The Full Wiki

Caria: Map


Wikipedia article:

Map showing all locations mentioned on Wikipedia article:

Ancient Region of Anatolia
Caria (Καρία)
Location Southwestern Anatoliamarker
State existed: 11-6th c. BC
Language Carian
Biggest city Halicarnassus
Roman province Asia

Caria (from Luwian Karuwa meaning "steep country", Ancient Greek, Καρία) was a region of western Anatoliamarker extending along the coast from mid-Ionia (Mycalemarker) south to Lycia and east to Phrygia. The Ionian and Dorian Greeks colonized the west of it and joined the Carian population in forming Greek-dominated states there. The eponymous inhabitants of Caria were known as Carians, and they had arrived in Caria before the Greeks. They were described by Herodotos as being of Minoan descent, while the Carians themselves maintained that they were Anatolian mainlanders intensely engaged in seafaring and were akin to the Mysians and the Lydians. The Carians did speak an Anatolian language, which does not necessarily reflect their geographic origin, as Anatolian once may have been widespread. Also closely associated with the Carians were the Leleges, which could be an earlier name for Carians or for a people who had preceded them in the region and continued to exist as part of their society in a reputedly second-class status.

Municipalities of Caria

Carian cities in white.
This map depicts the current rivers and coastline and certain features have changed over the years, notably Miletus, Heracleia, and Myus were on the south side of a gulf and Priene on the north side; the river Maeander has since filled in the gulf.
Also politically Telmessos, Miletus, and Kalynda were sometimes considered Carian and sometimes not
Cramer's detailed catalog of Carian towns in classical Greece is based entirely on ancient sources. The multiple names of towns and geomorphic features, such as bays and headlands, reveal an ethnic layering consistent with the known colonization.

Coastal Caria

Coastal Caria begins with Didymamarker south of Miletusmarker, but Miletus had been placed in the pre-Greek Caria. South of it is the Iassicus Sinus (Güllük Körfezi) and the towns of Iassus and Bargylia, giving an alternative name of Bargyleticus Sinus to Güllük Körfezi, and nearby Cindye, which the Carians called Andanus. After Bargylia is Caryanda or Caryinda, and then on the Bodrummarker Peninsula Myndus (Mentecha or Muntecha), miles from Miletus. In the vicinity is Naziandus, exact location unknown.

On the tip of the Bodrum Peninsula (Cape Termerium) is Termera (Telmera, Termerea), and on the other side Ceramicus Sinus (Gökova Körfezi). It "was formerly crowded with numerous towns." Halicarnassus, a Dorian Greek city, was planted there among six Carian towns: Theangela, Sibde, Medmasa, Euranium, Pedasa or Pedasum, and Telmissus. These with Myndus and Synagela, Syagela or Souagela, where the tomb of Car is located, constitute the eight Lelege towns. Also on the north coast of the Ceramicus Sinus is Ceramus and Bargasus.

On the south of the Ceramicus Sinus is the Carian Chersonnese, or Triopium Promontory (Cape Krio), also called Doris after the Dorian colony of Cnidusmarker. At the base of the peninsula (Datça Peninsulamarker) is Bybassus or Bybastus from which an earlier names, the Bybassia Chersonnese, had been derived. It was now Acanthus and Doulopolis ("slave city").

South of the Carian Chersonnese is Doridis Sinus, the "Gulf of Doris" (Gulf of Symimarker), the locale of the Dorian Confederacy. There are three bays in it: Bubassius, Thymnias and Schoenus, the last enclosing the town of Hyda. In the gulf somewhere are Euthene or Eutane, Pitaeum, and an island: Elaeus or Elaeussa near Loryma. On the south shore is the Cynossema, or Onugnathos Promontory, opposite Symimarker.

South of there is Peraea, a section of the coast under Rhodesmarker. It includes Loryma or Larymna in Oedimus Bay, Gelos, Tisanusa, the headland of Paridion, Panydon or Pandion (Cape Marmorice) with Physicus, Physca or Physcus, also acalled Cressa (Marmarismarker). Beyond Cressa is the Calbis River (Dalyanmarker River). On the other side is Caunusmarker (near Dalyan), with Pisilis or Pilisis and Pyrnos between.

Then follow some cities that some assign to Lydia and some to Caria: Calynda on the Indus River, Crya, Carya, Carysis or Cari and Alina in the Gulf of Glaucus (Katranci Bay or the Gulf of Makrimarker), the Glaucus River being the border. Other Carian towns in the gulf are Clydae or Lydae and Aenus.

Inland Caria

At the base of the east end of Latmusmarker near Selimiye was the district of Euromus or Eurome, possibly Europus, formerly Idrieus and Chrysaoris (Stratonicea), apparently the ethnic center of non-Hellenic Caria. The name Chrysaoris once applied to all of Caria; moreover, Euromus was originally settled from Lycia. Its towns are Tauropolis, Plarassa and Chrysaoris. These were all incorporated later into Mylasa. Connected to the latter by a sacred way is Labranda. Around Stratonicea is also Lagina or Lakena as well as Tendeba and Astragon.

Further inland towards Aydinmarker is Alabandamarker, noted for its marble and its scorpions, Orthosia, Coscinia or Coscinus on the upper Maeander and Halydienses, Alinda or Alina. At the confluence of the Maeander and the Harpasus is Harpasa (Arpaz). At the confluence of the Maeander and the Orsinus, Corsymus or Corsynus is Antioch on the Maeandermarker and on the Orsinus in the mountains a border town with Phrygia, Gordiutichos ("Gordius' Fort") near Geyre. Founded by the Leleges and called Ninoe it became Megalopolis ("Big City") and Aphrodisiasmarker, sometime capital of Caria.

Other towns on the Orsinus are Timeles and Plarasa. Tabae was at various times attributed to Phrygia, Lydia and Caria and seems to have been occupied by mixed nationals. Caria also comprises the headwaters of the Indus and Eriya or Eriyus and Thabusion on the border with the small state of Cibyra.

Pre-Hellenic states and people

The name of Caria appears in a number of early languages: Hittite Karkija (a member state of the Assuwa league, ca. 1250 BC), Babylonian Karsa, Elamite and Old Persian Kurka. Allegedly, the region received the name of Caria from Car, an ancestral hero of the Carians.

Sovereign state hosting the Greeks

Caria arose as a Neo-Hittite kingdom around the 11th century BC.The coast of Caria was part of the Dorian hexapolis (six-cities) when the Dorians arrived after the Trojan War in the last and southernmost waves of Greek migration to western Anatolia's coastline and occupied former Mycenaean settlements such us Knidosmarker and Halicarnassos (present-day Bodrummarker). Herodotus, the famous historian was born in Halicarnassus during the 5th century BC. But Greek colonization touched only the coast and the interior remained Carian organized in a great number of villages grouped in local federations.

The Iliad records that at the time of the Trojan War, the city of Miletusmarker belonged to the Carians, and was allied to the Trojanmarker cause.

Lemprière notes that "As Caria probably abounded in figs, a particular sort has been called Carica, and the words In Care periculum facere, have been proverbially used to signify the encountering of danger in the pursuit of a thing of trifling value." The region of Caria continues to be an important fig-producing area to this day, accounting for most fig production in Turkey, which is the world's largest producer of figs.

Lydian province

Persian satrapy

Caria was then incorporated into the Persian Achaemenid empire as a satrapy in 545 BC. The most important town was Halicarnassus, from where its sovereigns reigned. Other major towns were Latmus, refounded as Heracleia under Latmusmarker, Antiochiamarker, Myndus, Laodiceamarker, Alinda and Alabandamarker.

Halicarnassus was the location of the famed Mausoleummarker dedicated to Mausolus, a satrap of Caria between 377353 BC by his wife, Artemisia. The monument became one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, and from which the Romans named any grand tomb a mausoleum.

Macedonian kingdom

Caria was conquered by Alexander III of Macedon in 334 BC with the help of the former queen of the land Ada of Caria who had been dethroned by the Persian Empire and actively helped Alexander in his conquest of Caria on condition of being reinstated as queen. After their capture of Caria, she declared Alexander as her heir.

Roman province

As part of the Roman Empire the name of Caria was still used for the geographic region but the territory administratively belonged to the province of Asia. During the administrative reforms of the 4th century this province was abolished and divided into smaller units. Caria became a separate province as part of the Diocese of Asia.

Dissolved by Constantinople

In the 7th century provinces were abolished and the new theme system was introduced.

Traces in modern Turkey

The Greek population of the coast of Anatolia persisted through the fall of Constantinoplemarker in 1453 CE and went on under the Ottoman Empire. In the early 20th century as a result of various social conflicts and power vacuum, the Ottoman Empire came under the rule of the Three Pashas who first socially and then militarily attacked populations they considered foreign. The Greeks of the western coast suffered pogroms and were reduced to second-class citizens.

The Ottoman Empire fought on the losing side in World War I and lost sovereignty to the Entente Powers. They were not long under the Entente, conducted a Turkish War of Independence resulting in a new Turkish Republic under the presidency of Mustafa Kemal Atatürk starting in 1923. As a result of the Treaty of Lausanne, there occurred a Population exchange between Greece and Turkey, the entire remaining Greek population of western Anatolia was sent to Greece.

The exchange ended a 3000-year Greek presence in Anatolia; however, modern Turkey cherishes the ruins and culture of ancient times, having turned much of the coast into national parks and granting licenses to western archaeologists. Many of the names remain intact or they have been converted to local tongue; for example, Caria:Geyre; Myndos: Menteşe.

See also


  1. The Histories, Book I Section 171.
  2. Cramer (1832), pages 170-224.
  3. Page 170.
  4. Page 176.


  • Downloadable Google Books.

External links

Embed code:

Got something to say? Make a comment.
Your name
Your email address