Tuesday, 17 May 2016
IZMIR: GREECE, TROY AND ROME IN TURKEY
The city of Izmir is the third largest in modern Turkey, and is located on the Mediterranean coast at the far western extremity of Anatolia. It is today a popular Aegean and Mediterranean cruise ship port, and is the usual entry for the ancient cities of Ephesus and Pergamon. Prehistoric settlements from as early as 7000 BCE have been excavated, and artifacts have been found from the third millennium BCE that coincide with the first city of Troy. The city was known in Greek as Smyrna, and had extensive Hellenic settlement as well; Smyrna is believed to have been the birthplace of Homer. After conquest, Izmir was rebuilt by Alexander the Great and prospered under Roman rule from the 1st century CE until the separation of the Eastern and Western Roman Empires. Visitors to today’s Izmir can see artifacts of life from the Stone Age to the Byzantine Empire and later.