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Konya History

Konya is considered as one of the first inhabited areas in the world dating back to the 7th millennium in the Prehistoric Period. Archaeological studies carried out in Çatalhöyük demonstrate that the area was inhabited in that time.

Hittites inhabited at Karahoyuk in the outskirts of the city in the 2nd millennium and called the city Kuwanna. Then came the Phrygians from the Thracia and the city was named Kowania. Then Persians, Iskenderuns, Bergamans, Romans and Byzantines governed the city.

During the Roman Times the city was called Iconium and included in the province of Galatia in 25BC. Around 372 AD the city was raised to the status of colony and became the capital of the province of Lycaonia in 372 AD. The Christian saints St. Paul and St. Barnabas visited the city and preached there.

When the Seljuks defeated the Byzantines in the battle of Malazgirt a large part of Anatolia was captured including Iconium. Iconium was renamed to Konya and declared as the capital of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rum in 1076 by the Sultan of Anatolian Seljuks, Suleyman Shah. In 1080 Iznik was declared the capital city but in 1097 Kilic Aslan I, declared once the city of Konya as the capital city. Konya was the capital of Selujks until 1277.

During the Seljuks period the Moslem mystic MEVLANA CELALEDDIN (Jalaluddin) RUMI founded the sect of Whirling Dervishes and established a centre for the teaching of mystic philosophy and Sufi practice.

The Ottomans took the city in 1442 and felt under the power of the Sultan Murad II. During the Ottoman period Konya continued with its reputation and enjoyed many years of esteem. After the declination of the Ottoman reign, Konya grew larger and developed rapidly in the new republic era.

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