Bodrum heute ist das touristische Ziel Nr. 1 in der Türkei


Bodrum pages has all the travel informations for you

zurück zur Eingangsseite

General information




Freebies & offers

Various things



Useful addresses
Weather & climate
Money & traveltips
Hotel Info


Bodrum today
City plan
Bodrum News


The peninsula
Map of peninsula
Ancient sites
Daily tours


Blue Cruise
Discos & Bars


Bodrum Video
Books to order


Turkish cuisine
Crafts & folklore
This & that


E - M@il
Web Design


The long history of Caria

Halicarnassus once was the capital of this kingdom


please recommend these pages
tell a friend - recommend this site

Blick über Bodrum
New - Panoramic view of Bodrum

As a unique fact in nowadays archaeology the Carian scripts have not been deciphered yet

Athenians founded the famous maritime "Delian Confederacy". All Carian cities became part of this confederacy. Either they had to contribute financially to the league, or they were asked to furnish ships. The Delian Confederacy remained in existence until Sparta's victory over Athens in 405 B.C. the Spartan domination of Caria lasted a mere ten years. In the year 394 B.C. the Athenian general Conon and the Persian satrap Pharnabazos defeated the Spartan fleet under Peisandros near Cnidus. Following this defeat the Spartan governors were expelled everywhere, and many cities opened their gates to the Persians. The year 387 B.C. was an important date for the Greek cities of Asia Minor, when the Persian satrap Tinbazos, as the representative of the Persian King Artaxerxes TI, declared the folllowing to the Greek ambassadors at Sardis: "Artaxerxes, the Great King, deems it just that the cities of Asia should be his, as well as the islands Clazomenai and Cyprus, but that the other Greek cities, large or small, should become autonomous, with the exception of Lemnos, Imbros and Skyros which, as before, should belong to the Athenians". This signified the end of Greek rule in Asia Minor.

Use Enterprise Translation Server to translate this page into: Spanish | French | Italian | Norwegian | Portuguese

Blue Cruise

Bodrum is the ideal starting point for the famous  Blue Cruise

Bafa See

In ancient times - open sea, today a lake, the Bafa Gölü. Heracleia here was a Carian city


not far from Bafa lake is Euromos, another hidden Carian gem, only 10 km from Milas.




discover more on Bodrum

3 days forecast  here

The long history of Caria
The Persians divided their vast empire into satrapies. The first satrap of Caria was Hyssaldomus of Mylasa, who was succeeded by his son Hecatomnus. Upon his death in the year 377 B.C. his son Mausolus became satrap of Caria. With cunning political savvy Mausolus was able to set himself up as an independent dynast, without however bearing the title of king. During the revolts instigated by the other satraps against the Great King, e acted diplomatically, supporting the central power without, for all that, abandoning the other satraps. He was thus able to enlarge his own territory and even succeeded in bringing Rhodes and Cos under his domination. Artaxerxes II himself took up his cause when the Carian confederacy voiced its discontent over his actions. Mausolus transferred the capital of Mylasa, which from earliest times had been of particular importance to the Carians, to Halicarnassus which, as the new capital, he enlarged and enhanced lavishly. He also resettled the two old Lelegian towns of Syangela and Myndus in new locations, enlarged them, and forced the citizens of the other Lelegian towns to move to Halicarnassus and the newly established cities.

Caria's two border cities, Latmus, to which he gave the Greek name
Heracleia, and Caunus, he had fortified with massive walls. It was Mausolus's particular intention to Hellenize all of Caria, but his premature death left these plans unfinished. He was succeeded first by his wife and sister, Artemisia II, who died three years after him; then by his brother Idneus who was married to his sister Ada; when Ada was widowed the brother Pixodarus sent her into exile. None of Mausolus's successors had his vision or greatness to complete his plans. Pixodarus finally shared his government with the Persian Orontobates, who apparently had been officially appointed the new satrap, until Alexander the Great came to Caria in 334 B.C.

Alexander brought a swift end to the Persian domination. Only a few cities in Caria resisted him; Halicarnassus defended itself most vigorously. After the city's conquest Alexander brought Queen Ada back from exile and established her as the ruler over all of Caria. In the year 323 B.C. Alexander the Great died, leaving an empire without a firm structure and without a sole ruler.

A long and turbulent period followed until his generals divided the territory among themselves. Three kingdoms were eventually established: Macedonia with Greece; Egypt under the Ptolemies; Syria under the Seleucids. Asia Minor, which had not been clearly allotted to either of these three great powers, was indeed a desirable possession coveted by the kingdom of Pergamum and the strong maritime power of Rhodes. In the 3rd cent. B.C. Caria's fate was thus primarily determined by the power struggles between the Seleucids and the Prolemies.

Many cities frequently changed rulers. When the influence of the Seleucids and Ptolemies began to dwindle, the two other contenders became ever bolder. Rhodes acquired a considerable portion of southwestern Asia Minor, and the pretensions of Attalus I of Pergamum extended south to Caria. Even Antigonus III of Macedonia tried to gain political influence in Caria. One could hardly speak of a central power at this time. Only a certain Olympichus, a former general of Seleucus II Callinicus controlled the area around Mylasa as an independent dynast. Philip V, who had become king of Macedonia in 220 B.C., set out for Caria in 201 B.C. in order to conquer it. But during an entire winter he was besieged by the Pergamene navy at Bargylia, whereupon he withdrew the following spring.
At this time a new Carian confederacy, the "Chrysaoric League", was founded, based on the old village system. The league used to convene at the sanctuary of Zeus Chrysaorus near

The Romans finally put an end to the grand ambitions of the Macedonian King in 197 B.C. Philip V was defeated near Kynoskephalai by the Roman army, whereupon the proud victors magnanimously declared all Greek cities in Europe and Asia free. Antiochus Ill, however, tried to re-establish the old Seleucid domination in southwestern Anatolia with a rapid campaign. But at the battle of Magnesia-under-Sipylus in 190 B.C. he too was decisively defeated, and with the treaty of Apamea Caria and Lycia were given to Rhodes, at that time an ally of Rome.

Rhodian control over western Asia Minor was not lightly tolerated by its inhabitants and lasted only twenty years. The Lycians opposed it from the beginning; later the Carians led an unsuccessful revolt, which was followed in the same year (167 B.C.) by a decree of the Roman Senate declaring Caria and Lycia free. Freedom lasted till 133 B.C., when Attalus III of Pergamum bequeathed his kingdom to the Romans, and a certain Aristonicus tried to secure the kingdom for himself. In the end, however, the Romans defeated him, and in the year 129 B.C. they declared the kingdom of Pergamum, together with Caria, the province of Asia.

At first the population welcomed the Roman supremacy but soon became disenchanted with the exploitation and the unsatisfactory provincial government. The governors and the Roman merchants and bankers thought only to enrich themselves. Therefore, when Mithridates VI, King of Pontus on the Black Sea, arrived in 88 B.C. with the intention of conquering the west coast of Anatolia, he was welcomed as a liberator in many cities. The people, however, did not realize what consequences lay in store for them. Mithridates ordered all Romans who lived in the conquered cities to be murdered. Nearly 80 000 people perished. This bloody deed was revenged by the dictator Sulla, who punished the cities and forced them back under Roman control. A second attempt by Mithridates twelve years later was unsuccessful.

Ceasar's assassination in the year 44 B.C. had grave consequences fro Caria, for his murderers, Brutus and Cassius came to Asia Minor intending to exploit the province of Asia and to raise new troops. But, despised by Rome, they felt threatened and therefore called on the Parthians, Rome's arch enemies for support. This arrived too late. At the battle of Philippi in 42 B.C., where Anthony and Octavian were victorious, they were both killed. It fell upon Anthony to restore things in Asia Minor and Syria. In Tarsus he first met Cleopatra, queen of Egypt. Soon his behaviour altered; he began to conduct himself like a king and insisted on high taxation. Meanwhile he won the war against the Parthians whose leader, Labienus, he killed.

Some time later Anthony declared Cleopatra "the Queen of Kings", signifying his domination over the eastern empire. This his former ally, Octavian, could not accept and war broke out between them. The sea battle at Actium in 31 B.C., at which Cleopatra was also present, ended in a crushing defeat for Anthony, and he and Cleopatra committed suicide. Upon Octavian's return to Rome he was welcomed in triumph. The title Augustus, "the exalted", was conferred upon him, and he became governor over the provinces of Syria, Egypt, Gaul, and Spain. This marked the end of the Republic and the beginning of the Roman Empire.

For Caria the Empire was a period of stability and prosperity. Many cities were enhanced with sumptuous administrative and public buildings. Security reigned in the Roman military colonies. The population expressed its recognition of the imperial domination by accepting the cult of the god-emperors, and by celebrating their festivals yearly or every four years. In the 3rd century, after a long and peaceful period, appeared the first signs of decline in the strength of the Roman Empire. During the extensive governmental reforms undertaken by Emperor Diocletian, aiming at a reorganization of the provinces, Caria remained as an independent province.
Christianity spread only slowly throughout Caria until Emperor Constantine the Great declared Christianity the official religion. The Byzantine period which followed marked the end of antiquity in Caria.

back to top


Free Downloads
free stuff

surprise your friends - with a postcard from Bodrum
Send a Bodrum Postcard

click here for the Blue Cruise

auf diesem zeitgenössischem Stich sieht man die in die Mauern eigelassenen Friese des Mausoleums

on an engraving from around 1800 the friezes guild in the walls of the castle can still be seen

click here for the Blue Cruise

 DuMont Extra: Bodrum &
 DM 12,90



Bodrum castle

the castle of St. Peter is a landmark from all points of view

General information | Bodrum | Surroundings | Activities | Freebies & offers | Various things | Contact

© copyright and design by PIXELWORK Bodrum Web Design 2000 - 2012