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Arykanda

The site of the ancient settlement is to be found near a small hamlet called Aykiricay, part of the settlement of Arif, on the road from Elmali to Finike, Arykanda was invaded by the Persians in the 5th century B.C., and was annexed by Alexander the Great in 333 B.C. it remained under the rule of the Ptolemaios dynasty on his death, and was then taken by the Seleucids. It was annexed to Rhodes during the Apemaia pact, and formed an independent confederation together with the other cities of Lycia, minting coins as a member of the confederation. The confederation lasted unti143 AD., when it was disbanded by the Emperor Claudius and Arykanda was annexed to Rome, along with the rest of the region. It survived during the Byzantine era, when it became known as Akalan, until the 9th century AD., when the settlement moved to a new site south of the modem road. The site is extensive, stretching from the source of the Aykiricay spring to the slopes of Sahinkaya, where it rise in terraces, closely-packed against the rock face. On the uppermost terrace can be seen a stadium, with one face. On the uppermost from this stadium to the terrace below, which contains a well-preserved theatre, a small structure the auditi orium Qf which rests on the natural slope of the hill. This building dates to the 2nd century AD. Greek inscription friezes can be seen lining the top two terraces of the twenty row auditorium.

On the terrace below rests the odeon of Arykanda, which was uncovered during excavations led by the Turkish archaeologist, Professor Cevdet Bayburtluoglu in 1978. The main entrance to the odeon is to the south, though a triple portal. The interior was lined with orthosats and was apparantly revetted polychrome marble. A frieze over the portal bears a portrait of the Emperor Hadrian flanked by cartouches bearing masks and heads of deities in relief.

One of the two portals to the rear of the odeon, to the east of the building opens onto the inclining road leading to the terrace wall of the theatre. The other portal, to the west, opens onto the stepped way leading around the agora of the town. The ode on portico, which measures 75mx8m. is decorated with mosaic some of the shops on the eastern face of the agora can , still be seen, and on the site lies the remains of what was once the agora shrine, amidst a cluster of trees. To the west of the theatre and the agora stands the bouleuterion, or council chamber, the tribunes of which are carved out of the rock face. A long stoa stretches beyond the front of this structure. Between the bouleuterion and the agora can be found a small ruined bath and fountain, and the remains of a larger fountain are to be seen below the agora.

From the surviving sections of the baths, it is plain that the estern section was used as a terrace for it has an extraordinary view. Next to the baths stands a gymnasium, and close by is a house bearing an inscription. The eastern necropolis of the town stretches over the terraces above the baths, while the western necropolis stretches from the source of the Aykiricay to the gorges just west of the city. Close to the baths lies a mausoleum in the form of a temple with. podium, in antis in plan, with a corinthian facade. A lionfigured relief decorates the facade. An inscription on the tomb gives the name of the owner. The necropolis also contains a number of vaulted tombs and sarcophagi. Close to the Aykiricay spring are to be seen a number of rock tombs and some interesting rock-cut water channels.

From the surviving sections of the baths, it is plain that the estern section was used as a terrace for it has an extraordinary view. Next to the baths stands a gymnasium, and close by is a house bearing an inscription. The eastern necropolis of the town stretches over the terraces above the baths, while the western necropolis stretches from the source of the Aykiricay to the gorges just west of the city. Close to the baths lies a mausoleum in the form of a temple with. podium, in antis in plan, with a corinthian facade. A lionfigured relief decorates the facade. An inscription on the tomb gives the name of the owner. The necropolis also contains a number of vaulted tombs and sarcophagi. Close to the Aykiricay spring are to be seen a number of rock tombs and some interesting rock-cut water channels.

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