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ASSOS


Assos or Behramkale is small but wealthy town located in the Ayvacık district of Çanakkale Province in Turkey. There is some evidence indicating that Assos was first settled during the Bronze Age. According to antique sources, Assos was founded by Methymians from the Island of Lesbos in the 7th century BC.

During the Classical period, Assos was under Lydian and Persian control. In 300 BC, it was ruled by the banker Eubolos and later his slave Hermeias. Hermeias, a student of Plato’s, invited Aristotle and other philosophers including Aristotle, Xenokrates, Erastus, Coriscus and Theophrastus from Athens; and he founded an academy in Assos in 347 BC. Aristotle married Hermeias’ niece Phthias, and lived in Assos for three years. During this short time, Aristotle opened a School of Logical Thinking.

The golden age of Assos came to an abrupt end with the Persians arrival. The city was taken by the Macedonian King Alexander the Great in 334 BC and placed the town under Pergamon rule in 241-133 BC. After the Pergamon lost their control, the city came under the Roman Empire. Assos was then ruled by Byzantine beginning in 395 AD. The city became an Ottoman town in the beginning of the 14th century.

The cultural richness of the region began to be protected after the establishment of Republic of Turkey. While the Romans did leave behind remains, the most notable archaeological sites today were built before the Hellenistic era. The Athena Temple, constructed during the Archaic Period (540-530 BC), can be seen on top of the Assos acropolis, which is defended by a double city walls. This temple is the only example in Anatolia in the Doric order. It has 6 columns on the short sides and 13 on the long sides surrounding the building externally with one row. The Theatre ruins can also be seen in the Acropolis.

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