August 2017 in Turkish archaeology

Ardahan Fortress
Ardahan Fortress

Millennia of peace in Çatalhöyük, majestic female statue from the times of Hittites, Neolithic finds in Istanbul, a military banner used in the Battle of Mohacs - these were the most fascinating discoveries of August 2017.

Turkish Archaeological News collects the most important, interesting and inspiring news from Turkish excavation sites. Here's the review for August 2017. Have we missed anything? Let us know by using Contact tab!

August 1, 2017

Ancient theater found under school

During official archaeological excavations that have been secretly carried out in the southern province of Antalya’s Kaleiçi, an ancient Roman theater has been discovered under a school. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Culture Ministry denies claims about ancient theater under Antalya school

The Culture and Tourism Ministry has issued a statement about claims that a Roman-era ancient theater has been unearthed under the Antalya Technical School for Girls in the southern province of Antalya’s Kaleiçi neighborhood, as well as claims that the school building may be demolished to unearth the theater. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 2, 2017

‘City of sorrows’ wait for visitors

The ancient city of Xanthos in the southern province of Antalya’s Kaş district, known as the “city of sorrows,” opens the door of a different world to its visitors both with its sad history and ruins that defy time. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Travel in time with warrior Amazon queens

The Haleplibahçe Mosaic Museum, which is home to the "warrior Amazon queen" mosaics engraved on the floor of a Roman palace that were unearthed during groundbreaking excavations surrounding a project conducted in Şanlıurfa province, offer visitors the chance to see ancient mosaics that are thought to date back to the fifth and sixth centuries A.D. Source: Daily Sabah

Europe's first advanced civilisations originated from Turkey: Early Greeks were descendants of early Neolithic farmers who migrated from Anatolia, DNA reveals

DNA analysis has revealed that two ancient civilisations in Greece were related and shared common ancestors that travelled from modern day Turkey. Source: Daily Mail

August 3, 2017

No wars in Çatalhöyük for 4,000 years

In the Neolithic settlement of Çatalhöyük, founded by 8,000 people in the Central Anatolian province of Konya and one of the earliest settlements in the history of mankind, no war, conflict or violent attacks occurred, archaeological excavations in the region have revealed. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Archaeological excavations to resume at Turkey’s ancient site of Lagina

Archaeologist are set to resume excavations after a six-year hiatus in the 3,000-year-old site of Lagina, the sacred precinct of the Goddess Hekate. Source: Daily Sabah

August 4, 2017

UNESCO registry increases interest in Ani

The ancient city of Ani, located on the Turkish-Armenian border and called the “cradle of civilizations” as it has been home to many ancient civilizations, has doubled its number of visitors after its registry in the UNESCO World Heritage list. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Excavations unveil mysteries of Trojan War

New findings that will shed light on the 10-year Trojan War, mentioned by Homer in his epic “Iliad,” were unearthed during excavations in the 5,000-year-old ancient city of Troy in the northwestern province of Çanakkale’s Tevfikiye village. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

1,800-year-old writing implement discovered in northwestern Turkey

Researchers have unearthed a 1,800-year-old writing tool, or stylus, at the Assos archeological site in northwestern Turkey. Source: Daily Sabah

August 5, 2017

Traces of ancient earthquake in Assos

Ruins with the traces of a massive earthquake that occurred 1,300 years ago have been unearthed in the ancient city of Assos in the northwestern province of Çanakkale’s Ayvacık district. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 7, 2017

Impression seals to illuminate Hittite administration

The excavations that have been carried out in Karkamış, one of the world’s most important ancient cities, lying along the borders of Turkey and Syria, have unearthed 250 kiln bullae, for the first time this year. The bullae were used by top state officials in the Hittite Empire. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Turkish researchers find bones of 350,000-year-old animal

Archeologists have discovered the bones of a large 350,000-year-old animal during excavations at the Karain Cave in the southern Turkish province of Antalya. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 8, 2017

Riverside fortress to enliven tourism in Ardahan

The fortress in Ardahan, the smallest city in Turkey in terms of population, and the historical structures that surround it, will serve as a hub for tourism. Source: Daily Sabah

2000-year-old Roman road discovered in western Turkey’s Manisa

A 55-kilometer section of a road that was built 2,000 years ago has been discovered in ongoing excavations of the ancient city of Aigai located in Turkey's Manisa province. Source: Daily Sabah

August 9, 2017

Zeugma to double number of visitors

The Zeugma Mosaic Museum, which holds the title of being the world’s largest mosaic museum, is aiming to increase the number of visitors with its newly opened section. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Bursa’s dungeons reveal ancient violence

Zindan Gate, which was built in the Bithynia Kingdom 2,500 years ago, has been unearthed in the northwestern province of Bursa and is set to open to visitors next year. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Fethi Paşa Korusu: Restoring an Ottoman plantation

The private grove of the mid-19th century Ottoman ambassador to Russia, Austria and France, who also served as Turkey's first museologist, Fethi Ahmet Paşa, recently saw the completion of municipal restorations ongoing since 2003, and two pavilions have now opened on the heels of construction that ended last winter. Source: Daily Sabah

Iran to return 7-century-old church bell to Turkey

Iran's Cultural Heritage, Handicrafts and Tourism Organization will return a 7-century-old church bell to Turkey, reports said Wednesday. Source: Daily Sabah

Roots of Sumer civilization discovered in Turkey's Kahramanmaraş

Traces showing the roots of the ancient Mesopotamian Sumer civilization have been discovered at an archaeological site in Turkey's southeastern Kahramanmaraş province, reports said Wednesday. Source: Daily Sabah

August 10, 2017

Excavations start in ‘sunken city’ in İzmir

A Roman ancient city, discovered during one of the world’s most important archaeology projects, the Liman Tepe excavations, is set to serve as an archeopark after excavations end. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Black Sea fortress contains historical treasure

As the first excavation site in the eastern Black Sea region, Kurul Fortress in Ordu province dates back 2,300 years and has gained recent notoriety with the discovery of a statue depicting the mother goddess, Cybele. Excavations are ongoing, with almost 30 percent unearthed since work started in 2010. Source: Daily Sabah

Archaeologists uncover 3,000-year-old female statue at citadel gate complex in Turkey

The remains of a majestic female statue uncovered at the archaeological site of Tayinat in Turkey may challenge our understanding of the public role of women in the ancient world. Source:

August 11, 2017

Ancient city in Amasra under excavation

Already considered a treasure due to its natural and geographical beauty, the Amasra district in the Black Sea province of Bartın is now the site of excavation unearthing a presumably 5,000-year-old ancient city. Source: Daily Sabah

Drawings revive Stratonikeia ancient city in western Turkey

Findings unearthed at the ancient city of Stratonikeia in the southwestern province of Muğla, as well as the structures to be restored there, are being revived through special drawings made by an excavation painter. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 12, 2017

Topkapı Palace not sliding, says minister

Culture and Tourism Minister Numan Kurtulmuş has denied claims Istanbul’s Topkapı Palace was sliding toward the sea, after he made a visit to the Ottoman-era palace and obtained information from officials. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 14, 2017

Batman's Hasankeyf expected to boost underwater tourism

In the context of the Ilısu Dam Hydroelectric Power Plants' project, Cultural Heritages Preservation and Rescue Studies, one of the structures submerged by a dam, Zeynel Bey's Tomb, has been moved to a new location in Hasankeyf in Batman. Source: Daily Sabah

Wrong Göbeklitepe skulls reported in Turkish media

Human skulls unearthed in the world’s oldest temple Göbeklitepe, in the southeastern province of Şanlıurfa, were recently reported in the Turkish media with the wrong visuals. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 15, 2017

Vessels with ‘tree of life’ motifs found in Turkey's Domuztepe

Excavations in the Domuztepe Mound in the southern province of Kahramanmaraş, considered to be the biggest settlement in the era since the usage of the term “Near East,” have unearthed vessels depicting “tree of life” motifs. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 16, 2017

Ancient structure discovered in Gökçeada

Excavations in the Uğurlu-Zeytinlik Mound in the northwestern province of Çanakkale’s Gökçeada (Imbros) island have unearthed a 7,000-year-old structure complex as well as 13 skeletons belonging to men, women and children in a large pit. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

3,000-year-old statue of woman found in Hatay

A statue of a female believed to have belonged to the ancient King Suppiluliuma's wife was found at the Tayinat Mound, a site where excavation works are ongoing. Source: Daily Sabah

Gladiators arena to be unearthed

The largest stadium in ancient Anatolia, the Laodicea Stadium in Denizli, has been excavated over 13 years with more findings expected to be unearthed soon. Source: Daily Sabah

August 17, 2017

Körtik Hill offers thousands of artifacts

Excavations in Körtik Hill in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır’s Bismil district have unearthed more than 30,000 artifacts in 17 years. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Subway construction excavations fill gap in Istanbul’s history

Ruins believed to be dating back to 6,000 years from the Neolithic age have been unearthed during a subway line construction in Istanbul’s Beşiktaş district. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 18, 2017

Ancient furnaces unearthed at ‘home of tiles’ İznik

The remains of two tile furnaces have been found in archaeological excavations in İznik, known as a historic center of tile production in the northwestern Turkish province of Bursa. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Hercules to come to Turkey in September

The Roman sarcophagus of Hercules, which was ruled to return to Turkey by a Swiss court in 2015, will return to its home in Turkey in September. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

2,000-year-old mound and dam discovered in Turkey’s Çorum

The discovery of an over 2,000-year-old dam and archaeological mound in central Turkey's Çorum is expected to bring in a new influx of tourists to the region. Source: Daily Sabah

August 19, 2017

Ancient ornamentations being restored in Van

Pieces that have fallen from ornaments carved on big stones 2,700 years ago in the Ayanis Castle, built by the Urartian King Rusa II on a hill overlooking the Lake Van, are being attached to their original places with special materials. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

1,000-year-old perfume shop discovered in Turkey's Şanlıurfa

Archaeologists in Turkey's southeastern Şanlıurfa province have discovered a 1,000-year-old ancient perfume store and various perfume bottles, shedding light to the history of scents in Mesopotamian lands. Source: Daily Sabah

August 20, 2017

Dam and mound unearthed in Çorum

A dam and a mound have been unearthed in the central Anatolian province of Çorum. The Örükaya Dam and Mound, estimated to date back 2,200 years ago, will be restored to serve tourism. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 21, 2017

Ancient stadium in Denizli under restoration

Works have been initiated this summer to unearth a stadium in the ancient city of Laodicea, a property on UNESCO’s tentative list for World Heritage Sites. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

8,600-year-old findings unearthed in western Turkey’s Ekşi Höyük

Teams of archaeologists have been carrying out excavation work at one of the oldest settlements in western Anatolia, where they have unearthed findings dating back 8,600 years. Source: Daily Sabah

August 23, 2017

Temple of Apollo restored in Antalya

The Temple of Apollo, dating back to the 2nd century and the time of Roman Emperor Antoninus Pius, has been reinforced after its columns began to show signs of aging. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Turkey asks for return of ‘Hittite King Maradas’

The Malatya Culture and Tourism Directorate has detected that a relief, depicting the Hittite King Maradas deer hunting on a horse cart and is on display at Louvre Museum in Paris, was removed from the Aslantepe Mound in 1891, which is on UNESCO’s tentative list of World Heritage Sites. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Treasure hunters rush to Istanbul's Kemerburgaz after rumors of 150 kg of gold

Rumors of 150 kilograms of ancient gold under the ground near the metro project in Istanbul's Kemerburgaz district have led many treasure hunters to carry out illegal excavations in the region, disturbing those living in the neighborhood, a report by the Habertürk Daily said Wednesday. Source: Daily Sabah

2800-year-old horse skeleton discovered in eastern Turkey

Archaeologists in Turkey's eastern Van province have discovered a 2,800-year-old horse skeleton from the Iron Age Urartu civilization, also known as the Kingdom of Van. Source: Daily Sabah

Ancient human remains discovered in Istanbul metro construction site

Construction workers in Istanbul's Beşiktaş district digging the ground for a new metro project connecting Istanbul's Kabataş-Beşiktaş-Mecidiyeköy-Mahmutbey districts have discovered human bones and cremated remains from the eighth and 12th centuries B.C. Source: Daily Sabah

August 25, 2017

Zerzevan Castle home to secret history

Following the discovery of an underground temple, a closed secret passage and a subterranean sanctuary in the Zerzevan Castle in the southeastern province of Diyarbakır’s Çınar district, four other ancient locations from the Roman era were unearthed this year in Çınar. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 27, 2017

Two millenia old shops found in Turkey’s Antalya province

Two-thousand-year old shops and warehouses were revealed at an excavation site of the ancient Aspendos city, located in the Serik district of Turkey's touristic Antalya province. Source: Daily Sabah

August 28, 2017

Hittite capital Hattusha: A victim of the Germany-Turkey diplomatic spat

Last year the Culture and Tourism Ministry did not give permission to the German Institute of Archaeology, which had carried out the excavations and restorations in Hattusha, amid ongoing diplomatic tension between Turkey and Germany. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Edirne's Uzunköprü waits for record registration

In the name of Uzunköprü Bridge in Edirne's Uzunköprü district, which is known as the longest stone bridge in the world, officials applied to Guinness for the title of "World's longest stone bridge." Source: Daily Sabah

Water handicaps restoration work on ‘Dracula’ castle

Water coming out of a hidden tunnel has caused difficulty in the progress of the restoration work on Tokat Castle, also known as the “dungeon of Dracula.” Source: Hürriyet Daily News

August 29, 2017

Excavations at Aspendos continue to uncover ancient riches

Ongoing excavations at the ancient city of Aspendos have unearthed 2,000-year-old shops and storage facilities. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Ancient graves ignored in Mersin

Centuries old Roman-era tombs that have been unearthed in the southern province of Mersin’s Mezitli district are falling into ruins as a result of human factors and natural conditions. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

Scientists Debunk Claim That Copper Smelting Was Invented 8,500 Years Ago in Turkey

Scientists have debunked the claim that prehistoric peoples living in central Turkey 8,500 years ago invented copper smelting, putting an end to one fierce controversy. Source: Haaretz

500-year-old witness of a historical Ottoman victory: Mohacs Banner

The military banner used in the Battle of Mohacs, which is considered as one of the most significant victories of the Ottoman Empire in Europe, has been carefully preserved for nearly five centuries in the town of Tesanj, Bosnia-Herzegovina. Source: Daily Sabah

Christie’s Defends Sale of 5,000-Year-Old Turkish Idol

Angling to auction off a 5,000-year-old Anatolian statue, Christie’s submitted evidence Monday that casts doubt on a bid by Turkey to repatriate the rare idol. Source: Courthouse News

August 31, 2017

Yumurtalık locals asks mosaics back

Civil society organizations and locals have reacted against the moving of mosaics to a new museum in the city center. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

New Istanbul Metro station to open in Beşiktaş after excavations are completed

Subway construction in the Istanbul district of Beşiktaş will start if archaeological excavations in the area are completed by the end of the year, Mayor Kadir Topbaş said on Aug. 29. Source: Hürriyet Daily News

8,000-year-old paint workshop discovered in Turkey's Eskişehir

One of the oldest paint workshops of the world have been found at an ancient settlement in northwestern Turkish province of Eskişehir, Anadolu Agency reported Thursday. Source: Daily Sabah