Nysa on the Maeander

Nysa on the Maeander is a true gem of Caria hidden in the deep valleys of the Aegean. An important Carian centre, the ancient city was located in the north of the region, 50 kilometres east of the Ionian city of Ephesus. Today, it is a well-preserved archaeological site.

Coordinates: 37° 54′ 6″ N, 28° 8′ 48″ E

Nysa

The city rose to prominence under the Romans and was home for a while to the historian Strabo (63 BC – 25 AD). Strabo described the city as three towns rolled into one. He mentioned that it was originally called Athymbra but by the 2nd century BC the settlement appears to have been renamed Nysa, possibly in honor of the wife of King Antiochus I Soter. Nysa was planned as a city composing of two separate sections, situated on both sides of a mountain cliff.

There are important ruins scattered on the mountain slope from the Hellenistic, Roman, and Byzantine periods. The well-preserved theatre, rebuilt during the Roman Imperial period, is famous for its friezes depicting the life of Dionysus and the sacred marriage (theogamia) between Persephone (daughter of the goddess Demeter) and the god of the Underworld, Pluto. With its 57 rows of marble seats, it had a capacity of 12,000 people.

The library, dating from the 2nd century AD, is considered to be Turkey’s second-best preserved ancient library structure after the Celsus Library of Ephesus. The stadium of Nysa, which was partially damaged by floods, had a capacity of 30,000 people. The Hellenistic gerontikon (Council House of the Elders), adapted in the 2nd century AD as an odeon, offered room for up to 700 people.

Other significant structures include the Agora (market place), the Gymnasium and the Roman baths. The 100 m long Nysa Bridge was the second largest of its kind in antiquity.

PORTFOLIO

The theatre, first built in the Late Hellenistic period but the current architectural features date to the 2nd century AD, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The theatre was first built in the Late Hellenistic period but the current architectural features date to the 2nd century AD.
The theatre, first built in the Late Hellenistic period but the current architectural features date to the 2nd century AD, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The scaenae frons of the theatre had 5 doors and was decorated with friezes depicting the life of Dionysus.
The cavea consisted of two maeniana (passageways) with 25 rows of seats.
The cavea consisted of two maeniana (galleries) with 25 and 22 rows of seats.
The Stadium, built at the foot of the gorge with rows of seats cut into the steep hillside and dated to Late Hellenistic period, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The Stadium was built at the foot of the gorge with rows of seats cut into the steep hillside. It is dated to the Late Hellenistic period.
The late imperial Roman bridge, the 100 m (328 ft) long substructure was the second largest of its kind in antiquity after the Pergamon Bridge.
The Roman bridge was a 100 m (328 ft) long substructure spanning the ravine below the theatre. It was the second largest of its kind in antiquity after the Pergamon Bridge.
The library, 2nd century AD, considered to be Turkey's second-best preserved ancient library structure after the "Celsus Library" of Ephesus, Nysa on the Maeander, Turkey
The library was built around 130 AD. It is considered to be Turkey’s second-best preserved ancient library structure after the “Celsus Library” of Ephesus.
 It apparently had three stories, but the lowest is now mostly buried and the highest almost entirely destroyed. The plan of the middle story is recognizable, and shows the usual separation of the bookshelves from the outer wall to protect them from damp.
The library contained 16 bookshelves in two stories accessible by means of wooden stairways. It was renovated around the 4th century AD and finally went out of use as a public building in the 6th century AD.
The gerontikon (Council House of the Elders), originally built during the Hellenistic and adapted as an odeon in the 2nd century AD, the capacity was 700, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The gerontikon (Council House of the Elders) was originally built during the Hellenistic period and was later adapted as an odeon in the 2nd century AD with a two-storey scaenae frons.
The gerontikon (Council House of the Elders), originally built during the Hellenistic and adapted as an odeon in the 2nd century AD, the capacity was 700, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The gerontikon (Council House of the Elders) had a capacity of 700 seats and could be entered through a propylon (monumental gate) situated on the main street.
The street leading to the entrance to the Agora, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The street leading to the entrance of the Agora.
The east portico of the Agora (market place), the Agora covered an area of 113 x 130 meters, the first construction phase of the Agora is dated back to Late Hellenistic Period, Nysa on the Meander, Turkey
The east portico of the Agora (market place) covering an area of 113 x 130 meters. The first construction phase of the Agora is dated to the Late Hellenistic Period.
The east portico of the Agora (market place).
The east portico of the Agora (market place).

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