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The two ports of Knidos and the remains of the facilities

Knidos ( Greek Κνίδος; Latin Cnidus ) is an ancient port city in the southwest of Asia Minor .


Satellite image of Knidos

Knidos is located on the tip of the southwest Turkish Datça Peninsula (more rarely also: Reşadiye Peninsula) about 35 km from Datça in the province of Muğla opposite the Greek island of Kos ( Turkish: Istanköy ). Whether Knidos has been at the tip of the peninsula since it was founded or was only moved there in the late classical period from the middle of the peninsula near today's Datça is a matter of dispute (see Bankel, Blümel, Demand versus Bean-Cook and Berges).


Slaves from Knidos ( ki-ni-di-ja ) are at the beginning of the 12th century BC. Already mentioned in Linear B documents from the Mycenaean Pylos . Excavations brought Minoan and later Mycenaean finds to light. It is not clear whether the place was also inhabited by Minoan or Mycenaean. The city was a Doric (new) foundation and a member of the Doric Pentapolis . Around 580 BC . BC was the city on the Sicilian colonization and the Hellenion in Naukratis involved; Around 550 the city had a treasure house built in Delphi . In 540 the Persian general Harpagos conquered Knidos, the city remained under Persian rule until the Greek victory in the battles of Mykale in 479 and on Eurymedon in 465. In 477 she was a member of the Attic-Delian League , in 412 she fell to Sparta , then again Persian rule. Around 394 the Athenian Konon defeated the Spartan fleet as Persian admiral in the naval battle of Knidos . In the 3rd century BC Mostly Ptolemaic BC , it came under Rhodian influence in 190 , and was free in 167.

During the Roman Empire, Knidos belonged to the province of Asia . 263–467 AD, the city is repeatedly hit by strong earthquakes. In late antiquity it was the seat of a bishopric and is still the Roman Catholic titular diocese of Cnidus. In the middle of the 7th century the city was destroyed by an Arab fleet.


The city was famous for its medical school (whose representatives were internationally known and sought after in classical times). The Knidische medical school differed from the Koischen , whose most famous representative is Hippocrates of Kos , in a trust based above all on the art of the doctors rather than on the healing power of nature. Knidos was also known for a shrine to Aphrodite with the Aphrodite statue of Praxiteles ( Aphrodite of Knidos ). At or in the city of Knidos was the Triopion , the Doric federal shrine .

Biblical mention

The place Knidos is also mentioned in the Bible . In Acts 27 : 7, the author Luke reports the following about Paul's fourth missionary journey: “For many days we made little travel and with difficulty got to the height of Knidos. Then the wind forced us to change course. "


Knidos minted his own coins very early on. Since the second half of the 6th century at the latest, silver oboles and drachms have been minted, typically showing a lion's head on the obverse and an Aphrodite's head on the lapel. These early coins are not yet inscribed.

Diobol from Knidos, 6th century BC BC, lion head
Back of the diobole, head of Aphrodite

Famous citizens

Individual evidence

  1. ^ Stefan Hiller: The early Greek texts from the Mycenaean period. Darmstadt 1976, p. 106; 109 ff .; Tassilo Schmitt : From the end of success. Reflections on the fall of the Mycenaean palace civilization. In: Gustav Adolf Lehmann , Dorit Engster, Alexander Nuss (eds.): From the Bronze Age history to the modern reception of antiquities , Syngramma vol. 1, Universitätsverlag Göttingen 2012, p. 120.
  2. Walter Hotz : The Mediterranean coasts of Anatolia . Scientific Book Society Darmstadt 1989 ISBN 3-534-03073-7 p. 134
  3. August Predöhl: "Peripleumonie" in the writings of the Knidischen medical school. In: Hans-Heinz Eulner u. a. (Ed.): Medical history in our time. Festival ceremony for Edith Heischkel-Artelt and Walter Artelt on their 65th birthday. Enke, Stuttgart 1971, ISBN 3-432-01698-0 , pp. 31-35.
  4. ^ H. Grensemann: Knidische Medizin. Volume I, Berlin 1975.
  5. Vincenzo Di Benedetto : Cos e Cnido, in: Hippocratica - Actes du Colloque hippocratique de Paris 4-9 September 1978, ed. v. MD Grmek , Paris 1980, 97-111, further Antoine Thivel : Cnide et Cos? : essai sur les doctrines médicales dans la collection hippocratique , Paris 1981 (passim), ISBN 22-51-62021-4 ; s. also the review v. Otta Wenskus (on JSTOR) .
  6. ^ Hippocrates: The common diseases first and third book (around the year 434-430 BC). Translated from the Greek, introduced and explained by Georg Sticker. Johann Ambrosius Barth, Leipzig 1923 (= Classics of Medicine. Volume 29); Unchanged reprint: Central antiquariat of the German Democratic Republic, Leipzig 1968, p. 111.
  7. ^ Szaivert / Sear, Greek Coin Catalog, Volume 2, Munich 1983, pages 169 to 171


  • Herbert A. Cahn : Knidos. The coins of the 6th and 5th centuries BC. Berlin, de Gruyter 1970.
  • Nancy Demand: Did Knidos really move? The literary and epigraphical evidence. In: California studies in classical antiquity 20.2 = Classical antiquity 8.2, 1989, pp. 224-237.
  • Hansgeorg Bankel: Knidos. New research in the urban area. In: Nürnberger Blätter to archeology . 6, Nuremberg 1991, p. 17 ff.
  • Wolfgang Blümel : The inscriptions of Knidos. Volume 1. (= inscriptions of Greek cities from Asia Minor . Volume 41). Bonn, Habelt 1992, ISBN 3-7749-2474-0 .
  • Hansgeorg Bankel: Knidos. The Hellenistic round temple and its altar. In: Archäologischer Anzeiger . 1997, pp. 51-71.
  • Hansgeorg Bankel: Scamilli impares at an Early Hellenistic Ionic Propylon at Knidos. In: Lothar Haselberger (Ed.): Appearance and Essence. Refinements of Classical Architecture. Curvature, Philadelphia 1999, pp. 127-138. Review: Margaret M. Miles, in: Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians. 60,1, 2001, p. 84 f.
  • Christine Bruns-Özgan: Knidos. A guide through the ruins. Konya 2002, ISBN 975-97981-0-7 .
  • Dietrich Berges : Archaic finds from Old Knidos. In: Istanbul communications . 52, 2002, pp. 99-164.
  • Mustafa Şahin: Hellenistic braziers with figuratively decorated attaches from Knidos (= Knidos studies. Volume III). Bibliopolis, Paderborn 2003, ISBN 3-933925-08-8 .
  • Hansgeorg Bankel: Knidos. The Triopion. On the topography of the tribal shrine of the Doric Hexapolis. In: Ernst-Ludwig Schwandner, Klaus Rheidt (ed.): Power of architecture - architecture of power (= discussions on archaeological building research. Volume 8). Zabern, Mainz 2004, ISBN 3-8053-3382-X , pp. 100-113.
  • Dietrich Berges: Knidos. Contributions to the history of the archaic city. Zabern, Mainz 2006, ISBN 978-3-8053-3457-0 .
  • Hansgeorg Bankel, Stefan Franz, Valentina Hinz: Greek architecture digital three-dimensional: a “working model” of the shrines on the western edge of Knidos and a polychrome model of the temple of Aphaia in Aegina. In: Alexandra Riedel, K. Heine, F. Henze (eds.): From hand measurement to high tech. Volume 2: Modeling, structuring, presenting . Zabern, Darmstadt 2006, ISBN 978-3-8053-3754-0 , pp. 242-251.

Web links

Commons : Knidos  - collection of images, videos and audio files

Coordinates: 36 ° 41 ′ 9 ″  N , 27 ° 22 ′ 30 ″  E