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Mardin (Syriac:ܡܶܪܕܺܝܢ; meaning fortresses) is a city in southeastern Turkeymarker. The capital of Mardin Provincemarker, it is known for its Arab-style architecture, and for its strategic location on a rocky mountain overlooking the plains of northern Syriamarker. Mardin has a very mixed population, Kurds, Turks, Assyrian/Chaldean/Syriacs and Arabs all represent large groups. There is also a small Armenian community in the region.


The earliest settlers in Mardin were Assyrians/Syriacs, arriving in the 3rd century AD; the old Assyro-Babylonian religion existed in Mardin until the 18th century. Most Syriac Orthodox churches and monasteries in the city, which are still active today, date from the 5th century AD, such as the Deyrülzafarân Monastery.Mardin is likely the Maride and Marida of the Greeks and Romans.Another important church, Kırklar Kilisesi (Church of the 40 Martyrs), originally built in the name of Benham and Saro, the two sons of the Assyrian ruler who executed them because they chose to become Christian, dates from 569 AD. , and even during its use as a capital by the Artukid Turkish dynasty which ruled Eastern Anatoliamarker and Northern Mesopotamia between the twelfth and fourteenth centuries. The 12th century Sitti Radviyye Madrasa, the oldest of its kind in Anatoliamarker, dates from this period.

The lands of the Artukid dynasty fell to the Mongols who took control of the region in 1394, but the Mongols never directly governed the area. Mardin was later controlled by the Turkish Akkoyunlu kingdom. The Kasımiye Madrasa was built by Sultan Kasım, son of the Akkoyunlu Sultan Cihangir, between 1457 and 1502. In 1517 was conquered by Ottoman Turks. 1915-1916 Arab, Aramaic and Armenian Christians of all denominations were massacred or driven away. On 15 August 1915 a public auction of Armenian women took place, for the first time.

In popular culture

Mardin is the one of the two main settings in the popular Turkish television series Sıla.
New districts of Mardin

Notable people

The world's tallest man, Sultan Kösen, lives nearby.


  1. Mardin, Turkey, from
  2. Encyclopaedia of the Orient - Mardin
  5. Jacques Rhétoré: Les chrétiens aux bêtes. Souvenirs de la guerre sainte proclamée par les Turcs contre les chrétiens en 1915, Les éditions du cerf, Paris 2005 ISBN 2-204-07243-5, pp. 13
  6. Yves Ternon: Mardin 1915. Mardin dans le génocide arménien. in: Revue d'Histoire Arménienne Contemporaine, Tome IV - 2002
  7. Raymond Kévorkian: Le Génocide des Arméniens, Odile Jacob, Paris 2006 ISBN 2-7381-1830-5, p. 459

See also


  • Ayliffe, Rosie, et al.. (2000) The Rough Guide to Turkey. London: Rough Guides.
  • Gaunt, David: Massacres, Resistance, Protectors: Muslim-Christian Relations in Eastern Anatolia During World War I, Gorgias Press, Piscataway (NJ) 2006 I
  • Grigore, George (2007), L'arabe parlé à Mardin. Monographie d'un parler arabe périphérique. Bucharest: Editura Universitatii din Bucuresti, ISBN (13) 978-973-737-249-9 [164103]
  • Jastrow, Otto (1969), Arabische Textproben aus Mardin und Asex, in "Zeitschrift der Deutschen Morgenländischen Gesellschaft" (ZDMG) 119 : 29-59.
  • Jastrow, Otto (1992), Lehrbuch der Turoyo-Sprache in "Semitica Viva – Series Didactica", Wiesbaden : Otto Harrassowitz.
  • Makas, Hugo (1926), Kurdische Texte im Kurmanji-Dialekte aus der Gegend von Mardin. Petersburg-Leningrad.
  • Minorsky, V. (1991), Mārdīn, in "The Encyclopaedia of Islam". Leiden: E. J. Brill.
  • Niebuhr, Carsten (1778), Reisebeschreibung, Copenhagen, II:391-8
  • Shumaysani, Hasan (1987), Madinat Mardin min al-fath al-'arabi ila sanat 1515. Bayrūt: 'Ālam al-kutub.
  • Tavernier, Jean-Baptiste (1692), Les six voyages, I:187
  • Sasse, Hans-Jürgen (1971), Linguistische Analyse des Arabischen Dialekts der Mhallamīye in der Provinz Mardin (Südossttürkei), Berlin.
  • Socin, Albert (1904), Der Arabische Dialekt von Mōsul und Märdīn, Leipzig.
  • della Valle, Pietro (1843), Viaggi, Brighton, I: 515
  • Wittich, Michaela (2001), Der arabische Dialekt von Azex, Wiesbaden: Harrassowitz.

International relations

Twin towns — Sister cities

Mardin is twinned with:

 Ljubljanamarker, Sloveniamarker, since 2003

External links

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