Arsameia Archaeological Site, Adıyaman


Arsameia, the ancient summer capital of the Commagene Kingdom, contains a relief of a handshake that represents the fusion of diverse cultures. Its Acropolis provides sweeping views and a peaceful perch to contemplate this sliver of lost time.

The settlement, founded in the 2nd century BC is located in the province of Adıyaman in modern Türkiye. The kingdom acted as a junction and buffer between Armenian, Iranian, Syrian, and Roman empires. Commagene kings sought to synthesize the Greek and Persian cultures, evident from architectural and artistic elements found in the settlement. The palace in Arsameia contains reliefs of gods and kings shaking hands. The most popular of these pacts depicts an exchange between King Mithridates and the mythical hero Hercules. The area, with its winding tunnels, houses one of the longest Greek inscriptions in Anatolia that shares invaluable details about the city’s administration and religious rituals.

Arsameia was damaged by the devastating February 6th earthquakes, but remarkably, the historic handshake remains intact. Still, immediate restoration is required to repair and fortify several statues and reliefs there. Your donation is needed to preserve this collision of cultural heritage.