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 recent consensus among several scholars is that the figure is a male with a beard, possibly a Hittite mountain god representation. There are two inscriptions by the relief/statue, one to its right and one to the left. The one on the left, which is a relief-type inscription, is read by Bossert as Ku(wa)lanamuwa or Ku(wa)lamuwa (EXERCITUS-BOS). This name also appears in Hanyeri and Ýmamkulu monuments, although it is less likely to be a reference to 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 Zu(wa)-wa/i-ni EUNUCHUS2 (Hawkins), 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.
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 NS 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.
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)
Tayfun Bilgin, 2012.
Illustrated London News, 1880.
Hörst Ehringhaus, 2005.
Hans G. Güterbock, 1983.
Massimo Poetto, 1988.