Phrygia was an ancient kingdom located in the central-western region of Anatolia, modern-day Turkey. It was a significant cultural and political center during the Bronze Age and Iron Age. The Phrygians were known for their unique language, art, and mythology.
The region of Phrygia was bounded by the Aegean Sea to the west, Lydia to the south, Galatia to the east, and Bithynia to the north. It was a landlocked region with rugged terrain surrounded by high mountains. The region’s climate was continental with hot summers and cold winters.
Phrygia’s history dates back to at least 1200 BCE when it was inhabited by Indo-European tribes. During the 8th century BCE, Phrygia emerged as a powerful kingdom under King Midas. He is famous for his golden touch and his legendary encounter with Dionysus.
In 696 BCE, Phrygia was conquered by the Cimmerians but regained its independence shortly after. In 676 BCE, it fell to Assyria but became independent again after Assyria’s decline.
During the Persian Empire’s reign in Anatolia (550-333 BCE), Phrygia became a satrapy (province) under Persian rule. After Alexander the Great’s conquest of Asia Minor in 334 BCE, Phrygia became part of his empire.
The Phrygians were known for their distinctive culture that blended Anatolian and Indo-European elements. They had their language, which is still not fully understood today. Their art included pottery decorated with animal motifs and bronze figurines depicting gods and goddesses.
The most famous monument of Phrygia is the rock-cut shrine known as Midas City or Yazılıkaya near Eskişehir. The shrine features rock-carved reliefs of Phrygian deities, including the mother goddess Cybele and her son Attis.
Phrygia was a significant kingdom in ancient Anatolia that played a vital role in the region’s political and cultural history. Its legacy lives on through its art, mythology, and language. Today, Phrygia is a popular tourist destination for those interested in ancient history.