Hattusa (Hattusha), Turkey Week 119 July 13th 2013
I'd taken a taxi to Taksim. But walked back.

A bit out of the way but this is the aquaduct.

There's a dip in the ridge between the source of water and the palace.

On the left is a British "Wicked" camper.

And a couple of Aussies who thought to cover it up a bit for a trip through a Muslim country.

On the right is another Aussie couple in German registered motorhome. From Gladstone.

Only  a few others in the sports club car park.

A 5am start.

Out of Istanbul before the traffic starts.

Plus we have a bit of catching up to do.

Not serious, we are a week behind the plan.

Through the mountains.
To the drier areas to the east.
Through our (hopefully) last toll gate.

We've learned that HGS and OGS are two different toll companies.

Most mosques we've seen have been in or close to residential areas.

This one seemed to be in an industrial area.

And this one hasn't been finished yet.

In Hagia Sophia the arches supporting the dome didn't have any intermediate supports.

There were "half domes" outwards from the arches, which in turn were buttressed.

If they don't build it right this is what happens.

Mud bricks again.


And other grains.

Hattusa was the Hittite capital.

Part of the system of city states that pervades this part of the Mediterranean.

There's a "free information" place on the way to the ticket office. Trying to sell tractor / trailer tours.

We drove ourselves. A very reasonable 5TL entry fee. A booklet. And about 5km of road circuit.

Easier to work backwards.

The last Hittite King was Supiluliuma II around 1200 BC.

Settlement has been traced back to 3rd millenium BC.

I worked backwards because the archeologists like to claim great age for their finds but here have been vague about the upper layers.

This is the Lower Town and the Great Temple.

When the Hittites arrived around two thousand BC the Hattians were already here.

Then the Hittites. Then the Greeks, Romans, and Turks.

The Kadesh Peace Treaty, signed in 1269 BC between Hattushili III and the Egyptian Ramises II was the first written (cuneiform) peace treaty which still exists (in the Istanbul Museum).

Not a word about this.

In any of the signs or leaflet that is.

Possibly some form of nephrite (jade / greenstone).

It looks most out of place among the limestone though we did find smaller fragments.

The 64,000 mud brick question.

That's how many mud bricks the experimental archaeologists needed to build this section of wall.

I'm not sure with the accuracy of the parabolic ramparts, but they are certainly distinctive.

And who am I to say!

What caught our attention though was the stonework.

The foundations are stone. With paths laid out.

The store rooms had storage jars.
The center of the temple has a large square open area.

The walls and roof would have been wood.

The wood for the walls would have been located in the holes cut in the stones.
The Lion's Gate.

The curve of the arch is about parabolic.

Not at all like our truck springs.

The archaeologists have excavated then laid the stonework in straight lines, rather than how it would have been after building collapse.
Difficult to know what the original stonework would have really looked like.
Yerkapi is at the high point.

Methinks the stones either side have been restored by different people.

The Sphinx Gate is at the high point.

Two of the sphinxes were taken to the Berlin Museum in 1907 for restoration. One was returned to Istanbul in 1924. Both are now in the local museum in Bogazkale.

The Upper City from atop Yerkapi.
The outer face of Yerkapi is paved at about the angle of a pyramid.

Under it is a tunnel.

Easy to walk through upright.

My guess it was to save people the effort of climbing over Yerkapi.

The King's Gate.

The stone carving is a cast of the original.

More of the parabolas.
And what the parabola would have looked like with a top.

This is "cult chamber 1".

"Cult Chamber II" is more interesting. With hieroglyphics.

Built by Supiluliuma II around 1200 BC.

It records conquests and other personal achievements, as Kings are wont to do.

That parabola again.

Though I think archeologists may not be mathematicians. Or the Hittite architects and stone masons not that precise.

Roughly y = -0.5x2

Though its not a very good fit. Its hard to find a parabola that would be parallel near the floor and relatively sharp at the apex.

The back wall has a depiction of an unnamed god, in a cloak with a winged sun disc above his head.

The Hittites were polytheistic.

Part of the Royal Citadel.

13th century BC.

And the lower city from the citadel.

We've driven 672 km today. Our third longest day of the entire trip.

Tomorrow will be similar on the way to Nemrut Dagi. Though we expect less good roads.

The China Visa episode was a bit like being swallowed by a snake. Now we are in search of ladders.

We are camped at the roadside a bit south of Hattusa.

Nemrut Dagi, Turkey Week 120 July 14th

Kay Brown Mon, 22 Jul 13 15:09:49 +1000

I have the archaeologist's book on Hattusa. Good stuff. You can borrow it when you return. It is an amazing site.


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