Hattusha, The Hittite Capital

Discover Corum and visit amazing Hattusha

Ancient Capital of Hittites

Hattusha, which is the first Anatolian organized state of Hittites' capital, takes a very important part in Anatolia's archaeological past. The city of Hattusha was founded around 1600 BC after Hattus was destroyed.

Hattusha

Hattusha is an open air archaeological museum consisting of two sites, the Lower City and the Upper City. Visible at the Lower City are the remains associated with civic life. The Great Temple is the principal cult building of the city. Due to its two cult rooms, this temple is believed to have been devoted to the Storm God Teshup and the Sun Goddess of Arinna City, which are the greatest gods of the Empire.

In the Upper City, the Temple Neighbourhood, which encompasses several temples, is noteworthy. The Upper City is situated on a broad arch and was protected by walls to the south. There are four gates on the walls.

The Yerkapi ramparts and the Sphinx Gate stand at the highest point of the city, which is at the southernmost edge of the city walls. King's Gate and Lion Gate are situated at either end of the southern walls. The lion sculptures on the outer face of the Lion Gate are some of the best examples of Hittite stone carving.

Open Air Museum

Yazilikaya Temple, which is situated 2 km northwest of Hattusha, is considered to be the most significant open air temple of the city. It consists of two rock cut rooms screened off by a single storey building reflecting the architectural style of the Hittites. The rock cut rooms of Yazilikaya Temple are called the Greater Gallery and the Lesser Gallery. The western end of the rock face of the Greater Gallery is decorated with a relief of gods, and the eastern end is decorated with a relief of goddesses. The figures of both ends face the central section, where the eastern and western rock faces meet the northern rock face. This is where the main stage was set. The Lesser Gallery has a separate entrance. The relief decorating the western rock face of Lesser Gallery depicts twelve gods lined up to their right, and on the eastern rock face there are reliefs depicting the god Nergal of Underworld and the God Sharrumma escorting King Tudhaliya IV. In this section, besides the well preserved reliefs, there are three rock cut niches. It is believed that these niches were used for placing gifts or possibly urns containing the ashes of members of the Hittite royal family.

UNESCO World Heritage

Having been founded around 1650 BC, Hattusha was the capital of the Hittite Civilization and became the focus of the arts and architecture of that time. It has been on the UNESCO World Heritage List as a cultural asset since 1986.

  • Official Name: Hattusha, The Hittite Capital
  • Date of Inscription: 1986
  • Category: Cultural
  • Reference: 377
  • Location: Corum, Turkey
Ancient Capital of Hittites
Hattusha Ancient City, Bogazkale, Corum