Tripolis on the Maeander under Roman Rule (Cent. 2nd B.C. - 3rd A.D.): History and Epigraphy

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This paper aims at depicting the historical and administrative geography of Tripolis on the Maeander (Lydia, Anatolia) within the Roman province Asia since its institution (129 B.C.) up to the provincial reform of Diocletian (late 3rd cent. A.D.). Tripolis traditionally belonged to the south-eastern part of Lydia, which in the Lykos Valley, and especially along the Maeander’s stream, met and mingled with Caria and Phrygia. The changes of names have an important historical meaning for the city, since the Hellenistic age (Apollonia) up to the Civil Wars of the late 1st cent. B.C. (Antoniopolis, Tripolis). Three wars can be considered as turning points for the Greek cities in Roman Asia: the Aristonicus’ revolt (133-130 B.C.), the first mithridatic war (89-85 B.C.), and the Parthian invasion of Labienus (40-38 B.C.) – these happenings must have involved in some way Tripolis, as they actually did with Laodikeia and Aphrodisias. Some administrative transformations can be detected during the Imperial age: according to the Roman system of juridical districts (conventus, dioikeseis), Tripolis belonged firstly to the conventus of Sardeis (under Augustus), then to Apameia’s (under the Flavians), later to one among the three newly established districts of Laodikeia, Hierapolis, and Philadelpheia (under Hadrian and/or Antoninus Pius). Finally Diocletian divided the province Asia in lesser administrative units: in Late Antiquity Tripolis was therefore ascribed to the province Lydia (capital Sardeis), as is also stated by some official documents of the age of Justinian (6th cent.). Epigraphy and numismatics offer also important data for the history of religious cults in Tripolis.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationTripolis Arastirmalari
Number of pages11
Publication statusPublished - 2017


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