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Anatolian peninsula

Anatolia (Turkish: Anadolu, from the Greek: Ανατολία, Anatolía) is a peninsula of Western Asia which forms the greater part (96%) of the Asian portion of Turkey, as opposed to the European portion (4%) (Thrace, or traditionally Rumelia). It is also often called by the Latin name of Asia Minor, which comes from the Greek Μικρά Ασία, Mikrá Asía.


The name comes from the Greek Aνατολή, Αnatolḗ or Ανατολία, Anatolía, which means "east." The Byzantine theme of "Anatolikon" ("eastern one") signified the lands to the east of Europe and Constantinople. On the First Theme, Called Anatolikon. This theme is called Anatolikon, not because it is above and in the direction of the east whence the sun rises, but because it lies east of us who are the inhabitants of Byzantium and Europe." The Turkish form Anadolu derives from the Greek version; Turkish folk etymology breaks down the geographical term into two words, "mother" and "full". Thus, Ana, dolu 'Mother, it is full' or 'Full of mothers.'

Ancient History

The Hittite Empire

Main Article: Hittite empire

The Hittite Empire (Hittite: URUHa-at-ti; "The Land of Hatti") was an ancient kingdom which encompassed a large part of Anatolia and north-western Syria as far as Ugarit, and upper Mesopotamia from the 18th century BC to the 12th century BC. The name of Heth, the son of Canaan, was perpetuated in the Hittite capital of Hattusa (Hittite: URUḪattuša), near modern Boğazkale in Turkey.

The Mitanni Empire

Main Article: Mitanni

The Mitanni Empire or Hanigalbat (Hittite: URUMi-it-ta-ni; Assyrian: Ḫa-ni-gal-bat) was a Hurrian kingdom in northern Mesopotamia and south-west Anatolia which controlled the territory of modern day Syria, Palestine, and Iraq between 1530-1330 BC. Its heartland was the Khābūr River region, where Washukanni, its capital, was probably located. Dr. A.E. Crowley suggests that these Mitanni are direct descendants of Midian, the son of Abraham.[1] After being sent away by Abraham, the descendants of Midian settled in the region of the Caucasus, both north and south of the mountain range.

During Roman Rule

Main Article: Roman Empire

During the Roman Times, Mithridates VI, the king of Pontus in northern Anatolia fought three Mithridatic Wars against Rome. The Mithridatic Wars took place between 88 and 74 B.C.[2] During the Roman domination, Pergamum, the most important city of Anatolia in this period, had a famous Aesculapium, or medical center, which was in use from the fourth century B.C. to the second century A.D. [3]

Modern History

Main Article: Republic of Turkey

Turkey (Turkish: Türkiye), officially the Republic of Turkey (Turkish: Türkiye Cumhuriyeti), is a Eurasian country primarily occupying the Anatolian peninsula, and forming a bridge between eastern Europe and the Middle East. It borders Bulgaria and Greece to the west, and Georgia, Armenia, Azerbaijan, Iran, Iraq, and Syria to the east and southeast. Turkey's northern border is the shore of the Black Sea, to the west is the Aegean Sea, and most of its southern border lies along the Mediterranean Sea.

See Also


  1. Bristowe, S (1971) Sargon The Magnificent. Association Of The Covenant People, Vancouver, Canada, 12
  2. Barnavi, Eli, ed. (1992). A Historical Atlas of the Jewish People. New York: Schocken Books. p. 35. ISBN 0-8052-4127-2. 
  3. Pfeiffer, Charles F (1979). Baker´s Bible Atlas. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Baker Book House. p. 268. ISBN 0-8010-6930-0.