Showing posts with label ruins. Show all posts
Showing posts with label ruins. Show all posts

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A Local Adventure

A week ago I went to Seferihisar, a little town about 4 hours from ours.
I went there for an underwater video workshop but I got up early on Friday to leave at 6 am so that I would arrive at 10 am to explore the town.

My first stop was Teos Ancient Site, first settled during the Protogeometric period at circa 1000 BC.
There were more places to see but it was soooo hot and I was on only 2 hours of sleep that I could not stay longer than 2 hours and had to escape the heat.

Entrance is 5 lira (1 dollar) and that includes a map which is handy as it is a pretty large area.

The Bouleuterion was in pretty good shape. A bouleuterion, also translated as council house, assembly house, and senate house, was a building in ancient Greece which housed the council of citizens of a democratic city state. These representatives assembled at the bouleteurion to confer and decide about public affairs. There are several extant bouleuteria around Greece and its former colonies.

In the middle of the site was also an old woman with her goats I'm pretty sure that the goats are appreciated as they keep the vegetation at bay :)

If I had been there during May or Fall I would definitely spent some more time but without shade it was really too hot to stay for too long.

There was still work going on at the site.

I loved these tunnels the most, nice shady and the beauty of abandonment very clear.

I then went to a little old Mill, the Greek history was clear all around Seferihisar.

Making use of the wind in several ways.

The town itself could easily be in Greece, as you know Turkey has a long history with Greece.

Beautiful old mosque.

Around the old town were the remnants of a castle wall.
On Sunday there was a bazaar here extremely crowded but with delicious home made food. We ate so much between our two dives that day that I was afraid I would sink too fast :D

Due to the heat it was very quiet when I went.

This I did all on Friday including some theory briefing for my video workshop in the evening.

As the town is small but popular there are not many hotels and  I discovered that rooms were pretty expensive. I discovered a lovely bungalow through Airbnb and it had this lovely place to sit with a cool breeze and amazing view.

At night I woke up to this red moon, not a blood moon just red due to the heat, I did take pics of the blood moon which you can see at myแจกเครดิตทดลองเล่นฟรี ไม่ต้องฝาก previous blog post.

On Saturday and Sunday we had two dives each day, and we took videos, will edit them soon to post on YouTube.

I managed to take a few photos as well, but mostly videos as that was what the course was about.

There was much more to see that in my town, the sea life especially the flora better preserved.

I had a great time and hope to do one on photography as well as underwater photography is tricky :)

View from our table during dinner.

Friday, 4 May 2018

Back to other times: Aphrodisias

Aphrodisias was our second stop of our photography trip (see here our first stop).

Aphrodisias was a large area with amazing ruins. There was also an indoor museum with the more fragile pieces.

Aphrodisias was a small ancient Greek Hellenistic city in the historic Caria cultural region of western Anatolia, Turkey. It is located near the modern village of Geyre, about 100 km (62 mi) east/inland from the coast of the Aegean Sea, and 230 km (140 mi) southeast of ?zmir.

Aphrodisias was named after Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, who had here her unique cult image, the Aphrodite of Aphrodisias. According to the Suda, a Byzantine encyclopedic compilation, before the city became known as Aphrodisias (c.3rd century BCE) it had three previous names: Lelégōn Pólis ("City of the Leleges"), Megálē Pólis  ("Great City"), and Ninóē .

Aphrodisias was the metropolis (provincial capital) of the region and Roman province of Caria.

White and blue grey Carian marble was extensively quarried from adjacent slopes in the Hellenistic and Roman periods, for building facades and sculptures. Marble sculptures and sculptors from Aphrodisias became famous in the Roman world. Many examples of statuary have been unearthed in Aphrodisias, and some representations of the Aphrodite of Aphrodisias also survive from other parts of the Roman world, as far afield as Pax Julia in Lusitania.

The city had notable schools for sculpture, as well as philosophy, remaining a centre of paganism until the end of the 5th century. The city was destroyed by earthquake in the early 7th century, and never recovered its former prosperity, being reduced to a small fortified settlement on the site of the ancient theatre. Around the same time, it was also renamed to Stauropolis ("city of the Cross") to remove pagan connotations, but already by the 8th century it was known as Caria after the region, which later gave rise to its modern Turkish name, Geyre.

The city was sacked again by the rebel Theodore Mankaphas in 1188, and then by the Seljuk Turks in 1197. It finally fell under Turkish control towards the end of the 13th century

 A monumental gateway, or tetrapylon, leads from the main north-south street of the town into a large forecourt in front of the Temple or Sanctuary of Aphrodite. The gateway was built ca. A.D. 200.

Attached to the gate I discovered this guy building a new home :)

The Temple of Aphrodite was a focal point of the town, but the character of the building was altered when it became a Christian basilica. The Aphrodisian sculptors became renowned and benefited from a plentiful supply of marble close at hand. The school of sculpture was very productive; much of their work can be seen around the site and in the museum. Many full-length statues were discovered in the region of the agora, and trial and unfinished pieces pointing to a true school are in evidence. Sarcophagi were recovered in various locations, most frequently decorated with designs consisting of garland and columns. Pilasters have been found showing what are described as "peopled scrolls" with figures of people, birds and animals entwined in acanthus leaves.

The stadium was used for athletic events until the theatre was badly damaged by a 7th-century earthquake, requiring part of the stadium to be converted for events previously staged in the theatre.

The stadium measures approximately 270 m (890 ft) by 60 m (200 ft). With 30 rows of seats on each side, and around each end, it would have had a maximum capacity for around 30,000 spectators. The track measures approximately 225 m (738 ft) by 30 m (98 ft).

As the stadium is considerably larger and structurally more extensive than even the stadium at the Sanctuary of Apollo at Delphi, it is probably one of the best preserved structures of its kind in the Mediterranean.

It was very windy and this poor grasshopper was struggling to stay where he was.

The bouleuterion (council house), or odeon, is centered on the north side of the North Agora. As it stands today, it consists of a semicircular auditorium fronted by a shallow stage structure about 46 m wide. The lower part of the auditorium survives intact, with nine rows of marble seats divided into five wedges by radial stairways. The seating of the upper part, amounting to an additional twelve rows, has collapsed together with its supporting vaults. The plan is an extremely open one, with numerous entrances at ground level and several stairways giving access to the upper rows of seats. A system of massive parallel buttresses shows that the building was originally vaulted. The auditorium would have been lighted by a series of tall, arched windows in the curved outer wall. Seating capacity can be estimated at about 1750. The available evidence indicates a construction date in the Antonine or early Severan period (late 2nd or early 3rd century AD).

The bouleuterion at Aphrodisias remained in this form until the early 5th century, when a municipal official had it adapted as a palaestra, recording his achievement in an inscription on the upper molding of the pulpitum (stage). Palaestra usually refers to a wrestling ground, but in the 5th century it could be used to describe a hall for lectures, performances, and various kinds of competitive displays, as suggested by a number of factional inscriptions carved on the seats. Numerous additional cuttings in the surviving seats, probably for poles supporting awnings, suggest that by this time the building had lost its roof. The orchestra was lowered and provided with a marble pavement, reused, perhaps, from the earlier phase.

The Sebasteion, or Augusteum, was jointly dedicated, according to a 1st-century inscription on its propylon, "To Aphrodite, the Divine Augusti and the People". A relief found in the ruins of the south portico represented a personification of the polis making sacrifice to the cult image of Aphrodite of Aphrodisias, venerated as promētōr, "foremother" or "ancestral mother". "Aphrodite represents the cosmic force that integrates imperial power with the power of local elites," a reader of Chariton romance has noted. This connection between the goddess and the imperial house was also a particularly politic one at the time, as the Gens Julia - the family of Julius Caesar, Octavian Augustus, and their immediate successors - claimed divine descent from Venus/Aphrodite.

The first formal excavations were undertaken in 1904-5, by a French railroad engineer, Paul Augustin Gaudin. Some of the architectural finds (mostly friezes, pilasters and capitals) he discovered at the site are now in the British Museum.

The most recent, ongoing excavations were begun by Kenan Erim under the aegis of New York University in 1962 and are currently led by Professor R. R. R. Smith (at Oxford University) and Professor Katharine Welch of the NYU Institute of Fine Arts. The findings reveal that the lavish building programme in the city's civic center was initiated and largely funded by one Gaius Julius Zoilus, a local who was a slave of Gaius Julius Caesar, set free by Octavian. When Zoilus returned as a freedman to his native city, endowed with prestige and rich rewards for his service, he shrewdly directed it to align with Octavian in his power struggle against Mark Antony. This ensured Octavian's lasting favor in the form of financial privileges that allowed the city to prosper.

In September 2014, drones weighing about 0.5 kg were used to 3D map the above-ground ruins of Aphrodisias. The data is being analysed by the Austrian Archaeological Institute in Vienna.

In March 2018, an ancient tomb has been unearthed in an area where illegal excavations were carried out. The tomb was taken to the Aphrodisias Museum (all information taken from Wikipedia).