Caesarea (Mazaca)

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Caesarea
Mazaca
Caesarea (Mazaca) is located in Europe
Caesarea (Mazaca)
Caesarea (Mazaca) (Europe)
LocationKayseri, Kayseri Province, Turkey
RegionCappadocia
Coordinates38°43′21″N 35°29′15″E / 38.72250°N 35.48750°E / 38.72250; 35.48750Coordinates: 38°43′21″N 35°29′15″E / 38.72250°N 35.48750°E / 38.72250; 35.48750
TypeAncient Greek settlement
History
BuilderRomans, Byzantines, Greeks
Abandoned11th century

Caesarea (/ˌsɛzəˈriːə, ˌsɛsəˈriːə, ˌsiːzəˈriːə/; Greek: Καισάρεια, romanizedKaisareia) also known historically as Mazaca (Greek: Μάζακα) was an ancient city in what is now Kayseri, Turkey. In Hellenistic and Roman times, the city was an important stop over for Merchants headed to Europe on the ancient Silk Road. The city was the capital of Cappadocia, and Armenian and Cappadocian kings regularly fought over control of the strategic city. The city was renowned for its Bishops of both the Greek Orthodox and Armenian Apostolic faith. After the Battle of Manzikert where the Byzantine Empire lost to the incoming Seljuk Empire, the city was later taken over by the Sultanate of Rum and became reconfigured over time with the influences of both Islamic and later, Ottoman architecture.

Excerpt, zoom-in, of this part of Greco-Roman Anatolia. To many Romans also called Asia Minor. The city is shown in the north with its name before the alternative from the reign of Julius Caesar. Click for broader map and to enable varied magnification.

History

Superseded trading town

Aya Panagia Greek Church in Talas, Kayseri

An earlier Silk Road, trading town or city can be traced to 3000 BCE, in ruined Kültepe, 20 km (12 mi) north-east. Findings there have included numerous baked-clay tablets, some of which were enclosed in clay envelopes stamped with cylinder seals. The documents record common activities, such as trade between the Assyrian colony and the city-state of Assur and between Assyrian merchants and local people. The trade was run by families rather than the state. The Kültepe texts are the oldest documents of Anatolia. Although they are written in Old Assyrian, the Hittite loanwords and names in the texts are the oldest record of any Indo-European language[1] (see also Ishara). Most of the archaeological evidence is typical of Anatolia rather than of Assyria, but the use of both cuneiform and the dialect is the best indication of Assyrian presence.

Importance and economy

Hellenistic times

Caesarea remained as its precessor was a firmly inland trading centre firstly for many nearby city states, secondly due to links far beyond to east and west giving it, among regional comparators in size, enhanced trade.[2]

The city was the centre of a satrapy under Persian rule until it was conquered by

Ariarathes V Eusebes Philopator of Cappadocia (163–130 BC). The new name of Caesarea (Greek: Καισάρεια), by which it has since been known, was given to it by the last Cappadocian King Archelaus[3] or perhaps by Tiberius.[4]

Roman and Byzantine rule

The city passed under formal Roman rule in 17 AD.

Caesarea was destroyed by the

Emperor Valerian I in 260 AD. At the time it was recorded to have around 40,000 inhabitants. The city gradually recovered, and became home to several early Christian saints: saints Dorothea and Theophilus the martyrs, Gregory of Nazianzus, Gregory of Nyssa and Basil of Caesarea. In the 4th century, bishop Basil established an ecclesiastic centre on the plain, about one mile to the northeast, which gradually supplanted the old town.[citation needed] It included a system of almshouses, an orphanage, old peoples' homes, and a leprosarium (leprosy hospital). The city's bishop, Thalassius, attended the[5] Second Council of Ephesus and was suspended from the Council of Chalcedon[6]

A

It was a titular see of the Roman Church under various names as well, including Caesarea Ponti.

A portion of Basil's new city was surrounded with strong walls, and it was turned into a fortress by

Seljuks
and Ottomans, is still standing in good condition in the central square of the city.

Home to many early Christian saints,[13] such as Basil, Andreas (Andrew) and Emmelia of Caesarea. It was an important trading centre[2][14] on the Silk Road.

Successor city

The city has some surviving buildings and is otherwise largely the foundations of what is now Kayseri, Turkey.[2]

Gallery

  • Coin of Ariobarzanes, minted at Mazaca in 83 or 82 BC

    Coin of Ariobarzanes, minted at Mazaca in 83 or 82 BC

  • Half-drachma from Caesarea (Mazaca) of Nero (reigned 37 to 68 CE)

    Half-drachma from Caesarea (Mazaca) of Nero (reigned 37 to 68 CE)

  • The foundations of this building, Kayseri Castle / Fortress of Kayseri retains some city walls, both date to the Roman era

    The foundations of this building, Kayseri Castle / Fortress of Kayseri retains some city walls, both date to the Roman era

  • This sarcophagus of the Twelve Labors of Hercules at Kayseri Archaeology Museum dates to 150-160 CE

    This sarcophagus of the Twelve Labors of Hercules at Kayseri Archaeology Museum dates to 150-160 CE

  • Cappadocian Greeks in Kayseri

    Cappadocian Greeks in Kayseri

  • Mazaka Land in Kayseri, Turkey

    Mazaka Land in Kayseri, Turkey

  • House in Kayseri from an earlier period

    House in Kayseri from an earlier period

  • Coin from Kayseri Archaeological Museum

    Coin from Kayseri Archaeological Museum

  • Surp Kirkor Lusavoric Armenian Church dome and ceiling

    Surp Kirkor Lusavoric Armenian Church dome and ceiling

  • Architectural style

    Architectural style

References

  1. ^ a b c Borges, Jason (2020-02-18). "Caesarea Mazaca (Kayseri)". Cappadocia History. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  2. ^ Everett-Heath, John (2005). Kayseri. Concise Dictionary of World Place-Names. Oxford University Press. Retrieved 2007-12-11.
  3. ^ "CATHOLIC ENCYCLOPEDIA: Caesarea". Archived from the original on 2007-07-02.
  4. ^ Richard Price, Michael Gaddis The Acts of the Council of Chalcedon, Volume 1 p31.
  5. ^ Richard Price, Michael Gaddis, The Acts of the Council of Chalcedon, Volume 1 p36.
  6. ^ Heinrich Gelzer, Ungedruckte und ungenügend veröffentlichte Texte der Notitiae episcopatuum, in: Abhandlungen der philosophisch-historische classe der bayerische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 1901, p. 536, nº 77–82, and pp. 551–552, nnº 106–121.
  7. ^ Pius Bonifacius Gams, Series episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae Archived 2015-03-08 at Wikiwix, Leipzig 1931, p. 440
  8. ^ Michel Lequien, Oriens christianus in quatuor Patriarchatus digestus, Paris 1740, Vol. I, coll. 367–390
  9. ^ Raymond Janin, v. 2. Césarée de Cappadoce, in Dictionnaire d'Histoire et de Géographie ecclésiastiques, vol. XII, Paris 1953, coll. 199–203
  10. ^ "Caesarea". Catholic Encyclopedia. Archived from the original on 2007-07-02.
  11. ), p. 867
  12. ^ "Cappadocian Saints - Discover Cappadocia". www.discovercappadocia.com. Retrieved 2021-09-04.
  13. ^ "Silk Road Caravanserais in Central Turkey". Bob Cromwell: Travel, Linux, Cybersecurity. Retrieved 2021-09-04.