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Birecik
Harran

 

Sanliurfa

Sanliurfa is located next to the Euphrates river, in the center of one of the longest inhabited areas in the world.  Many rich archaeological sites from all periods have been found and excavated in the area. The visitors to Sanliurfa may enjoy the finds of this archaeological projects in the Sanliurfa Museum.

Sanliurfa, known as the City of Prophets, has a very rich and far reaching background, due to its location in the great fertile plain of upper Mesopotamia. The archaeological and ethnographical museums exhibit finds of the Neolithic and Chalcolithic eras from the lower Euphrates region. You will notice a cave here, with several mosques around it here. This cave is believed to be the birthplace of Abraham. The Meviid Halil Mosque is also of another interest. Sanliurfa was praised as the city of the prophets Hiob, Jethro and St. George, besides Abraham, who were said to have lived here.

It is a holy city with "Balikli Göl" at the foot of a crusader castle and surrounded by mosques. The Halil Rahman Mosque is next to a pool which is full of sacred carp. The story about this pool that a holy person of Islam was about to be burned by non-believers and had stafied a big fire to burn him, but the logs turned into carp and the fire into water, and so the "Balikli Göl" was formed. On the other side of this pool, is the Ottoman Rizvaniye Mosque. The Firfirli Mosque, which was once the church of the Apostles, is worth a visit. A walk by the typical eastern bazaar and the old inns (hans), especially Gumruk Hani and Barutcu Hani, will take you back to the days of 1001 nights. Sanli Urfa Citadel and Ayn-i Zeliha Lake are other historical sites in the city.

Harran, 48 kms. south of Urfa, lets you visit a place directly connected with the Bible. It is said that Abraham spent several years of his life in Harran. Harran is a fascinating little town. The beehive-houses are built here and which are still occupied by families who may invite you for a look inside and to drink something cool. You should also visit the ruins of the biggest, ancient Harran Islamic University at which many great Islamic scientists were educated. In addition the ancient city walls are still standing. Sogmatar and Suayb are other old historical cities. You may find good accommodation with a picturesque view in Birecik where the Kelaynak Bird Festival is held every year.

Cigkofte is the famous local delicacy.
 

Sanliurfa Museum

The idea of opening up a museum in Sanliurfa emerged back in 1948 and the first step to this end was taken with the transfer of the existing pieces to a storage area in Ataturk primary school. Then, in 1956, a space was allocated for this purpose in Sehit Nurset Bey primary school. However, this space was not large enough, and there was clearly a need to exhibit the rich cultural assets of the area, documenting its thousands years of history, in an appropriate context.

Construction of a separate museum was started in 1965 on a small parcel of land (1,500 square meters) in the Sehitlik quarter of the town. The Museum was opened to visitors in 1969.

A testament to the rich past of the region of Sanliurfa is the large number of tumuli and old settlements. Harran, located 44 kilometers south of Sanliurfa, is one of the most notable of these settlements and was continuously inhabited from 3000 BC to the 13th century.  It was especially noted for its peculiar civilian architecture.

Salvage excavations are being conducted in the settlements threatened by the dams of Ataturk, Birecik and Kargamis. Starting from 1978, foreign teams conducted excavations in the Lidar and Hassek tumuli which were to be submerged under Ataturk Dam Lake, while the museum directorate was involved in the excavation of Cavi Field and Nevala Cori. Salvage excavations have been taking place since 1996 in Tilbes Tumulus which will disappear under the waters of Birecik Dam; Apamea, a Hellenistic city threatened by the same dam, has been excavated since 1998.

Apart from salvage excavations there are also regular archaeological excavations in sites such as Orencik, Gobektilepe, Konuklu Tumulus, Gurcutepe, Bozova, Bahceli Titrik Tumulus, Birecik and Hacinebi Tumulus.

Because of the increasing number of artifacts coming to the museum, the storage and exhibition facilities soon became inadequate. Annex storage and exhibition facilities were thus constructed and opened after increasing the museum's property.

In the new building, opened to the public in 1987, there are three archaeological and one ethnographic exhibition halls, administrative offices, a multipurpose room for activities such as conferences, and a library. Laboratories, storage facilities and photography sections are in the basement. 

In Sanliurfa museum, pieces obtained from Harran and other cultural assets recovered from other tumuli and ancient settlements are exhibited in different cases in alphabetical order. Pieces from the time of the Assyrians, Babylonians and the Hittites are exhibited in the entrance hall.

The second and third halls of the archaeology section have cutting and piercing devices made of Flintstone (8000-5000 BC), stone idols and vessels, plain and painted ceramics with geometric designs made of baked soil belonging to the period 5000-3000 BC, seals, pithoi, necklaces, pieces of imprinted cubes made of baked soil dating back to the Early Bronze Age (3000-2000 BC), animal figures, metal artifacts, and ornaments.

The ethnographic sections exhibit clothing from the region, silver and bronze ornaments, pieces of handmade instruments, carved wooden doors and window cases peculiar to the region, specimens of calligraphy, and an old hand-written Koran.

In the museum yard, archaeological pieces are exhibited in chronological order. In the front, there is a mosaic pool with depictions of animals.

As of the end of 1997, the Sanliurfa Museum hosts 17,961 archaeological and 2,430 ethnographic pieces, 44,576 coins, 1,061 seal pressings, 7 tablets, 9 manuscripts, 1 archive document, totalling 66,045 pieces.

Time Line of Osroene (Edessa, Urfa)  

In southern Anatolia, astride the modern Turkish/Syrian frontier. Based on the city of Edessa (modern Urfa), The Kingdom was a significant power-broker in southern Anatolia and northwest Mesopotamia, due to its strategic location. It is notable as being perhaps the earliest state to become Christianized, apparently in the 2nd century.

  • Council of Ten.....................................610-132
  • Bar HAWYU
  • Aryu...............................................132-127
  • 'Abdu bar Maz'ur...................................127-120
  • Fardhasht bar Geba'u...............................120-115
  • Bakru I............................................115-112
  • Bakru II bar Bakru.................................112-92 with...
  • Ma'nu I................................................94 and then...
  • Abgar I Piqa........................................94-68
  • Abgar II bar Abgar..................................68-53
  • Ma'nu II Aloho......................................52-34
  • Faquri (Paqor)......................................34-29
  • Abgar III...........................................29-26
  • Abgar IV Sumaqa.....................................26-23
  • Ma'nu III Saflul....................................23-4
  • Abgar V Ukkama bar Ma'nu.........................4 BCE-7 CE d. 50
  • Ma'nu IV bar Ma'nu...................................7-13
  • Abgar V Ukkama bar Ma'nu (restored).................13-50
  • Ma'nu V bar Abgar...................................50-57
  • Ma'nu VI bar Abgar..................................57-71
  • Abgar VI............................................71-91
  • vacant..............................................91-109
  • Abgar VII bar Ezad.................................109-116
  • A Roman Dependency 116-244
  • vacant.............................................116-118
    • Roman clients
    • Yalud (Yalur).................................118-122 with...
    • Frantsafat (Parthamaspat of Armenia)..........118-123
    • Bar HAWYU (as Roman clients) - figures in parentheses are an alternate dating scheme.
    • Ma'nu VII bar Ezad............................123-139
    • Ma'nu VIII bar Ma'nu..........................139-163 d. 167
    • Wa'el bar Sahru...............................163-165
    • Ma'nu VIII bar Ma'nu (restored)...............165-167 (165-177)
    • Abgar VIII the Great..........................167-214 (177-212)
    • Abgar IX Severus bar Abgar....................214-216 (212-214)
    • Ma'nu IX bar Abgar............................216-242 (214-240)
    • Abgar X Farhat bar Ma'nu......................242-244 (240-242)
  • To the Roman Empire................................244-395
  • To the Byzantine Empire............................395-609
  • To Persia..........................................609-623
  • To the Byzantine Empire............................623-638
  • To the Caliphate...................................638-990
  • To Amida...........................................990-1077
  • To Marash.........................................1077-1087
  • Bar Sawmo revolt.......................................1087
  • To the Great Seljuqs..............................1087-1094
    • Buzan........................................1087-1094
  • Armenian Dynast
  • Thoros............................................1094-1098
  • County of Edessa
  • BOULOGNE
  • Baldwin I (King of Jerusalem 1100-1118)...........1098-1100 d. 1118
  • RETHEL (du Bourg)
  • Baldwin II (King of Jerusalem 1118-1131)..........1100-1118 d. 1131
    • Tancred FitzRobert de Hauteville, Prince of Galilee, regent 1104-1112. See also Antioch.
  • de COURTENAY
  • Joscelin I........................................1118-1131
  • Joscelin II.......................................1131-1144 d. 1159
  • To Mosul..........................................1144-1175
  • To Egypt..........................................1175-1258
  • To the Mongols, and the Persian Ilkhans...........1258-1335
  • To Egypt..........................................1335-1375
  • To Cilicia (Ramadan-Oghlu)........................1375-1608
  • To the Ottoman Empire thereafter...
 

 

 

 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

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Last modified: 2016-08-27
 
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