previous next

ADANA later ANTIOCHEA AD SARUM Cilicia Campestris, Turkey.

In the center of the alluvial plain at the main crossing of the river Seyhan (Sarus), it is ca. 32 km E of Tarsus. Although the place was almost certainly an important city in Pre-Hellenic times, and would have been the logical place for Xenophon and the Ten Thousand to cross over the Sarus, Adana appears first in literature only in the time of Alexander the Great and as Antiochea ad Sarum when Cilicia was under the suzerainty of Antiochus Epiphanes in the 2d c. B.C. After Pompey's victory at Korakesion, Adana was settled by “reformed” ex-pirates who proved themselves such successful farmers that under the Roman Empire the city was celebrating “holy ecumenical Dionysia” (Dionysos Kallikarpos was much venerated in the cities of the fertile Cilician plain). With its occupation by the Parthians in A.D. 260, Adana lost semiautonomous status, but became a bishopric of Cilicia Prima with the emancipation of the church. Taken by the Arabs in the 7th c., it was recaptured for Christendom by Nikephoros Phokas in 964.

Of classical monuments in Adana only the great bridge over the Sarus, restored by Justinian and recently widened by the Turkish authorities, remains intact. On the citadel, and wherever foundations are prepared for new buildings, architectural fragments and mosaic floors of the ancient city tend to be exposed. Local brickwork is still Roman in type.


Scylax 101-2; App. Mith. 96.

Maggiore, Adana, città dell'Asia Minore (1842); N. Hammond, CAH (2d ed. 1961-) XXXVI, 23-24; R. Barnett, “Mopsus,” JHS 83 (1953) 140-43.


hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: