Aspendos or Belkıs is an ancient city famous for its ancient theater located in the village of Belkıs in the Serik district of Antalya province. It is one of the richest cities of Pamfilya.
Aspendos, 8 kilometers east of Serik district, where it reaches the plain from the mountainous region of Köprüçayı. It was founded by the Achaeans in the 10th century and is one of the rich cities of the ancient period. The theater here was built by the Romans in the 2nd century AD. The city was built on two hills, one large and one small.
History of Aspendos Theater
Geographer Strabon and Pamponrus Mela write that the city was founded by the Agrus. Greek immigration to the region after 1200 BC, whereas the source of the name Aspendos is the native Anatolian language before the Greeks. Aspendos was among the cities that were wanted to be seized in every age, as it is on an important trade route and is connected to the port with Köprüçay River.
The most important structure of Aspendos is its theater. It is an open-air theater that has been preserved in the best way among ancient theaters. This theater is the oldest and strongest example of Roman Theaters in Anatolia that can survive with its stage. Its architect is Zenon, the son of Theodorus of Aspendos. It was started in the time of Antonius Piu and completed in the time of Marcus Aurelius (138-164). The theater was presented to the emperor family with the city's native gods.
Thousands of local and foreign tourists visit Aspendos every year. The ancient theater is also used for concerts, events.
There is also a small story of the Aspendos Antique Theatre. The king of Aspendos once had a very beautiful daughter whom everyone wanted to marry. As the king did not know to whom to give his daughter, he announced to the people, "I will give my daughter to him who does the most beneficial thing for our people, our city." Thereupon, the two twin brothers build two large structures. Aqueducts, one of which is far from the city, bringing water through its complex roads, passing many difficulties; It is the best acoustic theater in the world, where your voice can be heard even from the top rows when a coin is thrown on the ground in the middle of it. After seeing the aqueducts, the king wants to give his daughter to the builder of the aqueducts. Thereupon, Zenon, the architect of the theatre, plays a game for the king. The king hears a whisper as he walks through the top of the theatre: “The king must give his daughter to me” Admiring the acoustics, the king cut his daughter in half with a great sword and gave it to the brothers.