ISSN: 0041-4255
e-ISSN: 2791-6472

Feyzullah Şahin

İzmir Demokrasi University, Faculty of Science and Letters, Department of Archaeology, İzmir/ TÜRKİYE

Keywords: Patara, metal, military equipment, war, weapon, Lycia.


The subject matter of this work is the metal military equipment that was found in the military settlement of Tepecik, situated on a natural rock north of the Patara city center and east of the inner harbor. Construction activities for defense purposes can be traced back to the 6th century B.C. in the settlement. During the excavations conducted in recent years, a garrison was unearthed, that had been built in the middle of the 4th century B.C. and remained in use until the end of the 3rd century B.C. with some architectural transformation.

The metal military equipment comprises a pilum, arrowheads, bolt-heads / spear butts, javelin heads, a catapult trigger mechanism part, sling bullets and a dagger. A limited number of metal military tools are dated to the 6th/5th century B.C. Apart from these, the great majority of the weapons pertain to the period to the middle of the 4th century B.C. and the 3rd century B.C. with a few other examples dating to the 2nd century B.C. All the metal equipment accords well with the history of Patara and strengthens the data on various architectural phases detected in the Tepecik settlement. Furthermore, we can say that certain weapons found among the military equipment stand out as rarely seen specimens: A pilum and a curved dagger which are known to have very few examples in Anatolia. A lead sling bullet inscribed with the names of Philip II of Macedon and Alexander the Great is the one and only example of this specimen in Anatolia. The trigger claw of a catapult is also of capital importance since it provides evidence for a much-debated mechanism.