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There are places, that are called “sun cities”. Mardin is one of these cities.
Also called Martin, Mertin, it is a city in Western Armenia, in the vilayet of Diyarbekir. Mardin is an old fortress-city and is now under the protection of UNESCO. The castle, which was built by Hamdanis in 975-976, is 1200m above the sea level. It’s not a coincidence, that it was first called Al-Baz, which means a castle of hawks. In the course of time it  renamed Kal-At Garap (a castle of ravens) and now it is known by this name.
The first inhabitants of Mardin appeared there in 6500-6000 B.C. In 1914 it had 25000 mix population, 1500 of which were Armenians, the others were Turks, Assyrians, Kurds, Arabs and others. Mardin was ruled by Persians in 6-4 centuries. In 1104 Arkudiks became the owners of Mardin. Till 1517, the city was under control of the ruler of Safev – Ismail Pasha, after whom the city was conquered by Ottomans by this ending the instable history of the city. The word “merdin”, which in Syrian legends means “fortresses”, is the root of the name of the city. When one Byzantine general killed a priest whose name was Din, the city started to call Mateidin, which meant – Din is killed.

Photo Gallery
  • Mardin, Cilicia
  • Assyrian religious center, Mardin
  • Mardin
  • Mardin at night
The Fortress of Mardin

The fortress which was built by Manadis in 975-976, which is about 1200m above the sea level. In Mardin Armenians had two churches and a school. St. Gevorg, which is known as Karmir (Red) church was built by Armenian Grigoryans.

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Tour to Western Armenia
Tour to Western Armenia
Tour to Western Armenia
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