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Ancyra Ankara. Capital of the Roman province of Galatia, where Augustus set up
his inscription commemorating achievements of his reign. Now the capital of
modern Turkey (Ankara).
Ancyra (Aγκύρα). A city of Galatia, in Asia Minor, originally the
chief city of a Gallic tribe named the Tectosages, who came from the south of
France. - Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. New
York. Harper and Brothers.
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Ancyra (Angora or Engareh), a town of Galatia, near a small stream, which
seems to enter the Sangarius. Ancyra originally belonged to Phrygia. The
mythical founder was Midas, the son of Gordius. (Paus. 1.4.) Midas found an
anchor on the spot, and accordingly gave the name to the town; a story which,
would imply that the name for anchor (ἄγκυρα) was the same in the Greek and in
the Phrygian languages. Pausanias confirms the story by saying that the anchor
remained to his time in the temple of Zeus. Stephanus (s. v. Ἄγκυρα) gives
another story about the name, which is chronologically false, if Aneyra was so
called in the time of Alexander. (Arrian. Anab. 2.4.) The town became the chief
place of the Tectosages (Strab. p. 567), a Gallic tribe from the neighbourhood
of Toulouse, which [1.134] settled in these parts about B.C. 277. [GALATIA] The
Galatae were subjected by the Romans under Cn. Manlius, B.C. 189, who advanced
as far as An. cyra, and fought a battle with the Tectosages near the town. (Liv.
38.24.) When Galatia was formally made a Roman province, B.C. 25, Ancyra was
dignified with the name Sebaste, which is equivalent to Augusta, with the
addition of Tectosagum, to distinguish it from Pessinus and Tavium, which were
honoured with the same title of Sebaste. Ancyra had also the title of
Metropolis, as the coins from Nero's time show. Most of the coins of Ancyra have
a figure of an anchor on them.
The position of Ancyra made it a place of great trade, for it lay on the road
from Byzantium to Tavium and Armenia, and also on the road from Byzantium to
Syria. It is probable, also, that the silky hair of the Angora goat may, in
ancient as in modern times, have formed one of the staples of the place. The
hills about Angora are favourable to the feeding of the goat. The chief monument
of antiquity at Ancyra is the marble temple of Augustus, which was built in the
lifetime of the emperor. The walls appear to be entire, with the exception of a
small portion of one side of the cella. On the inside of the antae of the temple
is the Latin inscription commonly called the Monumentum or Marmor Ancyranum.
Augustus (Suet. Aug. 101) left behind him a record of his actions, which, it was
his will, should be cut on bronze tablets, which were to be placed in front of
his Mausoleum. A copy of this memorable record was cut on the walls of this
temple at Ancyra, both in Greek and Latin. We must suppose that the Ancyrani
obtained permission from the Roman senate or Tiberius to have a transcript of
this record to place in the temple of Augustus, to whom they had given divine
honours in his lifetime, as the passage from Josephus (J. AJ 16.10), when
properly corrected, shows. (See Is. Casaub. in Ancyran. Marmor. Animadv.) The
Latin inscription appears to have been first copied by Busbequius about the
middle of the sixteenth century, and it has been copied by several others since.
The latest copy has been made by Mr. Hamilton, and his copy contains some
corrections on former transcripts. A Greek inscription on the outer wall of the
cella had been noticed by Pococke and Texier, but, with the exception of a small
part, it was concealed by houses built against the temple. By removing the mud
wall which was built against the temple, Hamilton was enabled to copy part of
the Greek inscription. So much of it as is still legible is contained in the
Appendix to his second volume of Researches in Asia Minor, &c. This transcript
of the Greek version is valuable, because it supplies some defects in our copies
of the Latin original. A Greek inscription in front of one of the antae of the
temple seems to show that it was dedicated to the god Augustus and the goddess
Rome. Hamilton copied numerous Greek inscriptions from various parts of the
town. (Appendix, vol. ii.). Angora is still a considerable town, with a large
population. - Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography, William
Smith, LLD, Ed.
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