Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Hierapolis: An Unexpected Surprise (Travel)

Hierapolis was such a surprise to us.  We had planned our trip around Biblical references and the places mentioned in the New Testament.  (I found today that this place is mentioned in Colossians 4:13, so much fun finding it in my study!)  We booked our accommodations at Pamukkale because it was a tourist area and felt that it would be a great place to stay.  When we looked at the reference material on what this place was, it became apparent that we needed to include this ancient city in our tour.  It is not one of the Seven Churches of Revelation, however, the Apostle Philips was martyred here.  
The above is a tomb that was just one among many.  I mean a couple hundred or more.  They were built by the prominent citizens for the remains of themselves and their families.  There was a shelf built around the interior (of the same stone) to be used until the body had decayed.  The smaller ones in front were used basically the same way.  I guess just not as prominent.  
This is the main street that had actually been covered up by the travertine waters.  This aided in it's preservation.  Special equipment was used to extract the pieces.  Immediately to the left, after entering these arches, is the public latrine.  It was totally collapsed, caused by an earthquake, but it was preserved by the travertine which allowed for the almost complete reconstruction.  This 1st Century WC was complete with water for hygiene.  
 I am always looking for letters while in these ruins.  These are Greek and I was pretty disappointed that I found no Roman letters.  I do really like the two characters in the bottom right.  I am thinking that I might try to study Greek, at least to be able to translate it.  
 The next four photos are from Terry's iTouch.  He really had a great time taking pictures and video. The above is the resting place of the Apostle Philip.  Philip was martyred here and during the 5th Century this Basilica was built to hold his remains.  It is called the "Martyrion" and is an octagonal room with eight smaller rooms that open into the larger through 3 arches.  This structure would have had a wooden dome.
 This is part of "St Philips Bridge".  I don't really understand how it was put together but I was amazed at the sheer complexity of this structure.  How did these people built cities of this magnitude?  The water system here was amazing.  Water flowed and was accessible by the people who lived here.  
 This stadium was huge! I couldn't believe how big it looked from far away! (I didn't go to it because it began to rain, hard!)  Terry was amazed at the restoration that was being done here.
 More of the stadium -- I have never had such clear idea of what this part of these massive structures looked like.  They hope to again be able to use this stadium for concerts and other entrainment.  The locals are very excited.  I am sure for the tourist opportunities that the completion of this stadium will bring.
As you can see one of the tombs has been over taken by the travertine waters.  This view is looking back toward Laodocia.   Thank you so much for coming by -- Sheryl


  1. so awed by these sites written about in the Bible!

  2. The stadium you show looks more like a Greek theater. Those are a couple of the best pictures I've ever seen of one. So glad you're having a historically-good time!! Hugs!

  3. AMAZING...I love that T is getting into the picture taking!

  4. Thanks so much for commenting! I am really enjoying doing this and your encouragement means a lot!

  5. Great shots - as always! I couldn't believe the one tomb that had been preserved like that in the travertine ancient waters. Amazing sites! xo