A report on Lydia

Map of the Lydian Kingdom in its final period of sovereignty under Croesus, c. 547 BC.
The temple of Artemis in Sardis.
Sardis Synagogue.
Portrait of Croesus, last King of Lydia, Attic red-figure amphora, painted ca. 500–490 BC.
Tripolis on the Meander is an ancient Lydian city in Turkey.
Tripolis on the Meander is an ancient Lydian city in Turkey.
Büyük Menderes River also known as Maeander is river in Lydia.
The Pactolus river, from which Lydia obtained electrum, a combination of silver and gold.
Early 6th century BC Lydian electrum coin (one-third stater denomination).
Gyges tablet, British Museum
Lydian delegation at Apadana, circa 500 BC
Lydia's borders under the reign of Alyattes's son Croesus
Bin Tepe royal funeral tumulus (tomb of Alyattes, father of Croesus), Lydia, 6th century BC.
Tomb of Alyattes.
Croesus at the stake. Side A from an Attic red-figure amphora, ca. 500–490 BC
Lydia, including Ionia, during the Achaemenid Empire.
Xerxes I tomb, Lydian soldier of the Achaemenid army, circa 480 BC
Roman province of Asia
Photo of a 15th-century map showing Lydia
Church of St John, Philadelphia (Alaşehir)

Iron Age kingdom of western Asia Minor located generally east of ancient Ionia in the modern western Turkish provinces of Uşak, Manisa and inland Izmir.

- Lydia
Map of the Lydian Kingdom in its final period of sovereignty under Croesus, c. 547 BC.

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Depiction of Croesus, Attic red-figure amphora, painted ca. 500–490 BC

Croesus

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Depiction of Croesus, Attic red-figure amphora, painted ca. 500–490 BC
Lydia's borders under King Croesus
Gold coin of Croesus, Lydian, around 550 BC, found in what is now modern Turkey
Aesop in front of Croesus
Croesus showing his treasures to Solon. Frans Francken the Younger, 17th century
Silver croeseid issued by King Croesus of Lydia (561–545 BC), obverse: lion and bull protomes
Defeat of Croesus at the Battle of Thymbra, 546 BC.
Croesus vanquished, standing in front of Cyrus
Croesus on the pyre, Attic red-figure amphora, Louvre (G 197)

Croesus (Lydian: Krowiśaś; Phrygian: Akriaewais; Ancient Greek:, Kroisos; Latin: ; reigned: c. 585 – c. 546 BC ) was the king of Lydia, who reigned from 585 BC until his defeat by the Persian king Cyrus the Great in 547 or 546 BC.

Achaemenid Empire

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Ancient Iranian empire based in Western Asia that was founded by Cyrus the Great in 550 BC. It reached its greatest extent under Xerxes I, who conquered most of northern and central ancient Greece.

Ancient Iranian empire based in Western Asia that was founded by Cyrus the Great in 550 BC. It reached its greatest extent under Xerxes I, who conquered most of northern and central ancient Greece.

The Achaemenid Empire at its greatest territorial extent under the rule of Darius I (522 BC–486 BC)
The Achaemenid Empire at its greatest territorial extent under the rule of Darius I (522 BC–486 BC)
Family tree of the Achaemenid rulers.
Map of the expansion process of Achaemenid territories
Cyrus the Great is said, in the Bible, to have liberated the Hebrew captives in Babylon to resettle and rebuild Jerusalem, earning him an honored place in Judaism.
The tomb of Cyrus the Great, founder of the Achaemenid Empire. At Pasargadae, Iran.
The Achaemenid Empire at its greatest extent, c. 500 BC
The Persian queen Atossa, daughter of Cyrus the Great, sister-wife of Cambyses II, Darius the Great's wife, and mother of Xerxes the Great
Map showing events of the first phases of the Greco-Persian Wars
Greek hoplite and Persian warrior depicted fighting, on an ancient kylix, 5th century BC
Achaemenid king fighting hoplites, seal and seal holder, Cimmerian Bosporus.
Achaemenid gold ornaments, Brooklyn Museum
Persian Empire timeline including important events and territorial evolution – 550–323 BC
Relief showing Darius I offering lettuces to the Egyptian deity Amun-Ra Kamutef, Temple of Hibis
The 24 countries subject to the Achaemenid Empire at the time of Darius, on the Egyptian statue of Darius I.
The Battle of Issus, between Alexander the Great on horseback to the left, and Darius III in the chariot to the right, represented in a Pompeii mosaic dated 1st century BC – Naples National Archaeological Museum
Alexander's first victory over Darius, the Persian king depicted in medieval European style in the 15th century romance The History of Alexander's Battles
Frataraka dynasty ruler Vadfradad I (Autophradates I). 3rd century BC. Istakhr (Persepolis) mint.
Dārēv I (Darios I) used for the first time the title of mlk (King). 2nd century BC.
Winged sphinx from the Palace of Darius in Susa, Louvre
Daric of Artaxerxes II
Volume of annual tribute per district, in the Achaemenid Empire, according to Herodotus.
Achaemenid tax collector, calculating on an Abax or Abacus, according to the Darius Vase (340–320 BC).
Letter from the Satrap of Bactria to the governor of Khulmi, concerning camel keepers, 353 BC
Relief of throne-bearing soldiers in their native clothing at the tomb of Xerxes I, demonstrating the satrapies under his rule.
Achaemenid king killing a Greek hoplite. c. 500 BC–475 BC, at the time of Xerxes I. Metropolitan Museum of Art.
Persian soldiers (left) fighting against Scythians. Cylinder seal impression.
Color reconstruction of Achaemenid infantry on the Alexander Sarcophagus (end of 4th century BC).
Seal of Darius the Great hunting in a chariot, reading "I am Darius, the Great King" in Old Persian (𐎠𐎭𐎶𐏐𐎭𐎠𐎼𐎹𐎺𐎢𐏁𐎴 𐏋, "adam Dārayavaʰuš xšāyaθiya"), as well as in Elamite and Babylonian. The word "great" only appears in Babylonian. British Museum.
Achaemenid calvalryman in the satrapy of Hellespontine Phrygia, Altıkulaç Sarcophagus, early 4th century BC.
Armoured cavalry: Achaemenid Dynast of Hellespontine Phrygia attacking a Greek psiloi, Altıkulaç Sarcophagus, early 4th century BC.
Reconstitution of Persian landing ships at the Battle of Marathon.
Greek ships against Achaemenid ships at the Battle of Salamis.
Iconic relief of lion and bull fighting, Apadana of Persepolis
Achaemenid golden bowl with lioness imagery of Mazandaran
The ruins of Persepolis
A section of the Old Persian part of the trilingual Behistun inscription. Other versions are in Babylonian and Elamite.
A copy of the Behistun inscription in Aramaic on a papyrus. Aramaic was the lingua franca of the empire.
An Achaemenid drinking vessel
Bas-relief of Farvahar at Persepolis
Tomb of Artaxerxes III in Persepolis
The Mausoleum at Halicarnassus, one of the Seven wonders of the ancient world, was built by Greek architects for the local Persian satrap of Caria, Mausolus (Scale model)
Achamenid dynasty timeline
Reconstruction of the Palace of Darius at Susa. The palace served as a model for Persepolis.
Lion on a decorative panel from Darius I the Great's palace, Louvre
Ruins of Throne Hall, Persepolis
Apadana Hall, Persian and Median soldiers at Persepolis
Lateral view of tomb of Cambyses II, Pasargadae, Iran
Plaque with horned lion-griffins. The Metropolitan Museum of Art

From this region, Cyrus rose and defeated the Median Empire—of which he had previously been king—as well as Lydia and the Neo-Babylonian Empire, following which he formally established the Achaemenid Empire.

Anatolia

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Large peninsula in Western Asia and the westernmost protrusion of the Asian continent.

Large peninsula in Western Asia and the westernmost protrusion of the Asian continent.

Europe during the Last Glacial Maximum, c. 20,000 years ago. Anatolia was connected to the European mainland until c. 5600 BCE, when the melting ice sheets caused the sea level in the Mediterranean to rise around 120 m,  triggering the formation of the Turkish Straits.   As a result, two former lakes (the Sea of Marmara and the Black Sea) were connected to the Mediterranean Sea, which separated Anatolia from Europe.
Göbeklitepe were erected as far back as 9600 BC.
The Sphinx Gate at Hattusha
The Sebasteion of Aphrodisias of Caria
Fairy chimneys in Cappadocia.
Aphrodisias was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage Site List in 2017
Sanctuary of Commagene Kings on Mount Nemrut (1st century BCE)
Byzantine Anatolia and the Byzantine-Arab frontier zone in the mid-9th century
Salty shores of Lake Tuz.
Mediterranean climate is dominant in Turkish Riviera
Ankara (central Anatolia)
Antalya (southern Anatolia)
Van (eastern Anatolia)

The northern regions included Bithynia, Paphlagonia and Pontus; to the west were Mysia, Lydia and Caria; and Lycia, Pamphylia and Cilicia belonged to the southern shore.

Coin of Alyattes. Circa 620/10-564/53 BC.

Alyattes

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Coin of Alyattes. Circa 620/10-564/53 BC.
Electrum trite, Alyattes, Lydia, 610-560 BC. (inscribed KUKALI[M] )
Lydia's borders under the reign of Alyattes's son Croesus
Section of the tomb of Alyattes. It is "one of the largest tumuli ever built", with a diameter of 360 meters and a height of 61 meters.
Tomb of Alyattes, 19th century.
Tomb of Alyattes today.
Alyattes tumulus reconstitution
Alyattes tomb entrance
Alyattes tomb passageway
Alyattes tomb inner vault

Alyattes (Lydian language: 𐤥𐤠𐤩𐤥𐤤𐤯𐤤𐤮 Walweteś; Aluáttēs; reigned c. 635-585 BC ), sometimes described as Alyattes I, was the fourth king of the Mermnad dynasty in Lydia, the son of Sadyattes, grandson of Ardys, and great-grandson of Gyges.

Greek settlements in western Asia Minor, Ionian area in green.

Ionia

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Ancient region on the western coast of Anatolia, to the south of present-day Izmir.

Ancient region on the western coast of Anatolia, to the south of present-day Izmir.

Greek settlements in western Asia Minor, Ionian area in green.
The ruins of the ancient city of Pergamon
Art relics from the Ionian cities of Asia
One of the earliest electrum coins struck in Ephesus, 620–600 BC. Obverse: Forepart of stag. Reverse: Square incuse punch.
The site of Miletus, once coastal, now inland. The plain was a bay in Classical Greece.
Gorgone with serpent, Ionia, 575-550 BC.
The temple of Artemis in Sardis.
Possible coin of Ionia. Circa 600-550 BC
Ionia, Achaemenid Period. Uncertain satrap. Circa 350–333 BC
The Library of Celsus in Ephesus was built by the Romans in 114–117. The Temple of Artemis in Ephesus, built by king Croesus of Lydia in the 6th century BC, was one of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World.

It was bounded by Aeolia to the north, Lydia to the east and Caria to the south.

Location of Phrygia in Anatolia

Phrygia

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Kingdom in the west central part of Anatolia, in what is now Asian Turkey, centered on the Sangarios River.

Kingdom in the west central part of Anatolia, in what is now Asian Turkey, centered on the Sangarios River.

Location of Phrygia in Anatolia
Gordion archeological site
Zeus Temple in ancient city of Aizanoi belongs to Phrygia. It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site
Theatre complex of Aizanoi in Phrygia
Phrygian soldiers. Detail from a reconstruction of a Phrygian building at Pararli, Turkey, 7th–6th centuries BC.
Ruins of the Lycus
Horseman and griffin, Phrygia, 600–550 BC.
Detail from a reconstruction of a Phrygian building at Pararli, Turkey, 7th–6th centuries BC: Museum of Anatolian Civilisations, Ankara. A griffin, sphinx and two centaurs are shown.
Tomb at Midas City (6th century BC), near Eskişehir
The location of Hellespontine Phrygia, and the provincial capital of Dascylium, in the Achaemenid Empire, c. 500 BC.
The two Phrygian provinces within the Diocese of Asia, c. 400 AD.
The Flaying of Marsyas by Titian, 1570s, with King Midas at right, and the man with a knife in a Phrygian cap
The Polyxena sarcophagus in Çanakkale Archaeological Museum, Turkey.
The Midas Mound Tumulus at Gordion, dated ca. 740 BCE.
Man in Phrygian costume, Hellenistic period (3rd–1st century BC), Cyprus

Phrygia then became subject to Lydia, and then successively to Persia, Alexander and his Hellenistic successors, Pergamon, the Roman Empire and the Byzantine Empire.

The Greek gymnasium of Sardis

Sardis

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Ancient city at the location of modern Sart (Sartmahmut before 19 October 2005), near Salihli, in Turkey's Manisa Province.

Ancient city at the location of modern Sart (Sartmahmut before 19 October 2005), near Salihli, in Turkey's Manisa Province.

The Greek gymnasium of Sardis
Inside the gymnasium of Sardis.
Map of Sardis and other cities within the Lydian Empire
Sardis in the middle of Lydia, c. 50 AD
Temple of Artemis at Sardis
Remains of the Greek Byzantine shops and the Bath-Gymnasium Complex in Sardis
The gymnasium complex of Sardis
Remains of the Byzantine churches at Sardis
Details of the columns.
Details of the Gymnasium complex.
The Sardis Synagogue
Synagogue of Sardis.
Sardes wall tile with three dimensional effect.

Sardis was the capital of the ancient kingdom of Lydia, one of the important cities of the Persian Empire, the seat of a Seleucid Satrap, the seat of a proconsul under the Roman Empire, and the metropolis of the province Lydia in later Roman and Byzantine times.

A rare depiction of the legend of Gyges finding the magic ring, Ferrara, 16th century

Gyges of Lydia

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A rare depiction of the legend of Gyges finding the magic ring, Ferrara, 16th century
Gyges tablet, British Museum
Candaules, King of Lydia, Shews his Wife by Stealth to Gyges, One of his Ministers, as She Goes to Bed by William Etty. This image illustrates Herodotus's version of the tale of Gyges (as told by Herodotus, Gyges watched the naked queen secretly, but is seen by her as he is sneaking out of concealment). An earlier artistic treatment of the same subject, by Dosso Dossi, is now in the Galleria Borghese.

Gyges (, ; Lydian: Kukaś; Akkadian: Guggu, Gugu; Ancient Greek: Gū́gēs; Latin: ; reigned c. 680-644 BCE ) was the founder of the Mermnad dynasty of Lydian kings and the first known king of the Lydian kingdom to have attempted to transform it into a powerful empire.

Map showing locations where inscriptions in the Lydian language have been found.

Lydian language

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Map showing locations where inscriptions in the Lydian language have been found.
The Sardis bilingual inscription was the "Rosetta Stone" for the Lydian language.

Lydian (𐤮𐤱𐤠𐤭𐤣𐤶𐤯𐤦𐤳 Sfardẽtiš "[language] of Sardis") is an extinct Indo-European Anatolian language spoken in the region of Lydia, in western Anatolia (now in Turkey).

Cyrus the Great with a Hemhem crown, or four-winged Cherub tutelary divinity, from a relief in the residence of Cyrus in Pasagardae

Cyrus the Great

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Cyrus II of Persia (c.

Cyrus II of Persia (c.

Cyrus the Great with a Hemhem crown, or four-winged Cherub tutelary divinity, from a relief in the residence of Cyrus in Pasagardae
The four-winged guardian figure representing Cyrus the Great or a four-winged Cherub tutelary deity. Bas-relief found on a doorway pillar at Pasargadae on top of which was once inscribed in three languages the sentence "I am Cyrus the king, an Achaemenian." Scholars who doubt that the relief depicts Cyrus note that the same inscription is written on other palaces in the complex.
"I am Cyrus the King, an Achaemenian" in Old Persian, Elamite and Akkadian languages. It is known as the "CMa inscription", carved in a column of Palace P in Pasargadae. These inscriptions on behalf of Cyrus were probably made later by Darius I in order to affirm his lineage, using the Old Persian script he had designed.
Painting of king Astyages sending Harpagus to kill young Cyrus
Detail of Cyrus Hunting Wild Boar by Claude Audran the Younger, Palace of Versailles
Victory of Cyrus over Lydia's Croesus at the Battle of Thymbra, 546 BC
Croesus on the pyre. Attic red-figure amphora, 500–490 BC, Louvre (G 197)
Ancient Near East circa 540 BC, prior to the invasion of Babylon by Cyrus the Great
Achaemenid soldiers (left) fighting against Scythians, 5th century BC. Cylinder seal impression (drawing).
Queen Tomyris of the Massagetae receiving the head of Cyrus
Tomb of Cyrus in Pasargadae, Iran, a UNESCO World Heritage Site (2015)
Cyrus the Great is said in the Bible to have liberated the Jews from the Babylonian captivity to resettle and rebuild Jerusalem, earning him an honored place in Judaism.
Cyrus the Great (center) with his General Harpagus behind him, as he receives the submission of Astyages (18th century tapestry)
The Cyrus Street, Jerusalem
Painting of Daniel and Cyrus before the Idol Bel
Statue of Cyrus the great at Olympic Park in Sydney
17th-century bust of Cyrus the Great in Hamburg, Germany
The Cyrus cylinder, a contemporary cuneiform script proclaiming Cyrus as legitimate king of Babylon

The reign of Cyrus lasted about thirty years; his empire took root with his conquest of the Median Empire followed by the Lydian Empire and eventually the Neo-Babylonian Empire.