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Arsinoe is an ancient Byzantine city on the south coast of Anatolia, between Anemurium and Kelenderis, near the modern city of Bozyazı. Strabo has assigned a port in this place. It would be near the ruins of the castle called Softa Kalesi or Sokhta kalesi.

The city is deemed to have been founded by Ptolemy Philadelphus, who would have called it by this name in tribute to his sister and wife Arsinoe II of Egypt. The neighboring cities of Arsinoe and Nagidos often conflicted about this time, in part because the city of Arsinoe was created by amputation of a part of the territory of Nagidos. Nevertheless, in my view, that does not mean that the city had no anteriority. We must also understand that the names of persons are often at the origin of the city names. Maybe a phonetic proximity with that ancient place name with the name of the princess is the origin of the tribute.

Here are the texts of the 2nd millennium BC, from Hattusa tablets, which concerned that city:

  • A treaty was concluded between Mursili II and the Prince Kupanta-Kurunta of Mira. It says that three cities of Lukka: Attarimma, Huwarsanassa and Suruda were recognized as possessions of Kupanta-Kurunta;

  • An ultimatum of Mursili II to the King of Arzawa, Uhhaziti, is a request for return of deportees of Huwasanassa, Attarimma and Suruta, probably consecutively to the conflict that preceded the treaty between the countries of Mira and Lukka;

  • The troublemaker, Mudduwatta at the time of King Tuthaliya, had rallied to his cause the countries of Zumanti, Wallarima, Yalanti, Zumarri, Matamutassa, Suruta and Hursanassa;

  • The king of the country of Mira, Manapa Tarhunta, had fortified the cities of Arsani, of Sarawa, of Impa and of Hapanuwa.

Many researchers see the cities of Arsani , of Sarawa, of Impa and of Hapanuwa in the high valley of the Meander. The frequent mention of Huwarsanassa with Suruda, Saranduwa or Sarawa, which was, I think, Kalenderis can be explained by proximity. This is mainly for this reason that I propose here this equivalence.

It is also likely that this port city that was called Harsamna by the Assyrian merchants of Kanes during the 3rd millennium BC. It was known at Mari for trade of red horses.

In the tablets of Alalakh, the city was probably called Hurzanu.


For an explanation on the colors of text, click here.

For French language, click here.

My notes of veracity :

Arsinoe was called Huwarsanassa, Hursanassa, Arsani by the Hittites: 3/5

Arsinoe was called Hurzanu in the land of Mukis: 3/5

Arsinoe was called Harsamna by the Assyrians merchants: 2.5 / 5

Tag(s) : #Region:Anatolie, #Empire of the Hittites, #Kingdom: Lukka, #Kingdom: Mira, #Kingdom: Mukis

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