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Izmir

Turkey

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    The history of Izmir dates back to 3000 BC according to the results of historical knowledge and archaeological excavations. Findings and many investigations have been made to enlighten its history: The continuous excavations on the Bayrakli ridges by Prof. Dr. Ekrem Akurgal since 1959, the discovery of the Zeus Altar by the German archaeologist Carl Humman in Pergamon (Bergama) between 1866 and 1878, the discovery of the Artemis Temple in 1869 by the British Wood and the continuous excavations by Austrian archaeologists at certain intervals of the city of ancient Ephesus since 1904. Also many researchers in different universities are still investigating on the city’s historical development.

    Clock Tower of IzmirMany legends are known about the derivation of the name of Izmir. According to the knowledge acquired from scientific studies the word “IZMIR” came from Smyrna in the ancient Ionian dialect and it was written as “Smyrna in the Attican” ( around Athens ). The word Smyrna was not Greek, it came from Anatolian root like many other names in the Aegean Region. From the texts belonging to 2000 BC in Kültepe settlement in Kayseri, a place called Tismyrna was mentioned and the “Ti” at the beginning was omitted hence the city was pronounced as Smyrna during the early years of 3000 BC or late 1800 BC. In the Turkish era the city was called Izmir.

    In the years of 3000 BC, Western Anatolia was under the influence of Trojan civilization. The settlement areas built on the Aegean coast also developed generally under their influence. The Hittites which Homer wrote about in the Iliad, were an active force and civilization in the Anatolian mountain pastures because the Trojans were allies of the Hittites and they had a big influence on the Aegean settlements. As a matter of fact Pitane (Çandarli) in the Bakirçay River basin and similar settlements were built by the Hittites. It is believed that the Amazons lived in the area between Caria and the Lydia which today is the sides of Yamanlar Mountains, and they carried on their existence until the arrival of the Aiolos and the Ions.

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