CAUNUS   <<< back <<<


The city is situated on the land across the Dalyan strait at Ortaca. According to poet Ovidius, Miletos had twins, Caunus and Byblis. During adolescence, Byblis felt an enormous love for her twin and grew most possessive. Though well aware of the unnatural aspect of her love, Byblis sent a letter of declaration to Caunus whereupon the mythological King was both enraged and disgusted. To avoid meeting her, he escaped from Miletos, to the Carian and Lycian border where he founded the city of Caunus.
          Strabon defines Caunus in the Antique period as "having dockyards and a closed harbour. "Howerer, as is the case with many ports on the Anatolian coasts during Antiquity, Caunus today is cut off from the sea due to alluvial soil.
         Approaching the city, tombs carved into rocks are noteworthy. These large and resplendent tombs resemble lonian temples with in-antis plans. At the eastern end, the half-finished rock-tomb is an interesting sample to illustrate the constructional steps.
       Another significant sight is the upper acropolis.The southern bloke is craggy. The wall and towers on the summit are medieval.
          The present excavations here brought to light a longish stoa leading to the antique  port on the shore of the Sülüklü lake. To the east of the stoa a fountain has been restored by the excavating team. On the northern wall of the fountain there is an inscription regarding the Customs regulations. Dur to the presence of another inscription found here, dedicated to Vespasian, it is called the Vespasian Fountain.
           The Hellenistic theater on the western slope of the upper acropolis is still standing  on a large scale. The northern portion is supported by two cradle vaults. On the ridge to the north of the theater is a row of three buildings. The first, built with sqared masonry, is a church dating from Early Christianity.
            The building further on the west in colossal dimensions is a bath from the Roman Period. Inscriptions found on the site mention temples built in honour of Zeus, Leto, Appollon, Artemis and Aphrodite. However the location of such temples has not yet been established.

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