Monthly Archives: May 2009


Cyrrhus, Cyrrus, or Kyrros (Greek: Κύρρος) was a city in ancient Syria founded by Seleucus Nicator, one of Alexander the Great’s generals. Other names for the city include Hagioupolis, Nebi Huri نبي حوري, Khoros (Arabic حوروس Ḳūrus). Its ruins are found about 14 km northwest of Kilis, Turkey, near the Syrian border.

Cyrrhus was the capital of the extensive district of Cyrrhestica, between the plain of Antioch and Commagene. A false etymology of the sixth century connects it to Cyrus, King of Persia due to the resemblance of the names.

The site of the city is marked by the ruins at Khoros, 14 km northwest of Kilis, near the village of Afrin. The ruins stand near the river Afrin Marsyas River a tributary of the Orontes, which had been banked up by Bishop Theodoret.

Cyrrhus was founded by Seleucus Nicator shortly after 300 BC, and was named for the Macedonian city of Cyrrhus. It was taken by the Armenian Empire in the 1st century BC, then became Roman when Pompey took Syria in 64 BC. By the 1st century AD, it had become a Roman administrative, military, and commercial center on the trade route between Antioch and the Euphrates River crossing at Zeugma, and minted its own coinage.[1] The Persian Empire took it several times during the 3rd century.[2]

In the 6th century, the city was embellished and fortified by Justinian. It was taken by the Muslims in 637 and by the Crusaders in the 11th century. Nur ud-Din recaptured it in 1150. Muslim travelers of the 13th and 14th century report it both as a large city and as largely in ruins.

Church history

Cyrrus became at an early date a suffragan of Hierapolis Bambyce in Provincia Euphratensis. Eight bishops are known before 536 (Lequien, II, 929; E.W. Brooks, The Sixth Book of the Select Letters of Severus, II, 341). The first was present at First Council of Nicaea in 325. The most celebrated is Theodoret (423-58), a prolific writer, well known for his rôle in the history of Nestorianism and Eutychianism. (His works are in Migne, P.G., LXXX-LXXXIV.) He tells us that his small diocese (about forty miles square) contained 800 churches, which supposes a very dense population.

A magnificent basilica held the relics of Saints Cosmas and Damian, who had suffered martyrdom in the vicinity about 283, and whose bodies had been transported to the city, whence it was also called Hagioupolis. Many holy personages, moreover, chiefly hermits, had been or were then living in this territory, among them Saints Acepsimas, Zeumatius, Zebinas, Polychronius, Maron (the patron of the Maronite Church), Eusebius, Thalassius, Maris, James the Wonder-worker, and others. Theodoret devoted an entire work to the illustration of their virtues and miracles. Under Justinian, it became an independent ecclesiastical metropolis, subject directly to Antioch. The patriarch, Michael the Syrian, names thirteen Jacobite bishops of Cyrrhus from the ninth to the eleventh century (Revue de l’Orient chrétien, 1901, p. 194). Only two Latin titulars are quoted by Lequien (III, 1195).

It remains a Roman Catholic titular see of the ecclesiastical province of Syria.

(info – wikipedia).

Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-49-44

Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-40-03 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-36-22 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-34-56 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-24-48 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-45-07 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-35-36 View From Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 14-19-27 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-31-51 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-36-09 Roman Theatre of Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-41-18 View From Cyrrhus 30-05-2009 13-52-04


North Aleppo

meydanki-h 30-05-2009 12-34-22

basuta-h 30-05-2009 15-35-53 basuta-h 30-05-2009 15-33-56 meydanki-h 30-05-2009 13-06-39 meydanki-h 30-05-2009 13-00-15 meydanki-h 30-05-2009 12-12-16

Andarin and Qasr Ibn Wardan

Andarin is one of the places that clearly shows how rich is Syria in history and how much are still under ground hidden, to be discovered.

Andarin is a large area, about 3 square km, now there are seen two churches unearthed, a bathroom complex, and some walls of the city. The work is ongoing and information is changed as time passes.

What is found is from Byzantine era. The structures are built in mud brick with the more significant buildings in stone, the local volcanic basalt. Two streets are found from north-south and east-west.

Inscriptions are found from the years 506 to 583 but assumed that a lot of works (e.g. walls) are older, some dating back to the second century AD. Barracks are found on the north-east of the main intersection about 80 m in length. They date from AD 558, late in Justinian’s reign during which he carried out extensive defensive works in northern Syria including Resafe to the east and nearby at Qasr Ibn Wardan.

andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-51-58 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-51-01 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-50-39 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-50-39 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-49-58 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-48-54 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-47-58 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-47-15 andarin-h 29-05-2009 16-46-45

Justinian’s other built structures, it lies south to Andarin by 20 km, Qasr Ibn Wardan:

qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-44-44 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-44-00 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-43-12 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-14-13 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-10-27 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-09-17 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-07-31 qasr-ibn-wardan-h 29-05-2009 15-06-24


breij-h 22-05-2009 14-01-10

breij-h 22-05-2009 14-01-24 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-59-18 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-58-37 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-58-29 people-villagers 22-05-2009 14-32-36 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-56-42 breij-h 22-05-2009 14-17-36 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-56-30 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-55-56 breij-h 22-05-2009 13-55-19

Khrbet Sharqiye

Going into the stone piles in the summer! Beware of snakes which are freely sliding around. I think Khrbet is locally named place, it means “ruins”. A more genuine name is not available. It is from byzantine era ruins, as usual in this area of limestone massifs.

khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 13-25-49 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 13-25-36 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 13-04-04 khrbet-gharbiye khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 12-04-52 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 11-49-45 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 11-45-47 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 11-44-49 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 11-43-27 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 11-37-42 khrbet-sharqiye-h 22-05-2009 11-32-29

Khawabi Castle

Khawabi castle is found near Tartous in the mountains. It is inhabited now but people are leaving slowly to the nearby village. The castle is from crusader era, later occupied by Ismaili rule, then abandoned.

khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 14-23-21

khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 14-26-01 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 14-11-50 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 14-08-34 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 14-08-13 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 14-04-30 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 13-59-51 aleppo-damascus-road 15-05-2009 17-58-24 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 13-47-50 khawabi-castle-h 15-05-2009 13-45-17 rasafeh-castle 15-05-2009 12-31-36 rasafeh-castle 15-05-2009 12-30-11

Dar Qita

darqita2009-05-01-h19 darqita2009-05-01-h13 darqita2009-05-01-h10 darqita2009-05-01-h8 darqita2009-05-01-h4 roman-road2009-05-01-h2 bakirha2009-05-01-h3 darqita2009-05-01-h31 darqita2009-05-01-h29 darqita2009-05-01-h22