The Land of the Amazons

Themiskyra at the river Thermodon

T he home of the warlike Amazons was never a fantasy world for the ancient Greeks, but was quite definite. It was the country at the mouth of the river Thermodon in Northern Turkey. Today the name of this river is rather the same - Terme Çay.
This river flows about 50 km east of the coastal town Samsun into the Black Sea. This region consists of a fertile plain which is very secluded. In the South and East there are high mountains, in the West flows the broad river Yesil Irmak and in the North there is the Black Sea.
The Amazons were reputed as skilled horsewomen, and even today you can see horses running free at that place.
At the banks of the river Thermodon there was Themiskyra - the famous town of the Amazons.

But where was Themiskyra situated?

Until now Themiskyra was not yet discovered, however it was not thoroughly searched for it! But there are numerous very ancient traces of a refined culture in this area.

female buttock with tattoos
Female buttock with tattoos (?)
female Idol from Dündartepe
Female Idol from Dündartepe

In Dündartepe, near the sea coast some kilometers east of the town Samsun, there were found the remains of a approximately 4000 till 5000 years old settlement. The most interesting fact of this excavation was that the finds there are quite different to the contemporary finds outside this area.
Furthermore the finds allow the conjecture that in this culture women had a preeminent position!

More detailed information about Dündartepe and more photos you find in the Amazon Research Center.

Karpu Kale
fortress of Kapru Kale

Near the spring of the Thermodon (today Terme Çay) in the southern mountain area there are the ruins of a fortress which is extremely inaccessible. Though very unapproachable and very destroyed, it still represents a mighty monument which conveys that this fortress must have been an important place.
Was it the last refuge for the hard-pressed Amazons?

More detailed information about Kapru Kale and more photos you find in the Amazon Research Center.

Aretias - Island of the Amazons
Giresun Adasi

Aretias, today Giresun Adasi, is the one and only island along the whole south coast of the Black Sea, and it is a place of mystic appearance. Even today cultic rites are performed there. It seems that there is a continuity from the Bronze Age till today. It was the sacred island of the Amazons, in the Middle Ages there has been a Byzantine monastery, and today it is a place of pre-islamic rites. There is the mystic Stone of Hamza where wishes shall become true, and every year there is a festival which is dominated by women.

More detailed information about the Island of the Amazons - Aretias - you find in the Amazon Research Center.

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Gerhard Pöllauer: The Lost History of the Amazons.