Zeugma is an ancient city of Commagene; currently located in the Gaziantep Province of Turkey. It is a historical settlement which is considered among the four most important settlement areas under the reign of the kingdom of Commagene. It was named for the bridge of boats, or Zeugma, which crossed the Euphrates there. The ancient city of Zeugma was originally founded as a Greek settlement by Seleucus I Nicator, one of the generals of Alexander the Great, in 300 BC. King Seleucus almost certainly named the city Seleucia after himself; whether this city is, or can be, the city known as Seleucia on the Euphrates or Seleucia at the Zeugma is disputed. The population in the city at its peak was approximately 80,000. In 64 BC Zeugma was conquered and ruled by the Roman Empire and with this shift the name of the city was changed into Zeugma, meaning "bridge-passage" or "bridge of boats". During Roman rule, the city became one of the attractions in the region, due to its commercial potential originating from its geo-strategic location because the city was on the Silk Road connecting Antioch to China with a quay or pontoon bridge across the river Euphrates which was the border with the Persian Empire until the late 2nd century.
In 1987 the Gaziantep Museum excavated two tomb chambers which had been broken into by antiquity smugglers in the necropolis southwest of Zeugma, revealing frescos on the walls and statues on the terraces in front of the chambers. These statues are now in the Zeugma Mosaic Museum, Gaziantep.
Zeugma Mosaic Museum, in the town of Gaziantep, Turkey, is the biggest mosaic museum on the world, containing 1700m2 of mosaics. It opened to the public on 9 September 2011.
The museum's mosaics are focused on Zeugma, thought to have been founded by a general in Alexander the Great’s army. The treasures, including the mosaics, remained relatively unknown until 2000 when artifacts appeared in museums and when plans for new dams on the Euphrates meant that much of Zeugma would be forever flooded. A large number of the mosaics still remain uncovered and teams of researchers continue to work on the project.
Zeugma Mosaic Museum - Gaziantep
Rape of Europa
All mosaics are from the villas of Zeugma, used as house decorations in floor
Sitting woman sculpture found in a room of villa at Zeugma. Roman Period, Lime Stone.
Bronze Mars Statue of Zeugma, famous with his raging facial expression
Original place of the city Zeugma
Excavations of Zeugma
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