Named as Pergamon in Ancient Age, Bergama has been an important center of population throughout the history. In this article, you can find information about the history of the Bergama Acropolis as well as the entrance fee and visiting hours for this archaeological site. Pergamon Ancient City is located in Izmir, Turkey.
Acropolis is recognized as the first settlement in the city of Pergamon. Located 300 meters above the sea level, Acropolis is home to the structures dating back to Roman Era. You should definitely take a look at this ancient city that protects the gorgeousness of Greco-Roman Era when you visit Western Coast of Turkey.
What is Acropolis?
Acropolis was a kind of settlement in Ancient Greece. The word is originated from acro (topmost, outermost) and polis (city) in Greek. The settlements founded on high grounds and hosting important buildings such as temples, treasure buildings and government agencies were called as Acropolis.
In ancient Greece, almost every city had its own Acropolis. These settlements would never be abandoned in wartime because they hosted treasures, documents and important buildings of the state.
The History of Bergama (Pergamon)
The structures dating back to Roman Empire stand out in Bergama Acropolis Archeological Site in our time. However, studies show that the history of Pergamon goes even back to 3000 BC. Even though it still has not been determined the identities of the nations lived there, it is possible to speculate that this place has been an important settlement since Bronze Age. According to some historians, Acropolis is located on an old and extinct volcano.
Pergamon was one of the important cities of the state of Asia Minor that was loyal to the empire in Roman era. In addition to this, a city called as Pergamon was mentioned in the book of Pausanias, a Lydian geographer, and the famous book of Xenophon titled as “The March of the Ten Thousand”. In this regard, it is possible to date Acropolis as a city-state back to Ancient Greek Period.
What to See in Bergama (Pergamon)
Acropolis was located 300 meters above the sea, at the peak point of ancient city of Pergamon. The ancient city of Pergamon is known today as the Bergama Acropolis. Bergama archaeological site is located in Izmir, Turkey.
Studies show that the family of the king, the commanders, the intelligentsia and the ruling class were living at Pergamon. Also, there were temples, stores, state buildings, aqueducts and agoras (marketplace) within the boundaries of this settlement.
Today, you can see some of these artifacts from the ancient city of Pergamon in the Bergama Archaeological Site.
1. The Temple of Trajan
Located at the peak point of the Bergama, the Temple of Trajan was built on behalf of Trajan, the Roman Emperor, by Hadrian, the successor of him, in 125 AD. Also known as Trajaneum, the temple was reinvigorated by German Archeological Institute in 1976 even though it was destroyed in time.
2. The Temple of Athena
While the construction started at the second half of the 6th century, it is unknown the date of the final completion of the Temple of Athena. Possessing a Doric and Ionian style in its architecture, the temple does not include an altar and this makes it a unique structure. The reliefs on the walls of the temple can still be seen today.
3. Theatre of Pergamon
A good part of the Theatre of Pergamon still remains standing and it is recognized as the most important architectural monuments of Hellenistic Period. Having the capacity for 10.000 people, it was also the first theatre that had a wooden stage at that time.
4. Temple of Dionysus
Located at the north of the terrace of the theatre, the Temple of Dionysus is recognized as one of the unique monuments that represent the architectural style of Ionian Period. It is good to state that the altar located inside the temple has survived until today. Some of the pieces of this temple are located at the Pergamon Museum in Berlin.
5. Library of Pergamon
Dedicated to Athena, the goddess of wisdom, the Library of Pergamon was recognized as the second biggest library and cultural center after the Library of Alexandria when it was operating. In fact, it is known that the Ancient Egypt banned the exportation of papyrus because of the competition between these two libraries.
When we examine the etymology of the word “parchment”, we can see that this word comes from the word stem “Pergamae Chartae” meaning “Pergamon Paper”. This paper was invented after the Egyptians banned the exportation of papyrus to be able to bring new works of art in the library located at this Acropolis.
Bergama Acropolis Entrance Fee
Entrance fee for Bergama Acropolis is 50 Turkish Lira. As Pergamon is an archaeological site under the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, Museum Pass Turkey is valid at the entrance.
Bergama Acropolis Opening Hours
Bergama Acropolis can be visited between 08:00 and 19:00 in the summer period from April 1 to October 1. It is closed to visitors at 17:30 in the winter period between October 1 and April 1.
There may be changes in the opening hours of the Bergama Acropolis due to some activities and renovations. So you can visit the official website of the ancient city to see the latest situation before you go.
History of the Bergama Acropolis by Serhat Engul