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Mark Hersh | profile | all galleries >> Vacations 2004-2011 >> Vacation 2011: Turkey! >> Pergamon (near modern Bergama) tree view | thumbnails | slideshow

Pergamon (near modern Bergama)

We traveled all over western and central Turkey by intercity bus. From Canukkale to Bergama we passed many olive groves. And tractor dealerships. I was surprised to see New Holland farm equipment dealers.

At the next four locations we visited ancient cities. Living in a big city ourselves, Jennifer and I had some interesting discussions about life in these cities, and especially how the Greeks and Romans planned and built their cities thinking about the citizen's relationship to the public areas and what kinds of feelings those areas are supposed to evoke. As you walk around your city or town, look closely at the public spaces and note how they make you feel... are they welcoming and inclusive? Do you feel like you belong? Are you glad to be a citizen of that place?

Each of these cities had gates (in part because cities had walls for defense) and those could be elaborate and welcoming to visitors at the same time giving them a sense of the wealth and power of the city. Now we enter cities through an airport (yuck), bus station (worse), train station (in the past, they could be awe-inspiring, now they are a mixed bag), or inside a car, in which you may feel insulated from the place.

The market space of a city ("agora") could also be a pleasant place. Market spaces inside modern US cities are rare and you go to the "mall" usually in the suburbs...

The ruins at Pergamon Acropolis date from the Hellenistic Era (roughly 324 BC to 133 BC and the Roman Era (133 BC to the 4th century AD). We were able to visit the Acropolis but missed the Asklepion ruins. It was an ancient health center (Asklepios was the Greek god of health). We missed it because.... I was ill!
View of the Acropolis
View of the Acropolis
Temple of Trajan
Temple of Trajan
Gallery at lower part of temple
Gallery at lower part of temple
View of Bergama
View of Bergama
The Altar of Zeus
The Altar of Zeus
Aqueduct built in Roman era
Aqueduct built in Roman era
Theater
Theater
View of the gymnasium
View of the gymnasium
Grave markers in museum (and next one)
Grave markers in museum (and next one)
Panel
Panel
Atatürk celebration
Atatürk celebration
Building detail
Building detail