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Akpýnar/Sipylos Monument

The large, almost statue like, relief is about 8 meters in height and 4.5 meters in width and located in Sipylus Mountain (Spilos, Sipil) near Manisa in the locality of Akpýnar. The badly worn out relief appears to be a seated figure, carved into a large niche. For a long time it was thought to be a seated goddess (cf. the 3rd picture below). However the more recently several scholars suggested that the figure is a male with a beard. There are two inscriptions by the relief/statue, one to its right and one to the left, but it is uncertain whether they have any association with the relief itself. The one on the left, which is a relief-type inscription, is read as Ku(wa)la(na)muwa, Prince. This name also appears in Hanyeri and Ýmamkulu monuments, but he may not necessarily be the same person. About 3 meters to the right of the head is a second inscription carved into the rock. First part might be read Zuwani, the Palace Official, possibly followed by another epithet. The monument may date to the 13th century BCE. Although originally a Hittite/Luwian monument, it was also a popular attraction in the later ages and was believed to have been a representation of the goddess Kybele. It is known that in Lydian times religious ceremonies were conducted by the monument.


Click on the pictures for larger images.

T. Bilgin, 2012 T. Bilgin, 2012 A drawing of the monument from 1880 - Illustraded London News H. Ehringhaus, 2005 H. Ehringhaus, 2005 Left inscription - H. Ehringhaus, 2005 Left inscription - K. Kohlmeyer, 1983
Second inscription
Second inscription - H. Ehringhaus, 2005 Second inscription - H. G. Güterbock, 1983 Second inscription - K. Kohlmeyer, 1983 Second inscription - M. Poetto, 1988


Literature:
Andre-Salvini, B. and M. Salvini. "Fixa cacumine montis: Nouvelles Considerations sur le relief rupestre de la pretendue 'Niobe' du mont Sipyle" in Collectanea Orientalia. Paris, 1996: 7–20.
Bossert H.Th., "Das hethitische Felsrelief bei Hanyeri (Gezbeli)," Orientalia 23, 1954: 129–47 (144–47 and plts. xxvii–xxix).
Ehringhaus, H. Götter, Herrscher, Inschriften, Mainz, 2005: 84–87.
Güterbock, H. G. and R. L. Alexander. "The Second Inscription on Mount Sipylus", Anatolian Studies 33, 1983: 29–32.
Hawkins, J. D. "Commentaries on the readings," in Bogazköy-Hattusa 22, 2005: 298.
Hawkins, J. D. Corpus of Hieroglyphic Luwian Inscriptions, Vol 3, Berlin, 2024: 96–97 and plt. 69.
Kohlmeyer, K. "Felsbilder der hethitischen Großreichszeit," Acta Praehistorica et Archaeologica 15, 1983: 7–154 (28–34).
Oreshko, R. "Hieroglyphic Inscriptions of Western Anatolia," in Luwian Identities (CHANE 64), 2013: 345–420 (368–71)
Poetto, M. "In margine alla seconda iscrizione luvio-geroglifica del monte Sipylos," Vicino Oriente 7, 1988: 171–76.
(List of Abbreviations)


Image sources:
Tayfun Bilgin, 2012.
Illustrated London News, 1880.
Hörst Ehringhaus, 2005.
Hans G. Güterbock, 1983.
Massimo Poetto, 1988.