(Niksar) Pontus, Turkey.
About 103 km inland by mountain road over the coastal
range (Paryadres Mons), overlooking the plain of the
Kelkit Çayi (Lycus fl.). This is probably the same site
as Kabeira, a treasury and hunting lodge of Mithridates VI Eupator of Pontus, where Pompey in 64 B.C.
founded the city of Diospolis. This was subsequently
presented by Antony to Polemon I of Pontus, whose
widow and successor Pythodoris made it her capital under the name Sebaste. The later name Neocaesarea may
mark a refoundation by Nero when the Pontic kingdom
was annexed to Galatia in A.D. 64-65. Neocaesarea remained the chief city of the region, being metropolis
first of Pontus Polemonianus and then of Pontus Mediterraneus. In Diocletian's reorganization it was metropolis of Polemoniacus.
The site is dominated by a largely mediaeval castle,
which crowns a long spur projecting S from the foothills
of the Paryadres. Part of the walls may be Roman or
earlier; and a rock-cut tunnel-stairway, like those at
Amaseia, is certainly pre-Roman. Other mediaeval walls
enclose the old Turkish town, which lies below the castle
on the S, perhaps on the site of the Roman city. Earthquakes in A.D. 344 and 499 may well have destroyed most of the Roman walls and buildings.
J.G.C. Anderson, Studia Pontica
(1903) 56-59; F. & E. Cumont, Studia Pontica
D. R. WILSON