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Ephesus, on the west coast of Turkey, is one of the most visited Anatolian sites in Turkey, notably due to the good condition of its Greco-Roman ruins.

The archaeological researchs have identified several places and occupancy times, including:

  • around the current city: some men were etablished threre as early as 6000 BC,

  • on the slopes of the hill Ayasuluk (or Ayasoluk): settlements are dated from the Bronze Age through the remains of pottery,

  • near the ruins of the Basilica of St. John, a cemetery was used from 1500 to 1400 BC.

According to Herodotus, the creation of Ephesus is the work of Androclos. The Delphic oracle had predicted to the Ionians settlers the base of their future city at the location indicated by a wild boar and a fish. The prediction will come true when, during a dinner, a fish escapes from a flat, and its embers have set fire to a bush. From the grove got out a boar, immediately killed by Androclos, who founded on the place the town of Ephesus.

But Pausanias and Strabo, however, attributed the foundation of Ephesus to the Queen of the Amazons.

In fact, the excavations of the hill Ayasuluk have shown that the first inhabitants were settled in the hills where the Ionians settled after chasing the Leleges and Carians. The Lydians lived them the lower city where was the great temple of Artemis. The settlers merged the cult of Artemis and Cybele, identified as Artemis of Ephesus, in order to reconcile the beliefs of different origins peoples. This goddess was deemed to be the queen bee. His sanctuary was on the Ayasuluk hill, close to the sea, which at that time was less remote.

In the Hattusa archive, the city of Apasa is mentioned in the annals of the Great King Tuthaliya II (CTH142), near the country of the Seha River.

A war against Arzawa is documented under Mursuli II: Uhhaziti was forced to flee from his palace of Apasa, which thus appears as the capital of Arzawa. The king has gone, with his sons Piyama Kurunta and Tapala Zunauli, to the Aegean islands where he allied himself to the king of the land of Ahhiyawa.

A sharing of the country of Arzawa has taken place : Manapa Tarhunta took possession of the valley of Seha and of the country of Appawiya.


For the allocation of the name "Apasa" Ephesus competes with Phaselis and Kas, further south. The latter being called in Lycian language, Habesos or Habessa. However, the two other locations are hardly consistent with the Hittites texts. They position Apaisa near the sea and near a major river called Seha.





My notes of veracity :

Ephesus was called Apasa under the Hittites: 3/5

Phaselis was called Apasa under the Hittites: 1/5

Kas or Habesos as called Apasa under the Hittites: 2/5

Tag(s) : #Region:Anatolie, #Empire of the Hittites, #Kingdom: Arzawa, #Kingdom: Seha River

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