What Was Turkey Called Before in Ancient Times?

Turkey, the transcontinental country that bridges both Asia and Europe, has a long and rich history. Its name has evolved over the ages, just like its culture and society. In ancient times, Turkey was known by different names depending on the region and civilization that inhabited it.

One of the earliest recorded names for this region was “Anatolia,” which means “sunrise” or “east.” This name was given by the ancient Greeks who colonized the area in the 8th century BC. The Greeks also referred to Turkey as “Asia Minor,” which means “the smaller Asia” in contrast to the larger continent of Asia.

During the Roman Empire, Turkey was called “Asia” or “Provincia Asia,” which was one of their most significant territories. The name stuck even after the fall of Rome, and it continued to be used throughout the Byzantine period.

When the Seljuk Turks arrived in Anatolia in the 11th century AD, they called it “Rum” or “Rome.” This name was meant to convey their ambition to become the heirs of Rome’s legacy as a great empire. Hence, they referred to themselves as “Rum Seljuks” or “the Seljuks of Rome.”

During the Ottoman Empire’s reign from 1299 until its dissolution in 1922, Turkey was known as “Ottoman Empire” or simply as “Turkey.” The Ottomans had a profound impact on Turkey’s culture and society during their long reign. They also played a significant role in shaping modern-day Turkey.

In conclusion, Turkey has been known by various names throughout history – Anatolia, Asia Minor, Provincia Asia, Rome (Rum), Ottoman Empire, and finally Turkey. Each name reflects a different era and civilization that left its mark on this beautiful country. Today, Turkey remains an essential bridge between two continents with a unique blend of eastern and western cultures.