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A Brief History of Hattusha/Boğazköy

The first "settling in" around Boğazköy took place in the 6th millennium BC during the Chalcolithic period, when small widely scattered hamlets appeared most particularly on mountain slopes and rocky outcroppings.

Late in the 3rd millenium BC, towards the end of the Early Bronze Age, a Hattian settlement developed, marking the beginning of continuous occupation at the site. The Hattians, native Anatolians, called their town Hattush.

During the Middle Bronze Age the Hattian occupation grew into a city of such significance that a Karum was established here in the 19th and 18th centuries BC - a trading post of Assyrian merchants who had come from Assur. With their caravans of donkeys they transported goods to and from Mesopotamia, and along their route they also dealt in local Anatolian products, thus stimulating a certain "globalization". It was these Assyrian traders who first introduced writing to Anatolia.

The ruins excavated demonstrate that the city of Hattush was burned down in a great conflagration around 1700 BC. Responsible was King Anitta from Kussar, who also put a curse on the site. But already by the second half of the 17th century BC the temptation to settle here again had obviously become overwhelming, for a Hittite king had indeed chosen the site as his residence and capital. The Hattian Hattush was now the Hittite Hattusha, and the king took the name of Hattushili, or "one from Hattusha." This is the beginning of the story of the Hittite capital and the Hittite Royals - until now, 27 kings are known by their names.

The Old Hittite city comprised an area of almost 1 square kilometer; it was protected by a massive fortification wall. On the high ridge of Büyükkale was the residence of the Great King, and the city lay on the slope below to the northwest, reaching to the valley below. In the course of time great effort was spent on the development of the Upper City. This area south of the Old City was included into the city limits through the erection of a new 3.3-km long defense wall with several monumental gates, thus bringing the size of the city to 182 hectares. Within the wall a great many large structures were built, among them many temples - houses for "the Thousand Gods of the Hatti Land".

If you want to know more details about the history of the city, please click  here