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Σμύρνα), and in some manuscripts Zmyrna. Now Smyrna (Turkish, Izmir); an ancient city of Asia Minor, the only one of the great cities on the coast that still remains of importance as a commercial port. It lay on the river Meles at the eastern end of the Sinus Smyrnaeus, whose depth allowed the largest ships to anchor at the very walls of the city. From it stretched back the great valley of the Hermus, in which lay the rich city of Sardis (q.v.), of which Smyrna served as the principal seaport. It was probably Aeolian in its origin, founded by colonists from Cymé (Herod.i. 150; Pausan. vii. 5, 1), but became a possession of the Ionians of Colophon, and from that time was politically classed with the Ionian cities. As to the time when it became a member of the Panionic Confederacy, we have only a very untrustworthy account, which refers its admission to the reign of Attalus, king of Pergamum. Its early history is also very obscure. There is an account in Strabo (p. 646) that it was destroyed by the Lydian king Sadyattes, and that its inhabitants were compelled to live in scattered villages until after the Macedonian conquest, when the city was rebuilt, twenty stadia from its former site, by Antigonus; but this is inconsistent with Pindar's mention of Smyrna as a beautiful city ( Fr. 155). Thus much is clear, however, that at some period the old city of Smyrna, which stood on the northeastern side of the Hermaean Gulf, was abandoned, and that it was succeeded by a new city on the southeastern side of the same gulf (the present site), which is said to have been built by Antigonus, and which was enlarged and beautified by Lysimachus. This new city stood partly on the sea-shore and partly on a hill called Mastusia. The streets were paved with stone, and crossed one another at right angles. The city soon became one of the greatest and most prosperous in the world. It was especially favoured by the Romans on account of the aid it rendered them in the Syrian and Mithridatic Wars. It was the seat of a conventus iuridicus. In the Civil Wars it was taken

Coin of Smyrna. (Second century B.C.)

and partly destroyed by Dolabella, but it soon recovered. It occupies a distinguished place in the early history of Christianity, as one of the only two among the Seven Churches of Asia which St. John addresses in the Apocalypse without any admixture of rebuke, and as the scene of the labours and martyrdom of Polycarp. In the years A.D. 178- 180 a succession of earthquakes, to which the city has always been much exposed, reduced it almost to ruins; but it was restored by the emperor M. Antoninus. In the successive wars under the Eastern Empire it was frequently much injured, but always recovered; and, under the Turks, who took it in A.D. 1424, it has survived repeated attacks of earthquake, fire, and plague, and still remains the great commercial city of the Levant. There are but few ruins of the ancient city. In addition to her other sources of renown, Smyrna stood at the head of the seven cities which claimed the birth of Homer. The poet was worshipped as a hero in a magnificent building called the Homereum (Ὁμήρειον). Near the sea-shore there stood a magnificent temple of Cybelé, whose head decorated the coins of the city.

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