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Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía'';
Middle Persian Middle Persian or Pahlavi, also known by its endonym Pārsīk or Pārsīg (𐭯𐭠𐭫𐭮𐭩𐭪) in its later form, is a Western Middle Iranian language which became the literary language of the Sasanian Empire. For some time after the Sasan ...
: ''klkyʾy'' (''Klikiyā''), Parthian: ''kylkyʾ'' (''Kilikiyā''), tr, Kilikya). is a geo-cultural region in southern
Anatolia Anatolia,, tr, Anadolu Yarımadası), and the Anatolian plateau. also known as Asia Minor, is a large peninsula in Western Asia and the westernmost protrusion of the Asian continent. It makes up the majority of modern-day Turkey. The region ...
(
Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia Anatolia,, tr, Anadolu Yarımadası), and the Anatolian plateau. also known as Asia Minor, is a large peninsula in Western Asia and ...

Turkey
), extending inland from the northeastern coasts of the
Mediterranean Sea The Mediterranean Sea is a connected to the , surrounded by the and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by and and , on the south by , and on the east by the . The Sea has played a central role in the . Although the Mediterrane ...
. Cilicia has a population ranging over six million, concentrated mostly at the Cilicia plain. The region includes the provinces of
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...
,
Osmaniye Osmaniye () is a city in the Çukurova Çukurova () or the Cilician Plain (''Cilicia Pedias'' in antiquity), is a large fertile plain in the Cilicia Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian: ''klkyʾy'' (''Klikiyā''), Parth ...
, and
Hatay Hatay Province ( tr, Hatay ili, ) is Turkey's southernmost province. Almost all of it is located outside Anatolia, on the eastern coast of the Levantine Sea. The administrative capital is Antakya Antakya (), historically known as Antioch (Gre ...
.


Geography

Cilicia is extended along the
Mediterranean The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Western Europe, Western and Southern Europe and Anatolia, on the south by North Africa ...
coast east from
Pamphylia Pamphylia ( grc, Παμφυλία, ''Pamphylía'', modern pronunciation ''Pamfylía'' ) was a region in the south of Asia Minor, between Lycia and Cilicia, extending from the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean to Mount Taurus (all in modern-day Antal ...
to the
Nur Mountains and Antioch Image:IskenderunShorelineWithMountain092012.jpg, 250px, Promenade of İskenderun (old name: Alexandria of Cilicia) seeing the Nur Mountains (old name: Amanus) in the background. The Nur Mountains ( tr, Nur Dağları, "Mountains of H ...
, which separates it from
Syria Syria ( ar, سُورِيَا or ar, سُورِيَة, ''Sūriyā''), officially the Syrian Arab Republic ( ar, ٱلْجُمْهُورِيَّةُ ٱلْعَرَبِيَّةُ ٱلسُّورِيَّةُ, al-Jumhūrīyah al-ʻArabīyah as-S ...

Syria
. North and east of Cilicia lie the rugged
Taurus Mountains The Taurus Mountains (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Gr ...
that separate it from the high central plateau of Anatolia, which are pierced by a narrow gorge called in antiquity the
Cilician Gates Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian Middle Persian or Pahlavi, also known by its endonym Pārsīk or Pārsīg (𐭯𐭠𐭫𐭮𐭩𐭪) in its later form, is a Western Middle Iranian language which became the literar ...
. Ancient Cilicia was naturally divided into Cilicia Trachea and Cilicia Pedias by the
Limonlu River The Limonlu River ( grc, Λάμος ''Lamos''; Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language belonging to the Italic languages, Italic branch of the Indo-European languages. Latin was originally spoken in the area around Rome, known as Latium. T ...
.
SalamisSalamis may refer to : Places and battles * Salamis Island in the Saronic Gulf of the Aegean Sea, near Athens, Greece ** Salamina (city), former municipality on Salamis Island ** Salamis Naval Base, a Greek naval base on Salamis Island ** Battle o ...
, the city on the east coast of Cyprus, was included in its administrative
jurisdiction Jurisdiction (from Latin Latin (, or , ) is a classical language A classical language is a language A language is a structured system of communication Communication (from Latin ''communicare'', meaning "to share" or "to be i ...
. The Greeks invented for Cilicia an
eponym An eponym is a person, place, or thing after whom or which someone or something is, or is believed to be, named. The adjectives derived from eponym include ''eponymous'' and ''eponymic''. Word usage The term ''eponym'' functions in multiple ...
ous Hellene founder in the purely mythical
Cilix Cilix (; , ''Kílix'') was, according to Greek mythology Greek mythology is the body of myths originally told by the Ancient Greece, ancient Greeks, and a genre of Ancient Greek folklore. These stories concern the Cosmogony, origin and Cosmolo ...
, but the historicEdwards, I. E. S. (editor) (2006) ''The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume 2, Part 2, History of the Middle East and the Aegean Region c. 1380–1000 B.C.'' (3rd edition) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, England
page 680
founder of the dynasty that ruled ''Cilicia Pedias'' was
Mopsus Mopsus (; Ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the used in and the from around 1500 BC to 300 BC. It is often roughly divided into the following periods: (), Dark Ages (), the period (), and the period (). Ancient Gr ...
,Fox, Robin Lane (2009) ''Travelling Heroes: In the Epic Age of Homer'' Alfred A. Knopf, , New York
pages 211-224
identifiable in Phoenician sources as ''Mpš'',Fox, Robin Lane (2009) ''Travelling Heroes: In the Epic Age of Homer'' Alfred A. Knopf, , New York
page 216
Edwards, I. E. S. (editor) (2006) ''The Cambridge Ancient History, Volume 2, Part 2, History of the Middle East and the Aegean Region c. 1380–1000 B.C.'' (3rd edition) Cambridge University Press, Cambridge, England
page 364
the founder of
Mopsuestia Mopsuestia ( grc, Μοψουεστία and Μόψου ἑστία, Mopsou(h)estia and Μόψου ''Mopsou''; Byzantine Greek: ''Mamista'', ''Manistra''; Arabic: ''al-Maṣṣīṣah''; Armenian: ''Msis'', ''Mises'', ''Mam(u)estia''; Frankish langua ...
who gave his name to an oracle nearby.
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
mentions the people of Mopsus, identified as Cilices (Κίλικες), as from the
Troad The Troad ( or ; el, Τρωάδα, ''Troáda'') or Troas (; grc, Τρῳάς, ''Trōiás'' or , ''Trōïás'') is a historical region in northwestern Anatolia. It corresponds with the Biga Peninsula (Turkish language, Turkish: ''Biga Yarımada ...
in the northwestern-most part of
Anatolia Anatolia,, tr, Anadolu Yarımadası), and the Anatolian plateau. also known as Asia Minor, is a large peninsula in Western Asia and the westernmost protrusion of the Asian continent. It makes up the majority of modern-day Turkey. The region ...
. The English spelling ''Cilicia'' is the same as the Latin, as it was transliterated directly from the Greek form Κιλικία. The palatalization of occurring in the west in later
Vulgar Latin Vulgar Latin, also known as Popular or Colloquial Latin, is non-literary Literature broadly is any collection of written work, but it is also used more narrowly for writings specifically considered to be an art form, especially prose fiction, ...
(c. 500–700) accounts for its modern pronunciation in English. Cilicia Trachea ("rugged Cilicia"—
Greek#REDIRECT Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anything of, from, or related to Greece Greece ( el, Ελλάδα, , ), officially the Hellenic Republic, is a country located in Southeast Europe. Its population is approximately 10.7 million as of ...
: Κιλικία Τραχεῖα; the Assyrian '' Hilakku'', classical "Cilicia") is a rugged mountain district formed by the spurs of Taurus, which often terminate in rocky headlands with small sheltered harbours,Rife, Joseph L. (2002) "Officials of the Roman Provinces in Xenophon's "Ephesiaca"" ''Zeitschrift für Papyrologie und Epigraphik'' 138: pp. 93–108 , page 96 a feature which, in classical times, made the coast a string of havens for
pirates Piracy is an act of robbery Robbery is the crime In ordinary language, a crime is an unlawful act punishable by a state or other authority. The term ''crime'' does not, in modern criminal law, have any simple and universally accepted ...
and, in the Middle Ages, outposts for
Genoese Genoese may refer to: * a person from Genoa * Genoese dialect, a dialect of the Ligurian language * Republic of Genoa (–1805), a former state in Liguria See also

* Genovese, a surname * Genovesi, a surname * * * * * Genova (disambiguati ...

Genoese
and traders. The district is watered by the and was covered in ancient times by forests that supplied timber to
Phoenicia Phoenicia () was an ancient Ancient history is the aggregate of past eventsWordNet Search – 3 ...
and
Egypt Egypt ( ar, مِصر, Miṣr), officially the Arab Republic of Egypt, is a spanning the and the of . It is bordered by the to , the () and to , the to the east, to , and to . In the northeast, the , which is the northern arm of the R ...

Egypt
. Cilicia lacked large cities. Cilicia Pedias ("flat Cilicia"— grc, Κιλικία Πεδιάς; Assyrian ''Kue''), to the east, included the rugged spurs of Taurus and a large coastal plain, with rich loamy soil, known to the Greeks such as
Xenophon Xenophon of Athens (; grc, Ξενοφῶν Xenophon of Athens (; grc-gre, Ξενοφῶν, , ''Xenophōn''; – 354 BC) was an Athenian , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens mont ...

Xenophon
, who passed through with his mercenary group of the
Ten Thousand The Ten Thousand ( grc, οἱ Μύριοι, ''oi Myrioi'') were a force of mercenary A mercenary, sometimes known as a soldier of fortune, is an individual who takes part in military conflict for personal profit, is otherwise an outsider to ...
, for its abundance (''euthemia''), filled with
sesame Sesame ( or ; ''Sesamum indicum'') is a flowering plant Flowering plants include multiple members of the clade Angiospermae (), commonly called angiosperms. The term "angiosperm" is derived from the Greek Greek may refer to: Greece Anythi ...

sesame
and
millet Millets () are a group of highly variable small-seeded grasses, widely grown around the world as cereal crops or grains for fodder and human food. Millets are important crops in the semiarid tropics of Asia and Africa (especially in Indi ...

millet
and olives and pasturage for the horses imported by
Solomon Solomon (; he, , ), ''Šlēmūn''; : سُلَيْمَان ', also : ' or '; el, Σολομών ''Solomōn''; : Salomon) also called Jedidiah (, ), was, according to the and Christian , a fabulously wealthy and wise monarch of the who suc ...

Solomon
. Many of its high places were fortified. The plain is watered by the three great rivers, the Cydnus (Tarsus Çay), the Sarus (
Seyhan Seyhan is a district-municipality in the Adana Province of Turkey, core of the Adana urban area. Seyhan is home to 35 percent of the residents of Adana Province and almost half of the residents of the city of Adana. It is the fifth most populous ...

Seyhan
) and the Pyramus (
Ceyhan River The Ceyhan River (historically Pyramos or Pyramus ( el, Πύραμος), Leucosyrus ( el, Λευκόσυρος) or Jihun) is a river in Anatolia in the south of Turkey. Course of the river The Ceyhan River (Pyramus) has its source (known as '' ...

Ceyhan River
), each of which brings down much silt from the deforested interior and which fed extensive wetlands. The Sarus now enters the sea almost due south of Tarsus, but there are clear indications that at one period it joined the Pyramus, and that the united rivers ran to the sea west of Kara-tash. Through the rich plain of Issus ran the great highway that linked east and west, on which stood the cities of Tarsus (Tarsa) on the Cydnus,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
(Adanija) on the Sarus, and Mopsuestia (Missis) on the Pyramus.


Climate

The climate of Cilicia shows significant differences between the mountains and the lower plains. At the lower plains, the climate reflects a typical
Mediterranean The Mediterranean Sea is a sea connected to the Atlantic Ocean, surrounded by the Mediterranean Basin and almost completely enclosed by land: on the north by Western Europe, Western and Southern Europe and Anatolia, on the south by North Africa ...
; summers are hot while winters are mild, making the land, particularly, the eastern plains, fertile. In the coldest month (January), the average temperature is 9 °C, and in the warmest month (August), the average temperature is 28 °C. The mountains of Cilicia have an inland climate with snowy winters. The average annual precipitation in the region is 647mm and the average number of rainy days in a year is 76.
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
and surrounding areas have the highest average temperature in Cilicia. Mersin also has high annual precipitation (1096mm) and 85 rainy days in a year.


Geology

The Mountains of Cilicia are formed from ancient limestones,
conglomerate Conglomerate or conglomeration may refer to: * Conglomerate (company) * Conglomerate (geology) * Conglomerate (mathematics) In popular culture: * The Conglomerate (American group), a production crew and musical group founded by Busta Rhymes ** Con ...
, marlstone, and similar materials. The Taurus Mountains are composed of karstic limestone while its soil is also limestone-derived with pockets of volcanic soil. The lower plain is the largest alluvial plain in Turkey. Expansion of limestone formations and fourth era alluvials brought by the rivers
Seyhan Seyhan is a district-municipality in the Adana Province of Turkey, core of the Adana urban area. Seyhan is home to 35 percent of the residents of Adana Province and almost half of the residents of the city of Adana. It is the fifth most populous ...

Seyhan
and , formed the plains of the region over the course of time. Akyatan, Akyayan, Salt Lake, Seven lakes at Aladağ, and Karstik Dipsiz lake near Karaisalı are the lakes of the region. The reservoirs in the region are Seyhan, Çatalan, Yedigöze, Kozan and Mehmetli. The major rivers in Cilicia are
Seyhan Seyhan is a district-municipality in the Adana Province of Turkey, core of the Adana urban area. Seyhan is home to 35 percent of the residents of Adana Province and almost half of the residents of the city of Adana. It is the fifth most populous ...

Seyhan
, , Berdan (Tarsus), Asi and . *
Seyhan River The Seyhan River (formerly written ''Seihan'', ''Sihun''; ancient name: grc, Σάρος, ''Sáros''), alternatively known as ''Sarus'' (or in Turkish language, Turkish as ''Sarus Su''),John Garstang and O.R. Gurney is the longest river of Cilic ...

Seyhan River
emerges from the confluence of Zamantı and Göksu rivers which originate from
Kayseri Province The Kayseri Province ( tr, ) is situated in central Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It ...
and flows into the Gulf of Mersin. The river is 560 km long. *
Ceyhan River The Ceyhan River (historically Pyramos or Pyramus ( el, Πύραμος), Leucosyrus ( el, Λευκόσυρος) or Jihun) is a river in Anatolia in the south of Turkey. Course of the river The Ceyhan River (Pyramus) has its source (known as '' ...

Ceyhan River
emerges from the confluence of Aksu and Hurman rivers and flows into Cape Hürmüz at the
Gulf of İskenderun The Gulf of Alexandretta or İskenderun ( tr, İskenderun Körfezi) is a gulf A gulf is a large inlet from the ocean into the landmass, typically with a narrower opening than a bay, but that is not observable in all geographic areas so named. ...
. It is 509 km long and it forms the Akyayan, Akyatan, and Kakarat lakes before flowing into the Mediterranean. *
Berdan River The Berdan (also Baradān or Baradā), the ancient Cydnus ( el, Κύδνος), is a river in Mersin Province Mersin Province ( tr, ), formerly İçel Province ( tr, ), is a Provinces of Turkey, province in southern Turkey, on the Mediterrane ...
originates from the
Taurus Mountains The Taurus Mountains (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Gr ...
and flows into the Mediterranean, south of Tarsus. * river originates from the
Taurus Mountains The Taurus Mountains (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Gr ...
and flows into the Mediterranean, 16 km southeast of
Silifke Silifke ( grc-gre, Σελεύκεια, ''Seleukeia'', la, Seleucia ad Calycadnum) is a town and district in south-central Mersin Province, Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southea ...

Silifke
. It forms the delta of Göksu, including Akgöl Lake and Paradeniz Lagoon. * Asi River (Orontes) rises in the great springs of
Labweh Labweh ( ar, اللبوة), Laboué, Labwe or Al-Labweh is a village at an elevation of on a foothill of the Anti-Lebanon mountains in Baalbek District Baalbek District ( ar, قضاء بعلبك) is an administrative district in the Baalbek-Her ...

Labweh
on the side of the Beqaa Valley and it runs due north, parallel with the coast, and flows into the Mediterranean just south of the little port of Samandağı.


History


Neolithic to Neo-Assyrian period

Cilicia was settled from the Neolithic period onwards.Mellink, M.J. 1991.'' Anatolian Contacts with Chalcolithic Cyprus''. Dating of the ancient settlements of the region from Neolithic to Bronze Age is as follows: Aceramic/Neolithic: 8th and 7th millennia BC; Early Chalcolithic: 5800 BC; Middle Chalcolithic (correlated with Halaf and Ubaid developments in the east): c. 5400–4500 BC; Late Chalcolithic: 4500–c. 3400 BC; and Early Bronze Age IA: 3400–3000 BC; EBA IB: 3000–2700 BC; EBA II: 2700–2400 BC; EBA III A-B: 2400–2000 BC. The area had been known as
Kizzuwatna Kizzuwatna (or Kizzuwadna; in Ancient Egyptian ''Kode'' or ''Qode''), is the name of an ancient Anatolian kingdom in the 2nd millennium BC. It was situated in the highlands of southeastern Anatolia, near the Gulf of İskenderun, in modern-day Tu ...
in the earlier
Hittite Hittite may refer to: * Hittites, ancient Anatolian people ** Hittite language, the earliest-attested Indo-European language ** Hittite grammar ** Hittite phonology ** Hittite cuneiform ** Hittite inscriptions ** Hittite laws ** Hittite religion ** ...

Hittite
era (
2nd millennium BC The 2nd millennium BC spanned the years 2000 through 1001 BC. In the Ancient Near East The ancient Near East was the home of early civilization A civilization (or civilisation) is any complex society that is characterized by urban de ...
). The region was divided into two parts, Uru Adaniya (flat Cilicia), a well-watered plain, and "rough" Cilicia (Tarza), in the mountainous west. The Cilicians appear as ''Hilikku'' in Assyrian inscriptions, and in the early part of the first millennium BC was one of the four chief powers of
Western Asia Western Asia, West Asia, or Southwest Asia, is the westernmost subregion of the larger geographical region of Asia, as defined by some academics, UN bodies and other institutions. It is almost entirely a part of the Middle East, and includes Anat ...

Western Asia
.
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
mentions
the plain The Plain (french: La Plaine), better known as The Marsh (french: Le Marais), was a political group in the French National Convention during the French Revolution The French Revolution ( ) refers to the period that began with the Estate ...

the plain
as the "Aleian plain" in which
Bellerophon spears the Chimera (mythology), Chimera, on an Attica, Attic Red-figure pottery, red-figure epinetron, 425–420 BC Bellerophon (; Ancient Greek: Βελλεροφῶν) or Bellerophontes () is a hero of Greek mythology. He was "the greatest hero ...

Bellerophon
wandered, but he transferred the Cilicians far to the west and north and made them allies of Troy. The Cilician cities unknown to Homer already bore their pre-Greek names: Tarzu (Tarsus), Ingira ( Anchiale), , which retains its ancient name, Pahri (perhaps
Mopsuestia Mopsuestia ( grc, Μοψουεστία and Μόψου ἑστία, Mopsou(h)estia and Μόψου ''Mopsou''; Byzantine Greek: ''Mamista'', ''Manistra''; Arabic: ''al-Maṣṣīṣah''; Armenian: ''Msis'', ''Mises'', ''Mam(u)estia''; Frankish langua ...
), Kundu (Kyinda, then
Anazarbus 200px, Anazarbus West Gate Anazarbus ( grc, Ἀναζαρβός, medieval Ain Zarba; modern Anavarza; ar, عَيْنُ زَرْبَة) was an ancient Cilicia Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian: ''klkyʾy'' (''Kliki ...
) and Azatiwataya (today's
Karatepe Karatepe (Turkish language, Turkish, 'Black Hill'; Hittite language, Hittite: ''Azatiwataya'') is a late History of the Hittites, Hittite fortress and open-air museum in Osmaniye Province in southern Turkey lying at a distance of about 23 km f ...
). There exists evidence that circa 1650 BC both Hittite kings
Hattusili IḪattušili (''Ḫattušiliš'' in the inflected nominative case) was the regnal name of three Hittite kings: * Ḫattušili I (Labarna II) * Ḫattušili II * Ḫattušili III It was also the name of two Neo-Hittite kings: * Ḫattušili I (Labar ...
and
Mursili I Mursili I (also known as Mursilis; sometimes transcribed as Murshili) was a king of the Hittites 1620-1590 BC, as per the middle chronology, the most accepted chronology in our times, or alternatively c. 1556–1526 BCE (short chronology), and was ...
enjoyed the freedom of movement along the Pyramus River (now the Ceyhan River in southern
Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia Anatolia,, tr, Anadolu Yarımadası), and the Anatolian plateau. also known as Asia Minor, is a large peninsula in Western Asia and ...

Turkey
), proving they exerted strong control over Cilicia in their battles with
Syria Syria ( ar, سُورِيَا or ar, سُورِيَة, ''Sūriyā''), officially the Syrian Arab Republic ( ar, ٱلْجُمْهُورِيَّةُ ٱلْعَرَبِيَّةُ ٱلسُّورِيَّةُ, al-Jumhūrīyah al-ʻArabīyah as-S ...

Syria
. After the death of Murshili around 1595 BC,
Hurrians The Hurrians (; cuneiform: ; transliteration: ''Ḫu-ur-ri''; also called Hari, Khurrites, Hourri, Churri, Hurri or Hurriter) were a people of the Bronze Age The Bronze Age is a prehistoric Periodization, period that was characterized by th ...
wrested control from the Hitties, and Cilicia was free for two centuries. The first king of free Cilicia, Išputahšu, son of Pariyawatri, was recorded as a "great king" in both
cuneiform Cuneiform is a Logogram, logo-Syllabary, syllabic writing system, script that was used to write several languages of the Ancient Near East. The script was in active use from the early Bronze Age until the beginning of the Common Era. It is nam ...

cuneiform
and Hittite hieroglyphs. Another record of Hittite origins, a treaty between Išputahšu and
Telipinu Telipinu was a king of the Hittites The Hittites () were an Anatolian peoples, Anatolian people who played an important role in establishing an empire centered on Hattusa in north-central Anatolia around 1680–1650 BCE. This empire reached i ...
, king of the Hittites, is recorded in both Hittite and
AkkadianAkkadian or Accadian may refer to: * The Akkadian language Akkadian ( ''akkadû'', ''ak-ka-du-u2''; logogram: ''URIKI'')John Huehnergard & Christopher Woods, "Akkadian and Eblaite", ''The Cambridge Encyclopedia of the World's Ancient Languages' ...

Akkadian
. In the next century, the Cilician king Pilliya finalized treaties with both King
Zidanta II Zidanta II (c. 1450) was a king of the Hittites The Hittites () were an Anatolian peoples, Anatolian people who played an important role in establishing an empire centered on Hattusa in north-central Anatolia around 1680–1650 BCE. This empir ...
of the Hittites and
Idrimi Idrimi was the king of Alalakh Alalakh (Hittite Hittite may refer to: * Hittites, ancient Anatolian people ** Hittite language, the earliest-attested Indo-European language ** Hittite grammar ** Hittite phonology ** Hittite cuneiform ** Hittite i ...
of
Alalakh Alalakh (Hittite Hittite may refer to: * Hittites, ancient Anatolian people ** Hittite language, the earliest-attested Indo-European language ** Hittite grammar ** Hittite phonology ** Hittite cuneiform ** Hittite inscriptions ** Hittite laws ** H ...
, in which Idrimi mentions that he had assaulted several military targets throughout Eastern Cilicia.
Niqmepa Niqmepa (died 1270 BC) was the fifth-from-last King of Ugarit, a city-state in northwestern Syria. Niqmepa was a contemporary of Mursili II and Hattusili III, the great List of Hittite kings, Hittite kings, as well as Horemheb and Seti I of Ancien ...
, who succeeded Idrimi as king of Alalakh, went so far as to ask for help from a Hurrian rival,
Shaushtatar Shaushtatar (also spelled Šauštatar)Martiros S. Kavoukjian's The Genesis of Armenian People, Montreal, 1982; Hovick Nersessian, "Armenian Highland," Los Angeles, 2000, (New York Academy of Sciences professor) was a king of the Hurrian kingdom of ...
of
Mitanni Mitanni (; Hittite cuneiform Hittite cuneiform is the implementation of cuneiform script Cuneiform is a logo- syllabic script that was used to write several languages of the Ancient Near East. The script was in active use from the ear ...

Mitanni
, to try and reduce Cilicia's power in the region. It was soon apparent, however, that increased Hittite power would soon prove Niqmepa's efforts to be futile, as the city of
Kizzuwatna Kizzuwatna (or Kizzuwadna; in Ancient Egyptian ''Kode'' or ''Qode''), is the name of an ancient Anatolian kingdom in the 2nd millennium BC. It was situated in the highlands of southeastern Anatolia, near the Gulf of İskenderun, in modern-day Tu ...
soon fell to the Hittites, threatening all of Cilicia. Soon after, King Sunassura II was forced to accept
vassal A vassal or liege subject is a person regarded as having a mutual obligation to a lord Lord is an appellation for a person or deity who has authority, control, or power (social and political), power over others, acting as a master, a chief ...
ization under the Hittites, becoming the last king of ancient Cilicia. After the death of
Mursili I Mursili I (also known as Mursilis; sometimes transcribed as Murshili) was a king of the Hittites 1620-1590 BC, as per the middle chronology, the most accepted chronology in our times, or alternatively c. 1556–1526 BCE (short chronology), and was ...
, which led to a power struggle among rival claimants to the throne, eventually leading to the collapse of Hittite supremacy, Cilicia appeared to have regained its independence. In the 13th century BC a major population shift occurred as the
Sea Peoples The Sea Peoples are a purported seafaring confederation A confederation (also known as a confederacy or league) is a union of sovereign groups or states united for purposes of common action. Usually created by a treaty, confederations of ...
overran Cilicia. The Hurrians that resided there deserted the area and moved northeast towards the
Taurus Mountains The Taurus Mountains (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Gr ...
, where they settled in the area of
Cappadocia Cappadocia (; also ''Capadocia''; grc, label=Ancient Ancient history is the aggregate of past events
. In the 8th century BC, the region was unified under the rule of the dynasty of Mukšuš, whom the Greeks rendered
Mopsos Mopsus (; Ancient Greek: Μόψος, ''Mopsos'') was the name of one of two famous seers in Greek mythology; his rival being Calchas. A historical or legendary ''Mopsos'' or ''Mukšuš'' may have been the founder of a house in power at widespread s ...
and credited as the founder of Mopsuestia, though the capital was Adana. Mopsuestia's multicultural character is reflected in the bilingual inscriptions of the ninth and eighth centuries, written both in Indo-European
hieroglyphic Luwian Hieroglyphic Luwian (''luwili'') is a variant of the Luwian language Luwian , sometimes known as Luvian or Luish, is an ancient language, or group of languages, within the Anatolian branch of the Indo-European language family A language i ...
and West Semitic
Phoenician Phoenician may refer to: * Phoenicia, an ancient civilization * Phoenician alphabet * Phoenician language * List of Phoenician cities * Phoenix, Arizona See also

* Phoenix (mythology) * Phoenicia (disambiguation) {{disambiguation Language an ...
. In the ninth century BC, it became part of
Assyria Assyria (), also called the Assyrian Empire, was a Mesopotamia Mesopotamia ( grc, Μεσοποταμία ''Mesopotamíā''; ar, بِلَاد ٱلرَّافِدَيْن ; syc, ܐܪܡ ܢܗܪ̈ܝܢ, or , ) is a historical region of We ...

Assyria
and remained so until the late seventh century BC.


Kingdom of Cilicia and Persian period

Before the early foundings of the kingdom, Cilicians had to protect themselves from Assyrian domination. After the dissolution of the
Neo-Assyrian Empire The Neo-Assyrian Empire (Assyrian cuneiform Assyrian may refer to: * Assyria, a major Mesopotamian kingdom and empire * Assyrian people, an ethnic group indigenous to the Middle East * Assyrian Church (disambiguation) * Assyrian language (disam ...

Neo-Assyrian Empire
in 612 BC, they established an independent kingdom from Syria. Given the fact that Cilicia was a strategically significant location, Cilicians were able to expand their kingdom as far north as the
Halys River Halys may refer to: * Health-adjusted life years (HALYs), a type of disability-adjusted life year which are used in attempts to quantify the burden of disease or disability in populations * Halys River, a western name for the Kızılırmak River (T ...

Halys River
in a short period of time. With these expansions, the Cilician Kingdom became as strong as
Babylonia Babylonia () was an and based in central-southern which was part of Ancient Persia (present-day and ). A small -ruled state emerged in 1894 BCE, which contained the minor administrative town of . It was merely a small provincial town dur ...
, one of the contemporary powerhouses. The Syennesis dynasty emerged in Cilicia and seemed to have been based in its western part during the reign of Appuašu. The peaceful governance of the Syennesis dynasty sustained the kingdom and prevented the Achaemenid Empire from attacking Lydians after the Achaemenid invasions of Median lands. Appuašu, the son of Syennesis, defended the country against the Babylonian king Neriglissar, whose army reached Cilicia and crossed the Taurus mountain range. The Achaemenids defeated the Lydians, and Appuašu had to recognize the authority of the Persians in 549 BC to keep the local administration with the Cilicians. Cilicia became an autonomous Cilicia (satrapy), satrapy under the reign of Cyrus II. Cilicians were independent in their internal affairs and kept this autonomy for almost 150 years. In 401, Syennesis III and his wife Epyaxa supported the revolt of Cyrus the Younger against his brother Artaxerxes II Mnemon. This was sound policy, because otherwise, Cilicia would have been looted by the rebel army. However, after the defeat of Cyrus at Cunaxa, keeping Syennesis' position was difficult. Most scholars assume that this behavior marked the end of the independence of Cilicia. After 400, it became a normal satrapy. Under the Persian empire, Cilicia (in peo, Karka) was said to be governed by tributary native kings who bore a Hellenized name or the title of "Syennesis", and it was officially included in the fourth satrapy by Darius the Great, Darius.
Xenophon Xenophon of Athens (; grc, Ξενοφῶν Xenophon of Athens (; grc-gre, Ξενοφῶν, , ''Xenophōn''; – 354 BC) was an Athenian , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens mont ...

Xenophon
found a queen in power, and no opposition was offered to the takeover of Cyrus the Younger.


Roads

The great highway from the west existed before Cyrus conquered Cilicia. On its long rough descent from the Anatolian plateau to Tarsus, it ran through the narrow pass between walls of rock called the
Cilician Gates Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian Middle Persian or Pahlavi, also known by its endonym Pārsīk or Pārsīg (𐭯𐭠𐭫𐭮𐭩𐭪) in its later form, is a Western Middle Iranian language which became the literar ...
. After crossing the low hills east of the Pyramus it passed through a masonry (Cilician) gate, Demir Kapu, and entered the plain of Issus. From that plain one road ran southward through another masonry (Syrian) gate to Alexandretta, and thence crossed Mt. Amanus by the Syrian Gate, Beilan Pass, eventually to Antioch and Syria. Another road ran northwards through a masonry (Armenian) gate, south of Toprak Kale, and crossed Mt. Amanus by the Armenian Gate, Baghche Pass, to northern Syria and the Euphrates. By the last pass, which was apparently unknown to Alexander, Darius crossed the mountains prior to the battle of Issus. Both passes are short and easy and connect Cilicia Pedias geographically and politically with Syria rather than with Anatolia.


Hellenistic period

Alexander the Great, Alexander forded the Halys River in the summer of 333 BC, ending up on the border of southeastern Phrygia and Cilicia. He knew well the writings of
Xenophon Xenophon of Athens (; grc, Ξενοφῶν Xenophon of Athens (; grc-gre, Ξενοφῶν, , ''Xenophōn''; – 354 BC) was an Athenian , image_skyline = File:Athens Montage L.png, center, 275px, alt=Athens mont ...

Xenophon
, and how the Cilician Gates had been "impassable if obstructed by the enemy". Alexander reasoned that by force alone he could frighten the defenders and breakthrough, and he gathered his men to do so. In the cover of night, they attacked, startling the guards and sending them and their satrap into full flight, setting their crops aflame as they made for Tarsus. This good fortune allowed Alexander and his army to pass unharmed through the Gates and into Cilicia. After Alexander's death it was long a battleground of the rival Hellenistic monarchs and kingdoms, and for a time fell under Ptolemaic Kingdom, Ptolemaic dominion (i.e., Egypt), but finally came to the Seleucids, who, however, never held effectually more than the eastern half. During the Hellenistic era, numerous cities were established in Cilicia, which minted coins showing the badges (gods, animals, and objects) associated with each polis.


Roman and Byzantine periods

Cilicia Trachea became the haunt of
pirates Piracy is an act of robbery Robbery is the crime In ordinary language, a crime is an unlawful act punishable by a state or other authority. The term ''crime'' does not, in modern criminal law, have any simple and universally accepted ...
, who were subdued by Pompey in 67 BC following a Battle of Korakesion (modern Alanya), and Tarsus was made the capital of the Roman province of Cilicia. Cilicia Pedias became Roman territory in 103 BC first conquered by Marcus Antonius Orator in his campaign against pirates, with Lucius Cornelius Sulla, Sulla acting as its first governor, foiling an invasion of Mithridates II of Parthia, Mithridates, and the whole was organized by Pompey, 64 BC, into a province which, for a short time, extended to and included part of Phrygia. It was reorganized by Julius Caesar, 47 BC, and about 27 BC became part of the province Syria-Cilicia Phoenice. At first the western district was left independent under native kings or priest-dynasts, and a small kingdom, under Tarcondimotus I, was left in the east; but these were finally united to the province by Vespasian, AD 72. Containing 47 known cities, it had been deemed important enough to be governed by a proconsul. Under Emperor Diocletian's Tetrarchy (c. 297), Cilicia was governed by a ''consularis''; with Isauria and the Syrian, Mesopotamian, Egyptian and Libyan provinces, formed the Diocesis Orientis (in the late 4th century the African component was split off as Diocese of Egypt (Late Antiquity), Diocese of Egypt), part of the praetorian prefecture of the East, pretorian prefecture also called ''Oriens'' ('the East', also including the dioceses of Diocese of Asia, Asiana and Diocese of Pontus, Pontica, both in Anatolia, and Thraciae in the Balkans), the rich bulk of the eastern Roman Empire. After the division of the Roman Empire, Cilicia became part of the eastern Roman Empire, the Byzantine Empire.


Early Muslim period

In the 7th century Cilicia was invaded by the Muslim Arabs. The area was for some time an embattled no-man's land. The Arabs succeeded in conquering the area in the early 8th century. Under the Abbasid Caliphate, Cilicia was resettled and transformed into a fortified frontier zone (''thughur''). Tarsus, re-built in 787/788, quickly became the largest settlement in the region and the Arabs' most important base in their raids across the
Taurus Mountains The Taurus Mountains (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Gr ...
into Byzantine-held Anatolia. The Muslims held the country until it was reoccupied by the Emperor Nicephorus II in 965. From this period onward, the area increasingly came to be settled by Armenians, especially as Imperial rule pushed deeper into the Caucasus over the course of the 11th century.


Armenian Cilicia and the Crusades

During the time of the First Crusade, the area was controlled by the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia. The Seljuk Turkish invasions of Armenia were followed by an exodus of Armenians migrating westward into the Byzantine Empire, and in 1080 Ruben I of Armenia, Ruben, a relative of the last king of Ani (Armenia), Ani, founded in the heart of the Cilician Taurus a small principality which gradually expanded into the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia. This Christian state, surrounded by Muslim states hostile to its existence, had a stormy history of about 300 years, giving valuable support to the Crusaders, and trading with the great commercial cities of Italy. It prospered for three centuries due to the vast network of fortifications which secured all the major roads as well as the three principal harbours at Yumurtalık, Ayas, Corycus, Koŕikos, and
Mopsuestia Mopsuestia ( grc, Μοψουεστία and Μόψου ἑστία, Mopsou(h)estia and Μόψου ''Mopsou''; Byzantine Greek: ''Mamista'', ''Manistra''; Arabic: ''al-Maṣṣīṣah''; Armenian: ''Msis'', ''Mises'', ''Mam(u)estia''; Frankish langua ...
. Through their complex alliances with the Crusader states the Armenian barons and kings often invited the Crusaders to maintain castles in and along the borders of the Kingdom, including Bagras, Trapessac, Toprakkale, Osmaniye, T‛il Hamtun, Düziçi, Harunia, Silifke Castle, Selefkia, Amouda, and Sarvandikar. Constantine I of Armenia, Gosdantin (r. 1095 – c. 1100) assisted the First Crusade, Crusaders on their march to Antioch, and was created knight and marquis. Thoros I of Armenia, Thoros I (r. c. 1100 – 1129), in alliance with the Christian princes of Syria, waged successful wars against the Byzantines and Seljuk Turks. Leo II of Armenia, Levon II (Leo the Great (r. 1187–1219)), extended the kingdom beyond Taurus Mountains, Mount Taurus and established the capital at Kozan, Adana, Sis. He assisted the Crusaders, was crowned King by the Archbishop of Mainz, and married one of the Lusignans of the Crusader Kingdom of Cyprus.


Mongols

Hetoum I of Armenia, Hetoum I (r. 1226–1270) made an alliance with the Mongols, sending his brother Sempad the Constable, Sempad to the Mongol court in person. The Mongols then assisted with the defence of Cilicia from the Mamluks of Egypt, until the Mongols themselves converted to Islam.


Turkmens

The Ilkhanate lost cohesion after the death of Abu Sa'id Bahadur Khan, Abu Sa'id (r. 1316–1335), and thus could not support the Armenian Kingdom in guarding Cilicia. Internal conflicts within the Armenian Kingdom and the devastation caused by the Black Death that arrived in 1348, led nomadic Türkmens to turn their eyes towards unstable Cilicia. In 1352, Ramazan Beg led Turkmens settled south of Çaldağı and founded their first settlement, Camili, Yüreğir, Camili. Later that year, Ramazan Beg visited Cairo and was assented by the Sultan to establish the new frontier ''Turkmen Emirate'' in Cilicia.


Collapse

When Leo V of Armenia, Levon V died (1342), John of Lusignan was crowned king as Constantine IV of Armenia, Gosdantin IV; but he and his successors alienated the native Armenians by attempting to make them conform to the Roman Catholic, Roman Church, and by giving all posts of honour to Latins (Middle Ages), Latins, until at last the kingdom, falling prey to internal dissensions, ceded Cilicia Pedias to the Ramadanid-supported Mamluk Egypt, Mamluk Sultanate of Egypt in 1375.


Mamluk and Turkmen rule

In 1359, Mamluk Sultanate Army marched into Cilicia and took over Adana and Tarsus, two major cities of the plain, leaving few castles to Armenians. In 1375, Mamluks gained the control of the remaining areas of Cilicia, thus ending the three centuries rule of Armenians. Cilicia Pedias became part of the Mamluk Sultanate in 1375. The Karamanids, Karamanid Principality, one of the Oghuz Turk, Turkmen Anatolian beyliks emerged after the collapse of the Anatolian Seljuks, took over the rule of Cilicia Thracea.


Ottoman period

In 1516, Selim I incorporated the beylik into the Ottoman Empire after his Ottoman–Mamluk War (1516–1517), conquest of the Mamluk state. The beys of Ramadanids held the administration of the Ottoman sanjak of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
in a hereditary manner until 1608, with the last 92 years as a vassal of the Ottomans. Ottoman Empire, Ottomans ended the Ramadanid administration of Adana sanjak in 1608, and ruled it directly from Constantinople then after. The autonomous sanjak was then split from the Aleppo Eyalet and established as a new province under the name of Adana Eyalet. A governor was appointed to administer the province. In late 1832, Egypt Eyalet, Eyalet of Egypt Wali (administrative title), Vali Muhammad Ali Pasha invaded
Syria Syria ( ar, سُورِيَا or ar, سُورِيَة, ''Sūriyā''), officially the Syrian Arab Republic ( ar, ٱلْجُمْهُورِيَّةُ ٱلْعَرَبِيَّةُ ٱلسُّورِيَّةُ, al-Jumhūrīyah al-ʻArabīyah as-S ...

Syria
, and reached Cilicia. The Convention of Kütahya that was signed on 14 May 1833, ceded Cilicia to the ''de facto'' independent Egypt Eyalet, Egypt. After the Oriental Crisis of 1840, Oriental crisis, the Convention of Alexandria that was signed on 27 November 1840, required the return of Cilicia to Ottoman sovereignty. The American Civil War that broke down in 1861, disturbed the cotton flow to Europe and directed European cotton traders to fertile Cilicia. The region became the centre of cotton trade and one of the most economically strong regions of the Empire within decades. In 1869, Adana Eyalet was re-established as Adana Vilayet, after the re-structuring in the Ottoman Administration. Thriving regional economy, doubling of Cilician Armenian population due to flee from Hamidian Massacres, Hamidian massacres, the end of autocratic Abdul Hamid II, Abdulhamid rule with the Young Turk Revolution, revolution of 1908, empowered the Armenian community and envisioned an autonomous Cilicia. Enraged supporters of Abdulhamid that organized under Cemiyet-i Muhammediye amidst the 31 March Incident, countercoup, led to a series of anti-Armenian pogroms in 14–27 April 1909. The Adana massacre resulted in the deaths of roughly 25,000 Armenians, orphanized Adana Dar-ül Eytam, 3500 children and caused heavy destruction of Christian neighbourhoods in the entire Vilayet of Adana, Vilayet. Cilicia section of the Berlin–Baghdad railway were opened in 1912, connecting the region to Middle East. Over the course of Armenian genocide, Ottoman telegraph was received by the Governor to deport the more than 70,000 Armenians of the Adana Vilayet to Syria. Armenians of Zeitun had organized a successful resistance against the Ottoman onslaught. In order to finally subjugate Zeitun, the Ottomans had to resort to treachery by forcing an Armenian delegation from Marash to ask the ''Zeituntsi''s to put down their arms. Both the Armenian delegation, and later, the inhabitants of Zeitun, were left with no choice.


Modern era

Armistice of Mudros that was signed on 30 October 1918 to end the World War I, ceded the control of Cilicia to France. French Government sent four battalions of the French Armenian Legion, Armenian Legion in December to take over and oversee the repatriation of more than 170,000 Armenians to Cilicia. The French forces were spread too thinly in the region and, as they came under withering attacks by Muslim elements both opposed and Turkish national movement, loyal to Mustafa Kemal Pasha, eventually reversed their policies in the region. A truce arranged on May 28 between the French and the Kemalists, led to the retreat of the French forces south of the Mersin-Osmaniye railroad. With the changing political environment and interests, French further reversed their policy: The repatriation was halted, and the French ultimately abandoned all pretensions to Cilicia, which they had originally hoped to attach to their Mandate for Syria and the Lebanon, mandate over Syria. Cilicia Peace Treaty was signed on 9 March 1921 between France and Grand National Assembly of Turkey, Turkish Grand National Assembly. The treaty did not achieve the intended goals and was replaced with the Treaty of Ankara (1921), Treaty of Ankara that was signed on 20 October 1921. Based on the terms of the agreement, France recognized the end of the Cilicia War, and French troops together with the remaining Armenian volunteers withdrew from the region in early January 1922.


Republic of Turkey

The region become part of the Turkey, Republic of Turkey in 1921 with the signing of the Treaty of Ankara. On 15 April 1923, just before the signing of the Treaty of Lausanne, the Turkish government enacted the "Law of Abandoned Properties" which confiscated properties of Armenians and Greeks who were not present on their property. Cilicia were one of the regions with the most confiscated property, thus muhacirs (en: immigrants) from Balkans and Crete were relocated in the old Armenian and Greek neighbourhoods and villages of the region. All types of properties, lands, houses and workshops were distributed to them. Also during this period, there was a property rush of Muslims from Kayseri and Darende to Cilicia who were granted the ownership of large farms, factories, stores and mansions. Within a decade, Cilicia had a sharp change demographically, socially and economically and lost its diversity by turning into solely Muslim/Turkish.


Governance

The modern Cilicia is split into four administrative provinces:
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...
,
Osmaniye Osmaniye () is a city in the Çukurova Çukurova () or the Cilician Plain (''Cilicia Pedias'' in antiquity), is a large fertile plain in the Cilicia Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian: ''klkyʾy'' (''Klikiyā''), Parth ...
and
Hatay Hatay Province ( tr, Hatay ili, ) is Turkey's southernmost province. Almost all of it is located outside Anatolia, on the eastern coast of the Levantine Sea. The administrative capital is Antakya Antakya (), historically known as Antioch (Gre ...
. Each province is governed by the Central Government in Ankara through an appointed Provincial Governor. Provinces are then divided into districts governed by the District Governors who are under the Provincial Governors.


Provinces and districts

Provinces & Districts in Cilicia (from West to East): *Mersin Province: Anamur, Bozyazı, Aydıncık, Mersin, Aydıncık, Gülnar, Mut,
Silifke Silifke ( grc-gre, Σελεύκεια, ''Seleukeia'', la, Seleucia ad Calycadnum) is a town and district in south-central Mersin Province, Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southea ...

Silifke
, Erdemli,
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
(composed of Mezitli, Yenişehir, Mersin, Yenişehir Toroslar, Akdeniz, Mersin, Akdeniz), Çamlıyayla, Tarsus (city), Tarsus *Adana Province:
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
(composed of Seyhan, Çukurova, Adana, Çukurova, Yüreğir, Sarıçam), Pozantı (Bozantı), Karaisalı, Karataş (İskele), Yumurtalık (Ayas), Ceyhan, İmamoğlu, Aladağ, Adana, Aladağ, Kozan, Adana, Kozan (Sis), Feke (Vahka), Saimbeyli (Hadjin), Tufanbeyli (Şar) *Osmaniye Province: Sumbas, Kadirli, Toprakkale, Osmaniye, Toprakkale, Düziçi, Osmaniye, Hasanbeyli, Bahçe, Osmaniye, Bahçe *Hatay Province: Erzin, Turkey, Erzin, Dörtyol, Hassa, Turkey, Hassa, İskenderun, Arsuz, Belen, Hatay, Belen, Kırıkhan, Samandağ, Antakya, Defne, Reyhanlı, Kumlu, Yayladağı, Altınözü


Economy

Cilicia is well known for the vast fertile land and highly productive agriculture. The region is also industrialized; Tarsus (city), Tarsus,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
and Ceyhan host numerous plants.
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
and İskenderun seaports provide transportation of goods manufactured in Central, South and Southeast Anatolia. Ceyhan hosts oil, natural gas terminals as well as refineries and shipbuilders.


Natural resources


Agriculture

The Cilicia plain has some of the most fertile soil in the world in which 3 harvests can be taken each year. The region has the second richest flora in the world and it is the producer of all agricultural products of Turkey except hazelnut and tobacco. Cilicia leads Turkey in soy, peanuts and corn harvest and is a major producer of fruits and vegetables. Half of Turkey's citrus export is from Cilicia. Anamur is the only sub-tropical area of Turkey where bananas, mango, kiwi and other sub-tropical produce can be harvested. Cilicia is the second largest honey producer in Turkey after the Muğla–Aydın region. Samandağ, Yumurtalık, Karataş and Bozyazı are some of the towns in the region where fishing is the major source of income. Gray mullet, red mullet, sea bass, lagos, calamari and gilt-head bream are some of the most popular fish in the region. There are aquaculture farms in Akyatan, Akyağan, Yumurtalık lakes and at Seyhan Reservoir. While not as common as other forms of agriculture, dairy and livestock are also produced throughout the region.


Mining

*Zinc and lead: Kozan, Adana, Kozan-Horzum seam is the major source. *Chromium, Chrome is found around Aladağlar. *Baryte resources are around
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
and
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
. *Iron is found around Feke and Saimbeyli. *Asbestos mines are mostly in Hatay Province. *Limestone reserves are very rich in Cilicia. The region is home to four lime manufacturing plants. *Pumice resources are the richest in Turkey. 14% of country's reserves are in Cilicia.


Manufacturing

Cilicia is one of the first industrialized regions of Turkey. With the improvements in agriculture and the spike of agricultural yield, agriculture-based industries are built in large numbers. Today, the manufacturing industry is mainly concentrated around Tarsus,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
and Ceyhan. Textile, leather tanning and food processing plants are plentiful. İsdemir is a large steel plant located in İskenderun. The petrochemical industry is rapidly developing in the region with the investments around the Ceyhan Oil Terminal. Petroleum refineries are being built in the area. Ceyhan is also expected to host the shipbuilding industry.


Commerce

Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
is the commercial centre of the region where many of the public and private institutions have their regional offices.
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
and Antakya are also home to regional offices of public institutions. Many industry fairs and congresses are held in the region at venues such as the TÜYAP Congress and Exhibition Centre in
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
and the Mersin Congress Centre. Mersin Seaport is the third largest seaport in Turkey, after İstanbul and İzmir. There are 45 piers in the port. The total area of the port is 785 square kilometres (194,000 acres), and the capacity is 6,000 ships per year. İskenderun Seaport is used mostly for transfers to Middle East and Southeastern Turkey. Ceyhan Oil Terminal is a marine transport terminal for the Baku–Tbilisi–Ceyhan pipeline (the "BTC"), the Kirkuk–Ceyhan Oil Pipeline, the planned Samsun-Ceyhan pipeline, Samsun-Ceyhan and the Ceyhan-Red Sea pipelines. Ceyhan will also be a natural gas terminal for a planned pipeline to be constructed parallel to the Kirkuk-Ceyhan oil pipeline, and for a planned extension of the Blue Stream Gas Pipeline from Samsun to Ceyhan. Dörtyol Oil Terminal is a marine transport terminal for Batman-Dörtyol oil pipeline which started operating in 1967 to market Batman Province, Batman oil. The pipeline is 511 km long and has an annual capacity of 3.5 million tons.


Tourism

While the region has a long coastline, international tourism is not at the level of the neighbouring Antalya Province. There are a small number of hotels between Erdemli and Anamur that attracts tourists. Cilicia tourism is mostly cottage tourism serving the Cilicia locals as well as residents of Kayseri, Gaziantep and surrounding areas. Between
Silifke Silifke ( grc-gre, Σελεύκεια, ''Seleukeia'', la, Seleucia ad Calycadnum) is a town and district in south-central Mersin Province, Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southea ...

Silifke
and
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
, high-rise and low-rise cottages line the coast, leaving almost no vacant land. The coastline from
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
to Karataş is mostly farmland. This area is zoned for resort tourism and is expected to have a rapid development within the next 20 years. Karataş and Yumurtalık coasts are home to cottages with a bird conservatory between the two areas. Arsuz is a seaside resort that is mostly frequented by Antakya and İskenderun residents. Plateaus on the Taurus mountains are cooler escapes for the locals who wants to chill out from hot and humid summers of the lower plains. Gözne and Çamlıyayla (Namrun) in Mersin Province, Tekir, Bürücek and Kızıldağ in Adana Province, Zorkun in Osmaniye Province and Soğukoluk in Hatay Province are the popular high plain resorts of Cilicia which are often crowded in summer. There are a few hotels and camping sites in the Tekir plateau.


Balneary tourism

The region is a popular destination for thermal springs. Hamamat Thermal Spring, located on midway from Kırıkhan to Reyhanlı, has a very high sulphur ratio, making it the second in the world after a thermal spring in India. It is the largest spa in the region and attracts many
Syria Syria ( ar, سُورِيَا or ar, سُورِيَة, ''Sūriyā''), officially the Syrian Arab Republic ( ar, ٱلْجُمْهُورِيَّةُ ٱلْعَرَبِيَّةُ ٱلسُّورِيَّةُ, al-Jumhūrīyah al-ʻArabīyah as-S ...

Syria
ns due to proximity. Haruniye Thermal Spring is located on the banks of the
Ceyhan River The Ceyhan River (historically Pyramos or Pyramus ( el, Πύραμος), Leucosyrus ( el, Λευκόσυρος) or Jihun) is a river in Anatolia in the south of Turkey. Course of the river The Ceyhan River (Pyramus) has its source (known as '' ...

Ceyhan River
near Düziçi town and has a serene environment. Thermal springs are a hot spot for people with rheumatism. Kurttepe, Alihocalı and Ilıca mineral springs, all located in Adana Province, are popular for toxic cleansing. Ottoman Palace Thermal Resort & Spa in Antakya is one of Turkey's top resorts for revitalization.


Religious tourism

Lying at a crossroads of three major religions, namely Judaism, Christianity and Islam, the region is home to numerous landmarks that are important for people of faith. Tarsus is the birthplace of St. Paul, who returned to the city after his conversion. The city was a stronghold of Christians after his death. Ashab-ı Kehf cavern, one of the locations claimed to be the resting place of the legendary Seven Sleepers, holy to Christians and Muslims, is located north of Tarsus. Antakya is another destination for the spiritual world, where the followers of Jesus Christ were first called Christians. It is the home of Saint Peter, one of the 12 apostles of Jesus.


Population

Cilicia is heavily populated due to its abundant resources, climate and plain geography. The population of Cilicia as of December 31, 2019 is 6,246,018. Hatay is the most rural province of Cilicia and also Hatay is the only province that the rural population is rising and the urban population is declining. The major reason is the mountainous geography of Hatay as well as the religiously and ethnically diverse culture, with Arabs, Turks, Kurds, Armenians, and Assyrians inhabiting the region. Hatay joined Turkey in 1939, thus did not face the population exchanges of the 1920. The province has many villages inhabited by Christians as well as the only remaining ethnic Armenians, Armenian village of Turkey, Vakıflı, Samandağ, Vakıflı. Adana Province is the most urbanized province, with most of the population centred in the city of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
. Mersin Province has a larger rural population than Adana Province, owing to its long and narrow stretch of flat land in between the
Taurus Mountains The Taurus Mountains (Turkish Turkish may refer to: * of or about Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southeastern Europe and Western Asia. It shares borders with Greece Gr ...
and the Mediterranean.


Urban areas

List of settlements in Cilicia with population over 100,000.


Places of interest


Ancient sites

Kizkalesi (Maiden Castle), a fort on a small island across Kızkalesi township, was built during the early 12th century by Armenian kings of the Rubeniyan dynasty, to defend the city of Korykos (today Kızkalesi). Heaven & Hell, situated on a large hill north of Narlıkuyu, consists of the grabens result from assoil of furrings for thousands of years. Natural phenomena of the grabens is named 'Hell & Heaven' because of the exotic effects on people. From an ancient path, 260 meter long mythological giant Typhon's cave can be accessible. The ancient Roman town of Soloi-Pompeiopolis, near the city of
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
. Yılanlı Kale (Castle of Serpents), an 11th-century crusader castle built on a historical road connecting Taurus mountains to the city of Antakya. Castle has 8 round towers, and there ıs a military guardhouse and a church in the castle. Castle is located 5 km. west of Ceyhan.
Anazarbus 200px, Anazarbus West Gate Anazarbus ( grc, Ἀναζαρβός, medieval Ain Zarba; modern Anavarza; ar, عَيْنُ زَرْبَة) was an ancient Cilicia Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian: ''klkyʾy'' (''Kliki ...
Castle was built in the 3rd century and served as the centre of the ancient metropolis of Anavarza. The city was built on a hill and had a strategic importance, controlling the Cilicia plain. Main castle and the city walls are remains of the city. City wall is 1500m. long and 8-10m. high and there are 4 entrances to the city. Castle is located 80 km. northeast of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
. Şar (Comona), ancient city located in northernmost Cilicia, some 200 km. north of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
, near Tufanbeyli. It is a historical centre of Hittites. Remaining structures today are, the amphitheatre built during Ancient Rome, Roman period, ruins of a church from Byzantine and rock works from Hittites. Church of St. Peter in Antakya, was converted into a church while it was a cave on the slopes of Habibi Neccar mountain. The church is known as the first Christians' traditional meeting place. The church was declared a "Place of Pilgrimage" for Christians by Pope Paul VI in 1963, and since then a special ceremony is held on the Feast of Saints Peter and Paul, 29 of June of each year. St. Simeon Monastery, a 6th-century giant structure built on a desolate hill 18 km south of Antakya. The most striking features of this monastery are its cisterns, its storage compartment, and the walls. It is believed that Simeon Stylites the Younger, St. Simeon resided here atop a 20-meter stone column for 45 years.


Parks and conservation areas

Akyatan Lagoon is a large wildlife refuge which acts as a stopover for migratory birds voyaging from Africa to Europe. The wildlife refuge has a area made up of forests, lagoon, marsh, sandy and reedy lands. Akyatan lake is a natural wonder with endemic plants and endangered bird species living in it together with other species of plants and animals. 250 species of birds are observed during a study in 1990. The conservation area is located 30 km south of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
, near Tuzla. Yumurtalık Nature Reserve covers an area of 16,430 hectares within the Seyhan-Ceyhan delta, with its lakes, lagoons and wide collection of plant and animal species. The area is an important location for many species of migrating birds, the number gets higher during the winters when the lakes become a shelter when other lakes further north freeze. Aladağlar National Park, located north of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
, is a huge park of around 55,000 hectares, the summit of Demirkazik at 3756 m is the highest point in the middle Taurus mountain range. There is a huge range of flora and fauna, and visitors may fish in the streams full of trout. Wildlife includes wild goats, bears, lynx and sable. The most common species of plant life is black pine and cluster pine trees, with some cedar dotted between, and fir trees in the northern areas with higher humidity. The Alpine region, from the upper borders of the forest, has pastures with rocky areas and little variety of plant life because of the high altitude and slope. Karatepe-Aslantaş National Park located on the west bank of
Ceyhan River The Ceyhan River (historically Pyramos or Pyramus ( el, Πύραμος), Leucosyrus ( el, Λευκόσυρος) or Jihun) is a river in Anatolia in the south of Turkey. Course of the river The Ceyhan River (Pyramus) has its source (known as '' ...

Ceyhan River
in Osmaniye Province. The park includes the Karatepe Hittites, Hittite fortress and an open-air museum. Tekköz-Kengerlidüz Nature Reserve, located 30 km north of Dörtyol, is known for having an ecosystem different from the Mediterranean. The main species of trees around Kengerliduz are beech, oak and fir, and around Tekkoz are hornbeam, ash, beach, black pine and silver birch. The main animal species in the area are wild goat, roe deer, bear, hyena, wild cat, wagtail, wolf, jackal and fox. Habibi Neccar Dağı Nature Reserve is famous for its cultural as well as natural value, especially for St Pierre Church, which was carved into the rocks. The Charon monument, 200 m north of the church, is huge sculpture of Haron, known as Boatman of Hell in mythology, carved into the rocks. The main species of tree are cluster pine, oaks and sandalwood. The mountain is also home to foxes, rabbits, partridges and stock doves. Nature reserve is 10 km east of Antakya and can be accessible by public transport.


Education

There are numerous private primary and high schools besides the state schools in the region. Most popular high school in the region is Tarsus American College, founded as a missionary school in 1888 to serve Armenian community and then became a secular school in 1923. Adana Anatolian High School and Adana Science High School most important high schools in the Cilicia. In other cities, Anatolian High School and School for Science are the most popular high schools of the city. The region is home to five state and two foundation universities. Çukurova University is a state university founded in 1973 with the union of the faculties of Agriculture and Medicine.. Main campus is in the city of
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
, and the College of Tourism Administration is in Karataş. There is an engineering faculty in Ceyhan, and vocational schools in Kozan, Adana, Kozan, Karaisalı, Pozantı and Yumurtalık. The university is one of the well-developed universities of Turkey with many cultural, social and athletic facilities, currently enrolls 40,000 students. Mersin University is a state university founded in 1992, and currently serving with 11 faculties, 6 colleges and 9 vocational schools. The university employs more than 2100 academicians and enrolls 26,980 students. Main campus is in the city of
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
. In Tarsus, there is Faculty of Technical Education and Applied Technology and Management College. In
Silifke Silifke ( grc-gre, Σελεύκεια, ''Seleukeia'', la, Seleucia ad Calycadnum) is a town and district in south-central Mersin Province, Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country straddling Southea ...

Silifke
and Erdemli, university has colleges and vocational schools. There are also vocational schools in Anamur, Aydıncık, Mersin, Aydıncık, Gülnar, and Mut. Mustafa Kemal University is a state university located in Hatay Province. University was founded in 1992, currently has 9 faculties, 4 colleges and 7 vocational schools. Main campus is in Antakya and Faculty of Engineering is in İskenderun. The university employs 708 academicians and 14,439 students as of 2007. Osmaniye Korkut Ata University, Korkut Ata University was founded in 2007 as a state university with the union of colleges and vocational schools in Osmaniye Province and began enrollment in 2009. The university has 3 faculties and a vocational school at the main campus in the city of Osmaniye and vocational schools in Kadirli, Bahçe, Osmaniye, Bahçe, Düziçi and Erzin, Turkey, Erzin. University employs 107 academicians and enrolled 4000 students in 2009. Adana Science and Technology University is a recently founded state university that is planned to have ten faculties, two institutions and a college. It will accommodate 1,700 academic, 470 administrative staff, and it is expected to enroll students by 2012. Çağ University is a not-for-profit tuition based university founded in 1997. It is located on midway from
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
to Tarsus. University holds around 2500 students, most of them commuting from Adana, Tarsus and Mersin. Toros University is a not-for-profit tuition based university located in
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
. The university started enrolling students in 2010.


Sports

Soccer, Football is the most popular sport in Cilicia, professionally represented at all levels of the Turkish football league system, Football in Turkey.
Football Clubs in Cilicia Basketball Clubs in Cilicia


Transportation

Cilicia has a well-developed transportation system with two airports, two major seaports, motorways and railway lines on the historical route connecting Europe to Middle East.


Air

Cilicia is served by two airports. Adana Şakirpaşa Airport is an international airport that have flights to European destinations. There are daily domestic flights to İstanbul, Ankara, İzmir, Antalya and Trabzon. Adana Şakirpaşa Airport serves the provinces of
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...
and
Osmaniye Osmaniye () is a city in the Çukurova Çukurova () or the Cilician Plain (''Cilicia Pedias'' in antiquity), is a large fertile plain in the Cilicia Cilicia (); el, Κιλικία, ''Kilikía''; Middle Persian: ''klkyʾy'' (''Klikiyā''), Parth ...
. Hatay Airport, opened in 2007, is a domestic airport, and currently has flights to İstanbul, Ankara and Nicosia, Northern Cyprus, TRNC. Hatay Airport mostly serves Hatay Province. Another under construction airport is Çukurova Regional Airport, According to the newspaper Hürriyet, the project's cost will be 357 million Euro. When finished, it will serve to 15 million people, and the capacity will be doubled in the future.


Sea

There are daily seabus and vehicle-passenger ferry services from Taşucu to Kyrenia, Northern Cyprus. From
Mersin Mersin () is a large city and a port on the Mediterranean Sea, Mediterranean coast of southern Turkey. As of the last 2020 estimation, the Metropolitan Province population was 1,868,757 inhabitants whom 1.050.301 lived in the built-up (or metro ...
port, there are ferry services to Famagusta.


Road

The List of highways in Turkey#Motorways, O50 - O59 motorways crosses Cilicia. Motorways of Cilicia extends to Niğde on the north, Erdemli on the west and Şanlıurfa on the east, and İskenderun on the south. State road D400 (Turkey), State road D-400 connects Cilicia to Antalya on the west.
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
–Kozan, Adana, Kozan,
Adana Adana () is a major city in southern Turkey Turkey ( tr, Türkiye ), officially the Republic of Turkey, is a country located mainly on Anatolia in Western Asia, with a small portion on the Balkans in Southeast Europe. It shares borders ...

Adana
–Karataş, İskenderun–Antakya–Aleppo double roads are other regional roads.


Railway

Parallel to the highway network in Cilicia, there is an extensive railway network. Adana-Mersin train runs as a commuter train between Mersin, Tarsus and Adana. There are also regional trains from Adana to Ceyhan, Osmaniye and İskenderun.


Society

Cilicia was one of the most important regions for the Ottoman Armenians because it managed very well to preserve Armenian character throughout the years. In fact, the Cilician highlands were densely populated by Armenian peasants in small but prosperous towns and villages such as Hadjin and Süleymanlı, Zeitun, two mountainous areas where autonomy was maintained until the 19th century.Bournoutian, Ani Atamian. "Cilician Armenia" in ''The Armenian People From Ancient to Modern Times, Volume I: The Dynastic Periods: From Antiquity to the Fourteenth Century''. Ed. Richard G. Hovannisian. New York: St. Martin's Press, 1997, pp. 283-290. . In ports and cities of the Adana plain, commerce and industry were almost entirely in the hands of the Armenians and they remained so thanks to a constant influx of Armenians from the highlands. Their population was continuously increasing in numbers in Cilicia in contrast to other parts of the Ottoman Empire, where it was, since 1878, decreasing due to repression.


Mythological namesake

Greek mythology mentions another Cilicia, as a small region situated immediately southeast of the
Troad The Troad ( or ; el, Τρωάδα, ''Troáda'') or Troas (; grc, Τρῳάς, ''Trōiás'' or , ''Trōïás'') is a historical region in northwestern Anatolia. It corresponds with the Biga Peninsula (Turkish language, Turkish: ''Biga Yarımada ...
in northwestern Anatolia, facing the Gulf of Adramyttium. The connection (if any) between this Cilicia and the better-known and well-defined region mentioned above is unclear. This Trojan Cilicia is mentioned in
Homer Homer (; grc, Ὅμηρος , ''Hómēros'') was an ancient Greek Ancient Greek includes the forms of the Greek language Greek ( el, label=Modern Greek Modern Greek (, , or , ''Kiní Neoellinikí Glóssa''), generally re ...

Homer
's ''Iliad'' and Strabo's ''Geography'', and contained localities such as Cilician Thebe, Thebe, Lyrnessus and Chryse (home to Chryses and Chryseis). These three cities were all attacked and sacked by Achilles during the Trojan War. In ''Prometheus Bound'' (v 353), Aeschylus mentions the Cilician caves (probably Cennet and Cehennem), where the earth-born, hundred-headed monster Typhon dwelt before he withstood the gods and was stricken and charred by Zeus's thunderbolt.


Notes


References


Further reading

* Pilhofer, Philipp. 2018.
Das frühe Christentum im kilikisch-isaurischen Bergland. Die Christen der Kalykadnos-Region in den ersten fünf Jahrhunderten
(PDF; 27,4 MB)'' (Texte und Untersuchungen zur Geschichte der altchristlichen Literatur, vol. 184). Berlin/Boston: De Gruyter (). * ''Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research'', No. 282/283, Symposium: Chalcolithic Cyprus. pp. 167–175. * Engels, David. 2008. "Cicéron comme proconsul en Cilicie et la guerre contre les Parthes", ''Revue Belge de Philologie et d'Histoire'' 86, pp. 23–45. * Pilhofer, Susanne. 2006
''Romanisierung in Kilikien? Das Zeugnis der Inschriften''
(Quellen und Forschungen zur Antiken Welt 46). Munich: Herbert Utz Verlag (). And: 2., erweiterte Auflage, mit einem Nachwort von Philipp Pilhofer (Quellen und Forschungen zur Antiken Welt 60) Munich: Herbert Utz Verlag ()


External links


Ancient Cilicia - texts, photographs, maps, inscriptions





Photographs and Plans of the Churches and Fortifications in the Armenian Kingdom of Cilicia

Pilgrimages to Historic Armenia and Cilicia




{{Armenian diaspora Cilicia, Anatolia Ancient Cilicia, Ancient Greek archaeological sites in Turkey Ancient Greek geography Geography of Adana Province Historical regions of Anatolia History of Adana Province Historical regions Regions of Asia