: Eth. Σιδήτης
), a town with a good harbour on the coast of Pamphylia, 50 stadia to the west of the river Melas, and 350 east of Attaleia. (Stud. Mar. Mag.
§ 214, fell.)
The town was founded by Cumae in Aeolis. (Scylax, Peripl.
p. 40; Strab. xiv. p.667
, comp. p. 664; Steph. B. sub voce
Pomp. Mela, 1.15.) Arrian (Arr. Anab. 1.26
), who admits the Cumaean origin of the place, relates a tradition current at Side itself, according to which the Sidetae were the most ancient colonists sent out from Cumae, but soon after their establishment in their new home forgot the Greek language, and formed a peculiar idiom for themselves, which was not understood even by the neighbouring barbarians. When Alexander appeared before Side, it surrendered and received a Macedonian garrison.
In the time of Antiochus the Great, a naval engagement took place off Side between the fleet of Antiochus, commanded by Hannibal, and that of the Rhodians, in which the former was defeated. (Liv. 35.13
.) Polybius (5.73
) states that there existed great enmity between the people of Side and Aspendus.
At the time when the pirates had reached their highest power in the Mediterranean, they made Side their principal port, and used it as a market to dispose of their prisoners and booty by auction. (Strab. xiv. p.664
.) Side continued to be a town of considerable importance under the Roman emperors, and in the ultimate division of the province it became the metropolis of Pamphylia Prima. (Hierocl. [p. 2.995]
p. 682; Concil. Const.
ii. p. 240.)
The chief divinity of this city was Athena, who is therefore seen represented on its coins, holding a pomegranate (σίδη
) in her hand. (Sestini, Num. Vet.
p. 392, foil.; comp. Xenoph. Anab.
1.2.12; Cicero, Cic. Fam. 3.6
; Athen. 8.350
; Paus. 8.28.2
; Ptol. 5.5.2
The exact site of ancient Side, which is now called Esky Adalia,
as well as its remains, have been described by modern travellers. Beaufort (Karamania,
p. 146, foll), who gives an excellent plan of the present condition of the place, states that the city stood on a low peninsula, and was surrounded by walls; the part facing the land was of excellent workmanship, and much of it is still perfect.
There were four gates, one from the country and three from the sea.
The agora, 180 feet in diameter, was surrounded by a double row of columns. One side of the square is at present occupied by the ruins of a temple and portico.
The theatre appears like a lofty acropolis rising from the centre of the town, and is by far the largest and best preserved of any seen in Asia Minor.
The harbour consisted of two small moles, connected with the quay and principal sea gate.
At the extremity of the peninsula were two artificial harbours for larger vessels. Both are now almost filled with sand and stones, which have been borne in by the swell.
The earliest coins of Side are extremely ancient; the inscriptions are in very barbarous characters, resembling the Phoenician, and the imperial coins exhibit the proud titles of λαμπροτάτη
(Eckhel, vol. iii. pp. 44, 161; Spanheim, De Usu et Praest. Num.
p. 879; Fellows, Asia Minor,
p. 201; Leake, Asia Minor,
p. 195, foll.)
Respecting Side, the ancient name of Polemonium, see POLEMONIUM