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S A R D I S
The capital of the ancient Lydia, Sardis is one of the most interesting ruin Turkey with its monumental buildings and location.Some of the names that people who are into archaeology and mythology know by heart are directly related to Sardis:the ancient gold river Pactolus and Croesus whose name means wealth.He printed the first coin in history. History: Sardis is located 72 km distant from Izmir by the river Sard Çayı (Pactolus) close to Salihli. The first settlers in Sardis were there in the second millennium B.C.,but the city gained importance after the7 th century B.C. when it became the capital of the Lydians Starting with the king Giges, Sardis reached its best times during Croesus in the 6 th century B.C. Croesus was enormously wealthy;he created a highly civilized society and he also had intensive relations with the neighboring states. For example, it is known that he contributed much to the construction of the Artemis Temple,one of the Seven Wonders of the world .Croesus was defeated in the middle of this century by the Persians,the Persian king Cyrus took the treasure back to his country .Sardis also marks the and of the famous King's Road wich was used during the Persian invasion between Persia and Western Anatolia. Sardis was then one of the three governing cities in the region .As Alexsander arrived in Anotalia İn the 4 th century B.C. , Sardis changed hands from Seleucids to Pergamum Kingdom and then to the Roman Empire.One of the first seven churches after Christianity was also built in Sardis.
The city is divided into two by the highway.The monumental road is in the north and behind it there is a gymnasium and synagogue is a Roman bath,down the road there are the Hellenistic theater and the stadium. South of the hig,as you follow the side road,you reach the3 rd century B.C. Artemis Temple, one the most becautiful temples with its Ionian style. Next to it are located the marble tower from the Antiochos III period (3 rd century B.C.), large blocks of the temple and some other Byzantine ruins. For the visitors who have extra time the Gölmarmara,at the west end of the Salihli plain close to the Sardis Necropolis and nexs to it ,the tumulus that belong to the Lydain kings are worth seeing!
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