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SIDYMA (Dudurga Asari) Lycia, Turkey.

About 14 km NW of Xanthos, high up on Mt. Cragus. First mentioned in the 1st c. B.C. (by Alexander Polyhistor). No Lycian inscription has been found there; and the extant remains are of the Roman period. The name, however, appears ancient, and there are some indications of an earlier city on the site. The ruins lie in a valley at the foot of a steep hill, at whose base is a stretch of “cyclopean” wall containing a gate; this appears to have defended a city on the hill, though the summit now carries nothing beyond the remnants of a Byzantine fortification. The known coinage seems to be confined to a single specimen of League type (2d-1st c. B.C.). The city flourished in a modest way under the Empire, but was never important. It is related that when the emperor Marcian, then still only a simple soldier, was at Sidyma, a portent revealed his future elevation to the purple. Later, the bishop of Sidyma ranked tenth under the metropolitan of Myra.

The ruins include a number of buildings of good Roman work, among them a small Temple of the Augusti and a columned stoa, but none stands to any considerable height. The theater mentioned by Fellows is now in wretched condition. The inscriptions record a gymnasium and baths, but these have not been identified. Nothing is known of games at Sidyma, nor does the city possess a stadium. Tombs are numerous, including “Gothic” sarcophagi, temple tombs and other built tombs, and some plain rock-cut chamber tombs. The more impressive Lycian rock tombs familiar on other sites are totally lacking.

The port of Sidyma, named apparently Calabatia, lay on the coast to the W at the foot of a steep valley which seems to be that called by Strabo (665) “the valley Chimaira,” associated with the legend of Bellerophon.


C. Fellows, Lycia (1840) 151-56; E. Petersen & F. von Luschan, Reisen in Lykien (1889) I 57-83; TAM II.1 (1920) 60-62.


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