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Posted 13 April 2004 - 14:56


Marmaris Archeology Museum gives service in a historical place, in Marmaris fort.

Herodotos has written that the first city walls in Marmaris were constructed in 3rd thousand BC. Physkos (Marmaris), which was a Karia city in that period, was a passage point between Aegean Sea and Mediterranean Sea, as it is today. The harbor of the city has kept its importance for ages with its trade routes opening to Rhodes and Egypt. Charles Texier, a 19th century researcher, has mentioned in this work of art of a fort dominating on Physkos Gulf, whose ruins were found at Fineks Mountains. It is known that the Great Alexander, who took over Marmaris in 334 BC has had the fort repaired because of its strategic importance.

The only written reference mentioning about the construction of Marmaris Fort that is located at a high point at the back of the Yacht Harbor, is the travel book of Evliya Çelebi. Evliya Çelebi, who visited Muğla and its surroundings in 17th century, says that Kanuni Sultan Süleyman has ordered the repair of the fort before his Rhodes campaign and that the fort was used as a base during the campaign. In the reference, it is said that the fort was constructed on the main rock having four emplacements, that there were 400 foot walls made of smooth stones, that there were one room for each of warden, imam, mosque caretaker and the guardians, and an inscription on the entrance door. In the work of art, where another history writer Celaloğlu Mustafa tells Marmaris days of Kanuni Sultan Süleyman and his army, the Rhodes campaign and their return to İstanbul, the fort is not mentioned.

Piri Reis, who wrote "Navy Book", does not indicate Marmaris Fort in his work of art, in which he tells Marmaris Harbor in detail, and in the map he drew. In the period between 1494 - 1520, during which Piri Reis drew other forts in Mediterranean and took notes for his book, the existence of a fort in Marmaris harbor was not recorded.

In the light of this information, there is another thought in relation with the date of construction of Marmaris Fort. In accordance with that thought, Kanuni Sultan Süleyman, who ascended the throne in 1520, has demanded the construction of the fort while returning from Rhodes Campaign. Hafıza Sultan caravansary is located at the entrance of the narrow street having steps which leads to the fort. The caravansary, which has a rectangular plan, has seven small and one big rooms and it is covered with arches. In the inscription at the entrance of this building, which is constructed in the same period with the fort, the date 1545 is read. This date supports the thought that the fort and the caravansary were constructed after the campaign, at the same time.

An important part of the fort has been destroyed in 1914 during the First World War with the cannon balls of a French destroyer. In the fort, which is used for settlement by Marmaris people beginning from the pre - Republic period until a recent date, there are 18 dwellings, one fountain and one cistern.

Marmaris Fort has been restored between the years 1980 - 1990 and has been opened to service as Marmaris Museum in 1991. It has seven closed places. The cradle vaulted entrance is opening to the inner garden. The stairs on the right and left of the courtyard provides access to the city walls. Two of the closed areas that are covered with cradle vault are arranged as archeology halls. In these halls and in the garden, the stone opuses collected in the region, amphora belonging to Hellenistic, Roman and Byzantine Periods, candles, bottles, figurines made of cooked soil, various pots and glass opuses, arrow ends, coins and ornamental goods found in Knidos, Burgaz, Hisarönü excavations are being exhibited. In the ethnography hall, weavings, carpets, kilims, furniture, copper kitchen tools, guns and ornamental goods are exhibited. The places other than those halls are used as art gallery, office and depot.

The museum is open for visit between the hours 08:30 - 12:00 and 13:00 - 17.30 everyday except Mondays.

The museum personnel can be contacted from

Tel: (256) 412 14 59
Fax: (256) 412 17 46

Marmaris, which is surrounded by the sea in west and by the mountains in south, has been a preferable location in history because of this feature. From the written references, it is learnt that its archaic name was Physkos and had a special importance among the cities across Rhodes.

Marmaris and Datça Districts, controlled by Marmaris Archeology Museum, show an integrity in historical geography. There are many traces reflecting the history of the region since 3rd thousand BC until the end of Ottoman period. The prehistory of Marmaris district and Datça Peninsula is not completely known today. But, the region has been discovered and examined by the native and foreign travelers and scientists starting from the second half of 19th century.

Physkos, Amos, Erine, Kastabos, Saranda, Bybasslos, Tymnus, Gallipolis, Prynos, Hydas, Cennet Island, Kedreal, Keçi and Bedir Islands, Euthenna, Bayır - Gebekse, Pymos, Gavur Sancağı, Loryma, Kıran Gölü, Çubucak ceramic workshops, which are in the borders of Marmaris district, and Knidos, Bybassos, Trioplon, Burgaz residences which are in the borders of Datça District are a part of the land of Rhodes Union in Anatolia in archaic geography, that is they are the cross side of Rhodes. In the peninsula, besides those ruin places, there are many cultural values consisting of single buildings such as cistern, grave, fort, church, monastery, mill, oil house, etc.

In recent years, the region is being examined in detail by excavations and surface researches.

Loryma: Loryma archaic city is located on Karaburun, close to Taşlıca, Bozukkale. Transportation is provided via sea until Bozukkale harbor, after that a climbing for more than one hour is needed to the ruins.

It is an important center among the cities cross Rhodes in 4th century BC. In the archaic city, which has a big gulf, scientific surface researches have been commenced in 1995 under the direction of the German Archeologist Dr. Winferd Held.

Loryma, which is a small city, has been established in 7th century BC. It is surrounded with a two - stage wall dated to the Archaic and Classical periods. In the upper part of the city, lies the acropolis, which is also surrounded by a two - stage wall. The three cisterns above the acropolis and the base ruins belonging to a single building show that this area was used as shelter in case of danger. The narrow and long harbor fort controls the entrance of the gulf. The dwellings of Loryma are on terraces carefully made on the slope. "Artemis Sotaria" holy area is located in the plain that is in west of the city. In west of the gulf, the necropolis area longing towards north is beside the temple. In the plain that is in the south of the necropolis, Apollo holy area is located. Furthermore, the existence of an altar devoted to Zeus Atabyrios, the Rhodes God is known. This information shows that the city, which is at a strategic point in terms of the defense of Rhodes, was under the control of Rhodes. Three churches and many houses was built on Loryma acropolis, which was a navy base and gun storage in Byzantine Period, by using also the archaic period materials.

The city has been completely left after the Arabic invasion in 7th century AD.

Kıran Lake: Transportation via sea is possible to the residence located in southwestern of Marmaris near the dry lake having a diameter of 30 meters, which is a neighbor of Loryma harbor city. After the sea journey ending at Bozukkale harbor, the ruins are reached with a climb longing for two hours.

In 1995, as the result of the scientific researches carried out by Dr. Zeynep Kuban and Dr. Turgut Saner, the temple, whose altar has also been protected, theater buildings and five more building ruins, whose functions could not be determined yet, have been found. Furthermore, with these researches it can also be explained that blocks similar to stels could be placed in the holes that are seen on flat, large, rectangular blocks in addition to the pyramid graves having steps, special to the region. Another grave type seen in this area is the chamber graves made of large, block stones that are covered with cradle roof shaped covers.

The researchers say that the center might be used as meeting and cult center by the city groups paying tax to Attika Sea Union, which is thought to be located in Bozburun Peninsula.

Çubucak: "Rhodes commercial amphora production workshops" in Hisarönü Çubucak location are being searched by Ass. Prof. Dr. Ersin Doğer, who is a lecturer in Ege University, since 1990 via scientific excavations. It is known that, for approximately 250 years, (beginning of 3rd century BC - mid of 1st century BC) the commercial amphora of Rhodes city state were sealed with stamps bearing the name of the city and with the names of the Rhodes officers selected each year and gave their name to the year during which he was charged, and that the amphora that did not comply with the production standard were disposed. The amphora and their handles found, which were accumulated in the waste areas in layers by time, provide important results for the chronology of the term and for general chronology.

In the excavations, more than 2500 sealed amphora handles have been obtained. As the result of the examination carried out on these handles, it has been determined that the potter named Hieroteles made production for 70 years and that 6 more potters worked.

Burgaz: Burgaz ruin place is 2 km northeastern of Datça District Center. Burgaz ruin place, which was introduced to the science world for the first time by Bean and Cook, is thought to be the "Ancient Knidos City". Burgaz excavation works are performed since 1993 under the scientific direction of Ass. Prof. Dr. Numan Tuna.

The ruin place, which covers an area of approximately 1400 x 400 m lies along the seashore and is the most important center providing findings belonging to pre - Hellenistic Period. The city is surrounded with walls. In southwest of this area, tower and sea wall ruins are seen in shallow waters. The ruins of two harbors dated to 4th century BC can be observed from the seashore today.

As the result of the excavation works, it has been understood that Burgaz settlement existed since the geometric period, that it has been partially left in 4th century BC, but the storage and harbor loading at the seashore; and a life depending on agriculture and necropolis utilization at the inner parts went on.

Knidos: Knidos archaic city that is located between the archaic cities we mentioned herein above, at the end of Datça Peninsula, at the point where Aegean Sea and Mediterranean combines, on Tekir Cape is one of the most important ones among the Western Anatolia shore cities.

It is in the borders of Yazı Village of Datça District of Muğla Province. It is connected to Datça via highway with a 35 km road - the last 8 km of which is stabilized. Transportation via sea is made with excursion boats and yachts during the tourism season.

In the period during which the region was under the control of the Persians, approximately in 360 BC, Knidos people left their city near Datça District and established a new Knidos city in Hippadamos plan at the farthest point of the peninsula. Apollo Temple, which was the holy place of Rhodes state was there. Strabon (XIV 656, 2, 15) has written that this place was in the appearance of "double city" with its both land and island settlement. Knidos city, which was one of the important cities of Rhodes Union and which exported wine with its improved trade, is surrounded by a wall reinforced with round and cornered towers. It has two harbors, one military and one commercial. The important buildings and areas in the city are: B, C, D and E Churces, Dor Temple, Propylon, Apollo Temple and Altar, Round Temple and Altar, assembly building, Korinth Temple, Sun Clock, Dor Stoa, Theatre, Dionysos Temple and Stoa, Slope Houses, Odeon, Demeter Holy Area, Necropolis and Kap Krio Peninsula.

The history of the city, whose excavation works have been carried out by Sir Charles T. Newton between the years 1856 - 1857 and by Prof. Dr. Iris Cornelia Love between the years 1967 - 1997, is being re - lighted with the scientific archeological excavations being carried out under the direction of Prof. Dr. Ramazan Özgan since 1987. The works are continuing in the mainland on which the city is established and in Deve Boynu, that is Kap Krio Island.

The findings of the excavations show that the settlement goes back to 14th and 13th century BC. The condition of the city in 7th, 6th and 5th centuries was very bright. The city, which has shown development in economic, cultural and artistic fields, has opened a medicine school and has shown itself in science arena.

As other Anatolian shore cities, Knidos has also been invaded by the Arabs in 7th century AD and has completely been destroyed by the earthquakes that occurred thereafter.

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