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.
The port was active around 2000 BCE. Some Hittite potteries from the 17th century BC have been found there. In Greek, it was called Aleios or Aigai, in Latin Aegee.
Among the many seals and scarabs found in Cilicia, in the Adana museum, some come from Zeytinbeli Höyük, including a beetle dark red serpentine.
The landscape of the region had to be different in the 2nd millennium BC by the contribution of alluvium of the neighboring rivers during 4 millennia. Tarsus, for example, was near the sea. Also it is possible that this city and the surrounding hills were an island or peninsula in antiquity. Herodotus described the Cilicians as Hypachéens or Hypachaoi, ie "sub Achai". I think it can come from a simple geographical fact: the Cilicia was at the north the island of Agai.
A Greek origin of the oldest peoples has long been seen there. This is perhaps the city evoked in song VI of the Iliad, when Glaucus describes his genealogy and when Bellerophon was taken into enmity by the gods, he wandered alone in the desert of Alèios before fighting the illustrious Solymi.
There is reason to wonder if it is not the city of Alha or Hahha mentioned as having been destroyed by Hattusili I around 1600 BC:
During a campaign against the Arzawa after that Ninassa opened its doors without a fight, people of Ulma give two battles before being defeated. The following year, after that the Parmanna important center had opened its doors, Hattusili marched against Alha he destroyed.
This same campaign of Hattusili is also narrated on a tablet from clandestine excavations, addressed to the King of Tikunan. It help to understand that the running order was: Zaruna, Mount Atalur, Purana River, Hassuwa, then Zippasna and Hahha.
If Hahha is that city, then Hahhum is the Old Assyrian name : it was, at the beginning of the 2nd millennium BC, an important hub where goods in transit were reconditioned (because, I think, there was a change of means of travel for most of the goods).
The city name "I'e" is one of seven fortresses, and commercial places, that Idrimi, king of Alalakh, conquered during shipments to the country of Hatti. The probable date of the taking of the city and the relative position of this place with others makes this rapprochement quite plausible.
This would then be an explanation of the emergence of a country of navigators called "Ahhiyawa".
These hypotheses are reinforced by the recent discovery of two stelae in Arsuz, a place called Uluçınar, further south. Their translation shows that the author is a king Suppiluliuma of Palastin, who proclaims a victory over the neighboring countries of Adana and Hiyawa, during the 10th or 9th century BCE.