(Mersin) Ciicia Campestris, Turkey.
About 48 km W of Adana towards the end of
the alluvial plain where the mountains of the Taurus
range begin closely to approach the Mediterranean. The
city's history is elusive, though archaeology suggests a
very ancient settlement including, in its pre-Islamic phase,
an unbroken pottery sequence from Mycenaean to archaic Greek times. Literary evidence is scanty, though
Zephyrion seems to have changed hands frequently in
the Hellenistic period, from Seleucid to Ptolemaic, and
then back to Seleucid control. A short period of semi-autonomy ended with Pompey's Cilician settlement, and
like Mopsuestia and Alexandria ad Issum the city chose
67 B.C. as the opening of a new era. It was apparently a
relatively small and unimportant city, but was nevertheless a bishopric under the Metropolitan of Tarsus in the
Christian period. Its modern successor is capital of the
Mersin vilayet, and except at Soğuksu Tepe, N of the
town, no excavation has been undertaken. Some ancient
building material found in reuse was probably taken from
the ruins of Soli-Pompeiopolis some 11 km to the W.
Until recently these were housed in Mersin, but are now
in the Museum of Adana.
102; Livy 33.20
B. V. Head, Hist. Num
. (2d ed. 1911) 724; J. Garstang, Prehistoric Mersin