), a town in the southern part of Lycia, on the river Limyrus, twenty stadia above its mouth. (Strab. xiv. p.666
; comp. Scyl. p. 39; Ptol. 5.3.6
; Steph. B. sub voce
Velleius Paterculus (2.102) states that Caius Caesar, the adopted son of Augustus, died at Limyra.
It is often mentioned by Roman writers, as Ovid (Ov. Met. 9.646
), Mela (1.15), and continued to exist down to a late period. (Basil. M. Epist.
218; Hierocl. p. 683.) Ruins of Limyra were first discovered by Captain Beaufort above Cape Fineka
; but it was reserved for Sir Charles Fellows to explore and describe them more minutely.
In his first work (Journal of an Excursion in Asia Minor,
p. 214) he only says: “two miles across the little valley, at the foot of the mountains, and up their sides, lay the ruins of the ancient Limyra, its theatre, temples, and walls.” But in his later work (Account of Discoveries in Lycia,
p. 205, foll.), he fully enters into a description of the remains of the place, illustrated by fine engravings and copies of some of the many inscriptions, both Greek and Lycian, in which the place abounds.
In describing the approach to the town, he says, that first he found a fine stately sarcophagus, with a bilingual inscription. “Hundreds of tombs cut in the rocks, and quite excavating the long ribs of its protruding strata, as they curved down the sides of the mountain, soon came in view. . . .The inscriptions were almost all Lycian,--some few Greek, but these were always inferior in execution, some being merely scratched upon the surface; while the Lycian were cut deeply in the stone, and many richly coloured,--the letters being alternately red and blue, or in others green, yellow, or red.” Some of these tombs contain beautiful bas-reliefs, representing stories from Greek mythology. Beyond these tombs lies the city, “marked by many foundations, and by a long wall with towers. Further on is a very pretty theatre, . . . the size of which bespeaks a small population.” The whole neighbourhood, however, is filled with tombs cut in the rocks. (Comp. Leake, Asia Minor,