itouristmaps: Let’s Visit Nyssa – a Ruined, but Very Intelligent Hellenistic Town!
Let’s Visit Nyssa – a Ruined, but Very Intelligent Hellenistic Town!
You consider yourself as a sophisticated traveller and you probably think that you know all about Turkey? Then how about Nyssa – a hidden place in Anatolia region that remembers times of antiquity and even a little bit of Middle Ages? If you haven’t been there yet, then we highly recommend it as a travel destination and of course with our help you can get known some useful information about this interesting place.
What is Nyssa?
This time Nyssa is not a heroine of Doctor Who’s series and not the name of a tree. Neither is it a villainess from Batman movie or anything else other than a nice ruined ancient town. In fact there are several ancient towns with this name in Turkey - one was Cappadocian, another Lycian and the third one from Caria (an area in western Anatolia during the Hellenistic period). But the most important and rich in history is probably the last one, today situated in Aydin province, near the town of Sultanhisar.
The story of Athymbra
You may wonder now what Athymbra is and why we should know its story. Athymbra is a female name and also it was the name of a settlement on the hillside of the mount Malgac. But most of its grand and tortuous life right from the 2nd century BC went under another name – Nyssa. With this name it was a part of Hellenistic Seleucid Empire, then Roman Empire, Byzantine Empire and finally Ottoman sultanate. The great Byzantium Empire was tottering to its fall and as a result, Nyssa was fallen into decay too and finally in 1402 it was pillaged, partly destroyed and abandoned forever.
The heritage of three empires is still there
From the Hellenes it has gymnasium, a library, agora, and bouleuterion. It was a remarkable period in town’s life as that time Nyssa was recognized as a prestigious and highly developed educational center. People from all over the country came there to study literature, rhetoric, philosophy and other important subjects of antiquity including sportsmanship – physical development was an inherent constituent of a proper Hellenistic education. Such important figures as geographer Strabo studied there. During Roman times the city gained a great theater, a tunnel, beautiful bridge, a stadium and Roman baths. Byzantine period added two gorgeous churches. Today all these constructions are still partly available at Nyssa-place and archeological excavations are so far in process there.
Also do not miss tourist attractions of Istanbul while you travelling Turkey. This big city has a big variety of historical places, museums, parks, monuments and mosques and could be suggested to every tourist.