Cilicia

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In antiquity, Cilicia (Turkish: Kilikya, Armenian: Կիլիկիա Greek: Κιλικία, Middle Persian: klkyʾy, Parthian: kylkyʾ) now known as Çukurova, was a commonly used name of the south coastal region of Asia Minor south of the central Anatolian plateau. It existed as a political entity from Hittite times into the Byzantine empire. Cilicia extends inland from the southeastern coast of modern Turkey, due north and northeast of the island of Cyprus.

Contents

Geography

Cilicia extended along the Mediterranean coast east from Pamphylia, to the Amanus Mountains, which separated it from Syria. North and east of Cilicia lie the rugged Taurus Mountains that separate it from the high central plateau of Anatolia, which are pierced by a narrow gorge, called in Antiquity the Cilician Gates.[1][2] Ancient Cilicia was naturally divided into Cilicia Trachaea and Cilicia Pedias divided by the Lamas Su. Salamis, the city on the east coast of Cyprus, was included in its administrative jurisdiction. The Greeks invented for Cilicia an eponymous Hellene founder in the purely mythic Cilix, but the historic[3] founder of the dynasty that ruled Cilicia Pedias was Mopsus,[3][4] identifiable in Phoenician sources as Mpš,[5][6] the founder of Mopsuestia[7][6] who gave his name to an oracle nearby.[6] Homer mentions the people of Mopsus, identified as Cilices, as from the Troad in the northernwesternmost part of the peninsula.[8]

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