Side Ancient City – Antalya

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Side Ancient City, the most important port city of Pamphylia in ancient times, was founded on a peninsula with a width of 350-400 meters, located 80 kilometers east of Antalya and 7 kilometers southwest of Manavgat.

Side Ancient City - Antalya

Side Ancient City – Antalya

Side VII. century, it became a settlement center. VI. BC. century, it came under the rule of the Lydian Kingdom with all Pamphylia, and after the collapse of the Lydian Kingdom in 547/46, it came under the rule of the Persians. The city, which preserved its freedom to some extent in this period, minted coins in its own name. Side, which opened its doors to the Macedonian king without showing any resistance during the Anatolian campaign of Alexander the Great (334 BC), later became one of the great coinage centers established by Alexander. Side, which constantly changed hands between the Hellenistic Period kingdoms after the death of Alexander, was built in BC III. century, first by the Ptolemies, and in the years 215-189 BC, it was under the rule of the Seleucids. According to the Peace of Apameia made in 188 BC, when the Seleucids were defeated in the war they opened against the Romans, Pamphylia and in the meantime Side were given to the Kingdom of Pergamon. On the other hand, Side regained its independence after a while and experienced one of the brightest periods in history.

Side Ancient City - Antalya

Side Ancient City – Antalya

The fact that Antiochus VII, who ascended the throne of Syria in 138 BC and later took the nickname “Sidetes”, was sent to Side to study in his youth is an indication of how important the city is in the Eastern Mediterranean. This bright period of the city did not last long. Piracy, which started in Pisidia and mountainous Cilicia regions in the 1st century BC, also jumped to Pamphylia and therefore Side, and the Sidelis, who could not cope with the pirates, had to open their ports and markets to them. Finally, in 78 BC, after the Roman Consul Publius Servilius cleared the region from pirates, Side was also attached to the Roman Empire, like other cities of Pamphylia.

Side Ancient City - Antalya

Side Ancient City – Antalya

After 25 BC, Augustus made the Pamphylia region a province directly governed by an official who was subordinate to him. After this date, Side is a city of the province of Rome. AD II. and III. Side, which lived a bright period in the centuries, IV. It looks like a Christian city that was impoverished in the 19th century. V and VI. The city, which lived its third and last bright time in the centuries, became the capital of the Eastern Pamphylia Metropolitan. IX. Byzantine Emperor Konstantinos Porphyrogennetos (913-959) refers to the city, which was weakened by the Arab raids in the 10th and 10th centuries, as a “pirate’s nest” in his work “De Thematibus”. The Arab geographer Idrisi (towards 1150) calls Side “Burnt Antalya” and states that its people were settled in “New Antalya”, which is two days away.

Side Ancient City - Antalya

Side Ancient City – Antalya

On the ruins of Side Antique City, which is known as a trade and port city, XX. Selimiye Village was founded by Cretan immigrants at the beginning of the century. Built on a peninsula, Side, as in other Pamphylia cities, stretches along a monumental street that starts from the main gate of the city. The main street, which starts from the “Great Gate” in the northeast, continues along the peninsula in an almost straight line, except for the curve in front of the Theater, and ends with a large square near the temples. The second largest street of the city extends from the “Great Gate” to the south of the city. Both streets have colonnades and there are columned porticos with Corinthian caps on both sides and a row of shops behind them.

Side Ancient City - Antalya

Side Ancient City – Antalya

Source: Side, Antalya from Past to Present II. Volume, Antalya Provincial Directorate of Culture and Tourism (2012)

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