Mt Nemrut National Park

Trip Start May 24, 2008
Trip End Jul 26, 2008

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Flag of Turkey  ,
Saturday, June 21, 2008

From Malatya we headed south to the 7000 foot peak of Mt Nemrut.

Topped by statues and a tomb on its summit, this mountain is another trademark of Turkey and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.  In 62 BC, King Antiochus I Theos of Commagene built on the mountain top a tomb flanked by huge statues, originally 24 to 27 feet high.   The statues are of himself, two lions, two eagles and a selection of gods - Hercules, Zeus, and Apollo. These statues were once seated, but now lie partially in ruin with the heads of the statues scattered throughout the site on both the eastern and western side of the summit.  Excavations have failed to reveal Antiochus' tomb, but this is still believed to be the site of his burial.

Now get a load of this.  The mountain is artificially 150 feet higher.  Why?  Because the good old king ordered this artificial peak created through the use of crushed rock.  And why the statues of the gods surrounding his own statue?  Well, that's because the king fancied the gods as his relatives.  Someone sure thought themselves special...

Jon and Liz
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