Gaziantep Map
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Zeugma ancient city is located on the shore of the river Euphrates within the boundaries of Belkıs Village. Zeugma ancient city which was established on a land of about 20 million kilometres, due to the fact that it is at the shallowest passable part of Euphrates and since it is very strategic region in terms of military and commerce, it protects its importance in each period of history.
Zeugma, which was one of the biggest cities of its period, through its population of 80 thousand people, was called with various names in various periods of history. Seleukekia Nikador, one of the Generals of the Alexander the Great, and who also became King of Syria later on, by combining his name with Euphrates river and established a city named as Selevkeya Euphrates in 300 B. C here. Then it was conquered by Roman Empire in 100 B.C. and its name was amended as Zeugma, meaning passage or bridge, which is known throughout the world upon the conquest.
In Zeugma of which population had reached 80 thousand person as population in a short time due to the fact that 4th Skitia Legion garrison was positioned by Roman Empire and due to the trade, some villas were built on the feet with Euphrates view. Its population of 80 thousand people made Zeugma as one of the biggest cities of the world. It was several folds of Pompeii and London (Londinum) which is currently a giant metropolis. Strabon, a famous geographer, also mentions about Zeugma. It is known that considerable development activities were conducted in Zeugma during Hellenistic era and in time of Seleukekia Nikador.
A temple for Thyke, a goddess of destiny, was built on Acropolis in the city. Such temple is still under the soil. Belkis/Zeugma ancient city is one of the Roman Cities, which also issued its own city coins. On one side of coin Thyke temple was printed and on the other side of coin, Roman Eagle motive, as a symbol of strength, was printed.
Kaynak: Gaziantep Museum