Water is civilization. One of the best examples of that can be found in Anatolia. The region Yeşilırmak runs through rightfully deserves the title “cradle of civilizations” with water basins that have nurtured the fertile soils for thousands of years and the sea.
Contributor: MUSTAFA ÖZKAN Photography: MEHMET HOSTALI
And Yeşilırmak… It is referred to as “Iris” in Ancient philosopher Strabon’s works. It rises in the foots of Kösedağ on Sivas border and flows into Black Sea. That river which takes a lament from an orphan’s mouth and leaves it in another town, for many years on Anatolian lands. It flows with the excitement of weddings during harvest season and brings them to another country. It is as if a historical journey takes place on Yeşilırmak. Amasya is the first city that appears in mind when Yeşilırmak is mentioned. One must go back thousands of years to narrate Amasya’s story. It is surrounded by mountains as if guarded by a natural fortress. King tombs on the mountains indicate that the kings also lived in this safe area. Amasya later became a Seljuk and Ottoman city in this secure and fertile flatland nurtured by the river. Today, Amasya is an open-air museum as numerous artefacts dating back to ancient civilizations still stand.
CITY OF PRINCES
Amasya enriched with the legacy of numerous civilizations throughout the history, was a healing centre for many years with its hospital that raised tens of prominent medical scientists. It became known as the city where princes were raised and which shaped the future of this great empire. Yıldırım Beyazıt (Bayezid I), Mehmed I, Murat II, Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror, Bayezid II, Selim I and Murat II studied in Amasya. These princes had numerous works built in Amasya both because they took interest in the region and followed state matters. Today there is a giant library in Amasya where a good number of rare manuscripts are preserved. It is possible to find tens of works from beylik period to Republic in this precious building. Yeşilırmak also gives life to legendary romances. The love of Ferhat and Şirin blossomed here. Ferhat’s love, who dug through mountains around Amasya to rejoin with his beloved, was heard from neighbouring cities Samsun and Tokat. So that Yeşilırmak does not only carry water but it carries poetry, myths, civilization from these lands to the world…