Aeolis

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Ancient Region of Anatolia
Aeolis (Αἰολίς)
Izmir016.jpg
LocationWestern Anatolia
State existed:8th-6th centuries BC (as Dodecapolis)
Language Aeolic Greek
Biggest city Smyrna
Roman province Asia
Map of Asia Minor/Anatolia in the Greco-Roman period. Asia Minor in the Greco-Roman period - general map - regions and main settlements.jpg
Map of Asia Minor/Anatolia in the Greco-Roman period.

Aeolis (Ancient Greek: Αἰολίς, Aiolís), or Aeolia ( /ˈliə/ ; Αἰολία, Aiolía), was an area that comprised the west and northwestern region of Asia Minor, mostly along the coast, and also several offshore islands (particularly Lesbos), where the Aeolian Greek city-states were located. Aeolis incorporated the southern parts of Mysia, which bounded it to the north, Ionia to the south and Lydia to the east.

Ancient Greek Version of the Greek language used from roughly the 9th century BCE to the 6th century CE

The Ancient Greek language includes the forms of Greek used in Ancient Greece and the ancient world from around the 9th century BCE to the 6th century CE. It is often roughly divided into the Archaic period, Classical period, and Hellenistic period. It is antedated in the second millennium BCE by Mycenaean Greek and succeeded by medieval Greek.

Lesbos Regional unit in North Aegean, Greece

Lesbos is an island located in the northeastern Aegean Sea. It has an area of 1,633 km2 (631 sq mi) with 320 kilometres of coastline, making it the third largest island in Greece. It is separated from Turkey by the narrow Mytilini Strait and in late Palaeolithic/Mesolithic times was joined to the Anatolian mainland before the end of the last glacial period.

The Aeolians were one of the four major tribes in which Greeks divided themselves in the ancient period.

Contents

Geography

Aeolis was an ancient district on the western coast of Asia Minor. It extended along the Aegean Sea from the entrance of the Hellespont (now the Dardanelles) south to the Hermus River (now the Gediz River). It was named for the Aeolians, some of whom migrated there from Greece before 1000 BC. Aeolis was, however, an ethnological and linguistic enclave rather than a geographical unit. The district often was considered part of the larger northwest region of Mysia.

Aegean Sea Part of the Mediterranean Sea between the Greek and Anatolian peninsulas

The Aegean Sea is an elongated embayment of the Mediterranean Sea located between the Greek and Anatolian peninsulas, or between the mainlands of Greece and Turkey. The sea has an area of some 215,000 square kilometres. In the north, the Aegean is connected to the Marmara Sea and the Black Sea by the straits of the Dardanelles and Bosphorus. The Aegean Islands, numbering over are within the sea and some bound it on its southern periphery, including Crete and Rhodes. Along with the Ionian Sea, which it connects to the southwest, the Aegean Sea contain some 1415 islands. The sea reaches a maximum depth of 3,544 meters, to the east of Crete.

Dardanelles strait in northwestern Turkey

The Dardanelles, also known from Classical Antiquity as the Hellespont (; Greek: Ἑλλήσποντος, Hellespontos, literally "Sea of Helle"), is a narrow, natural strait and internationally significant waterway in northwestern Turkey that forms part of the continental boundary between Europe and Asia, and separates Asian Turkey from European Turkey. One of the world's narrowest straits used for international navigation, the Dardanelles connects the Sea of Marmara with the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas, while also allowing passage to the Black Sea by extension via the Bosphorus. The Dardanelles is 61 kilometres (38 mi) long, and 1.2 to 6 kilometres wide, averaging 55 metres (180 ft) deep with a maximum depth of 103 metres (338 ft) at its narrowest point abreast the city of Çanakkale.

Greece republic in Southeast Europe

Greece, officially the Hellenic Republic, also known as Hellas, is a country located in Southern and Southeast Europe, with a population of approximately 11 million as of 2016. Athens is the nation's capital and largest city, followed by Thessaloniki.

History

Greek settlements in western Asia Minor, Aeolian area in dark red. Western Asia Minor Greek Colonization.svg
Greek settlements in western Asia Minor, Aeolian area in dark red.

According to Homer's Odyssey, Odysseus, after his stay with the Cyclopes, reached the floating island of Aeolia, where Aeolus son of Hippotas provided him with the west wind Zephyr. [1]

Homer name ascribed by the ancient Greeks to the legendary author of the Iliad and the Odyssey

Homer is the legendary author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, two epic poems that are the central works of ancient Greek literature. The Iliad is set during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy by a coalition of Greek kingdoms. It focuses on a quarrel between King Agamemnon and the warrior Achilles lasting a few weeks during the last year of the war. The Odyssey focuses on the ten-year journey home of Odysseus, king of Ithaca, after the fall of Troy. Many accounts of Homer's life circulated in classical antiquity, the most widespread being that he was a blind bard from Ionia, a region of central coastal Anatolia in present-day Turkey. Modern scholars consider these accounts legendary.

Odysseus legendary Greek king of Ithaca

Odysseus, also known by the Latin variant Ulysses, is a legendary Greek king of Ithaca and the hero of Homer's epic poem the Odyssey. Odysseus also plays a key role in Homer's Iliad and other works in that same epic cycle.

Cyclops member of a primordial race of giants in Greek mythology and later Roman mythology

In Greek mythology, the Cyclopes, were giant one-eyed creatures. There were two distinct groups of Cyclopes, the Cyclopes of Hesiod, and those of Homer, who aside from being one-eyed, have little in common. In Hesiod, they are three sons of Uranus and Gaia: Brontes, Steropes, and Arges, who provided Zeus with his characteristic weapon the thunderbolt. However in Homer, they are a savage group of shepherds, one of whom, Polyphemus, the son of Poseidon, is encountered by Odysseus in the Odyssey. The word cyclops literally means "round-eyed" or "circle-eyed".

Aeolis, Kyme; Tetradrachm; Silver; circa 165-140 BC; Obverse: Head of the Amazon Kyme right, wearing taenia; Reverse: Horse walking right, skyphos (one handled cup) below, KUMAION left, SEUThES (magistrate) in exergue, all within laurel-wreath; 34.2mm, 16.409g; Reference: SNG Von Aulock 1640; Oakley obv. die 59; Sg4183 var Aeolis Kyme Tetradrachm.jpg
Aeolis, Kyme; Tetradrachm; Silver; circa 165-140 BC; Obverse: Head of the Amazon Kyme right, wearing taenia; Reverse: Horse walking right, skyphos (one handled cup) below, ΚΥΜΑΙΩΝ left, ΣΕΥΘΗΣ (magistrate) in exergue, all within laurel-wreath; 34.2mm, 16.409g; Reference: SNG Von Aulock 1640; Oakley obv. die 59; Sg4183 var

By the 8th century BC the Aeolians' twelve most important cities were independent. They formed a league of twelve cities (a Dodecapolis): Cyme (also called Phriconis); Larissa; Neonteichos; Temnus; Cilla; Notion; Aegiroessa; Pitane; Aegae; Myrina; Gryneion; and Smyrna. [2]

Cyme (Aeolis) Ancient Greek city

Cyme or Cumae was an Aeolian city in Aeolis close to the kingdom of Lydia.

Neonteichos, was an Aeolian town not far from the coast of Mysia, situated between the Hermus and the town of Larissa, from which its distance was only 30 stadia. It is said to have been founded by the Aeolians, as a temporary fort on their first arrival in Asia Minor. According to Strabo, the place was more ancient even than Cyme; but according to a statement in the Vita Homeri it was built eight years later than Cyme, as a protection against the Pelasgians of Larissa.

Cilla is an English female given name, originally the diminutive form of Priscilla and less frequently Drusilla. It first appeared in the 20th century.

The most celebrated of the cities was Smyrna (modern Izmir, Turkey), but in 699 BC, Smyrna became part of an Ionian confederacy. [ citation needed ] This league or confederation, known as the Ionian League , also called the Panionic League, was formed at the end of the Meliac War in the mid-7th century BC. [3]

Smyrna ancient city on the Aegean coast of Turkey

Smyrna was a Greek city dating back to antiquity located at a central and strategic point on the Aegean coast of Anatolia. Since 1930, the modern city located there has been known as İzmir, in Turkey, the Turkish rendering of the same name. Due to its advantageous port conditions, its ease of defense and its good inland connections, Smyrna rose to prominence. Two sites of the ancient city are today within the boundaries of İzmir. The first site, probably founded by indigenous peoples, rose to prominence during the Archaic Period as one of the principal ancient Greek settlements in western Anatolia. The second, whose foundation is associated with Alexander the Great, reached metropolitan proportions during the period of the Roman Empire. Most of the present-day remains of the ancient city date from the Roman era, the majority from after a 2nd-century AD earthquake.

A confederation is a union of sovereign states, united for purposes of common action often in relation to other states. Usually created by a treaty, confederations of states tend to be established for dealing with critical issues, such as defense, foreign relations, internal trade or currency, with the general government being required to provide support for all its members. Confederalism represents a main form of inter-governmentalism, this being defined as any form of interaction between states which takes place on the basis of sovereign independence or government.

Croesus, king of Lydia (reigned 560-546 BC), conquered the remaining cities. Later they were held successively by the Persians, Macedonians, Seleucids, and Pergamenes. [4]

Croesus King of Lydia

Croesus was the king of Lydia who, according to Herodotus, reigned for 14 years: from 560 BC until his defeat by the Persian king Cyrus the Great in 546 BC.

Lydia Iron Age kingdom of western Asia Minor

Lydia was an Iron Age kingdom of western Asia Minor located generally east of ancient Ionia in the modern western Turkish provinces of Uşak, Manisa and inland İzmir. Its population spoke an Anatolian language known as Lydian. Its capital was Sardis.

The Persians are an Iranian ethnic group that make up over half the population of Iran. They share a common cultural system and are native speakers of the Persian language, as well as closely related languages.

Attalus III, the last king of Pergamum, bequeathed Aeolis to the Roman Republic in 133 BC. Shortly afterwards it became part of the Roman province of Asia. At the partition of the Roman Empire (395 AD), Aeolis was assigned to the East Roman (Byzantine) empire and remained largely under Byzantine rule until the early 15th century,[ citation needed ] when the Ottoman Turks occupied the area. [5]

Notable people

See also

Notes

  1. http://www.perseus.tufts.edu/hopper/text?doc=Perseus:text:1999.01.0218:book=10:card=1 - "Thence we went on to the Aeolian island where lives Aeolus son of Hippotas, dear to the immortal gods. It is an island that floats (as it were) upon the sea, iron bound with a wall that girds it."
  2. Herodotus. The Histories: 1.149. Compare Ionian League.
  3. Editors (2005). "Recent Finds in Archaeology: Panionion Sanctuary Discovered in Southwest Turkey". Athena Review. 4 (2): 10–11. Archived from the original on 2012-03-23. Retrieved 2018-05-30.
  4. Each of the cities minted coins of its own, using different gods, animals and objects as identifying city badges. See asiaminorcoins.com - ancient coins of Aeolis
  5. Smyrna fell to the Seljuk Turk Tzachas in 1076, to the Turkish Beylik of Aydın about 1330 and to the Turco-Mongol Timur in 1402 (after the Siege of Smyrna).

Related Research Articles

Anatolia Asian part of Turkey

Anatolia, also known as Asia Minor, Asian Turkey, the Anatolian peninsula or the Anatolian plateau, is the westernmost protrusion of Asia, which makes up the majority of modern-day Turkey. The region is bounded by the Black Sea to the north, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, the Armenian Highlands to the east and the Aegean Sea to the west. The Sea of Marmara forms a connection between the Black and Aegean seas through the Bosphorus and Dardanelles straits and separates Anatolia from Thrace on the European mainland.

Ionia region in Turkey

Ionia was an ancient region on the central part of the western coast of Anatolia in present-day Turkey, the region nearest İzmir, which was historically Smyrna. It consisted of the northernmost territories of the Ionian League of Greek settlements. Never a unified state, it was named after the Ionian tribe who, in the Archaic Period, settled mainly the shores and islands of the Aegean Sea. Ionian states were identified by tradition and by their use of Eastern Greek.

Mysia Historical region in the northwest of ancient Asia Minor

Mysia was a region in the northwest of ancient Asia Minor. It was located on the south coast of the Sea of Marmara. It was bounded by Bithynia on the east, Phrygia on the southeast, Lydia on the south, Aeolis on the southwest, Troad on the west and by the Propontis on the north. In ancient times it was inhabited by the Mysians, Phrygians, Aeolian Greeks and other groups.

Colophon (city) ancient former city in Ionia (in modern Lydia, Turkey)

Colophon was an ancient city in Ionia. Founded around the turn of the first millennium BC, it was likely one of the oldest of the twelve cities of the Ionian League. In ancient times it was located between Lebedos and Ephesus. Today the ruins of the city can be found south of the town Değirmendere Fev in the Menderes district of Izmir Province, Turkey.

Megali Idea Irredentist nationalist movement aiming to establish a Greek state that would encompass all historically ethnic Greek-inhabited areas, including Greeks under Ottoman rule and regions inhabited by ancient Greeks

The Megali Idea was an irredentist concept of Greek nationalism that expressed the goal of establishing a Greek state that would encompass all historically ethnic Greek-inhabited areas, including the large Greek populations that were still under Ottoman rule after the end of the Greek War of Independence (1821–1828) and all the regions that traditionally belonged to Greeks in ancient times.

Phocaea ancient Greek city-state

Phocaea or Phokaia was an ancient Ionian Greek city on the western coast of Anatolia. Greek colonists from Phocaea founded the colony of Massalia in 600 BC, Emporion in 575 BC and Elea in 540 BC.

Asia (Roman province) Roman province

The Roman province of Asia or Asiana, in Byzantine times called Phrygia, was an administrative unit added to the late Republic. It was a Senatorial province governed by a proconsul. The arrangement was unchanged in the reorganization of the Roman Empire in 211.

Ionian League

The Ionian League, also called the Panionic League, was a confederation formed at the end of the Meliac War in the mid-7th century BC comprising twelve Ionian cities . These were listed by Herodotus as

Teos maritime city of Ionia

Teos or Teo was an ancient Greek city on the coast of Ionia, on a peninsula between Chytrium and Myonnesus. It was founded by Minyans from Orchomenus, Ionians and Boeotians, but the date of its foundation is unknown. Teos was one of the twelve cities which formed the Ionian League. The city was situated on a low hilly isthmus. Its ruins are located to the south of the modern town Sığacık in the Seferihisar district of Izmir Province, Turkey.

Pitane (Aeolis) ancient Greek city

Pitane, near Çandarlı, Turkey, was an ancient Greek town of the ancient region of Aeolis, in Asia Minor. It was situated near the mouth of the river Evenus on the bay of Elaea. It was one of the eleven ancient Aeolian settlements, and possessed considerable commercial advantages in having two harbours. It was the birthplace of the academic philosopher Arcesilaus, and in the reign of Titus it suffered severely from an earthquake. The town is still mentioned by Hierocles. Pliny the Elder mentions in its vicinity a river Canaius, which is not noticed by any other writer; but it may possibly be the river Pitanes, spoken of by Ptolemy, and which seems to derive its name from the town of Pitane.

Notion (ancient city) ancient Greek city

Notion or Notium was a Greek city-state on the west coast of Anatolia; it is about 50 kilometers (31 mi) south of Izmir in modern Turkey, on the Gulf of Kuşadası. Notion was located on a hill from which the sea was visible; it served as a port for nearby Colophon and Claros, and pilgrims frequently passed through on their way to the oracle of Apollo at Claros. There are still remains of the defense walls, necropolis, temple, agora, and theater. The ruins of the city are now found east of the modern town Ahmetbeyli in the Menderes district of Izmir Province, Turkey.

Madytus or Madytos was a Greek city and port of ancient Thrace, located in the region of the Thracian Chersonesos, nearly opposite to Abydos.

Gambrium or Gambrion, also Gambreium or Gambreion (Γάμβρειον), was a town of ancient Aeolis and of Mysia, quite close to Pergamum. Its location is near Kınık and Bergama in İzmir province, in the Aegean Region of Turkey.

Iron Age Greek migrations

The Iron Age Greek migrations were effected by a population of émigrés from amidst the displacements and reconstruction that occurred in Greece proper from the middle of the 11th century to end of the 9th century BCE. These movements resulted in the settlement of the Aegean islands, Cyprus, Crete and the western coast of Asia Minor and the founding of new cities which afterwards became centers of the Greek civilization. The migrations were effected in consecutive waves by tribal groupings known as the Aeolic, Ionian, Doric and Achaean (Arcadian) migrations. These movements differed from the Greek colonisation of the Archaic period in that they were more ad hoc affairs instead of the result of a planned process of colonisation on the part of the mother city, and they are less well-documented historically, often with a mythologized or semi-legendary leader such as Hercules or Orestes being recorded as the leader of the colonists.

Nasos was a town and polis (city-state) of ancient Aeolis. The place-name "Nesos Pordoselene" appears in the list of tributes to ancient Athens of the year 422/1 BCE but there are different opinions on whether Nesos and Pordoselene were a single city or if they are two different cities. On the other hand, the nickname "nasiotas" (Νασιώτας) appears in an inscription of Adramyttium dated to 319-317 BCE.

Chalcis was a town of ancient Aeolis, placed by Stephanus of Byzantium across from Lesbos. Bronze coins dated to the fourth century BCE inscribed «ΧΑ» are attributed to the town.

References

Coordinates: 39°12′N26°42′E / 39.2°N 26.7°E / 39.2; 26.7