The ancient city is situated 57 km southwest of Kütahya,in Çavdarhisar.The settlement dates back to 3000 BC.Aizanoi was settled on the two banks of River Rhyndakos that flowed through the region called 'Phyrgia Epiktetus'(little Phyrgia)in ancient times.The name Aizanoi comes from the word eksouanous(eksis=hedgehog,ouanous=fox).It is understood that these animals used to be sacrified for the sake of the city.According to sources from ancient writings the city was conquered by the king of Bithynia,Prusias I,and put under the domination of the Kingdom of Pergamon with Rome it too joined Rome.the name 'Azainon'comes from the nymph Erato,who is one of Zeus' daughters,and Azan,who was the son of Arkas from Arkadya.We also come across the name 'Ezeanition'on the coins from the Augustus period (27BC-14AC).Aizanoi became a wealthy city with its grain,wine and wool production.It had fame for a while as the main market of the empire,lived in the glorius age in the 2nd century and experienced many public works improvements.The city became a center of the patriarchate with the spread of Christianity and was discovered by European tourists in 1824.
There are ruins of two agorae,the temple of Zeus,a stadium,a theatre,bath and gymnasium situated on both sides of the river.
Temple Of Zeus
Built on a dais on an area 130.5x112m.It is located 200m away from the western bank of the river and it is surrounded by colonnaded galleries.It was built to a dipteral plan with 4 Corinthian columns and 120 Ionian Columns of 8x15.In the temple under the main cella (inner shrine of a Greek or Roman temple),there are stairs that go down to underground cella.This underground cella was dedicated to the goddess of Phrygia,Meter Steunene.The temple is one of the best examples of the Ionian style in Anatolia.The acroters are especially interesting.On the west pediment,the middle acroter is decorated with the bust of goddess Kybele placed in the middle of acanthi branches and leaves.On the east pediment acroter,there is a bust of Zeus.The temple was built between the years 117-138 and has a courtyard and agora with columns in Doric style.On its front gallery walls,there are epitaphs praising Apuleius who served the Emperors Hadrian and Aizanoi.
Theatre: 200m northeast of the Zeus Temple the two-storey theatre is found next to the Stadium.It has a capacity of 13.000 and a stage with a diameter of 56m.From the epitaphs on its walls,we learn that Apuleius,whose name is also to be found on the Zeus Temple and on the 4th Roman Bridge,played an important role in the construction of the theatre.
Stadiıum: This structure is attached to the theatre and has dimensions of 220x50m.Its construction started in approximately the year 160 A.D.and was not finished until approximately 250.The stadium has a capacity of 13.500,a wide-gate on the west side and a ''VIP Section''where there are medallions of athlethes.There is a marble wall that seperates the stadium and the theatre.On both sides of there are reliefs depicting hunting scenes.
On the east bank of the river,there is a round structure with 16 columns,a tomb and a necropolis that belonged to the City Elders.
Stock Exchange Building: This building was used as a grain market during the first half of the century.On its walls,there are price lists of all the goods sold in markets throughout the empire;inscriptions which show the prices set by Emperor diocletian in 301 as a measure againist inflation.Amongst the interesting things to be gleaned from the price lists is that:the price of a strong slave is equal to two donkeys,a horse is equal to two slaves and that is equivalent to 30.000 dinar.This building is considered important.as it gives certain information about the architectural development and social life of the city.And it is widely known as the world's first commodity exchange.
Colonnaded Street: This road was attached to the northeast part of the stock exchange and along the road were shops and galleries.It passes the Temple of Zeus and extends to the Holy Arena of Kybele.
Ancient Bridges: There were five bridges on the River Rhyndakos.One was made of wood and the others were stone-vaulted.Only two of them have survived to the present day.
Kutahya > Ancient City of Aizanoi-Aezani
- 15 Kasım 2011 SalıYazdır
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