Holy Lands; Asia Minor, Anatolia, Turkey.
Last Updated: Fri, 07 Dec 2012 08:09:12 +0000
Parthians, Medes and Elamites; residents of Mesopotamia, Judea and Cappadocia, Pontus and Asia,
Opposition arose, however, from members of the Synagogue of the Freedmen (as it was called)—Jews of Cyrene and Alexandria as well as the provinces of Cilicia and Asia—who began to argue with Stephen.
[ Paul’s Vision of the Man of Macedonia ] Paul and his companions traveled throughout the region of Phrygia and Galatia, having been kept by the Holy Spirit from preaching the word in the province of Asia.
This went on for two years, so that all the Jews and Greeks who lived in the province of Asia heard the word of the Lord.
He sent two of his helpers, Timothy and Erastus, to Macedonia, while he stayed in the province of Asia a little longer.
And you see and hear how this fellow Paul has convinced and led astray large numbers of people here in Ephesus and in practically the whole province of Asia. He says that gods made by human hands are no gods at all.
There is danger not only that our trade will lose its good name, but also that the temple of the great goddess Artemis will be discredited; and the goddess herself, who is worshiped throughout the province of Asia and the world, will be robbed of her divine majesty.”
He was accompanied by Sopater son of Pyrrhus from Berea, Aristarchus and Secundus from Thessalonica, Gaius from Derbe, Timothy also, and Tychicus and Trophimus from the province of Asia.
Paul had decided to sail past Ephesus to avoid spending time in the province of Asia, for he was in a hurry to reach Jerusalem, if possible, by the day of Pentecost.
When they arrived, he said to them: “You know how I lived the whole time I was with you, from the first day I came into the province of Asia.
[ Paul Arrested ] When the seven days were nearly over, some Jews from the province of Asia saw Paul at the temple. They stirred up the whole crowd and seized him,
But there are some Jews from the province of Asia, who ought to be here before you and bring charges if they have anything against me.
We boarded a ship from Adramyttium about to sail for ports along the coast of the province of Asia, and we put out to sea. Aristarchus, a Macedonian from Thessalonica, was with us.
Greet also the church that meets at their house. Greet my dear friend Epenetus, who was the first convert to Christ in the province of Asia.
1 Corinthians 16:19
[ Final Greetings ] The churches in the province of Asia send you greetings. Aquila and Priscilla greet you warmly in the Lord, and so does the church that meets at their house.
2 Corinthians 1:8
We do not want you to be uninformed, brothers and sisters, about the troubles we experienced in the province of Asia. We were under great pressure, far beyond our ability to endure, so that we despaired of life itself.
2 Timothy 1:15
[ Examples of Disloyalty and Loyalty ] You know that everyone in the province of Asia has deserted me, including Phygelus and Hermogenes.
1 Peter 1:1
Peter, an apostle of Jesus Christ, To God’s elect, exiles scattered throughout the provinces of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia,
[ Greetings and Doxology ] John, To the seven churches in the province of Asia: Grace and peace to you from him who is, and who was, and who is to come, and from the seven spirits before his throne,
The peninsular mass that the Asiatic continent projects westward of an imaginary line running from the Gulf of Alexandretta (Issus) on the Mediterranean to the vicinity of Trebizond (Trapezus) on the Black Sea. It is washed by three great seas, the Euxine (Black Sea) on the north, the Mediterranean on the south, and the Ægean on the west. It is located between 36°-42° north latitude and 26°-40° east longitude. The extreme length is about 720 miles and the extreme breadth about 420, though the average is 650 and 300 miles respectively. At its extreme western limit it almost touches the European mainland, from which it is separated for several miles by the narrow straits of the Bosphorus and the Dardanelles (Hellespont) and by the small Sea of Marmora (Propontis) through which connecting waters the Mediterranean and the Black Sea are brought into mutual contact.
In remote antiquity it had no common designation, being known variously after the races or kingdoms that it included. The term "Asia" was soon popularized by the Romans for whom it meant only the populous and cultivated western sea-board, organized by them into a province, together with neighbouring territory (Mysia, Lydia, Caria, Phrygia) more or less civilized after the Græco-Roman ideas. The first writer to use the term Asia Minor is the Christian Orosius (Hist., I, 2, 10), about the year 400. The early Byzantine writers often refer to it as ‘e mikrà ’Asía, "Little Asia". In Byzantine administration it came soon to be known under the somewhat elastic name of ’Anatolé or "rising sun", i.e. "the East". It was, politically speaking, "the Anatolic theme", one of the twenty-nine provinces of the Byzantine empire from the seventh century to the eleventh century, when it became a Turkish land. Since then it has become officially known as Anatolia (Anadoli, Natolia, Nadolia), and as such constitutes an important part of Asiatic Turkey, is in fact the chief political and religious mainstay of the present Moslem constitution as far as it is based on Constantinople. Asia Minor is also known as "the Levant", a Western (Italian and French) equivalent for Anatolia. This term, however, applies chiefly to the commercial and industrial centres of the southern and western coasts, though in ecclesiastical language and history it often includes both Egypt and the Holy Land. It was only gradually, and in response to divers influences and agencies, that under the name of Asia Minor were included the remote semi-Oriental territories of Cappadocia and Pontus, Cilicia and Lesser Armenia. Outside of Roman law and administration, their only element of earnest unity was in the Christian religion, and it is not at all insignificant that the first expression of a sense of close and solid relationship should come from a Christian philosopher historian, and precisely at the moment when the new religion had finally borne down in town and country all forms of opposition and apathy, and filled with a new spirit the exhausted races and now lifeless culture of past ages.
It is an elevated plateau, ranging in its surfaces from two to five thousand feet above the sea level, from which rise great mountain chains that run east and west with a certain regularity, while minor groups of mountains and isolated peaks of savage grandeur are widely scattered over the immense table-land. In extent Asia Minor covers about 270,000 square miles and is about the size of France, while in its main physical features it has often been compared with Spain. The mountains of the northern coast, or Pontic range, rise abruptly from the sea for a long distance, are broken by no good harbours, and fall gradually away towards the Bosphorus. Those of the southern or Taurus range run in an irregular line not far from the Mediterranean and form a natural barrier between the central highlands and the southern sea, broken only by the coastal plains of Pamphylia and Cilicia. Inland, the Anti-Taurus range and isolated peaks lift their huge walls from seven to ten thousand feet and render difficult the intercommunication of the inhabitants. Some of these peaks, like Mt. Argæus in Cappadocia (13,100) are of volcanic origin, and smaller cones with well-preserved craters are numerous. There are but few passes, usually at a great height, the most notable of them being the famous Gates of Cilicia (Pylæ Ciliciæ) at the easternmost extremity, a narrow gorge (3,300) between two lofty mountains, the only entrance from the plains of Syria, and therefore at all times the road followed by the Eastern conquerors of Asia Minor. At the extreme west the mountains descend gradually to the sea which they pierce with numberless headlands and projections that give rise to the system of bays and inlets in which Asia Minor has at all times found its chief resources and its most attractive charm.
Asia Minor is a rich field for the geologist. The immense central mass of Mt. Argæus in Cappadocia is largely cretaceous limestone, and elsewhere, south and west, calcareous rocks abound. The rivers carry off enormous quantities of this material which, as it hardens to travertine, forces them to shift their beds, petrifies vegetation, and sterilizes the surroundings. Igneous rocks are frequent, and there is still abundance of the Proconnesian and Phrygian marbles that once tempted the sculptors and builders of Pergamus and Rhodes. The mineral wealth is very great, but much neglected. The rivers are numerous and fall mostly into the Black Sea or the Mediterranean. But they are all sinuous and narrow, and as a rule very shallow. Moreover, falling from great interior heights, they become regularly torrential floods that carry away vast masses of alluvial matter, which they deposit in the sea, thereby filling up good harbours, converting into lakes ports once open, and pushing their deltas so far seaward that they become a menace to navigation. The lack of navigable rivers reaching well into the interior has always been a source of political and economic weakness for Asia Minor, and is perhaps the chief reason why in antiquity it never took on the character of a great united state. In later times this was much more deplorable, owing to the ruin of the once excellent system of Roman roads, the suspicions and unprogressive attitude of the Turkish authorities, and the decay of all the land-improvements made by the original native races, the Greeks of the coast and coastal valleys, the Romans of the imperial period, and the Byzantine population. The interior plateau has an average altitude of 3,500 feet, and stretches north-east by south-west a distance of 250 miles in length by 160 in breadth. Much of it is a treeless and barren waste covered with salt lakes or brackish pools, and with a stunted growth of saline brush, wormwood, sage, and fern. Yet it supports many nomadic and semi-nomadic tribes of Turcomans and Yuruks, who wander at will over these lonely wastes and undulating downs in search of pasturage and water for their vast flocks of sheep and goats, though in the hot summer months they seek the higher levels for purer air and the welfare of their flocks.
There are twenty-six lakes on this great plateau, some of which compare favourably with the great lakes of Switzerland, both for size and beauty. Hot medicinal springs are very numerous and form one of the distinctive features of the land. In general the climate is colder than that of the European peninsula within the same degrees of latitude, and is subject to greater extremes of temperature. One cause of the great extremes of cold and heat is the general lack of moisture; that of the clouds is intercepted by the tall mountains, north and south, while the discharge of all the rivers is only about one-third of the united volume of the rivers of France. The northern coast, between Constantinople and Sinope, is exposed to the cold blasts of unimpeded polar winds and to sultry summer heats; on the other hand, to the north-east the lofty peaks of the Caucasus intercept the cold winds from the steppes of Russia and permit the growth of magnificent forests and of wild fruit-trees in abundance. The western coast has a temperature somewhat lower than that of Greece, owing to the atmospheric currents developed by the countless headlands and inlets of the Ionian coast. The southern coast, sheltered from the north winds by the Taurus range, enjoys a warm and genial climate comparable to that of southern France, though its summer is very dry. On the central plateau the climate is affected by the elevation and aspect of the land, but chiefly by the scanty rainfall; in some places the blue sky remains for six or seven months unflecked by a single cloud. As a rule, the summer is exceedingly hot and the winter equally cold. Even on the coast malaria is endemic, owing to the stagnant pools, swamps, and marshy tracts formed by the shifting of river beds, inundations, and the formation of deltas. Moreover, the deforestation of the interior permits the contaminated air of the low-lying pestilential plains to be wafted freely over the central plateau. In respect to climate Asia Minor has greatly deteriorated since Roman antiquity, owing chiefly to the low-grade civilization of its Turkish population and its inefficiency of the civil administration.
The flora of Asia Minor is very varied, apart from the scanty vegetation of the inland plateau. The oak is found there in fifty-two varieties, half of which occur nowhere else. On the northern slopes of the central plateau grow the walnut, box, beech, ash, and other trees; the great forest of Ajakh-Dagh (Sea of Trees) is 120 miles long by 40 broad, and its trees exhibit generally a much larger growth than those of other lands under the same latitude. There are also great forests on all the northern slopes of the Black Sea ranges. On the southern slope of the Taurus, to an altitude of 6,000 feet, noble cedar groves grow and tower above the pines, firs, and junipers, while below them, gradually dropping to the sea, are broad belts of palm groves and aloes and other sub-tropical growths. In the eastern Pontic region and elsewhere the apple, pear, plum, and cherry grow wild; indeed, Asia Minor is said to be the native home of these fruit-trees, usually looked on as of Western origin. Oriental plane and cypress, quasi-sacred symbols of domestic comfort and of human sorrow, are found everywhere. In the sheltered southern valleys the vine, fig, orange, lemon, and citron grow amid the rich aromatic shrubbery, and lend to the landscape the aspect of Sicily or the more favoured districts of southern France.
Several animal species, once indigenous to Asia Minor, have disappeared with the destruction of the inland forests. It is thought that like our domestic varieties of fruit trees, the sheep and the goat are also a gift of Asia Minor. The Angora goat, famous for its silky hair of which the mohair or so-called "cashmere" shawls are woven, is a Turkish importation of the eleventh or twelfth century (Tchihatcheff) and seems to have been unknown to the ancients. It is limited to the district of that name in Galatia, and the flocks, 400,000 to 500,000 head, are very difficult to acclimatize elsewhere than on these high plateaux; at any other place the quality of the fleece quickly deteriorates. The horses for which Asia Minor, particularly Cappadocia, was once famous have either disappeared or given way to another race, graceful, active, and hardy, but inferior to the present stock of Syria or Arabia; there are no longer any large cattle of fine breed. The one-humped camel is the chief means of transportation, especially on the uplands and in the remote eastern districts. Here he associates peaceably with the horse, and can bear with ease and security a pack of 250 pounds over the passes and rocky terraces. The introduction of the camel probably dates from the twelfth century and symbolizes the thorough substitution of Oriental life for the civilization of the West. A small debased breed of asses abounds, quite inferior to the fine donkeys of Syria or Egypt. Mules are also numerous, as pack-animals and means of transportation; according to an Homeric tradition the peninsula is the original home of the mule. [For a fuller account of the geography of Asia Minor see the classic work of Vivien de Saint Martin, quoted below, and Reclus-Keane, The Earth and its Inhabitants (New York, 1895), Asia Minor (Anatolia), IV, 241-343.]
From time immemorial Asia Minor has been the highway of nations crossing from east to west, and occasionally reversing their course. At the dawn of history, dimly seen Chalybes are working the iron ores of the Caucasus on the Black Sea, and close by are Iberians, Colchians and other tribes. At the other extremity Thracian tribes are flowing backward to their original haunts in Phrygia and Bithynia, while Semitic peoples begin the historical life of Cappadocia. From 1500 to 1000 B.C. the Hittites overran the land as far as the Halys and even as far as Smyrna and Ephesus; sculptures and rock-sanctuaries (Boghaz-Keuï in Cappadocia) still attest their presence. Before them Turanian peoples may have been long settled on the land. Inscribed and sculptured rock-surfaces and tombs in Lydia still puzzle the archeologist, historian, and philologist. From all such data it is impracticable to reconstruct, except in the broadest outline, "the periods of formation through which Asia Minor must have passed before it stands out in the full light of history with its division into numerous more or less independent states, its mixed population, its complicated combination of religions and cultures as different as the races which originated them" (Ragozin). The fable of the Amazon state in the Thermodon valley seems to have originated in the female priesthood of the Hittite nature-goddess, Mâ, that the Greeks of the western coast eventually changed into Artemis (Diana of Ephesus). The modern discoveries of Schliemann and Dorpfeld at Hissarlik, on the site of ancient Troy, go far to confirm the reality of the main incidents in Homer and the traditional date (1200-1100 B.C.) of the siege and capture of the city of Priam. But it was not the Argives of Agamemnon who were destined to conquer Asia Minor for the ideas of Hellas. About the year 1100 B. C., numerous Greeks, fleeing before the Dorian invasion from the uplands of Epirus and Thessaly, began to move southward. Driven by these rude warlike invaders, they soon took to the open sea, and so eventually settled in the islands of the Archipelago and along the southern coast of Asia Minor wherever the river-mouths or the plains offered tempting sites for trade and enterprise. They found before them the kingdoms of Lydia and Caria with whose history Herodotus (I, 7-14) begins his account of the wars of the Greeks and Persians; for Asia, he says, with all the barbarian tribes that inhabit it, is regarded by the Persians as their own (ibid., I, 4). Thenceforth, from the ninth to the sixth century B. C., it is a long procession of Greeks (Ionians, Æolians, Dorians) who descend regularly on the shores of Asia Minor as traders, colonists, adventurers; above all, men of Ionian race. They build their city and sanctuary of Miletus near the shrine of the Lydian sun-god; they adopt other local deities, intermarry with the natives and establish soon an over-sea Greece whose development is the first great chapter in the history of the Western mind. (Sayce, The Ancient Empires of the East, London, 1884; Grote, History of Greece.) The earliest known coins (square-punched, electron) are of Lydian origin, belong to the seventh century B. C., and are perhaps a result of the mercantile intercourse of Greeks and natives. The oracle of Delphi now attracted the Lydian kings, "the first of the barbarians", says Herodotus, "to send presents to that Greek temple", and so along the lines of a common religion there sprang up an ever closer intercourse of both races.
About the middle of the sixth century B. C., a certain hegemony over most of the peninsula was established by Cræsus, King of Lydia, but this petted child of antique fortune was soon overthrown (548-546 B.C.) by the Persian Cyrus, after which for two centuries the entire land was an outlying province of Persia. In those days the exactions of the "Great King" fitted in with the ambition and patriotism of the Greeks of the mainland to bring about sympathetic wars in defence of the Asiatic Greeks and then in defence of the Hellenic fatherland (500-449 B.C.). These immortal efforts of the Greeks arrested forever the repeated overflow of Oriental arrogance and oppression, and made ready the way for the career of Alexander the Great who was destined to revenge on the Orient all the wrongs, supposed or real, of the Greeks of Asia Minor, and to open the career of European grandeur and progress. An uneasy and disturbed period followed, during which the Seleucid successors of Alexander pretended to dominate from Antioch the rich and easy prey of Asia Minor that had fallen to Alexander after the battles of the Granicus and of Issus (334-333 B.C.), fought respectively at either end of the peninsula. In this time arose the new kingdoms of Pontus, Bithynia, Cappadocia, Pergamus, and Cilicia partly Greek and partly native, also the interesting Celtic kingdom of Galatia founded (280 B.C.) by warlike adventurers from Gaul, and so organized by them that for the next six or seven centuries it bore the stamp of many peculiar Celtic institutions of their distant fatherland. Greek art, that had already flourished admirably in the Ionian islands and mainland centres of the south and south-west, now took on a fresh development forever connected with the little mountainous kingdom of Pergamus and its Greek rulers known as the Attalids, from Attalus, a favourite name of its kings. Then came the wars with republican Rome (190-63 B.C.), ending in the latter year with the defeat and death of the great Mithradates VI, "the Oriental defender of Greek liberties", whereby Pontus and Bithynia, i.e. the shores of the Black Sea, were for a long time freed from the peril of Oriental domination. In general the first three centuries of Roman imperial administration were a period of peace and progress for Asia Minor. From the fourth to the seventh century the last long conflict of Eastern Rome with Persia went on, the vicissitudes of which were of no little importance to the great province across which the imperial armies and the warriors of Persia moved to and fro. The annihilation of Persian ambition by Emperor Heraclius (A.D. 610-641) only shifted the source of danger; henceforth the Arab and his successor, the Turk, take up the continuous challenge of the Orient, and finally make it good. Predatory Arab invasions from 672 to 717 were repelled with vigour from Constantinople, after which for over three centuries the land remained subject to the hereditary Byzantine rule, though during this period almost endless conflict with the Arab dynasties made the Christian buffer-state of Armenia a scene of unutterable woe, and even Asia Minor was constantly menaced by the children of the Prophet. In the end the bravery and military skill of the Macedonian emperors (867-1057) availed not against the continuous pressure of fresh hordes from the far East, and the middle of the eleventh century saw two fatal events, almost contemporaneous and intimately connected, the final separation of the Greek and Latin churches (1040), and the conquest of Asia Minor by Malek Shah and his Seljuk Turks (1058-71). After the death of Malek (1092) his children disputed and divided the splendid inheritance left by him. But Asia Minor, henceforth Rûm (i.e. Rome, the Turkish name of all Byzantine territory), did not pass from their control; they set up their thrones at Nicæa, Nicomedia, and eventually (1097) at Iconium (Koniah). The crusaders of the twelfth century usually took the great highway over Asia Minor, either entirely into Syria, or partly, to embark at ports on the southern coast. Here and there they set up a temporary rule, but could not sustain it against the inexhaustible multitude of the Turkish hordes and the treachery of the Greek emperors. For more than a century the Seljuks ruled Asia Minor, until the appearance of the Mongol hordes (1235). The over-lordship of the latter lasted for some sixty years, until about 1294, when the rule of the Ottoman Turk was inaugurated by the victories of Othman I, and the successful reigns of his three sons, Urkhan, Murad I, and Bajazet I. A ray of hope shone for the Christian Byzantines during the thirteenth century when the Empire of Nicæa (1204-1330) held Bithynia, Lydia, a part of Phrygia and the islands of the Archipelago, i.e. the western region of Asia Minor, and again in the fourteenth and fifteenth centuries when the Empire of Trebizond (1204-1461) on the Black Sea nourished feebly the hopes of Greek Christians for a return of independence under the cross. But Nicæa fell and became an outpost of Ottoman conquest, and Trebizond scarcely survived the fall of Constantinople (1453). Both weak states had arisen as a protest against the Latin conquest of Constantinople (1204), and though they made the coast line Christian for three centuries, they were unable to loosen the grip of the Turkish hordes of "the Black Sheep" and others on the table-land of the interior. In the thirteenth and fourteenth centuries the Genoese and Venetians established a commercial supremacy along the coasts of Asia Minor and in many of the islands. They left permanent memorials in military architecture (since then the Turks call ruins indiscriminately "Djenovessi kalessi" or Genoese castles), and especially in the commercial and maritime law, in business relations and methods, and in the class known henceforth as "Levantines". But the mutual jealousies and rivalries of the Italian commercial republics, and their predominating secular aims, prevented any serious attempt to oust the Seljuk Turk from the high table-lands and eastern border. Ottoman rule and life spread rapidly, threatened only for a brief while by a new Mongol invasion under Tamerlane (1386-1402), and by the disastrous battle of Angora in the latter year (Creasy, History of the Ottoman Empire, new ed., London, 1882). In the end, however, Turkish fortune and courage prevailed, and permanent dominion over the peninsula was secured to the Osmanli by the capture of Constantinople in 1453, since which time save for a partial occupation by the Egyptian Mohammed Ali (1831-39) the Turk has held in peace this richest jewel of Mediterranean empire. As a rule, the inland Turk has cared only for fresh pasturage for his flocks. Ever moving from place to place with his countless sheep and goats, he has despised agriculture and the life of towns. Heedless of the future he has ruined all cultivation of the land, allowed its once perfect development to decay completely, and driven the Christian peasant of the Byzantine age to the mountains or the sea, when he has not induced him to adopt, with the normal life, the law of the Koran. It is the low-grade civilization of the steppes of Turkestan made permanent on the former site of supreme Hellenic refinement of life and of Christian sublimity of teaching and virtue. And it is universally admitted that only a recolonization from Europe can restore its original felicitous conditions. (Vivien de Saint Martin, "Déscription historique et géographique de l'Asie Mineure", Paris, 1852; Heyd, "Geschichte des Levantenhandels", Stuttgart, 1879, tr. into French by Reynaud, Paris, 1880-86).
The Roman Province.—Under the Roman rule, republican and early imperial, the numerous political entities that had sprung up in Asia Minor after the death of Alexander the Great disappeared rapidly and made way for a unity and efficiency of administration, a peace and prosperity, hitherto unknown. The little Greek kingdoms of Pergamus and Bithynia were left to Rome by the wills of their last kings; Cilicia, freed by Pompey from the pirates that infested its waters, was only too grateful for imperial protection; Pontus alone was won from Mithradates VI in a memorable war during which the Celts of Galatia sided with victorious Rome and reaped the reward of their good fortune in governmental favour. With their kings Deiotadrus and Amyntas, the line of Celtic rulers of Asia Minor closed; after the death of Amyntas (25 B.C.) Galatia became a Roman province. The last king of Cappadocia died in the reign of Tiberius, and the land was forthwith annexed. In this way a practical uniformity of government was introduced over the entire peninsula. Without doing violence to local customs or traditions, the imperial government assured to the provincials an administration at once responsible and equitable, of swift and thorough justice, of continuous peace, easy communication, protection to life and property and the fruits of honest industry. The wool-grower and the weaver of Ancyra, the gold-embroiderer of Attalia, and the sculptor of Diana statuettes in Ephesus were henceforth assured of permanent prosperity, and with them all the other callings and occupations of the most highly civilized part of the Mediterranean world. Manufactures and industries increased, and before the end of the second century Asia Minor had touched the scene of temporal felicity. Taxation, as everywhere in the empire, was close and minute, but not intolerable. Occasionally the taxes were remitted and in periods of public calamity (earthquakes, inundations) the public treasury came to aid the unhappy provincials. The revenues of the peninsula, deeply impaired by republican misgovernment, the Mithradatic wars, and the campaigns against the pirates, increased with rapidity; the fertile islands of the archipelago together with Crete and Cyprus, centuries ago hellenized in polity, tongue and civilized institutions, were bee-hives of industry. Rhodes, e.g., was the great workshop of Greek sculptors who continued, though in a decadent way, the glorious traditions of the Ionian and Pergamene ages. Every available piece of ground on the coast was intensely cultivated, as the pitiful wreckage of agricultural engineering yet shows, while in the interior the plains of Galatia were covered with goats and sheep, and those of Cappadocia with the finest breed of horses known to the ancients. That all the industrial virtues were highly cultivated is shown by a list of occupations drawn from Christian inscriptions of the fifth century (Cumont). They exhibit among other callings oil-dealers, scribes, greengrocers, potters, coppersmiths, skinners, mariners, money-changers, and goldsmiths. In the imperial period few new cities were added to the five hundred busy urban hives of the western coast, but Greek civilization went hand in hand with Roman law through the interior and was welcomed, e.g. in the mountains of uncouth Cappadocia and of rugged warlike Issauria where the Attalids and Seleucids had never been able to acclimatize it. For the better administration of justice the land was divided into a certain number of judicial districts (conventus juridici) and assizes were regularly held in the chief towns of the same.
A certain unity of religion was reached in the worship of Rome and Augustus, i.e. of the dead and later of the living emperors, to whom temples were built in the metropolitan cities (Augusteum, Cæsareum), and in the celebration of whose festivals the Asiatic provincial proclaimed his gratitude, exercised his new Roman patriotism, and felt himself drawn nearer, if not to his fellow-Asiatics, at least to the marvellous darling of fortune enthroned upon the distant Tiber. The man of Asia Minor had long been subject to Persia without revolt, and then to the children of the brilliant marshals of Alexander; submission was natural to him, and this time it brought in its train all that was needed to make life perfect in so favoured a land, i.e. peace and prosperity. As high-priest of the provincial department of the imperial religion of Rome and Augustus his influence over all religious matters was great. The office seems at times to have been closely identified with that of the president of the emperor's festival, and was the formal source of much of the persecution directed against the Christians of the province, especially during the annual festival, when the deputies of the provincial cities met at the metropolis and manifested their patriotism, among other ways, by denouncing the followers of Jesus for refusing to adore the divinity (numen, genius) of the emperor. An ideal picture of the office, affected, however, by Christian institutions and experience, is given by Julian the Apostate in his famous letter to the Galatarch (Ep., xlix; cf. Eusebius, Church History VIII.14.9). With the honour of president of the annual festival of the emperor went other distinctions, a special title (Asiarch, Bithyniarch, Galatarch), in addition to various marks of honour. Only the rich could pretend to merit it, for the office carried with it the right and the duty to defray the expense of such festivals. But there were many to claim it, for provincial pride was strong in Asia Minor, and the rivalry of the metropolitan cities was very keen. The new worship of Rome and Augustus was not unlike a religion established by law, though it never interfered with the other forms of Greek or Oriental worship, or the numerous miraculous asylums, or even such individual careers as those of Apollonius of Tyana or Alexander of Abonoteichos. To the cities was left their ancient liberty of internal administration, the repartition of imperial assessments, and the preservation of local order. Only the wealthy could vote for the magistrates, and the time was yet far off when their descendants would try in vain to rid themselves of an hereditary dignity that in the end carried with it the heaviest of financial burdens. Occasionally the imperial government looked into the municipal book-keeping and even controlled the municipal decrees; more frequently it exercised a certain surveillance over the nomination of the chief of police (eirenarch). The public safety was assured in the early imperial times by a small army of 5,000 auxiliary troops in Galatia, and by the Black Sea fleet of forty ships stationed at Trebizond. In the time of Vespasian two legions were quartered in Cappadocia and along the upper waters of the Euphrates. A few soldiers scattererd here and there through the provinces served the Roman magistrates as messengers, sheriffs, bailiffs, and the like. Asia Minor, in which both the senate and the emperor exercised, in theory at least, a co-ordinate jurisdiction until the end of the third century, was too contented and loyal to call for other troops than were necessary for protection from the foreign enemy, or to repress brigandage. The latter was, unhappily, never quite suppressed in a land well fitted for the flight and concealment of the lawless. Up to the time of Justinian certain parts of Isauria and Cilicia were the home of bold freebooters, despite the ever tightening military cordons, the increase of civilization, and the growing influence of Christian principles. There were often in municipal life lack of integrity, corruption, and waste, coupled with intrigues, rivalries, and factions, but this is no more than might be expected amid such unexampled prosperity, in a land where no large political life existed, and where climate and the narrow municipal horizon conspired to diminish energy and magnify local and temporary interests. "The calm sea" says Mommsen, "easily becomes a swamp, and the lack of the great pulsation of general interest is clearly discernible also in Asia Minor".
A complete description of the cities of Asia Minor in the best days of the empire, their splendour and magnificence, partly inherited and partly to the credit of Rome, sounds to modern ears like exaggeration. Their ruins, however, are convincingly eloquent. Marble and granite, exquisitely and solidly worked, were the building materials of the countless temples, baths, assembly-rooms, gymnasia, deep-pillared porticoes and colonnades that graced even the smallest of its cities, and were very often the gifts of private individuals, who exhibited thus in their little "fatherland" (as the Christian Bishop Abercius calls his native city Hierapolis), a power of self-sacrifice and affection for the public weal for which no larger stage was open. Countless art-works in marble and bronze often replicas of incomparable Greek originals carried away in the republican period, decorated the public buildings and the open squares; even these copies seem at last to have been confiscated by Constantine for his new city by the Golden Horn. Aqueducts and reservoirs, embankments and levees, saved and controlled the useful waters that are now the ruin of the land. Terraces built with skill and art multiplied the productive power of the fertile soil. From the city gates there radiated numerous long lines of sculptured tombs, whose broken inscriptions now throw light on the rich and varied life of the antique world. In the fine arts the correct sense of the Greeks was the guide, but in commercial and industrial life the Roman seems to have been dominant. Latin mercantile words are often transliterated into Greek, and there are numerous other evidences of close commercial intercourse with Italy. Famous Greek teachers and physicians frequented the Italian cities (Tac., Ann., XII, 61, 67) somewhat as the Byzantine humanists frequented those of Northern Italy. The great municipal families and those well established on the vast estates of the central table-land seem to have clung to the ancestral soil with more fidelity than was shown elsewhere in the Orient. Education of the purely literary type was universal, and to some extent provided for by the cities and even by the imperial government. We read of principals and inspectors of schools, of teachers of writing and music, of masters of boxing, archery, and spear-throwing, of special privileges for teachers of rhetoric and grammar; in a word the ideal education of the Greek mainland as crystallized in the classic writers and in the still vigorous school of Athens, was in a large measure reproduced in Asia Minor. Homer and the Greek classics were the school books. The chief result of it all was a race of remarkable public orators known as sophists or rhetoricians, wandering academic lecturers on the glories of the past or on commonplaces of philosophy, poetry, and history. Often bilingual, they were admired by the provincials, whose favour they held by flattery and sympathy, and by careful attention to the mise en scene—voice, gesture, dress, attitude. Some of them, like Dio Chrysostom, exhibit genuine native patriotism, but in all of them there echoes a hollow declamatory note, the best evidence of the hopeless character of Greek paganism, of which they were now the chief theologians and philosophers. Their literary influence was deep and lasting, and though they were inimical to the Christian religion, this influence may yet be traced in not a few of the Greek Christian writers of their own and later times. Apart from this class the pagan society of Asia Minor seems to have contributed but a few great names to the annals of science and literature. Two of them come from Bithynia, the above-mentioned rhetorician Dio Chrysostom, moralist and philosopher, and Arrian of Nicomedia, historian of Alexander the Great and popularizer of Epictetus. Pergamus boasts the name of the learned physician Galen, like his earlier fellow-Asiatic, Xenophon of Cos, a man of scientific attainments in his own department, and also of general philosophic culture, but a stern enemy of the Christian religion. Nevertheless, just as Roman Asia Minor boasts of no first-class cities like Alexandria or Antioch, but only of a great many second and third class centres of population, so in literature the great names are wanting, while general literary culture and refinement, both of speech and taste, are widespread, and, in the near western section, universal. The cosmopolitan character of imperial administration, the diffusion of education, the facility of travel, and the free use of the two great civilized tongues, made the man of Asia Minor, in a certain sense, a citizen of the world and fitted him peculiarly to play an important part from the fourth century on in the spread of Christianity and the adaptation of its ideas to Græco-Roman society. Indeed, without some knowledge of the civilization that moulded their youth, the Basils and the Gregorys [of Nyssa and Nazianzus — Ed.] lose half their interest for us. (Mommsen, The Provinces of the Roman Empire, New York, 1887, II, 345-97; Ramsay, The Historical Geography of the Roman Empire, London, 1890.)
Spread of Christianity in Asia Minor
As everywhere in the Roman empire, so in Asia Minor it was the numerous Jewries in which the Christian religion found its first adherents. In the last three pre-Christian centuries the Seleucid kings of Syria had transplanted from Palestine to Asia Minor thousands of Jewish families whose descendants were soon scattered along all the coasts and throughout a great part of the interior. On Pentecost day at Jerusalem (Acts 2:5, 9, 10) there were present among the disciples "Jews, devout men out of every nation under heaven", also representatives of Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia. On his several missionary journeys, St. Paul visited many parts of Asia Minor and established there the first Christian churches; in the thirteenth and fourteenth chapters of Acts there is a vivid and circumstantial description of all the chief phases of his Apostolic activity. His conversion of the Galatians, in particular, has a perennial interest for Western Christians, since at least a large portion of that province was composed of descendants of those Celts of Gaul who had settled there in the third century B.C. and in St. Paul's time, and for centuries afterwards, still retained their Celtic speech and many Celtic institutions (Lightfoot, Commentary on Galatians, London, 1896, 1-15; Ramsay, The Church in the Roman Empire before A.D. 170, New York, 1893, 97-111; Idem, St. Paul, the Traveller and Roman Citizen, New York, 1898, 130-151). Asia Minor was the principal scene of the labours of St. John; he wrote his Apocalypse on the desolate island of Patmos, and his Gospel probably at Ephesus. He established firmly in the latter city a famous centre of Christian life, and an ancient tradition, as old as the Council of Ephesus (431), says that the Blessed Virgin spent her last years in the vicinity of Ephesus, and passed thence to her reward. From Ephesus St. John travelled much throughout Asia Minor and has always been credited with the first establishment of many of its episcopal sees; the story of the re-conversion of the young robber, touchingly told in the "Quis Dives" of Clement of Alexandria exhibits the popular concept of St. John in the mind of the average Christian of Asia Minor about the year 200. In the "Acts of Thecla" it is now recognized that we have a fragment of a life of St. Paul in Asia Minor, written about the middle of the second century, though without ecclesiastical approval, which throws no little light on several phases of the great Apostle's career but slightly touched on in the Acts and the Pauline Epistles. St. Peter, too, preached the Christian Faith in Asia Minor. His First Epistle, written from Rome (v, 13), is addressed "to the strangers dispersed through Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia", i.e. in northern, western, and central Asia Minor. That the new religion spread rapidly is proved by the famous passage in the letter of Pliny (Ep. x, 97), Roman governor of Bithynia, addressed to the Emperor Trajan about 112, in which he says that the whole province is overrun with the contagion of Christianity, the temples are abandoned and the meat of the victims unsaleable, persons of every age, rank, and condition are joining the new religion. At this period also the Church History of Eusebius shows us the admirable figure of St. Ignatius of Antioch, of whose seven letters five are addressed to Christian churches of Asia Minor (Philadelphia, Ephesus, Smyrna, Tralles, Magnesia) and reveal an advanced stage of Christian growth. It was at this time that St. Polycarp of Smyrna and St. Irenæus of Lyons were born in Asia Minor, both prominent Christian figures of the second century, the latter being the foremost ecclesiastical writer of his period.
It is in Asia Minor that synods, or frequent assemblies of Christian bishops, first meet us as a working ecclesiastical institution; even in remote and uncouth Cappadocia they were not infrequent in the third century. It was therefore fitting that when the first general council of the Catholic Church was held (525) it should be called together at Nicæa (Isnik) in western Asia Minor, amid a population long stanchly Christian. Of the (traditional) 318 bishops who attended that council about one hundred were from Asia Minor; the semi-barbarous Isauria sent fourteen city bishops and four rural bishops (chorepiscopi), while remote Cilicia sent nine city bishops and one rural bishop. Indeed, the episcopal system of Asia Minor seems to have been almost completed by this time. (Ramsay, Cities and Bishoprics of Asia Minor, in Histor. Geogr. of Asia Minor, London, 1890, 104-426.) In any case, there were in that territory in the fifth century some 450 Catholic episcopal sees. The institution of rural bishops (chorepiscopi) appears first in Asia Minor (Council of Ancyra, 314) and seems to be the origin of the later parochial system. It is in Asia Minor that arose, or were fought out, nearly all the great ecclesiastical conflicts of the early Christian period. The Church History of Eusebius, first published before 325, exhibits the Christian bishops of Asia Minor during the second and third centuries in conflict with semi-Oriental philosophic heresies like Gnosticism, that developed under the leadership of keen critical rationalists like Marcion of Sinope on the Black Sea, while the germs of the great christological heresies, e.g. Sabellianism, were first nourished on the same soil. Here, too, met the famous councils that overthrew these heresies (Nicæa in 325, Ephesus in 431, and Chalcedon in 451). Internal reform of the Christian Church was first undertaken from Asia Minor, where Montanus, a native of Phrygia, began the rigorist movement known as Montanism, and denounced the growing laxity of Christian life and the moral apathy of the religious chiefs of the society. He claimed for himself and certain female disciples the survival of the early Christian prophetic gifts, or personal religious inspiration, which seems to have been more frequent and to have survived longer in Asia Minor than elsewhere (Harnack, Mission und Ausbreitung, 287, 402). The immediate cause of the last great persecution, that of Diocletian (284-305), seems to have been the rapid growth of Christianity in all Asia Minor, particularly in the imperial capital, then located at Nicomedia (Ismid). Maximus Daza, the sympathetic colleague in Egypt of the persecuting Galerius (305-311), admitted (Eusebius, Church History IX.9) that nearly all the Orient had become Christian, and in this he was merely the echo of the dying words of the contemporary Christian scholar and martyr, Lucian of Antioch, who asserted (Rufinus, Hist. Eccl., IX, vi) that in his time the greater part of the Roman world had become Christian, even entire cities. Such a Christian city of Phrygia, Eusebius tells us (Church History VIII.11.1), was given to the flames by the pagans in the persecution of Diocletian; the inhabitants perished to a man with the name of Christ upon their lips. Apropos of this, Harnack recalls (op. cit., p. 466) the fact that eighty years earlier Thyatira in the same province was an entirely Christian city, though intensely Montanist in religious temper. The city of Apaneia in the same province seems to have become quite Christian before 250. The work of Cumont (Inscriptions Chrétiennes de l'Asie Mineure, Rome, 1895) exhibits undeniable epigraphic evidence that Phrygia was widely Christianized long before the conversion of Constantine (312). The words of Renan (Origines du Christianisme, III, 363, 364) are therefore eminently true: "Thenceforward (from A.D. 112) for three hundred years Phrygia was essentially a Christian land. There began the public profession of Christianity; there are found, from the third century, on monuments exposed to the public gaze, the terms Chrestianos or Christianos; there the formulas of epitaphs convey veiled references to Christian dogmas; there, from the days of Septimus Severus, great cities adopt biblical symbols for their coins, or rather adapt their old traditions to biblical narrations. A great number of the Christians of Ephesus and Rome came from Phrygia. The names most frequently met with on the monuments of Phrygia are the antique Christian names (Trophimus, Tychicus, Tryphenus, Papias, etc.), the names special to the apostolic times, and of which the martylrologies are full". The Acts of the Christian Bishop, Pionius of Smyrna, a martyr of the time of Decius (249-251), portray that city as largely Christian, and (with exception of the Jews) entirely devoted to its rhetorician-bishop. In the fourth century Gregory of Nyssa relates, apropos of Gregory of Cæsarea (c. 213-275), that during the thirty-five or forty years of his episcopal activity he had Christianized nearly all Pontus. It is an unfair exaggeration (Harnack, 475-476) to attribute his success to toleration of heathen customs, amusements, etc. So good a Christian theologian as Gregory of Nyssa could relate this condescension of the Wonder-worker without perceiving any real sacrifice of Christian principles in faith or morals; some concessions there must always be when it is question of conversions in bulk. His "Epistola Canonica" (P.G., X, 1019-48), one of the earliest and most venerable documents of diocesan legislation, presupposes many well-established Christian communities, whose captive ecclesiastics and citizens (c. 260) spread the first germs of Christianity among the piratical Goths of the Black Sea. Asia Minor was certainly the first part of the Roman world to accept as a whole the principles and the spirit of the Christian religion, and it was not unnatural that the warmth of its conviction should eventually fire the neighbouring Armenia and make it, early in the fourth century, the first of the ancient states formally to accept the religion of Christ (Eusebius, Church History IX.8.2). The causes of the rapid conversion of Asia Minor are not, in general, dissimilar to those which elsewhere favoured the spread of Christianity. It may be accepted, with Harnack, that the ground was already prepared for the new religion, inasmuch as Jewish monotheism was acclimatized, had won many disciples, and discredited polytheism, while on the other hand Christianity was confronted by no State religion deeply and immemorially entrenched in the hearts of a united and homogeneous people (the imperial worship being a late innovation and offering only a factitious unity). But much of this is true of other parts of the Roman empire, and it remains certain that the local opposition to the Christian religion was nowhere stronger than in the cities of Asia Minor where Antoninus Pius (138-161) had to check the illegal violence of the multitude (Eusebius, Church History IV.33); even if we do not accept as genuine his rescript "Ad commune Asiæ" (ibid., IV, xix), it is of ancient origin and exhibits an enduring Christian sense of intolerable injustice, already foreshadowed in 1 Peter 4:3-5, 13-19. The literary opposition to Christianity was particularly strong, as already said, among the rhetoricians and grammarians, i.e. among the public teachers and the philosophers, not to speak of the pagan imperial priesthood, nowhere so well organized and favoured as in every province of Asia Minor. Lactantius tells us that the last known anti-Christian pamphleteers were both from Bithynia in Asia Minor (Inst. V, 2), Hierocles, the governor of the province, and another whose name he withholds. The principal theologians of Asia Minor (Irenæus, Gregory the Wonder-worker, Methodius of Olympus, Basil of Neocæsarea, Gregory of Nazianzus, and Gregory of Nyssa) do not differ notably in their concepts of the Christian religion from those of Syria or Egypt or the West. It seems therefore quite incorrect to describe with Harnack the original conversion of Asia Minor as a gradual and rather peaceful transformation of the native heathenism and no real extirpation (keine Ausrottung, sondern eine Umformung, op. cit., 463). If this were so, it must always remain a great mystery how the Christianity of Asia Minor could present, on the eve of its political triumph, so remarkable a front of unity in sound doctrine and elevated morals when its alleged original pagan sources were so numerous and conflicting, so gross and impure.
Of the ecclesiastical administration of Asia Minor, after the triumph of the Christian religion, but little need be said. Like the rest of the Roman empire the land was divided into two administrative territories, known as "dioceses" (Gr. dioikéseis, districts to be supervised). They were Pontus and Asia, respectively an eastern and a western territory. In the first were twelve civil provinces, to which corresponded the ecclesiastical provinces of Cappadocia, Lesser Armenia, Pontus, Polemonium, Helenopontus, Galatia, Bithynia, Honorias, and Paphlagonia. The diocese of Asia included the provinces of Asia (proper), Hellespont, Phrygia, Lydia, Caria, Lycia, Pamphylia, Pisidia, Lycaonia, and the Cyclades or islands of the Ægean. By the end of the fourth century these eighteen provinces were subject to the patriarch of Constantinople, while on the south-eastern coast, Isauria and Cilicia, with the island of Cyprus, were subject to the patriarchate of Antioch, Cyprus in a restless and discontented way. All were more easily reached from the mouth of the Orontes; yet other reasons, historical, national, and temperamental, co-operated with the ambition of the clergy of Constantinople to draw this line of demarcation between the two great ecclesiastical spheres of influence in the central Orient, whereby Armenia was drawn within the radius of Syro-Antiochene influence, to the great detriment, later on, of Catholic unity. (Duchesne, Histoire ancienne de l'église, Paris, 1906, I, 433 sqq.) The ambition of the clergy of Constantinople, their jealousy of old Rome, and imperial favour, had won this pre-eminence for the royal city. It had never evangelized Asia Minor; that was done from Antioch, and in the third century the two ecclesiastical exarchates of Asia Minor, Cæsarea in Cappadocia and Ephesus in Asia proper, were subject to the patriarch of the great Syrian city. In the latter half of the third century, long before the founding of Constantinople (330), the bishops of Asia Minor were wont to attend the synods of Antioch and in turn that patriarch occasionally presided over the synods held in Asia Minor. It was from Antioch that the churches of Asia Minor got their liturgy; from them it radiated to Constantinople itself and eventually throughout the greater part of the Greek Church (Duchesne, Origins of Christian Worship, London, 1903, 71). Once established, however, the jurisdiction of Constantinople over most of the churches of Asia Minor remained unchallenged, especially after the Arab conquest of Syria (636) when the ancient influence of Antioch on eastern Asia Minor disappeared. Nevertheless, the ecclsiastical organization of Asia Minor was too solidly rooted in popular life to disappear except very slowly. If we had complete lists of the subscriptions to the Greek councils of the eighth and ninth centuries, we should know more about the survival of the episcopal system and its various modifications under Byzantine rule. As it is, not a little light is thrown on the medieval hierarchy of Asia Minor by a certain number of catalogues or lists of the patriarchates with their metropolitan and autocephalous archbishops, also of the suffragans of the metropolitans, which are extant under the Latin name of "Notitiæ Episcopatuum" (ed. Parthey, Berlin, 1866). These catalogues were originally known as Taktiká, some of them dating back to the seventh or eighth century (Pakaià Taktiká), while others underwent frequent correction, more or less scientific and thorough, even as late as the thirteenth century (Krumbacher, Gesch. der byzant. Litteratur, 2d ed., Munich, 1897, 415, 416; Ramsay, Hist. Geogr. of Asia Minor, 89, 427). Together with the geographies of Ptolemy and Strabo (the latter a native of Asia Minor and praised by Ramsay for his accurate and lucid work), the famous "Tabula Peutingeriana" (a fourth-century map of the imperial road-system radiating from Constantinople), and the "Synecdemos" of Hierocles, a sixth-century account of the sixty-four Byzantine provinces and their more than 900 cities, these episcopal lists enable us to follow the continuity of Christian public life in Asia Minor throughout the troubled centuries of political and economic decay that finally ended in the blank horror of Islamitic shepherdism. Krumbacher notes in these lists the strict adherence to ancient system and the recurrence of original diocesan names, long after they had ceased to correspond with the reality of things, somewhat as the Roman Church yet continues to use the titles of extinct sees located in countries now subject to non-Christian political control. The same author treats (op. cit., passim) in detail of the Byzantine writers of Asia Minor during the medieval period.
Present civil conditions
In the absence of a reliable census the population of Asia Minor is variously given. Larousse (1898) puts it at 9,235,000, of whom 7,179,000 are Moslems and 1,548,000 Christians. This does not include the small Greek Christian principality of Samos (45,000) nor the island of Cyprus (210,000) nor that of Crete (360,000), all three being frequently counted as parts of Asia Minor. Neher (Kirchenlex., VII, 775) puts the total population at 10,750,000. It is mostly composed of Ottoman Turks who still reproduce the primitive type, especially in the interior, where nomadic tribes, like the Turcomans and Yuruks, exhibit the characteristics of the original Ottoman conquerors. In general the term "Turk" is applied to all sedentary Mohammedans in Asia Minor, whatever be their origin; it is also applied to the officials, descendants of Georgian or Circassian captive women, to the numerous immigrants from Bosnia and Bulgaria (Slavs in blood, but Moslems in faith), and to the Albanian soldiers settled in Asia Minor. Similarly, the term applies to Moslem descendants of Arab and negro slaves. Some of the nomadic tribes (Yuruks) are Mohammedan only in name, though of ancient Turkish descent. They are generally known as Turcomans and live with their flocks in their own tent-encampments, primitive clans with no cohesion; they spend their lives in transit from the plains to the mountains, and vice versa, in search of pasturage, water, and pure air. With them may be classed the Chingani or gypsies, wandering tinkers, and horse dealers. There are also other small remnants of the original Turkish immigration that still affect the ways of their fierce ancestry, the Afshars and the Zeibeks, from whose ranks the government draws its most fanatical soldiers. The Mohammedan Kurds of Asia Minor, both sedentary and nomad, differ so much in features and social habits from the Turks that they are not classed with the latter; they resemble much their brethren of the Armenian highlands, are evidently of Medic origin, and speak dialects of Persian with some Syriac and Armenian words. Around the seaboard, in the numerous islands of the archipelago and in the large inland cities of Cappadocia and Pontus, the Greeks are numerous; on the southern coast and in the islands they are in the vast majority and, except politically, are the dominant race as of old, being the commercial and industrial element. Not a few of the sedentary Turks are of Greek origin, descendants of voluntary or compulsory apostates; on the other hand, not a few Greeks isolated in the interior yet speak Turkish, a stigma of hated subjection that Greek patriotism aims at effacing. There are many Armenians in Asia Minor, sometimes gathered in distinct settlements, and again scattered through the Turkish villages; the taxes are usually farmed out to them, for which reason they are bitterly hated by the Turkish peasant who complains of their rapacity. They retain usually their native tongue. On the Persian frontier of Asia Minor, in some secluded valleys, are found yet a few Nestorians, descendants of those Syrian Christians who fled in remote times to these fastnesses either to avoid the oppression of their Moslem masters in Mesopotamia or before the encroachments of nomad tribes.
Asia Minor proper is divided into fifteen "vilayets" or administrative territories, two separate sanjaks (districts), and one principality (Samos). At the head of each is a "vali" or provincial governor, in whose council a seat is given to the spiritual head of each of the non-Moslem communities. Each vilayet is divided into sanjaks or districts, and these are again subdivided into communal groups and communes, presided over respectively by officers known as mutessarifs, kaimakams, mudirs, and mukhtars. The code is the common law of Islam, known as Nizam, and there is an appeal to the High Court at Constantinople from the civil, criminal, and commercial courts in each province. It is to be noted that in the conquered Roman provinces the Arabs first, and then the Turks, retained much of the Roman (Byzantine) Law, especially as regarded their Christian subjects, and in so far as it did not conflict with the Koran (Amos, History of the Civil Law of Rome, London, 1883). The chief cities of Asia Minor are Smyrna (300,000), Trebizond, Iskanderûn (Issus, Scanderoon), Adana, Angora (Ancyra), Sivas (Sebasteia), Sinope, Samsûn (Amisus), Komiah (Iconium), Kaisariyeh (Cæsarea in Cappadocia). Adalia is the largest seaport on the southern coast; Broussa (Prusa), magnificently situated at the foot of Mt. Olympus in Bithynia, is the seat of silk industries, and holds the tombs of the early Ottoman sultans. Kaisariyeh at the foot of Mt. Argeus, with its memories of St. Basil the Great, is one of the world's oldest trade-centres, recognized as such from the dawn of history under its Semitic name Mazaca; it is even now the most important commercial town in eastern Asia Minor. Sivas in the valley of the Kizil-Irmak (Halys) is a wheat centre. Trebizond on the Black Sea justifies even yet the foresight of its early Greek founders. Erzerûm in Lesser Armenia is an important mountain fortress.
Communication and education
There are no roads in the sense of our modern civilization; pack animals, including horses, have always been used by the Turks, both sedentary and nomad, for transportation, both of persons and goods. Recently carts have come somewhat into use. There are relays of horses at intervals on the main lines of communication and in the larger towns. A trans-Syrian railroad from Constantinople to Bagdad on the Persian Gulf has long been projected. It has reached Koniah and on its way passes Ismid (Nicomedia) and Eskeshir (Dorylæum). In all there are about 220 miles of railway in the vast peninsula. One of the principal Moslem schools is at Amasia in Galatia. The Greek communities in Asia Minor cherish no public duty more than that of education, and make many sacrifices in order to provide for their children, in primary and secondary schools, a high grade of the education they admire. It is in reality a genuine Hellenism based on the study of the ancient classic writers, the history of their ancestors both peninsular and continental, antipathy to Islam, a strong sense of mutual relationship, and a civil hope that they will again be called to the direction of public life throughout the peninsula. There is, however, a manifold opposition to this modern Greek ideal. If it were possible to bring about the re-union of the long separated Churches the ideal could be notably furthered.
Asia Minor is yet largely an agricultural and pastoral land. On the high plateaux immense flocks of sheep and goats are raised, whose wool is used for domestic purposes, for export, or for the manufacture of Turkish rugs and carpets. The silk manufactures of Broussa, in the sixteenth century a staple of Asia Minor, have greatly decreased. Viticulture, once the pride of Asia Minor, has almost perished. The use of wine is forbidden by the Koran; hence the grape is cultivated by the Turks only for the making of confections, and by the Greeks chiefly for personal use. The wines of Chios and Lesbos and Smyrna, famous in antiquity, are no longer made; their place is taken by dried raisins that form a principal article of export. Boxwood, salt-fish, barley, millet, wheat, oil, opium, rags, wool, and cotton, hides, galls, wax, tobacco, soap, liquorice paste, figure on the table of exports, but not at all in the proportions becoming the natural advantages of the land. It has already been stated that a few mines and marble quarries are worked, but in a feeble and intermittent way. The popular genius is foreign to all progress, the government is based on corruption and oppression, and the national religion is eminently suspicious and repressive. The inland Turk has the reputation of honesty, kindliness, hospitality, but he has no bent for the active and energetic Western life, loves dearly his "kief" or somnolent vegetative repose, and is hopelessly in the grasp of two rapacious enemies, the usurer and the tax-gatherer. The Greek and the Armenian are the dominant commercial factors, and are in several ways equipped to wrest from the Turk everything but political control of the country.
Leaving aside the great islands of Crete and Cyprus, no longer under immediate Turkish control, it may be noted that those of the Archipelago form a special administrative district. Their number is legion; some of them are very fertile, others are mere peaks and ridges of rock. They export fruit, some wine, raisins, olive oil, and mastic, and their sponge fisheries are very valuable. Among the islands famous in antiquity are Tenedos near the mouth of the Dardanelles, Lemnos between the Dardanelles and Mt. Athos, Lesbos, the native place of Alcæus and Sappho, between the Dardanelles and Smyrna. The island of Icaria recalls the legend of Icarus, and Patmos the sojourn of St. John and the composition of his Apocalypse. Cos awakens memories of the great healer Hippocrates, and the island of Rhodes has a history second to none of the small insular states of the world. Its strong fleets made it respected in Greek antiquity, and its maritime code was taken over by the Roman Law. Its bronze Colossus, astride the mouth of its harbour, was one of the seven wonders of the world. For nearly four hundred years it was the home of the Knights of St. John and its famous siege and capture by Suleiman I (1522) filled all Western Christendom with equal sorrow and admiration. Since 1832 the island of Samos is a quasi-independent principality, and forms a special sanjak by itself. In the full flood of ancient Ionian luxury, art, and science, Samos was foremost of the Hellenic colonies along the coast of Asia Minor. There Pythagoras was born, and Antony and Cleopatra once resided at Samos. In ancient times it was a favourite resort for those wearied of the agitated life of Rome.
Vicariate Apostolic of Asia Minor
In 1818 the Vicariate Apostolic of Asia Minor, founded in the seventeenth century, was confided by Pius VI to the Archbishop of Smyrna as Administrator Apostolic. Since then the Archbishop of Smyrna exercises jurisdiction over the Latin Catholics of the greater part of Asia Minor, a few places excepted. Smyrna itself is the chief centre of Catholicism in the peninsula. It was founded as a Latin see by Clement VI in 1346, became extinct in the seventeenth century, was restored and elevated (1818) to the archiepiscopal dignity by Pius VII. For about a century and a half, from 1618 to the latter part of the eighteenth century, the Jesuits exercised with success the pastoral ministry at Smyrna, for many centuries the chief resort of the once numerous Latin Christians (chiefly Italian and French) known as "Levantines". They were the traders, merchants, travellers, agents of all kinds in business at the various centres of commerce in the islands and along the coast of Asia Minor, which are known as "Scale" to the Italians and "Echelles" to the French. Here the famous "lingua franca", or jargon of a few hundred uninflected Provençal, Spanish, and French words, with some Greek and Turkish, was the principal medium of commercial communication. When the Jesuits first entered Smyrna they found there some 30,000 well disposed Christians and 7,000 to 8,000 Armenians. Lazarists and Capuchins were also active at Smyrna during this period. The Latin Catholics of Smyrna and vicinity are variously estimated from 15,400 to 18,000. There are in the city proper 8 churches and 8 chapels. The parishes are 3 in number and the clergy 61 (19 secular priests and 42 religious, Franciscans, Capuchins, Dominicans, Lazarists, Mechitarists). There are 15 schools (8 for boys, 7 for girls), with 3 boarding-schools or academies for girls, conducted respectively by the "Damesde Sion", the Sisters of Charity, and the Sisters of the Immaculate Conception. The orphan asylums number 4, with about 290 orphans. There is also a hospital. Since 1839 the Sisters of Charity (87) and since 1840 the Christian Brothers have been active at Smyrna in works of charity and education; the latter had in their college (1901) 155 pupils. The Lazarists conduct a college known as the College of Propaganda, founded in 1841; it has about 100 pupils. The present Archbishop of Smyrna and Administrator Apostolic of Asia Minor is Monsignor Rafaele Francesco Marengo, a Dominican, from 1871 to 1904 parish priest of Galata (Constantinople), and since 1904 Ordinary of Smyrna. He has one suffragan, the Bishop of Candia, or Crete. Outside of Smyrna, there are very few Latin Catholics in Asia Minor. The "Missiones Catholicæ" for 1901 gives the names of 16 scattered missions. Since 1886 the Assumptionist Fathers of Constantinople and the Oblate Sisters of the same congregation have devoted themselves to missionary work along the line of the railway from Broussa to Koniah (Iconium). They have opened 8 schools for boys and 7 for girls, in which they care for about 1,200 children. Their services are mostly in demand for the Latin Catholics engaged business or in the construction of the railway. Moslem fanaticism and Greek jealousy are sources of opposition. In 1900 there were engaged in charitable and educational work on these temporary missions 100 Assumptionist Sisters. The few Catholic (Uniat) Greeks on the mainland have no special organization of their own but are subject to the Latin Archbishop of Smyrna as Administrator of the Vicariate Apostolic of Asia Minor. Formerly all Catholics in the Archipelago (Latin and Greek) were under the jurisdiction of Smyrna, but since 14 December, 1907, there has been a prefecture Apostolic for the island of Rhodes, including eleven other islands. In this prefecture the Catholics number about 360 in a population of 36,000, and are attended by 2 Franciscan missionaries. They have 6 churches and chapels, a college, with 60 pupils directed by the Christian Brothers, and an academy for girls (130) directed by Franciscan Tertiaries. The Catholic (Uniat) Armenians scattered through the peninsula have their own ecclesiastical organization dependent on Constantinople, where the Porte now recognizes the Catholic Armenian Patriarch of Cilicia, since 1867 officially resident in the Turkish capital. He is the successor of the Armenian archbishop-primate created at Constantinople in 1830 by the Holy See for the benefit of the Uniat Armenians, but ignored by the Porte until 1867, when Pius IX secured the recognition of the settlement just mentioned. There are episcopal sees for the Catholic Armenians of Asia Minor at Adana (3,000), Angora (7,000), Broussa (3,000), Kaisariyeh or Cæsarea (1,500), Melitene (4,000), Erzerûm (10,000), Trebizond (5,000), and Sivas (3,000). In all these places the Catholic Armenians are far outnumbered by their schismatic countrymen. The Mechitarist Fathers (Armenian monks) have stations at Broussa, Angora, and Smyrna, also at Aidin, the ancient Tralles in the valley of the Mæander, where there are about 3,000 Armenian Catholics in a population of 40,000 or 50,000. The Armenian Catholic patriarch at Constantinople has a jurisdiction over his people (16,000 in Constantinople), both civil and ecclesiastical, analogous to that of the Greek Orthodox patriarch and his own schismatic fellow-patriarch. The Catholic Armenian clergy of Constantinople numbered (1901) 85; of these 26 were Mechitarists (10 from Vienna, 16 from Venice), and 9 were Antonian monks. There were 5 schools for boys and 3 for girls, with 300 pupils, 2 colleges and 1 lyceum, 1 hospital, 1 asylum for the insane and 1 asylum for invalids. Their churches and chapels number 16, and the parishes 13. The present patriarch is Monsignor Sabbaghian (Peter Paul XII). Since 1869 the law of celibacy, that until then had not been observed by all the Armenian Catholic clergy, has been made obligatory. The "Missiones Catholicæ" for 1901 indicates the following Latin missionaries in Armenian centres of Asia Minor: Jesuits, Capuchins, Lazarists, and Trappists (in all about thirty) at Adana, Erzerûm, Sivas, Trebizond, and Kaiseriyeh.
Greek Orthodox Church and non-Catholic Armenians
The great majority of the Christians of Asia Minor belong to the so-called Greek-Orthodox or schismatic patriarchate of Constantinople. In ecclesiastical and ecclesiastico-civil matters they are subject to the patriarch according to the arrangement made on the fall of Constantinople (1453), variously modified since then, and known as the "Capitulations" (Baron d'Avril, La protection des Chrétiens dans le Levant, Paris, 1901). The power of the patriarch, both ecclesiastical and civil, regulated by and divided with the National Assembly and the Great Synod at Constantinople, is extensive. Of the twelve metropolitans who now compose his council three are from western Asia Minor (Cyzicus, Nicomedia, and Chalcedon) and are habitually resident in the capital, while the other nine are elective at fixed periods. These three, together with the metropolitan of Heraclea in Thrace, hold the patriarchal seal that is divided into four parts. The Greek-Orthodox population, scattered through the islands of the Archipelago and along the whole coast-line of Asia Minor, is said to number about one million; in recent times it tends to increase and is now commercially dominant in the greater part of Asia Minor. There are several Greek (Basilian) monasteries in the peninsula, six on the coast of the Black Sea, near Samsun and near Trebizond. There is also one (Lembos) near Smyrna. In the islands the number is larger; there are 3 on Chios, 87 on Samos, 2 on Patmos, and several in the Princes Islands near Constantinople. Cyprus has 4 and Crete 50 (Silbernagl, 58, 59; Vering, "Lehrbuch des kathol. orient. und prot. Kirchenrechts", Freiburg, 1893, 3d ed., 623-630; Petit, "Règlements généraux des églises orthodoxes en Turquie", in Revue de l'orient chrétien, Paris, 1898; Neale, "The Holy Eastern Church", I, London, 1850; Pitzipios, "L'Église orientale", Rome, 1855). Non-uniat, or schismatic, Armenians have settled in large numbers in various parts of Asia Minor, sometimes in the cities and sometimes in their own villages, in some places among the Turkish populations. Since 1307 they have had a bishop resident at Constantinople, and since 1461 there has been in that capital a patriarch of the nation on the same political level as the Greek patriarch, recognized as the civil head of his people and their agent in all matters affecting their religion and in many civil matters. Until 1830 this schismatic patriarch was recognized by the Porte as the civil representative also of the Catholic Armenians. As stated above, it was only in 1867 that the latter obtained recognition of their own patriarch in the person of Monsignor, afterwards Cardinal, Anton Hassoun. There are about 40,000 Armenians resident in Constantinople, and in Asia Minor, as already stated, their number is quite large; of the 120 lay members who make up the National Assembly representative of the Armenians at Constantinople, one-third must be chosen from Asia Minor. They have the following metropolitan sees in the peninsula (most of them provided with suffragans); Kaisariyeh, Nicomedia, Broussa, Smyrna, Amasia, Sivas, Erzerûm, and Trebizond. The bishops of the schismatic Armenians usually reside in monasteries of their own nationality, which are thus centres both of national and ecclesiastical life. (Silbernagl-Schnitzer, Verfassung und gegenwärtiger Bestand sämtlicher Kirchen des Orients, 2d ed., Munich, 1904, 229-231.) See PERSECUTIONS, EARLY CHRISTIAN . For details of Moslem education, see TURKEY. For efforts of Protestant missionaries, and their influence on education, see CONSTANTINOPLE; TURKEY. For details of Greek-Orthodox ecclesiastical life and organization, see CONSTANTINOPLE, PATRIARCHATE OF; and GREEK CHURCH.
ASIA MINOR [ISBE]
- a'-shi-a mi'ner:
I. THE COUNTRY
1. Position and Boundaries
2. General Description
4. Rivers, Lakes and Plains
6. Climate and Products
1. The Hittites
2. Phrygian and Bithynian Immigrations
3. Lydians, Greeks and Persians
4. Alexander and his Successors
5. The Galatians
6. The Romans in Asia Minor
III. ASIA MINOR IN THE 1ST CENTURY AD
1. The Population
2. The Native Social System
3. Emperor Worship
4. The Hellenistic System
5. Roman "Coloniae"
IV. CHRISTIANITY IN ASIA MINOR
Christian Inscriptions, etc.
Technically, it is only on sufferance that an account of "Asia Minor" can find a place in a Biblical encyclopedia, for the country to which this name applies in modern times was never so called in Old Testament or New Testament times. The term first appears in Orosius, a writer of the 5th century AD, and it is now applied in most European languages to the peninsula forming the western part of Asiatic Turkey.
The justification for the inclusion in this work of a summary account of Asia Minor as a whole, its geography, history, and the social and political condition of its people in New Testament times, is to be found in the following sentence of Gibbon: "The rich provinces that extend from the Euphrates to the Ionian Sea were the principal theater on which the Apostle to the Gentiles displayed his zeal and piety"; and no region outside the city of Rome has preserved to modern times so many records of the growth and character of its primitive Christianity.
I. The Country.
1. Position and Boundaries:
Asia Minor (as the country was called to distinguish it from the continent of Asia), or Anatolia, is the name given to the peninsula which reaches out between the Black Sea (Pontus Euxinus) on the North and the Mediterranean on the South, forming an elevated land-bridge between central Asia and southeastern Europe. On the Northwest corner, the peninsula is separated from Europe by the Bosporus, the Sea of Marmora and the hellespont. On the West the peninsula borders on the Aegean Sea, whose numerous islands tempted the timid mariner of ancient times on toward Greece. The West coast, with its alternation of mountain and river-valley, is deeply indented: there is a total coast line of four times the length of a line drawn from North to South The numerous land-locked bays and harbors of this coast have made it the happy hunting-ground of Mediterranean traders in all ages. On the East it is usual to delimit Asia Minor by a line drawn from Alexandretta to Samsun, but for the purposes of New Testament history it must be remembered that part of Cilicia, Cappadocia and Pontus (Galatia) lie to the East of this line (Longitude 26 degrees to 36 degrees East; latitude 36 degrees to 42 degrees North).
2. General Description:
There are two distinct countries, implying distinct historical development, in the Anatolian peninsula, the country of the coast, and the country of the central plateau. The latter takes its shape from that of the great mountain ranges which bound it on the West, East and North. The high central tableland is tilted down toward the North and West; the mountain ranges on these sides are not so lofty as the Taurus chain on the South and Southeast. This chain, except at its Southeast corner, rises sharply from the South coast, whose undulations it determines. On the North, the mountains of Pontus (no distinctive name), a continuation of the Armenian range, give the coast-line a similar character. On the inhospitable North coast, there is only one good harbor, that of Sinope, and no plain of any extent. The South coast can boast of the plains of Pamphylia and Cilicia, both highly fertile, the harbors of Makri and Marmariki, and the sheltered bays of Adalia and Alexandretta. On the West, the ascent from the littoral to the plateau is more gradual. A distance of over 100 miles separates the Phrygian mountains where the oriental plateau begins, from the West seaboard with its inlets and trading cities. These hundred miles are composed of river valleys, divided off by mountain ranges, and forming the channels of communication between the interior and the coast. While these two regions form part of a single country it is obvious that--in all that gives individuality to a country, their flora, fauna, climate, conditions of life and history--the one region is sharply marked off from the other. For the plateau naturally connects itself with the East In its vegetation and climate, its contrasts of temperature, its dry soil and air, it forms part of the region extending eastward to central Asia. The coast land recalls the scenery and general character of the Greek mainland and islands. It naturally looked to, it influenced and was influenced by, the populations on the other side of the Aegean Sea. At Smyrna, the traveler in all ages recognizes the bright, active life of southern Europe; at Iconium he feels the immobile and lethargic calm of the East. Asia Minor in its geographical structure as well as in its population, has been throughout history the meeting-place, whether for peaceful intermixture or for the clash in war, of the eternally contrasted systems of East and West.
The Armenian mountains reach westward, and fork, close to the line we have chosen as the East boundary of Asia Minor, into two ranges, the Taurus Mountains on the South, and the mountains of Pontus on the North Mount Argaeus (over 12,000 ft.) stands in the angle formed by these ranges, nearer to Taurus than to the northern system. Taurus is pierced on the northern side of the Cilician plain by the pass, easy to traverse and still more easy to defend, of the Cilician Gates, while another natural route leads from central Cappadocia to Amisus on the Black Sea. These mountain ranges (average height of Taurus 7,000 to 10,000 ft.; the North range is much lower) enfold the central Galatian and Lycaonian plains, which are bounded on the West by the Sultan Dagh and the Phrygian mountains. From the latter to the west coast extend three mountain ranges, delimiting the valleys of the Caicus, Hermus and Meander. These valleys lie East and West, naturally conducting traffic in those directions.
4. Rivers, Lakes and Plains:
The great plains of the interior, covering parts of Galatia, Lycaonia and Cappadocia, lie at an altitude of from 3,000 to 4,000 ft. Rivers enter them from the adjoining mountains, to be swallowed up in modern times in salt lakes and swamps. In ancient times much of this water was used for irrigation. Regions which now support only a few wretched villages were covered in the Roman period by numerous large cities, implying a high degree of cultivation of the naturally fertile soil. The remaining rivers cut their way through rocky gorges in the fringe of mountains around the plateau; on the West side of the peninsula their courses open into broad valleys, among which those of the Caieus, Hermus and Meander are among the most fertile in the world. Down those western valleys, and that of the Sangarius on the Northwest, ran the great highways from the interior to the seaboard. In those valleys sprang up the greatest and most prosperous of the Hellenistic and Greek-Roman cities, from which Greek education and Christianity radiated over the whole country. The longest river in Asia Minor is the Halys, which rises in Pontus, and after an enormous bend south-westward flows into the Black Sea. This, and the Iris, East of Amisus, are the only rivers of note on the North coast. The rivers on the South coast, with the exception of the Sarus and the Pyramus which rise in Cappadocia and water the Cilician plain, are mere mountain torrents, flowing immediately into the sea. A remarkable feature of Asia Minor is its duden, rivers disappearing underground in the limestone rock, to reappear as springs and heads of rivers many miles away. Mineral and thermal springs abound all over the country, and are especially numerous in the Meander valley. There are several salt lakes, the largest being Lake Tatta in Lycaonia. Fresh-water lakes, such as Karalis and the Limuae, abound in the mountains in the Southwest.
The road-system of Asia Minor is marked out by Nature, and traffic has followed the same lines since the dawn of history. The traveler from the Euphrates or from Syria enters by way of Melitene and Caesarea, or by the Cilician Gates. From Caesarea he can reach the Black Sea by Zela and Amisus. If he continues westward, he must enter the Aegean area by one of the routes marked out, as indicated above, by the valleys of the Meander, Hermus or Caicus. If his destination is the Bosporus, he travels down the valley of the Sangarius. Other roads lead from the bay of Adalia to Antioch in Pisidia or to Apameia, or to Laodicea on the Lycus and thence down the Meander to Ephesus. The position of the Hittite capital at Pteria fixed the route North of the central plain in general usage for travelers from East to West, and this was the route followed by the Persian Royal Road. Later, traffic from the East took the route passing along the South side of the Axylon, North of Iconium, and Pisidian Antioch to the Lycus, Meander and Ephesus. This route coincides with that from the Cilician Gates, from a point Northeast of Iconium. The need to control the Pisidian tribes in the reign of Augustus led to the building of a series of roads in Pisidia, radiating from Antioch; one of these roads led from Antioch to Lystra, and it was the one traversed by Paul on his journey from Antioch to Iconium (Acts 13:51
6. Climate and Products:
The winter on the central plateau is long and severe, the summer is short and hot: but a cool breeze from the North (the inbat) tempers the hot afternoons. The south coast in summer is hot and malarious; in winter its climate is mild. Much snow fails in the regions adjacent to the Black Sea. The climate of the west coast resembles that of southern Europe. The country contains vast mineral wealth; many of the mines were worked by the ancients. There are forests of pine, oak and fir in the mountains of the North and South. The central plateau has always been famous for its vast flocks of sheep. King Amyntas of Galatia owned enormous flocks which pastured on the Lycaonian plain. Carpets and rugs and other textile products have always been characteristic of Asia Minor. The wealth of the cities in the province of Asia depended largely on textile and dyeing industries (Rev 1 through 3).
It follows from what has been said above that the clue to the history of Asia Minor more almost than in the case of any other country, lies in its geographical position and structure. "Planted like a bridge between Asia and Europe," it has been throughout human history the meeting-place and the battle ground of the peoples of the East and those of the West. From the earliest period to which our records reach, we find it inhabited by an amalgam of races, religions and social systems, none of which has ever quite died out. And throughout history new races, religions and social systems, alike imperishable in many of their features, have poured into the peninsula to find a home there.
1. The Hittites:
At the dawn of history, Asia Minor was ruled by a non-Aryan people, the Hatti or Hittites about which knowledge is at present accumulating so fast that no final account of them can be given. See HITTITES
. Asia Minor is now recognized to have been the center of their civilization, as against the older view that they were a Mesopotamian people. Sculptures and hieroglyphs belonging to this people have long been known over the whole country from Smyrna to the Euphrates, and it is almost unanimously assumed that their capital was at Boghaz Keui (across the Halys from Ancyra). This site has been identified with much probability with the Pteria of Herodotus, which Croesus captured when he marched against the Persians, the inference being that the portion of the Hittite land which lay East of the Halys was at that time a satrapy of the Persian Empire. Excavations in the extensive ancient city at Boghaz Keui have recently been carried out by Winckler and Puchstcin, who have discovered remains of the royal archives. These records are written on clay tablets in cuneiform script; they are couched partly in Babylonian, partly (presumably) in the still undeciphered native language. The documents in the Babylonian tongue prove that close political relations existed between the Hatti and the eastern monarchy. In the 14th century BC the Hittites appear to have conquered a large part of Syria, and to have established themselves at Carchemish. Thenceforth, they were in close touch with Mesopotamia. From about the beginning of the first millennium, the Hittites "were in constant relations, hostile or neutral, with the Ninevites, and thenceforward their art shows such marked Assyrian characteristics that it hardly retains its individuality."
2. Phrygian and Bithynian Immigrations:
The date of the Phrygian and Bithynian immigrations. from southeastern Europe cannot be fixed with certainty, but they had taken place by the beginning of the first millennium BC. These immigrations coincide in time with the decline of the Hittite power. After many wanderings, the Phrygians found a home at the western side of the plateau, and no power exercised such an influence on the early development of Asia Minor as the Phrygian, principally in the sphere of religion. The kings of Phrygia "bulked more impressively in the Greek mind than any other non-Gr monarchy; their language was the original language and the speech of the goddess herself; their country was the land of great fortified cities, and their kings were the associates of the gods themselves." The material remains of the "Phrygian country"--the tomb of Midas with the fortified acropolis above it, and the many other rock-tombs around--are the most impressive in Asia Minor Inscriptions in a script like the early Ionian are cut on some of the tombs. The Phrygian language, an Indo-Germanic speech with resemblances to both Greek and the Italian languages, is proved by some seventy inscriptions (a score of them still unpublished) to have been in common use well into the Christian period. Two recently found inscriptions show that it was spoken even in Iconium, "the furthermost city of Phrygia," on the Lycaonian side, until the 3rd century of our era. Those inscriptions mention the names of Ma (Cybele) and Attis, whose cult exercised a profound influence on the religions of Greece and Rome.
3. Lydians, Greeks and Persians:
The next monarchy to rise in Asia Minor is that of Lydia, whose origin is obscure. The Phrygian empire had fallen before an invasion of the Cimmerii in the 9th or 8th century BC; Alyattes of Lydia, which lay between Phrygia and the Aegean, repelled a second invasion of the Cimmerii in 617 BC. Croesus, king of Lydia (both names afterward proverbial for wealth), was lord of all the country to the Halys, as well as of the Greek colonies on the coast. Those colonies--founded from hellas--had reached their zenith by the 8th century, and studded all three coasts of Asia Minor. Their inability to combine in a common cause placed them at the mercy of Croesus, and later of his conquerors, the Persians (546 BC). The Persians divided Asia Minor into satrapies, but the Greek towns were placed under Greek dynasts, who owned the suzerainty of Persia, and several of the inland races continued under the rule of their native princes. The defeat of Xerxes by Hellas set the Greek cities in Asia Minor free, and they continued free during the period of Athenian greatness. In 386 BC they were restored to the king of Persia by the selfish diplomacy of Sparta.
4. Alexander and His Successors:
When Alexander the Great crossed the Hellespont in 334 BC, a new era opened for the Asiatic Greeks. Hitherto the Greek cities in Asia Minor, apart from spasmodic efforts at combination, had been mere trading communities, independent of each other, in competition with each other, and anxious for reasons of self-interest to bring each other to ruin. These colonies had moreover been confined to the coast, and to the open river valleys of the west, The idea of a Greek empire in Asia Minor was originated by Alexander, and materialized by his successors. Henceforward the city rivalries certainly lasted on, and at a later period excited the scorn of the stolid Romans; but henceforward the Greek cities were members of a Greek empire, and were conscious of an imperial mission. It is to this period that the Hellenization or, as Mommsen would translate the term, the civilization of the interior of Asia Minor belongs. The foundations of Alexander's successors, the Attalids and Seleucids, covered the peninsula; their object was to consolidate the Greek rule over the native races, and, most important of all, to raise those races to the Greek level of civilization and education. The experiment succeeded only partially and temporarily; but such success as it and the later Roman effort in the same direction had, exercised a profound influence on the early growth of Christianity in the country (see below).
5. The Galatians:
In their manner of entering and settling in the country, in the way in which they both came under the influence of the Asiatic environment, and impressed the stamp of their vigorous individuality on the culture and the history of the land, the Galatae, a Celtic nation who crossed from Europe in 278-277 BC, to establish themselves ultimately on the East of ancient Phrygia and on both sides of the Halys, recall the essential features of the Phrygian immigration of a thousand years earlier. "The region of Galatia, at a remote period the chief seat of the oriental rule over anterior Asia, and preserving in the famed rock-sculptures of the modern Boghaz Keui, formerly the royal town of Pteria, reminiscences of an almost forgotten glory, had in the course of centuries become in language and manners a Celtic island amidst the waves of eastern peoples, and remained so in internal organization even under the (Roman) empire." But these Gauls came under strong oriental influence; they modified to some extent, the organization of the local religion, which they adopted; but they adopted it so completely that only one deity with a Celtic name has so far appeared on the numerous cult-inscriptions of Galatia (Anderson in Journal of Hellenistic Studies, 1910, 163 ff). Nor has a single inscription in the Galatian language been found in the country, although we know that that language was spoken by the lower classes at least as late as the 4th century AD. The Galatian appears to have superseded the Phrygian tongue in the part of Galatia which was formerly Phrygian; no Phrygian inscriptions have been found in Galatia, although they are common in the district bordering on its southern and western boundaries. But Galatian was unable to compete with Greek as the language of the educated classes, and even such among the humbler orders as could write, wrote in Greek, and Greek-Roman city-organization replaced the Celtic tribal system much earlier and much more completely in Galatia than Roman municipal organization did in Gaul. Still, the Galatians stood out in strong contrast both to the Greeks and to the Orientals. Roman diplomacy recognized and encouraged this sense of isolation, and in her struggle against the Orientals and the Greeks under Mithridates, Rome found trusty allies in the Galatians. In the Imperial period, the Galatians were considered the best soldiers in Asia Minor.
6. The Romans in Asia Minor:
The Romans exercised an effective control over the affairs of Asia Minor after their defeat of Antiochus the Great in 189 BC, but it was only in 133 BC, when Attalus of Pergamus bequeathed his kingdom of "Asia" to the Roman state, that the Roman occupation began. This kingdom formed the province Asia; a second inheritance which fell to Rome at the death of Nicomedes III in 74 BC became the province Bithynia, to which Pontus was afterward added. Cilicia, the province which gave Paul to the empire and the church, was annexed in 100 BC, and reorganized by Pompey in 66 BC. These provinces had already been organized; in other words the Roman form of government had been definitely established in them at the foundation of the empire, and, in accordance with the principle that all territory which had been thoroughly "pacified" should remain under the administration of the senate, while the emperor directly governed regions in which soldiers in numbers were still required, the above-mentioned provinces, with the exception of Cilicia, fell to the senate. But all territory subsequently annexed in Asia Minor remained in the emperor's hands. Several territories over which Rome had exercised a protectorate were now organized into provinces, under direct imperial rule. Such were: Galatia, to which under its last king Amyntas, part of Phrygia, Lycaonia, Pisidia and Pamphylia had been added, and which was made a Roman province at his death in 25 BC (the extension of Galatia under Amyntas to include Antioch, Iconium, Lystra and Derbe and the consequent incorporation of these cities in the province Galatia, forms the ultimate historical basis of the "South Galatian Theory"); Paphlagonia, annexed in 7 BC; Cappadocia, in 17 AD; Lycia, in 43 AD, and in 63 AD the part of Pontus lying between the Iris and Armenia. This formed the Roman Asia Minor of Paul's time.
See ASIA; BITHYNIA, etc
III. Asia Minor in the First Century AD.
1. The Population:
The partition of Asia Minor into Roman provinces did not correspond to its ethnological divisions, and even those divisions were not always clearly marked. As is clear from the brief historical sketch given above, the population of Asia Minor was composed of many overlying strata of races, which tended in part to lose their individuality and sink into the original Anatolian type. Answering roughly to the above-mentioned separation of Asia Minor into two countries, and to its characterization as the meeting-place of East and West, we can detach from among a medley of races and institutions two main coexistent social systems, which we may call the native system, and the hellenistic system. These systems (especially as the result of Roman government) overlap and blend with each other, but they correspond in a general way to the distinction (observed in the country by Strabo) between city-organization and life on the village system. A deep gulf separated these forms of society.
2. The Native Social System:
Under the Roman Empire, there was a continuous tendency to raise and absorb the Anatolian natives into Greek cities and Roman citizenship. But in the Apostolic Age, this process had not gone far in the interior of the country, and the native social system was still that under which a large section of the population lived. It combined the theocratic form of government with institutions derived from a preexistent matriarchal society. The center of the native community was the temple of the god, with its great corporation of priests living on the temple revenues, and its people, who were the servants of the god (hierodouloi; compare Paul's expression, "servant of God"), and worked on the temple estates. The villages in which these workers lived were an inseparable adjunct of the temple, and the priests (or a single priest-dynast) were the absolute rulers of the people. A special class called hieroi performed special functions (probably for a period only) in the temple service. This included, in the ease of women, sometimes a
service of chastity, sometimes one of ceremonial prostitution. A woman of Lydia, of good social position (as implied in her Roman name) boasts in an inscription that she comes of ancestors who had served before the god in this manner, and that she has done so herself. Such women afterward married in their own rank, and incurred no disgrace. Many inscriptions prove that the god (through his priests) exercised a close supervision over the whole moral life and over the whole daily routine of his people; he was their Ruler, Judge, helper and healer.
3. Emperor Worship:
Theocratic government received a new direction and a new meaning from the institution of emperor-worship; obedience to the god now coincided with loyalty to the emperor. The Seleucid kings and later the Roman emperors, according to a highly probable view, became heirs to the property of the dispossessed priests (a case is attested at Pisidian Antioch); and it was out of the territory originally belonging to the temples that grants of land to the new Seleucid and Roman foundations were made. On those portions of an estate not gifted to a polis or colonia, theocratic government lasted on; but alongside of the Anatolian god there now appeared the figure of the god-emperor. In many places the cult of the emperor was established in the most important shrine of the neighborhood; the god-emperor succeeded to or shared the sanctity of the older god, Grecized as Zeus, Apollo, etc.; inscriptions record dedications made to the god and to the emperor jointly. Elsewhere, and especially in the cities, new temples were founded for the worship of the emperor. Asia Minor was the home of emperor-worship, and nowhere did the new institution fit so well into the existing religious system. Inscriptions have recently thrown much light on a society of Xenoi Tekmoreioi ("Guest-Friends of the Secret Sign") who lived on an estate which had belonged to Men Askaenos beside Antioch of Pisidia, and was now in the hands of the Roman emperor. A procurator (who was probably the chief priest of the local temple) managed the estate as the emperor's representative. This society is typical of many others whose existence in inner Asia Minor has come to light in recent years; it was those societies which fostered the cult of the emperor on its local as distinct from its provincial side (see ASIARCH), and it was chiefly those societies that set the machinery of the Roman law in operation against the Christians in the great persecutions. In the course of time the people on the imperial estates tended to pass into a condition of serfdom; but occasionally an emperor raised the whole or part of an estate to the rank of a city.
4. The Hellenistic System:
Much of inner Asia Minor must originally have been governed on theocratic system; but the Greek city-state gradually encroached on the territory and privileges of the ancient temple. Several of these cities were "founded" by the Seleucids and Attalids; this sometimes meant a new foundation, more often the establishment of Greek city-government in an older city, with an addition of new inhabitants. These inhabitants were often Jews whom the Seleucids found trusty colonists: the Jews of Antioch in Pisidia (Acts 13:14
ff) probably belong to this class. The conscious aim of those foundations was the Hellenization of the country, and their example influenced the neighboring cities. With the oriental absolutism of the native system, the organization of the Greek and Roman cities was in sharp contrast. In the earlier centuries of the Roman Empire these cities enjoyed a liberal measure of self-government. Magistracies were elective; rich men in the same city vied with each other, and city vied with city, in erecting magnificent public buildings, in founding schools and promoting education, in furthering all that western nations mean by civilization. With the Greek cities came the Greek Pantheon, but the gods of Hellas did little more than add their names to those of the gods of the country. Wherever we have any detailed information concerning a cult in inner Anatolia, we recognize under a Greek (or Roman) disguise the essential features of the old Anatolian god.
The Greeks had always despised the excesses of the Asiatic religion, and the more advanced education of the Anatolian Greeks could not reconcile itself to a degraded cult, which sought to perpetuate the social institutions under which it had arisen, only under their ugliest and most degraded aspects. "In the country generally a higher type of society was maintained; whereas at the great temples the primitive social system was kept up as a religious duty incumbent on the class called Hieroi during their regular periods of service at the temple. .... The chasm that divided the religion from the educated life of the country became steadily wider and deeper. In this state of things Paul entered the country; and wherever education had already been diffused, he found converts ready and eager." This accounts for "the marvelous and electrical effect that is attributed in Acts to the preaching of the Apostle in Galatia" (Ramsay, Cities and Bishoprics of Phrygia, 96).
5. Roman "Coloniae":
Under the Roman Empire, we can trace a gradual evolution in the organization of the Greek cities toward the Roman municipal type. One of the main factors in this process was the foundation over inner Asia Minor of Roman colonies, which were "bits of Rome" set down in the provinces. These colonies were organized entirely on the Roman model, and were usually garrisons of veterans, who kept unruly parts of the country in order. Such in New Testament time were Antioch and Lystra (Iconium, which used to be regarded as a colony of Claudius, is now recognized to have been raised to that rank by Hadrian). In the 1st century Latin was the official language in the colonies; it never ousted Greek in general usage, and Greek soon replaced it in official documents. Education was at its highest level in the Greek towns and in the Roman colonies, and it was to those exclusively that Paul addressed the gospel.
IV. Christianity in Asia Minor.
Already in Paul's lifetime, Christianity had established itself firmly in many of the greater centers of Greek-Roman culture in Asia and Galatia. The evangelization of Ephesus, the capital of the province Asia, and the terminus of one of the great routes leading along the peninsula, contributed largely to the spread of Christianity in the inland parts of the province, and especially in Phrygia. Christianity, in accordance with the program of Paul, first took root in the cities, from which it spread over the country districts.
Christian Inscriptions, etc.:
The Christian inscriptions begin earliest in Phrygia, where we find many documents dating from the end of the 2nd and beginning of the 3rd centuries AD. The main characteristic of those early inscriptions--a feature which makes them difficult to recognize--is their suppression as a rule of anything that looked overtly Christian, with the object of avoiding the notice of persons who might induce the Roman officials to take measures against their dedicators. The Lycaonian inscriptions begin almost a century later, not, we must suppose, because Christianity spread less rapidly from Iconium, Lystra, etc., than it did from the Asian cities, but because Greek education took longer to permeate the sparsely populated plains of the central plateau than the rich townships of Asia. The new religion is proved by Pliny's correspondence with Trajan (111-13 AD) to have been firmly established in Bithynia early in the 2nd century. Farther east, where the great temples still had much influence, the expansion of Christianity was slower, but in the 4th century Cappadocia produced such men as Basil and the Gregories. The great persecutions, as is proved by literary evidence and by many inscriptions, raged with especial severity in Asia Minor. The influence of the church on Asia Minor in the early centuries of the Empire may be judged from the fact that scarcely a trace of the Mithraic religion, the principal competitor of Christianity, has been found in the whole country. From the date of the Nicene Council (325 AD) the history of Christianity in Asia Minor was that of the Byzantine Empire. Ruins of churches belonging to the Byzantine period are found all over the peninsula; they are especially numerous in the central and eastern districts. A detailed study of a Byzantine Christian town of Lycaonia, containing an exceptionally large number of churches, has been published by Sir W. M. Ramsay and Miss G. L. Bell: The Thousand and One Churches. Greek-speaking Christian villages in many parts of Asia Minor continue an unbroken connection with the Roman Empire till the present day.
Ramsay's numerous works on Asia Minor, especially Paul the Traveler, etc., The Church in the Roman Empire, The Cities of Paul, The Letters to the Seven Churches, and Cities and Bishoprics of Phrygia have been freely drawn upon in this account. For a fuller bibliography, see Encyclopedia Biblica (11th edition), article "Asia Minor" (Hogarth and Wilson).
W. M. Calder
ASIA MINOR, ARCHAEOLOGY OF [ISBE]
ASIA MINOR, ARCHAEOLOGY OF
- a'-shi-a mi'-ner, ar'-ke-ol'-o-ji ov: At the present stage of our information it is difficult to write with acceptance on the archaeology of Asia Minor. Views unquestioned only a few years ago are already passing out of date, while the modern archaeologist, enthusiastically excavating old sites, laboriously deciphering worn inscriptions, and patiently collating documentary evidence, has by no means completed his task. But it is now clear that an archaeological field, worthy to be compared with those in the valleys of the Euphrates and the Nile, invites development in Asia Minor.
1. Earliest Influences from Mesopotamia:
In the Contemporary Review for August, 1907, Professor Sayce reminded his readers that the Greek geographers called Cappadox the son of Ninyas, thereby tracing the origin of Cappadocian culture to Nineveh, and similarly they derived the Merm had Dynasty of Lydia from Ninos the son of Belos, or from Babylonia through Assyria. Actual history is probably at the back of these legends, and the Table of Nations supports this (Gen 10:22
), when it calls Lud, or Lydia, a son of Shem and brother of Asshur. This is not to assert, however, that any great number of Semitic people ever made Asia Minor their home. But Professor Winckler and others have shown us that the language, script, ideas and institutions characteristic of the Babylonian civilization were widespread among the nations of western Asia, and from very early times Asia Minor came within their sphere of influence. Strabo records the tradition that Zile, as well as Tyana, was founded upon "the mound of Semiramis," thus connecting these ancient sites with the Mesopotamian culture. Dr. David Robinson in his Ancient Sinope (145 ff), argues that "the early foundations of Sinope are probably Assyrian," though established history cannot describe in detail what lay back of the Milesian settlement of this the northern point and the best harbor of the peninsula. Neither could Strabo go back of the Milesian colonists for the foundation of Samsoun, the ancient Amisus, an important commercial city east of Sinope, but the accompanying illustration (Fig. 1) seems clearly to show the influence of Assyria. The original is a terra cotta figure of gray clay found recently in Old Samsoun. Mesopotamian religious and cultural influences thus appear to have tinged Asia Minor, at least at certain points, as far as the coast of the Black Sea, and indeed the great peninsula has been what its shape suggests, a friendly hand stretching out from the continent of Asia toward the continent of Europe.
2. Third Millennium BC:
Professor Sayce's article referred to above was based upon the evidence furnished by cuneiform tablets from Kara Eyuk, the "Black Mound," an ancient site just within the ox-bows of the Halys River near Caesarea Mazaca. These tablets, as deciphered by himself and Professor Pinches, were of the period of Abraham, or of Hammurabi, about 2250 BC, and were written in a dialect of Assyrian. The settlers were soldier colonists from the Assyrian section of the Babylonian empire, engaged in mining and in trade. Silver, copper and perhaps iron were the metals sought. "Time was reckoned as in Assyria by means of officials called limmi, who gave their name to the year." The colonists had a temple with its priests, where financial transactions were carried on under the sanctity of religion. There were roads, mail carriers whose pouches were filled with cuneiform bricks, and commercial travelers who made a speciality of fine clothing. This makes quite natural the finding of a goodly Babylonian mantle by Achan at the pillage of Ai (Josh 7:21
). Slavery is a recognized institution; a boy is sent to a barber for circumcision; a house, wife and children are pledged as security for a debt. An oath is taken "on the top of a staff," an interesting fact that sheds its light on the verses describing the oath and blessing of dying Jacob (Gen 47:31
; Heb 11:21
). Early Asia Minor is thus lighted up at various points by the culture of Mesopotamia, and transmits some of the scattered rays to the Greek world.
3. Second Millennium BC:
The earliest native inhabitants to be distinguished in Asia Minor are the Hittites (see HITTITES). Ever since 1872, when Dr. Wright suggested that the strange hieroglyphics on four black basalt stones which he had discovered at Hamath were perhaps the work of Hittite art, there has been an ever-growing volume of material for scholars to work upon. There are sculptures of the same general style, representing figures of men, women, gods, lions and other animals, eagles with double heads, sphinxes, musical instruments, winged discs and other symbols, all of which can be understood only in part. These are accompanied by hieroglyphic writing, undeciphered as yet, and the inscriptions read "boustrophedon," that is from right to left and back again, as the oxen go in plowing an oriental field. There have also been discovered great castles with connecting walls and ramparts, gates, tunnels, moats, palaces, temples and other sanctuaries and buildings. More than this, occasional fragments of cuneiform tablets picked up on the surface of the ground led to the belief that written documents of value might be found buried in the soil. Malatia, Marash, Sinjirli, Sakje Geuzi, Gurun, Boghaz-keuy, Eyuk, Karabel, not to mention perhaps a hundred other sites, have offered important Hittite remains. Carchemish and Kedesh on the Orontes were capital cities in northern Syria. The Hittites of the Holy Land, whether in the days of Abraham or in those of David and Solomon, were an offshoot from the main stem of the nation. Asia Minor was the true home of the Hittites.
Boghaz-keuy has become within the last decade the best known Hittite site in Asia Minor, and may be described as typical. It lies in northern Cappadocia, fifty muleteer hours South of Sinope. Yasilikaya, the "written" or "sculptured" rocks, is a suburb, and Eyuk with its sphinx-guarded temple is but 15 miles to the North. It was the good fortune of Professor Hugo Winckler of the University of Berlin to secure the funds, obtain permission from the Turkish government, and, in the summer of 1906 to unearth over 3,000 more or less fragmentary tablets written in the cuneiform character and the Hittite language. This is the first considerable store of the yet undeciphered Hittite literature for scholars to work upon. These tablets are of clay, written on both sides, and baked hard and red. Often the writing is in ruled columns. The cuneiform character, like the Latin alphabet in modern times, was used far from its original home, and that for thousands of years. The language of a few Boghaz-keuy tablets is Babylonian, notably a copy of the treaty between Rameses II of Egypt and Khita-sar, king of the Hittites in central Asia Minor. The scribes adopted not only the Babylonian characters but certain ideographs, and it is these ideographs which have furnished the key to provisional vocabularies of several hundred words which have been published by Professors Pinches and Sayce. When Professor Winckler and his German collaborators publish the tablets they have deposited in the Constantinople museum, we may listen to the voice of some Hittite Homer speaking from amid the dusty bricks written in the period of Moses. Beside Boghaz-keuy the beetling towers of lofty Troy sink to the proportions of a fortified hamlet.
Hittite sculptures show a very marked type of men, with squat figures, slant eyes, prominent noses and Mongoloid features. We suppose they were of Turanian or Mongolian blood; certainly not Semitic and probably not Aryan. As they occupied various important inland centers in Asia Minor before, during and after the whole of the second millennium BC, it is probable that they occupied much or most of the intervening territory (see Records of the Past for December, 1908). A great capital like Boghaz-keuy, with its heavy fortifications, would require extensive provinces to support it, and would extend its sway so as to leave no enemy within striking distance. The "Amazons" are now generally regarded as the armed Hittite priestesses of a goddess whose cult spread throughout Asia Minor. The "Amazon Mountains," still known locally by the old name, run parallel with the coast of the Black Sea near the Iris River, and tradition current there now holds that the women are stronger than the men, work harder, live longer and are better at a quarrel! A comparative study of the decorated pottery, so abundant on the old sites of the country, makes it more than possible that the artificial mounds, which are so common a feature of the Anatolian landscape, and the many rockhewn tombs, of which the most famous are probably those at Amasia, were the work of Hittite hands.
The Hittite sculptures are strikingly suggestive of religious rather than political or military themes. The people were pagans with many gods and goddesses, of whom one, or one couple, received recognition as at the head of the pantheon. Such titles as Sutekh of Carchemish, Sutekh of Kadesh, Sutekh of the land of the Hittites, show that the chief god was localized in various places, perhaps with varying attributes. A companion goddess was named Antarata. She was the great Mother Goddess of Asia Minor, who came to outrank her male counterpart. She is represented in the sculptures with a youthful male figure, as a consort, probably illustrating the legend of Tammuz for whom the erring Hebrew women wept (Ezek 8:14
). He was called Attys in later days. He stands for life after death, spring after winter, one generation after another. The chief god worshipped at Boghaz-keuy was Teshub. Another was named Khiba, and the same name appears in the Tell el-Amarna correspondence from Jerusalem. This affords a remarkable illustration of the prophet's address to Jerusalem, "Your mother was a Hittite" (Ezek 16:45
The worship of the Hittites of the era of the Exodus is still seen pictured on the rocks at Yasilikaya. This spot was the sanctuary of the metropolis. There are two hypaethral rock galleries, the larger of which has a double procession of about 80 figures carved on the natural rock walls, which have been smoothed for the purpose, and meeting at the inmost recess of the gallery. The figures nearest the entrance are about half life-size. As the processions advance the height of the figures increases, until the two persons at the head, the chief priest and priestess or the king and queen, are quite above life-size. These persons advance curious symbols toward each other, each is followed by a retinue of his or her own sex, and each is supported--the priest-king upon the heads of two subjects or captives, and the priestess-queen upon a leopard. The latter figure is followed by her consort son.
The ruins at Eyuk are compact, and consist of a small temple, its sphinx-guarded door, and a double procession of approaching worshippers to the number of about 40. The main room of the sanctuary is only 7 yds. by 8 in measurement. This may be compared with the Holy Place in the tabernacle of the Israelites, which was approximately contemporary. Neither could contain a worshipping congregation, but only the ministering priests. The solemn sphinxes at the door suggest the cherubim that adorned the Israelite temple, and winged eagles with double heads decorate the inner walls of the doorway. Amid the sculptured processions moving on the basalt rocks toward the sanctuary is an altar before which stands a bull on a pedestal, and behind which is a priest who wears a large earring. Close behind the priest a flock of three sheep and a goat approach the sacrificial altar. Compare the description in Ex 32
. The Israelites said to Aaron, "Up, make us gods"; he required their golden earrings, made a calf, "and built an altar before it"; they offered burnt offerings and brought peace offerings; they sat down to eat and drink and rose up to play. Israelite worship was in certain forms similar to the worship of the Hittites, but its spiritual content was wholly different. For musical instruments the Eyuk procession exhibits a lituus, a (silver?) trumpet and a shapely guitar. The animal kingdom is represented by another bull with a chest or ark on its back, a well-executed lion and two hares held in the two talons of an eagle. A spring close by furnished all the water required by the worshippers and for ritual purposes.
Professor Garstang in The Land of the Hittites shows that the power which had been waning after about 1200 BC enjoyed a period of recrudescence in the 10th and 9th centuries. He ascribes to this period the monuments of Sakje Geuzi, which the professor himself excavated, together with other Hittite remains in Asia Minor. The Vannic power known as Urartu, akin to the Hittites but separate, arose in the Northeast; the Phrygians began to dominate in the West; the Assyrians pressed upon the Southeast. The overthrow of the Hittites was completed by the bursting in of the desolating Cimmerian hordes, and after 717, when Carchemish was taken by the Assyrians, the Hittites fade from the archaeological records of their home land.
See ASIA MINOR, II, 1
4. First Millennium BC:
Before the Hittites disappeared from the interior of Asia Minor, sundry Aryan peoples, more or less closely related to the Greeks, were established at various points around the coast. Schliemann, of Trojan fame, was the pioneer archaeologist in this field, and his boundless enthusiasm, optimism and resourcefulness recovered the treasures of Priam's city, and made real again the story of days when the world was young. Among the most valuable collections in the wonderful Constantinople Museum is that from Troy, which contains bronze axes and lance heads, implements in copper, talents of silver, diadems, earrings and bracelets of gold, bone bodkins and needles, spindle whorls done in baked clay, numbers of idols or votive offerings, and other objects found in the Troad, at the modern Hissarlik. Phrygian, Thracian and subsequently Galatian immigrants from the Northwest had been filtering across the Hellespont, and wedging themselves in among the earlier inhabitants. There were some points in common between the Cretan or Aegean civilization and that of Asia Minor, but Professor Hogarth in his Ionia and the East urges that these resemblances were few. It was otherwise with the Greeks proper. Herodotus gave the names of twelve Aeolian, twelve Ionian and six Dorian cities on the west coast, founded by colonists who came across the Aegean Sea, and who leavened, led and intermarried with the native population they found settled there. One of these Asiatic Greek colonies, Miletus, was sufficiently populous and vigorous to send out from 60 to 80 colonies of its own, the successive swarms of adventurers moving North and East, up the coast of the Aegean, through the Bosphorus and along the south shore of the Black Sea. In due season Xenophon and the Ten Thousand, and then Alexander with his Macedonians, scattered yet more widely the seeds of Hellenic culture upon a soil already prepared for its reception. The inscriptions, sculptures, temples, tombs, palaces, castles, theaters, jewelry, figurines in bronze or terra cotta, coins of silver or copper and other objects remaining from this period exhibit a style of art, culture and religion which may best be named Anatolian, but which are akin to those of Greece proper. The excavations at Ephesus, Pergamus, Sardis and other important sites show the same grafting of Greek scions upon the local stock.
One marked feature survived as a legacy from Hittite days in the worship of a great Mother Goddess. Whether known as Ma, or Cybele, or Anaitis, or Diana, or designated by some other title, it was the female not the male that headed the pantheon of gods. With the Greek culture came also the city-state organization of government. The ruder and earlier native communities were organized on the village plan. Usually each village had its shrine, in charge of priests or perhaps more often priestesses; the land belonged to the god, or goddess; it paid tithes to the shrine; sacrifices and gifts were offered at the sacred center; this was often on a high hill, under a sacred tree, and beside a holy fountain; there was little of education, law or government except as guiding oracles were proclaimed from the temple.
In the early part of this millennium the Phrygians became a power of commanding importance in the western part of the peninsula, and Professor Hogarth says of the region of the Midas Tomb, "There is no region of ancient monument's which would be better worth examination" by excavators. Then came Lydia, whose capital, Sardis, is now in process of excavation by Professor Butler and his American associates. Sardis was taken and Croesus dethroned by the Persians about 546 BC, and for two centuries, until Alexander, Persian authority overshadowed Asia Minor, but permanent influences were scanty.
5. The Romans in Asia Minor:
By about the year 200 BC the Romans began to become entangled in the politics of the four principal kingdoms that then occupied Asia Minor, namely Bithynia, Pergamus, Pontus and Cappadocia. By slow degrees their influence and their arms advanced under such leaders civil and military as Sulla, Lucullus, Pompey, Cicero and Julius Caesar, while Attalus of Pergamus and Prusias of Bithynia bequeathed their uneasy domains to the steady power arising from the West. In 133 BC the Romans proceeded to organize the province of Asia, taking the name from a Lydian district included in the province. Step by step the Roman frontiers were pushed farther to the East. Mithridates VI, king of Pontus, was called "the most formidable enemy the republic ever had to contend with," but he went down before the conquering arms of Rome. See PONTUS
. Caesar chastised the unfortunate Pharnaces at Zile in central Asia Minor, and coolly announced his success in the memorable message of three words, "veni, vidi, vici." Ultimately all of this fair peninsula passed under the iron sway, and the Roman rule lasted more than 500 years, until in 395 AD Theodosius divided the empire between his sons, giving the East to Arcadius and the West to Honorius, and the Roman Empire was cleft in twain.
True to their customs elsewhere the Romans built roads well paved with stone between the chief cities of their eastern provinces. The archaeologist or common traveler often comes upon sections of these roads, sometimes in the thickest forests, as sound and as rough as when Roman chariots rumbled over them. Milestones were erected to mark the distances, usually inscribed in both Latin and Greek, and the decipherment of these milestone records contributes to the recovery of the lost history. Bridges over the important streams have been rebuilt and repaired by successive generations of men, but in certain cases the Roman character of the original stands clearly forth. The Romans were a building people, and government houses, aqueducts, baths, theaters, temples and other structures confront the archaeologist or await the labor of the spade. Epigraphical studies such as those of Professor Sterrett indicate what a wealth of inscriptions is yet to be recovered, in Latin as well as in Greek
It was during the Roman period that Christianity made its advent in the peninsula. Christian disciples as well as Roman legions and governors used the roads, bridges and public buildings. Old church buildings and other religious foundations have their stories to tell. It is very interesting to read on Greek tombstones of the 1st or 2nd century AD such inscriptions as, "Here lies the servant of God, Daniel," "Here lies the handmaid of God, Maria." Our great authority for this period is Sir William M. Ramsay, whose Historical Geography of Asia Minor and other works must be read by anyone who would familiarize himself with this rich field.
6. The Byzantine Period:
By almost imperceptible degrees the Roman era was merged into the Byzantine. We are passing so rapidly now from the sphere of archaeology to that of history proper that we must be brief. For a thousand years after the fall of Rome the Eastern Empire lived on, a Greek body pervaded with lingering Roman influences and with Constantinople as the pulsating heart. The character of the times was nothing if not religious, yet the prevailing Christianity was a syncretistic compound including much from the nature worship of earlier Anatolia. The first great councils of the Christian church convened upon the soil of Asia Minor, the fourth being held at Ephesus in 431, and at this council the phrase "Mother of God" was adopted. We have seen that for fifty generations or more the people of Asia Minor had worshipped a great mother goddess, often with her consort son. It was at Ephesus, the center of the worship of Diana, that ecclesiastics, many of whom had but a slight training in Christianity, adopted this article into their statement of religious faith.
7. The Seljukian Turks:
Again the government of the country, the dominant race, the religion, language and culture, all are changed--this time with the invasions of the Seljukian Turks. This tribe was the precursor of the Ottoman Turks and later became absorbed among them. These Seljukians entered Asia Minor, coming up out of the recesses of central Asia, about the time that the Normans were settling along the coasts of western Europe. Their place in history is measurably clear, but they deserve mention in archaeology by reason of their remarkable architecture. Theirs was a branch of the Saracenic or Moorish architecture, and many examples remain in Asia Minor Mosques, schools, government buildings, khans, fortifications, fountains and other structures remain in great numbers and in a state of more or less satisfactory preservation, and they are buildings remarkably massive, yet ornate in delicacy and variety of tracery.
The Ottoman Turks, cousins of the Seljukians, came up out of the central Asian hive later, and took Constantinople by a memorable siege in 1453. With this event the archaeology of Asia Minor may be said to close, and history to cover the field instead.
George E. White
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