwan.
In the archives of Mari, during the 18th century BC, the town is called Hassum or Hessum. It is a partner of Yamhad against Yahdun-Lim of Mari, but combines with Samsi-Addad against Sumu-Epuh of Yamhad. It appears on tablets "I1" and "I24", with Ursum, Carchemish, and Yamhad.
According to Jean-Marie Durand, it is likely that the name of the city or of the valley, comes from the Hebrew meaning Hasam, a place in form of "Cul-de-sac."
I think this is the geographical description of the valley north of the bend of the Orontes, where the present town of Hassa is located.
Hittite archives have also taught us that the city of Hassu was not far from Ursu. They are mentioned together twice:
In the "stories" of the Old Empire, an officer called Sanda, who was present at the siege of Ursu, and had been incompetent during an incursion of Hurrians. He is accused in particular of not having built heavy equipment from the wood of the mountain Hassu;
The Hattusili annals indicate that he had destroyed the Hittite Alalakh and Ursu, but also, above all, Hassu, during the 16th century BC.
This same campaign of Hattusili is also relayed on a tablet from clandestine excavations addressed to the King of Tikunan. Duplication of information has allowed us to understand that the order of marching was: Zaruna, Mount Atalur, Purana River, Hassuwa, Zippasna and finaly Hahha. Two hypotheses confront about the last three cities of the list : some places them at the west of the Amanus, others to the east. I favor the latter hypothesis.
Hassuwa suffered another destruction 150 years later, under Telepinu.
Some researchers believe that Hessum is Chagar Bazar. The unexcavated tells are extremely numerous in the north of the ancient city of Alalakh towards the present city of Hassa.
My notes of veracity :
Hassu, or Hassuwa, was the Hittite designation of a town at the foot of the Amanus: 4/5
Hazwan is the Eblaite town name called Hassuwa by the Hittites: 4/5
Hassum is the Mariote town name called Hassuwa by the Hittites: 4/5
Hassu or Hassuwa is a tell to the present town of Hassa: 3/5