Myra, who was a bishop of Ziz Nicholaos and who therefore maintained his name throughout the Middle Ages, is an important Lycian city, meaning “the place of the Great Mother Goddess”. Myra, which is referred to as “Myrrh” in Lycian language, was built on the sea-facing slope of the mountains that turn the Demre ovale from the northwest. The city, which was founded from the hill above the rock tombs of today, was later enlarged and became one of the six most important cities of Lycia. City of BC IV. There is a mother goddess relief on the first sikkesi which was built in the century.

Ancient sources BC Although they mention Myra from the 1st century BC, the rock tombs and pillars are from the coins. It is understood that it existed in the Vth century.

The Demre creek (Myros), which passed through the city, improved the maritime trade but caused the pirates to easily raid. For this reason, the Myrians tried to stop these raids in the Andriake harbor by stretching a chain to the mouth of the river. B.C. Brutus, who killed Caesar at 42, came to Lykia to collect troops, and after he had taken Xanthos, he sent Commander Lentulus to Myra to collect the money. The Myrans opposed it and tried to defend themselves, but the commander broke the chains stretched into the mouth of the river and entered the city. M.S. Germanicus and his wife Agrippina, who were adopted by Tiberius in 18 BC, visited here and showed respect to them by planting their sculptures in Andriake, the port of Myral. M.S. At 60, Paul changes ships in Myra as he travels to Rome. The old sources record that ships were made between Myra and Limyra.

Myra M.S., metropolitan of the Lykia League. II. Century has shown a great improvement, where a lot of Lycian rich people with the help of structures were made. For example, Licinius Langus, an Oinoan, gave 10,000 dinars and built a theater and a portico. We also understand from the books that Rhodiapolis and Kyeanaili Iason are also very helpful for Myra’s discovery. St. Nicholas’s archbishopric in Myra II. Theodosion (408 – 450) is known to be the capital of Myra’s Lycia Region. City, VII. Starting from the century IX. In the year 809, one of the commanders of Aaron El Rasit captured Myra. On the sea ranses made by the Arabs in 1034, The church of Nicholaos was destroyed. The irritation caused by Arab raids, frequent flooding of the Myros River, the flooding of some structures with the soil due to this overflow, and the earthquakes that took place in the meantime caused the city to be abandoned.

There is not much left in the acropolis in the mountain above the theater. Spratt, who visited Myra in 1842 and emigrated to the acropolis, saw here nothing but small stones. In the city walls dating from the Roman Empire, There are wall remains belonging to the Vth century. When going to the city near the theater, you can see the baths or basilica late at the end of the road.

Myra’s water needs Demre’s presence was met with channels opening to the rock face at the edge of the valley. It is possible to see these channels today. Myra’s other buildings are underground today and they are waiting for the daylight. On the way to Myra, on the way to the Karabucak area, the monumental Roman monument is preserved as well.

The ancient city of Trebenda is located in Gürses, a few km from the famous Sura ancient city Sura, with Andriake, which is the port of Myra in the mouth of the tea, as the center of prophecy. Myra’s magnificent theater was able to arrive very intensely as day-to-day. The cave of the theater, which was built on the slope of the steep mountain behind it, was carved on a large scale. The theater was later used as an arena, so some arrangements were made.

In Myra, which is famous for its rock tombs, graves were collected in two places, immediately on the theater and in the place called the river necropolis on the eastern side.

Aziz Nicholaos, commonly known as Santa Claus in European countries, known as “Santa Claus” all over the world, is a clergyman who lived in Anatolia. Today, the prominence of Italy’s Sicilian Island, Naples, Bari, Germany’s Frieburg, and even America, is the patron saint of New York City, further reinforced by memorial ceremonies held every December 6th.

Today, Santa Klaus is undoubtedly formed by the birth of a semi-religious and very popular type, combining the personalities of Saint Nicholaos of Myra with the legendary Santa Claus, the guardian and gratifying child of good-deeds in Scandinavian countries. The root of this type comes from the very old beliefs of Scandinavian countries, as Santa Claus walks around with a sled drawn by deer. Whereas the place where Saint Nicholaos of the real Myra lives, is the Mediterranean coast with no snow. His tough children have turned into a sympathetic nurture, bringing gifts to children, unfolding at Christmas nights, combined with a protective personality, a holy presence in the north, perhaps a god lost in the darkness of very early ages. No matter how contrary to reality, in Christian countries Santa Claus lives as a charming person, especially when children are excitedly waiting.

Much is not known about St. Nicholaos’ life, as most of the saints are. The latter has been adorned with many legends and life. It is known to be a child of a family who trades grains. In the religious books written about his life, the chorus was believed to have created a gift, a fruit of the parents of his parents, and a fruit of the loyalty of the poor, the miracle of the baby when he was pointed to the world as the savior of the poor.

The day of St. Nicholaos’ death is considered to be December 6th of all Christians. However, it can not be said that this date is based on a definite source. The earliest sources mentioning the Aziz, VI. “Vita Sionitae” and “Vita de Stratelatis” of Century do not give a definite date of death. Only the Azizin birth place was recorded as Patara, which is the largest port of Lycia. In the early years of Christianity, Apostle Paulus continued to follow his path after he had stayed in Patara, which gave Patara the ability to be one of the cities mentioned in the Bible. In this section, it is told that at the end of their third trip with Apostle Paulos’ friend Luke, they were staying in Patara when returning from Jerusalem to Jerusalem, where they continued their journey by riding on a larger ship.

Saint Nicholaos III. It is said that the year of youth passed in Patara until it came to the world in Patara in the late of the 16th century and became a priest to Myra. In his youth he talked about the travels he made to Palestine and Egypt, and the lived idol was the Emperor Constantine period or III. The end of the century and IV. Century is the beginning. After his death, churches were built on behalf of many cities of Europe, including VI. Basilica built in Istanbul in the century is the most multiplier structure. Known as the most respected Aziz of Russia and Greece, it has been respected as the guardian of children’s prisoners, seafarers and travelers.

The reality about his experience and miracles will be discussed and numerous stories are told. It is said that the decision to become a bishop is based on the prediction of the prophecy or election meeting, based on the fact that the next day he was the first man to enter the church. Other stories relate to the anguishes that were carried out during the persecutions of Christians during the reign of Emperor Dioeletian (284-305). He was arrested and wounded by the judges for his faith, and a few years later he was released by the Christian Emperor Constantine and returned to Myra.

In another story Azizin İ.S. It is told that he joined the Consul collected in Nicaca (Iznik) in 325. He once entered the dream of the Emperor Constantine, telling him to release those who were unjustly condemned to death.

On one occasion he grazes the people of Myra with the cereals he got from a ship going from Egypt to Istanbul. However, when the ship arrives in Istanbul, there is no decrease in load. This is perhaps one of the miracles connected to the Saint being the patron of the seafarers. Because before the seafaring in the Mediterranean seafarers, good wishes to each other have become “traditions” of the “Stephanie Nicholaos Tutsi”. The Lycian coasts, the most important maritime center of the Mediterranean, and the ones living here were the famous mariners of the Mediterranean, working as religious men in the health of the Aziz. For this reason, many of the Aziz’s miracles about the sea are also found in religious books.

Both stories show him at the same time, and his children are boss saints. While people are starving, the butcher is sleeping in his sleep to invite and sell to three young houses. Aziz Nicholaos runs into the butcher’s house as soon as he hears this, and the young people resurrect. On the other hand, a poor merchant thinks to sell them when it is not enough to marry their daughters.

St. Nicholas saves three bags of money at the merchant’s house, and the girls fall into a bad way. It is believed that in Europe this is also the source of the hanging of three gold balls in the shops of the hostages, as it is the case that children receive gifts from the story of Santa Klaus. It is also based on this story that the Aziz was depicted with three golden balls in his iconic icons.


Myra Excavations started and continues in 2009 under Nevzat Cevik presidency. In 2010, a comprehensive book was published by the excavation team. According to Agile, Myra’s early name was Muri. Some researchers believe that Myra is the same settlement as Arzawa’s Mira, but there is no proven connection. Myra has no written source about Myra before being a member of the Lycian alliance (168-43 BC); According to Strabo (14: 665), he was one of the greatest cities of the alliance.

The Greek people worshiped Artemis Eleutheria, the guardian goddess of the city. Zeus, Athena and Tike were also worshiped.

Most of the ruins of the city belonging to the Lycian and Roman periods are under the alluvial deposits. The acropolis on the mountain above the ancient theater has been destroyed to a great extent. Near the theater there are late-time residences that can be baths and basilica. The open-air theater was destroyed in an earthquake in 141 but was later re-built.

There are two Lycian necropolis in Myra, these are gathered in the area called the river necropolis on the rocks on the theater and east of it. Most of the rock tombs look like a big house from a distance, and some are temple-shaped. The most striking grave traveler of the river necropolis is the “Tomb of the Painting” which Charles Fellows said when he saw rock tombs in 1840 that he still could choose the colors red, yellow, blue and purple. Today these colors are invisible only from the red and blue colors. Another highlight in this grave is eleven figures of human figures made in relief on actual scale.

The Myrrh harbors used a chain in the mouth of the river to protect Andriake against the pirates’ raids. This chain was broken in 42 BC by Marcus Junius Brutus, when Lentulus Spinther, who was sent to Myra to collect money, entered the city.

In the early days of Christianity Myra was the metropolis of Lycia. St. Paul changes ships in his port when he goes to Rome in 60 AD. Saint Nicholaos, now known as Santa Claus, was the bishop of Myra in the 4th century. Between the years 408 and 450, which was the head of the empire II. It is known that St. Nicholas was the archbishopric in Myra at the time of Teodosius and Myra was the capital of Lycia.


After the siege in 809, Myra Abbasi was seized by troops under the command of Harun Rashid. In the following years, the city entered a period of decline. In 1034, the end of the attack on the sea by the Arabs in the Church of Santa Claus was damaged. At the beginning of the period A. Alexios Komnenos (1081 – 1118), Myra was seized by the Seljuks this time. The mariners of Bari who took advantage of the disconcerting received the bones of Saint Nicholaos on 20 April 1087 and brought them to Bari on 9 May 1087, despite the objections of the priests in the church.

St. Nicholas Church

St. Nicholas Church in Myra was first built on the death of St. Nicholas in the 6th century. The church today is basically built from the 8th century; In the second half of the 11th century a monastery was added. In 1863, the Russian Criminal II. Aleksandr bought the building and surrounding area from the Ottoman State and began restoration work, but later the Ottoman State took back the region and the church and gave the Risse permission to do just restoration. The restoration work was done so badly as to ruin the church, and in 1876 the bell tower, which can be seen today, was added. In 1963 the eastern and western parts of the church were removed from underground. In 1968, St. Nicholas’s sarcophagus, which was destroyed in 1087, was unearthed.