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Map of the Roman Empire - Patara
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Ancient Patara A city of Lycia on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey mentioned in the Bible in Acts 21:1 as the place where Paul of Tarsus and Luke changed ships. In New Testament times Patara had a natural harbour and was known for its temple and worship of Apollo and a celebrated oracle.
Acts 21:1 - And it came to pass, that after we were gotten from them, and had launched, we came with a straight course unto Coos, and the [day] following unto Rhodes, and from thence unto Patara:
Patara (τὰ Πάταρα). One of the chief cities of Lycia, situated on the coast a few miles east of the mouth of the Xanthus. It was early colonized by Dorians from Crete, and became a chief seat of the worship of Apollo, who had here a very celebrated oracle, which uttered responses in the winter only. Hence Apollo is called by Horace Delius et Patareus Apollo (Carm. iii. 4, 64). - Harry Thurston Peck. Harpers Dictionary of Classical Antiquities. New York. Harper and Brothers. 1898.
Patara (Lycian: Pttara), later renamed Arsinoe (Greek: Ἀρσινόη), was a flourishing maritime and commercial city on the south-west coast of Lycia on the Mediterranean coast of Turkey near the modern small town of Gelemiş, in Antalya Province. It is the birth place of St. Nicholas, who lived most of his life in the nearby town of Myra (Demre)... Possessing a natural harbour, Patara was said to have been founded by Patarus, a son of Apollo. It was situated at a distance of 60 stadia to the southeast of the mouth of the river Xanthos. Patara was noted in antiquity for its temple and oracle of Apollo, second only to that of Delphi. The god is often mentioned with the surname Patareus. Herodotus says that the oracle of Apollo was delivered by a priestess only during a certain period of the year; and from Servius we learn that this period was the six winter months. It seems certain that Patara received Dorian settlers from Crete; and the worship of Apollo was certainly Dorian. Ancient writers mentioned Patara as one of the principal cities of Lycia. It was Lycia's primary seaport, and a leading city of the Lycian League, having 3 votes, the maximum. The city, with the rest of Lycia, surrendered to Alexander the Great in 333 BC. During the Wars of the Diadochi, it was occupied in turn by Antigonus and Demetrius, before finally falling to the Ptolemies. Strabo informs us that Ptolemy Philadelphus of Egypt, who enlarged the city, gave it the name of Arsinoe (Arsinoë) after Arsinoe II of Egypt, his wife and sister, but it continued to be called by its ancient name, Patara. Antiochus III captured Patara in 196 BC. The Rhodians occupied the city, and as a Roman ally, the city with the rest of Lycia was granted its freedom in 167 BC. In 88 BC, the city suffered siege by Mithridates IV, king of Pontus and was captured by Brutus and Cassius, during their campaign against Mark Antony and Augustus. It was spared the massacres that were inflicted on nearby Xanthos. Patara was formally annexed by the Roman Empire in 43 AD and attached to Pamphylia. Patara is mentioned in the New Testament as the place where Paul of Tarsus and Luke changed ships. - Wikipedia
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