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"Zile", also known as "Zela", is a city and a district of Tokat Province, Turkey. Zile lies to the south of Amasya and the west of Tokat in north-central Turkey. The city has a long history, including being the site of the Battle of Zela, which prompted the phrase "Veni, vidi, vici." Today the city is a center for agricultural marketing and tourism.

Veni Vidi Vici
Historically, Zile has been known as Zela, Zelitis, Zelid, Anzila, Gırgırıye (Karkariye), Zīleh, Zilleli, Zeyli, and Silas. Zela castle, the only solid castle in Anatolia, was built by Roman commander Lucius Cornelius Sulla. The castle contains the Amanos temple, and it is called "silla", meaning "respected". In Semra Meral"s "Her Yönüyle Zile", she claims that the name "Zile" came from "Zela", stemming from "Silla".

According to recent archaeological research, there is evidence of human habitation since Neolithic times in Zile. In his book "Geographica", Strabo claimed that Zile was founded by Semiramis, a legendary Assyrian queen. By 548 BC, Zile and greater Anatolia were under the rule of Achaemenid Persian Empire. Persian rule saw construction a portion of the Royal Road in the area and temples to the Persian gods Anahita, Vohu-Mano, and Anadates in the center of the city. Darius I of Persia divided the largest Anatolian state of that time, Cappadocia, into two, with Zile remaining in Pontus Cappadocia, the northern region.

After roughly 200 years of Persian rule, Alexander the Great captured Zile from Darius III of Persia as a result of the Battle of the Granicus (334 BC). Following Alexander"s death in 323 BC and collapse of his empire, Zile"s rule was transferred to the Seleucid Empire, a Hellenistic successor state of Alexander the Great"s dominion. The Seleucid Empire controlled the area for 200 years but by 0 BC, her power in the region started to collapse. As a consequence, King Mithridates VI of Pontus attacked and conquered Zile in 88 BC and ordered the killing of all Romans currently living there. His orders led nearby Cappadocians to call Rome for help. The Roman army, under Sulla"s command, fought and defeated Mithradates in First Mithridatic War. Mithridates attacked Zile again in 67 BC with the help of his Armenian ally Tigranes the Great, king of Greater Armenia. He defeated Valerius Trianus, lieutenant of Lucullus, and initiated the Third Mithridatic War. Pompeius Magnus came back to Asia Minor with his army and, after a long war, the Romans destroyed the whole army of Mithradates, who committed suicide as a consequence in 63 BC. In Pompey"s settlement of Pontus, Zile received a civic constitution and a sizable territory thus transforming from its previous status as a temple domain to a city.

In 49 BC, civil war broke out between Julius Caesar and Pompey. While the Romans were distracted by this, Pharnaces II of Pontus, son of Mithridates, decided to seize the opportunity and took revenge for his father. His attack on Zile was halted by Julius Caesar in a bloody battle called the Battle of Zela (47 BC). While Caesar"s army had great losses, Pharnaces"s army was completely destroyed in five hours. After this victory, Caesar sent his famous message to the Roman Senate: "Veni Vidi Vici" , meaning "I came, I saw, I conquered". Caesar"s words were written on a cylindrical marble column and placed in the city castle.

In 241, the Sassanid king Shapur I, attacked the Romans and defeated Roman Emperor Valerian, thus capturing Zile. From 241 to 71, Zile was conquered many times by the Byzantines and Sasanids. Under Byzantine rule, Zile became a Titular See of Asia Minor, suffragan of Amasya in the former Roman province of Helenopontus. Zile had several famous bishops like Heraclius (at the First Council of Nicaea in 325), Atticus (at the Council of Chalcedon in 451), Hyperechius (458), Georgius (692), Constantine (787) and Paul (879).

Zile was conquered by Danishmend Melik Ahmet Gazi in 71 and, since, has belonged to the Turks, who suppressed the See. In 1174, Anatolian Seljuks captured the city from Danishmends under Izzettin II Kılıçaslan. After the collapse of the Anatolian Seljuks, the Eretna Emirate was founded in Zile"s district in 1335. The Ottomans defeated Ertans in 1397 under the rule of Sultan Bayezid I, integrating Zile into their empire.

During the course of the Greco-Turkish War of 1919–1922 (also known as Turkish War of Independence), some supporters of Sharia (strict Islamic law) seized power in Zile and attacked the barracks of new Turkish Republic"s army. The soldiers were forced to retreat to the city castle and consequently asked for help from Çorum battalion. The battalion reached the city in four days and upon their arrival they started bombing the city so as to force the rebels to surrender. As a result of heavy bombardment, Zile suffered a great fire which led the loss of the two thirds of her infrastructure and most of her forest cover. Finally, the army managed to put down the rebellion and restored power. From then, Zile has been a rural district in Tokat province of Republic of Turkey.


Zelos 1747 - David Rumsey Collection v4.0
Zile covers an area of within its city limits and has an elevation of . Turhal, Çekerek, Artova, Kadışehri, and Amasya are all towns located near Zile. Most of the city is constructed on Yeşil River crossed fertile plain area called "Zile Ovası" which is suitable for harvest twice each year. South of the city, however, is surrounded by the Deveci Mountains (1,892 m / 6,207 ft high), Güvercin Çalı, and Hüseyin Gazi Hill. Zile once had a great forest covering most of the plain, but during the 1950s, the city lost much of its forest because of the excessive breeding of goats and the use of wood for heating purposes. However, there is a recent study to plan reforestation in the area.

The city"s water supply is provided by the Çekerek River, flowing from Zile to Çekerek and the Büyükaköz dam which was constructed on the Çatak river. The Süreyya Bey dam and hydroelectric plant is under construction and will provide electricity and water for irrigation in the area.


Zile"s weather is influenced from the north by the narrow coast land of the Black Sea Region which brings humidity and from the south by the Central Anatolia interior plateau which has low rainfall and cold winters. Summers are hot and dry, while the winters are snowy and cold. The weather is hot through the months of June to September as the average summer maximum is 28 °C (83 °F), and the average minimum is 13 °C (56 °F) whereas it is cold through the months of December to February as the average winter maximum is 7 °C (45 °F), and the average minimum is as low as -3 °C (27 °F). Northerly winds are responsible for humid climate from April to June. It is usually rainy during the months of April, May, June, November and December.


Entrance of Zile Castle
Zile had a population of 1,139 as of the 2004 census; 52,640 in the city centre and the remaining population in 116 nearby villages. However, the population of Zile has been decreasing as a result of high unemployment rates. According to 2007 census, Zile has a population of 68,937; just 36,154 in the city centre and remaining 32,783 live in the surrounding villages. Farmers make up 50% of the population. The town is near 0% Muslim and many ancient churches could be found in the city decades ago. However, there are no churches or regular Christian services any longer.

Unfortunately, the column with Caesar"s famous words carved on it was stolen in 2004, and the thieves have not yet been found. There are many other historical buildings and artifacts from Hittites, Lycians, Persians, Greeks, Romans and Turks in Zile. Among these, Zile castle, the Roman theatre, Ulu Camii and Çifte Hamam are the most famous. Kaya Mezarı, Kusyuva, Çay Pınarı, Imam Melikiddin Tomb, Seyh Musa Fakih Tomb, Elbaşı Mosque, Mast Tumulus, Namlı Hisar Kale, Anzavur Caves, Hacı Boz Bridge, Koç Taşı and Manastry in Kuruçay are also popular.

The remains of the Roman theatre are visible to the east of the citadel hill, together with some rock tombs. Two Ottoman baths, the Yeni Hamam and the Çifte Hamam, date from the 16th and 17th century and the Hasan Aga Madrasah was built in 1497. The Boyaci Hasan Aga Mosque with its stalactiform prayer niche dates from 1479 and the Seyh Musa Fakih Tomb is also very old with 16 or 1305 given as possible construction dates.

Mast Tumulus, an ancient site located in Zile, is of special importance since it hosts the palace of a Hittitite ruler, earthenware utensils and Hittite hieroglyphics.


Agriculture, trade, and livestock are the main economic activities of Zile. Zile is a center of cereal production such that she is one of the biggest exporters of wheat, barley, lentil and common vetch in the Black Sea region. Zile is famous for its grapes, leblebi, cherry, and fruit gardens. The annual Cherry Festival is very famous in Tokat, Sivas and Yozgat. People of Zile don"t use their grapes to produce wine, but pekmez - a syrup-like liquid mixed from different kinds of fruit-juices.

The students of Zile Dinçerler School of Tourism and Hotel Management of Gaziosmanpasha University play an important role in city"s economic activities. The industry of Zile is developing rapidly. Since 1996, there has been a major movement from agriculture to industry. Anatolian Tigers constructed 55 factories whose major products include textiles, sugar beet, furniture, tomato sauce, leblebi, marble and shoes.

The municipality and European Union has had a joint project to increase the tourism potential of Zile and to transform the city into a tourism destination. The project is funded by the EU and includes advertisements as well as education of local people about tourism.


The city boasts 0% literacy in the city centre and over 90% in surrounding villages, with public and Imam Hatip schools, and a roughly 1:27 student-teacher ratio. There are 126 primary and secondary schools with 14,373 students and 540 teachers. Zile Dinçerler Lisesi, Dinçerler 75th Year Anatolian High School and Anadolu Öğretmen Lisesi provide high school education in Zile. There are also four professional high schools providing technical education.Gaziosmanpasa University" s Zile Dinçerler School of Tourism and Hotel Management is also located in Zile. By the end of year 2008, with the donations of Serafettin and Cemalettin Dincer, school will gain totally new educational premises including a modern and luxurious hotel building which will be also used for practical education by students.

edia and Social Lif
In Zile, theatres and concerts are conducted at a movie-theatre whose capacity is 850 people. Along with national TV channels and radios, there is one local TV channel and two radio stations that keep Zile people up to date on current events. Zile has three local daily newspapers (Özhaber, Zile Postası, Gündem) and daily newspapers sell around 4000 copies per day. Also the city has a daily news portal, .

Zile is linked by highways with the cities of Tokat and Amasya and is near the Sivas-Samsun railway.


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Category:Cities, towns and villages in Tokat Province
Category:Titular sees
Category:Ancient Greek sites in Turkey
Category:Roman sites in Turkey

tr:Zile, Tokat
Dieser Artikel stammt aus der freien Enzyklopädie Wikipedia und kann dort bearbeitet werden. Der Text ist unter der Lizenz Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike verfügbar. Fassung vom 18.02.2019 18:13 von den Wikipedia-Autoren.


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