Memeç Kayalıkları in Phrygia




The Rock Settlement  

The early Christian rock settlement of Memeç Kayalıkları, carved into the soft tuff, was built in the immediate vicinity of the Emre Gölü near the village of Döğer. The famous Phrygian monument Arslankaya is 1.3 kilometres away.


Rock church  

The settlement was inhabited until Byzantine times, when some of the former residential caves were converted into churches.


Ground dwelling  

As in Cappadocia, early Christians as well as Byzantine monks used the soft tuff stone for their cave dwellings and cave churches.

In the Ground dwelling  

The settlement of the area, today the Phrygian Valley, took place around 8000-7500 B.C., parallel to the settlement of Cappadocia in the east. The earliest traces of settlers date back to the time around 6500 BC. The Hittites also made use of the fertile soil as early as 1600 BC and cultivated grain. Later the Phrygians and Lyder came, then in the late 7th century B.C. the Medes, which were replaced however soon (starting from 546 B.C.) by the Persians. In the winter from 334 to 333 BC Alexander the Great came to Phrygia. Translated with


View from one of the living caves  

BView from one of the living caves  



Around 274 BC Celtic Galatians were settled by the Diadochian ruler Antiochos I. Soter in the eastern part of Phrygia. After them this area was soon also called Galatia. Around the middle of the 1st century B.C. Phrygia became Roman and belonged from then on to the province Asia. Galatia was a Roman clientele state and was only affiliated to the Roman Empire under the rule of Augustus.






The most important city of Phrygia was Gordion, situated on the river Sangarios (today Sakarya), 80 kilometers southwest of Ankara. Kelainai, located in the south of Phrygia, was the residence of the Persian kings and, after Ephesus, was the most important market town in Asia Minor in Roman times. The capital Colossai, to whose Christian community the apostle Paul wrote a letter, was mentioned in late antiquity.

Photos: @chim, Monika P.    
Translation aid:    
Source: Wikipedia and others