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Sagalassos Introductory Presentation Burdur –Turkey

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Burdur –Turkey

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The urban site was laid out on various terraces at an altitude between 1400 and 1600 meter.

After having suffered from a major earthquake in the early sixth century CE, the town still managed to recover, but a cocktail of epidemics, water shortages, a general lack of security and stability, a failing economy and finally another devastating earthquake around the middle of the seventh century forced the inhabitants to abandon their town and resettle in the valley.


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Large-scale excavations started in 1990 under the

direction of Marc Waelkens of the Katholieke Üniversiteit Leuven.

A large number of buildings, monuments and other archaeological remains have been exposed, documenting the monumental aspect of the Hellenistic ,Roman and early Byzantine history of this town.

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Antique Theatre

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Human settlement in the area goes back to 8000 BCE, before the actual site was occupied.

 Hittite documents refer to a mountain site of Salawassa in the fourteenth century BCE and the town spread during the Phrygian   and Lydian cultures.

Sagalassos was part of the region of Pisidia in the western part of the Taurus Mountains.

During the Persian period, Pisidia became known for its warlike factions.


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Neon Library

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The Roman Empire absorbed Pisidia after the Attalids and it became part of the province of Asia.

In 39 BC it was handed out to Galatian client king Amyntas, but after he was killed in 25 BC Rome turned Pisidia into the province of Galatia.

Around 400 CE Sagalassos was fortified for defence. An earthquake devastated it in 518 and a plague circa

541-543 halved the local population.

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Around 400 CE Sagalassos was fortified for defence. In the following centuries, erosion covered the ruins of

Sagalassos. It was not looted to a significant extent, possibly because of its location.

Explorer Paul Lucas, who was traveling in Turkey on a mission for the court of Louis XIV of France, visited the ruins in 1706. 

Polish historian of art, count K.Lanckoroński produced the first map of Sagalassos.

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From 1990 Sagalassos, a major tourist site, has become a major excavation project led by Marc Waelkens of the Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium.

The first survey documents a thousand years of occupation—from Alexander the Great to the seventh century—while the latter has established the changing settlement patterns, the vegetation history and farming practices, the landscape formation and climatic changes during the last 10,000 years.

Modern Project

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Antonins Fountain

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On August 9, 2007, the press reported the discovery of

a finely detailed, colossal statue of the Emperor Hadrian, which is thought to have stood 4-5m in height.

A major earthquake sometime between the late sixth and early seventh centuries CE brought the vaulting crashing down; the statue of Hadrian was felled, coming apart along the joins of its facture.

On August 14, 2008, the head statue of Faustina the Elder, wife of Roman emperor Antoninus Pius (Hadrian's successor and adopted son) was discovered in the same site.

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The research found a significant maternal genetic

signature of Balkan/Greek populations, as well as ancient Persians and populations from the Italian peninsula.

Some contribution from the Levant was also detected, whereas no contribution from Central Asian population was ascertained.

The Gallo-Roman Museum in Tongeren, Belgium hosted an exhibition of artifacts from Sagalassos under the title "Sagalassos: City of Dreams" between 29 October 2011 and 17 June 2012

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Aliihsan Gökmen Burdur Cumhuriyet Anadolu Lisesi

Erasmus+ CONONECT Project Presentation