Alexandria's founded by Alexander

Alexandria's founded by Alexander the Great (by year BC): 334 Alexandria in Troia (Turkey) - 333 Alexandria at Issus/Alexandrette (Iskenderun, Turkey) - 332 Alexandria of Caria/by the Latmos (Alinda, Turkey) - 331 Alexandria Mygdoniae - 331 Alexandria (Egypt) - 330 Alexandria Ariana (Herat, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria of the Prophthasia/in Dragiana/Phrada (Farah, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in Arachosia (Kandahar, Afghanistan) - 330 Alexandria in the Caucasus (Begram, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria of the Paropanisades (Ghazni, Afghanistan) - 329 Alexandria Eschate or Ultima (Khodjend, Tajikistan) - 329 Alexandria on the Oxus (Termez, Afghanistan) - 328 Alexandria in Margiana (Merv, Turkmenistan) - 326 Alexandria Nicaea (on the Hydaspes, India) - 326 Alexandria Bucephala (on the Hydaspes, India) - 325 Alexandria Sogdia - 325 Alexandria Oreitide - 325 Alexandria in Opiene / Alexandria on the Indus (confluence of Indus & Acesines, India) - 325 Alexandria Rambacia (Bela, Pakistan) - 325 Alexandria Xylinepolis (Patala, India) - 325 Alexandria in Carminia (Gulashkird, Iran) - 324 Alexandria-on-the-Tigris/Antiochia-in-Susiana/Charax (Spasinou Charax on the Tigris, Iraq) - ?Alexandria of Carmahle? (Kahnu)

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Across the Hellespont by Richard Stoneman

Richard Stoneman’s approach to discover Turkey in his book Across the Hellespont (ISBN 978-1-84885-422-2) is quite unique and the subtitle “A Literary Guide to Turkey” in fact says it all.

Rather than a dreary sequence of texts, the author ably summarizes Turkey’s rich history inserting pieces of literature ranging from antiquity to modern writers. As history progresses, the author shares a panoply of documents, letters and poems written by the countless travelers who from the 17th all the way to the 20th century came in touch with the Ottoman Empire of which close to nothing had transpired to the West.

The main part of the book is centered on Istanbul (Stamboul or Constantinople as the city was known before) but also the western part of modern Turkey with the regions of Ionia and Lydia, Lycia and the now popular Turkish Riviera are widely illustrated by those early visitors.

Moreover, this book provides plenty of information to whoever wants to dig further into Turkey’s rich history. All the quoted texts are extremely well referenced and the most curious mind can certainly pick his choice from the elaborate Bibliography and Guide to Further Reading listed at the end of the book, from biographies to fiction, from modern accounts to guidebooks, from Turkish history to more specialized books about Istanbul

In spite of these bits and pieces, Richard Stoneman manages to write a coherent and captivating story about this land on the crossroad between East and West that fascinated and still fascinates so many of us.

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