In an effort to create a chronological assessment of Turkey’s cultural assets, parts of the ancient Greco-Roman regions of Pisidia and Karia are currently being excavated and studied.
As part of the Archeological Settlements of Turkey Project (TAY), Oğuz Tanındı, professor of prehistory at İstanbul University’s Department of Archeology, established TAY in 1993. Tanındı said that their excavation currently includes findings from the Stone and Bronze Ages and that they have been working on archeological sites from the Greco-Roman age in Anatolia and Thrace for the past four years.
Tanındı said their project in Pisidia -- which includes Afyon, Burdur, Isparta and Konya -- is being led by archeologists Senem Özden, and their project in Karia -- which includes, Aydin, Burdur, Denizli and Muğla -- is being led by Mete Aksan.
Tanındı said: “The project includes data on 555 caves that date from 950 B.C. to the period of the Roman Emperor Theodosius in 395. There are 282 caves in the Pisidia region and 273 in the Karia region. An additional 1,511 findings have been added to the research of the region. The map of the city, the architecture and findings were included in the 200 visual material and the map of Pisidia and Karia showing the location of the caves were included in the project.”
In every card made for each cave there is the information on the name, height, width, depth, region, province, town and location of the cave, and there is also a Greco-Roman dictionary that has 70 words included in the files.
In the Karia region there is Aphrodisias, Didyma, Halikarnassos, Kaunos and Knidos in Muğla. In the Pisidia region there is Ikonion in Konya, Laodikeia, Keraitai and Sagalassos in Burdur and Tymbriada in Isparta.
In the past, treasure hunters easily ransack these sites for money and gold. As economic burdens increased, these two regions were attacked by thieves, robbers and old civilizations.