Can you imagine an underground city where up to 70,000 people ate, slept and worshiped? Imagine no more, because researchers in Turkey recently discovered just such a city.
Archaeologists have dug up artifacts from the second and third centuries CE. That is the period from 101 to 300 of the Common Era, or a REALLY, REALLY long time ago.
The archaeologists were excavating in the Midyat District when they came upon a cave. Within that cave, the scientists say they found passageways, corridors, silos, water wells and even places of worship. According to Gani Tarkan, who directs the Mardin Museum and headed up the excavation, “[a]s it is known, Christianity was not an official religion in the second century.”
Because of this, the residents of this newly discovered underground city may have been hiding out. These residents might have been some of the first Christians and thus were trying to escape from persecution from Rome.
It’s amazing to think about having a religious conviction so strong that you would be willing to first, perform the very hard work of building a city underground and second, to live and raise your family there. While primitive tools existed back then, and they were masters at using what they had, it’s still hard to imagine not having the kind of implements we have today to construct such a place that could house such a huge number of people.
It will certainly be interesting to learn more about this newly discovered ancient underground city. Do you think, if it did in fact house 60-70,000 people, it is likely the largest city of its kind?