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Antakya

3.7
Specialty Museums · Waterfalls · Ruins
Antakya is the seat of the Hatay Province in southern Turkey.In ancient times, Antakya was known as Antioch, and was for centuries one of the largest cities in the Roman Empire. It was an influential early center of Christianity. It has a population of about 250,000. Most of the population speaks Turkish as their native language, while a minority are native Arabic speakers. Antakya is situated in a well-watered and fertile valley.HistoryAntiquityThe area of Antioch has been occupied by humans since the Calcolithic era (6th millennium BC), as revealed by archeological excavations of the mound of Tell-Açana, among others.The King of Macedon Alexander the Great, after defeating the Persians in the Battle of Issus in 333 BC, followed the Orontes south into Syria and occupied the area. The city of Antioch was founded in 300 BC, after the death of Alexander, by the Hellenistic Seleucid King Seleucus I Nicator. It played an important role as one of the largest cities in the Hellenistic Seleucid Kingdom, in the Roman Empire and in the Byzantium, and it was a key city during the early years of Christianity, and of the Syriac Orthodox Church, the Antiochian Orthodox Church, and also since the 7th c. AD with the rise of Islam, and after the 10th c. AD with the Crusades.
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