Assuwa was a confederation (or league) of 22 ancient Anatolian states that formed some time before 1400 BC, when it was defeated by the Hittite Empire, under Tudhaliya I. The league was formed to oppose the Hittites. A successor state, in a similar area, was named Arzawa. The historian H. T. Bossert suggested that Assuwa may have been the origin of the name Asia (which was used initially only in reference to Asia Minor).[1]

Modern scholars have often located Assuwa only in the north-west corner of Anatolia, an area centred north or north-west of the future Arzawa. This has made the inclusion of Caria, Lukka and/or Lycia problematic, as they were clearly located in south-west Anatolia. Their inclusion would mean that Assuwa included areas both north and south of Arzawa. However, the confederative structure of Assuwa may well have included states in two or more geographically separate, non-contiguous areas, which lacked a common land border.

Formationfl. 1400 BC
TypeConfederation or league comprising several states.
  • Western Anatolia


The member states are said to have included (in the order that they were listed by Tudhaliya I):

  • a name ending in -ugga (or -luqqa),
  • Kišpuwa,
  • Unaliya,
  • an obliterated name,
  • Dura,
  • Ḥalluwa,
  • Ḥuwallušiya,
  • Karakiša,
  • Dunda,
  • Adadura,
  • Parišta,
  • an obliterated name,
  • a name probably ending in -wwa,
  • Waršiya,
  • Kuruppiya,
  • a name ending in -luišša (or the whole name Luišša),
  • a name that is probably Alatra,
  • "the land of Mount Pahurina",
  • Pasuhalta,
  • an obliterated name,
  • Wilušiya,
  • and T[a]rui[s]ša.

In most cases, these states are never (or seldom) mentioned in the few contemporaneous sources available. However, Karkiya has generally been identified with Caria, Taruisa with the Troas (Troad) peninsula, and Wilusiya with Wilusa – which was apparently the endonym of the city known to the Ancient Greeks as Troy (or Ilios). The historical Lycia and/or Lukka have frequently been identified with Warsiya and [L]ugga. For instance, in the Iliad, Homer refers to two separate areas as "Lycia": Sarpedon is a leader of "distant Lycia" (in 2.876-77, 5.479) and Pandarus is the leader of Lycians from around Mount Ida (2.824ff. 5.105). Likewise the Alaksandu Treaty identifies Warsiyalla with the Lukka.


The confederacy is mentioned only in the fragmentary tablets making up Laroche's CTH 142/85. Since Tudhaliya IV was known to have had frontier trouble between 1250 and 1200 BC, and since the text lists rebel nations in much the way Ramesses II does, the first consensus dated this text and, therefore, Assuwa to Tudhaliya IV. This dating appears in all older literature on the fall of the Hatti, and crops up every now and then to this day. However the consensus has since then come around to dating Assuwa to an earlier Tudhaliya, which means prior to Suppiluliuma and so prior to 1350 BC.

A number of fragmentary Hittite records imply that the anti-Hittite rebellion of the Assuwa league received a certain decree of support from Mycenaean Greece (Ahhiyawa in Hittite).[2] The Iliad's depiction of Ajax the Great’s military equipment, Heracles sacking Troy prior to the Trojan War and Bellerophon’s deeds in Anatolia may have been inspired by Mycenaean warriors who participated in this rebellion.[3]


  1. ^ H. T. Bossert, 1946, Asia, vol.?, pp. ?, Istanbul.
  2. ^ Castleden, Rodney (2005). The Mycenaeans. Routledge. pp. 202–203. ISBN 9781134227822. It was political instability of this kind, not just in Assuwa but all along the Aegean coast, that the Mycenaeans were able to exploit. One fragmentary letter mentions Assuwa and Ahhiyawa together, implying that the rebellion of Assuwa may have been supported by the Mycenaeans. Another (ambiguous) letter says ‘the king of Ahhiyawa withdrew or retreated’ or someone ‘relied on the king of Ahhiyawa’, so the Mycenaean king was either leading his army in Anatolia or supporting rebellion from afar.
  3. ^ Cline, Eric H. 1177 B.C.: The Year Civilization Collapsed. pp. 40–41.

See also


Alaksandu or Alaksandus was a king of Wilusa who sealed a treaty with Hittite king Muwatalli II ca. 1280 BC. This treaty implies that Alaksandu had previously secured a treaty with Muwatalli's father, Mursili II, as well.

Ancient regions of Anatolia

The following is a list of regions of Ancient Anatolia, also known as "Asia Minor," in the present day Anatolia region of Turkey in Western Asia.


Arzawa was the name of a region and a political entity (a "kingdom" or a federation of local powers) in Western Anatolia in the second half of the 2nd millennium BC (roughly from late 15th century BC until the beginning of the 12th century BC). The core of Arzawa is believed to be along the Kestros River (Küçük Menderes), with its capital at Apasa, later known as Ephesus. When the Hittites conquered Arzawa it was divided into three Hittite provinces: a southern province called Mira along the Maeander River, which would later become known as Caria; a northern province called the Seha River Land, along the Gediz River, which would later become known as Lydia; and an eastern province called Hapalla.A successor of the Assuwa league, which also included parts of western Anatolia, but was conquered by the Hittites in c. 1400 BC. Arzawa was the western neighbour and rival of the Middle and New Hittite Kingdoms. On the other hand, it was in close contact with the Ahhiyawa of the Hittite texts, which corresponds to the Achaeans of Mycenaean Greece. Moreover, Achaeans and Arzawa formed a coalition against the Hittites, in various periods.


Asia ( (listen)) is Earth's largest and most populous continent, located primarily in the Eastern and Northern Hemispheres. It shares the continental landmass of Eurasia with the continent of Europe and the continental landmass of Afro-Eurasia with both Europe and Africa. Asia covers an area of 44,579,000 square kilometres (17,212,000 sq mi), about 30% of Earth's total land area and 8.7% of the Earth's total surface area. The continent, which has long been home to the majority of the human population, was the site of many of the first civilizations. Asia is notable for not only its overall large size and population, but also dense and large settlements, as well as vast barely populated regions. Its 4.5 billion people (as of September 2018) constitute roughly 60% of the world's population.In general terms, Asia is bounded on the east by the Pacific Ocean, on the south by the Indian Ocean, and on the north by the Arctic Ocean. The border of Asia with Europe is a historical and cultural construct, as there is no clear physical and geographical separation between them. It is somewhat arbitrary and has moved since its first conception in classical antiquity. The division of Eurasia into two continents reflects East–West cultural, linguistic, and ethnic differences, some of which vary on a spectrum rather than with a sharp dividing line. The most commonly accepted boundaries place Asia to the east of the Suez Canal separating it from Africa; and to the east of the Turkish Straits, the Ural Mountains and Ural River, and to the south of the Caucasus Mountains and the Caspian and Black Seas, separating it from Europe.China and India alternated in being the largest economies in the world from 1 to 1800 CE. China was a major economic power and attracted many to the east, and for many the legendary wealth and prosperity of the ancient culture of India personified Asia, attracting European commerce, exploration and colonialism. The accidental discovery of a trans-Atlantic route from Europe to America by Columbus while in search for a route to India demonstrates this deep fascination. The Silk Road became the main east–west trading route in the Asian hinterlands while the Straits of Malacca stood as a major sea route. Asia has exhibited economic dynamism (particularly East Asia) as well as robust population growth during the 20th century, but overall population growth has since fallen. Asia was the birthplace of most of the world's mainstream religions including Hinduism, Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Jainism, Buddhism, Confucianism, Taoism, Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, as well as many other religions.

Given its size and diversity, the concept of Asia—a name dating back to classical antiquity—may actually have more to do with human geography than physical geography. Asia varies greatly across and within its regions with regard to ethnic groups, cultures, environments, economics, historical ties and government systems. It also has a mix of many different climates ranging from the equatorial south via the hot desert in the Middle East, temperate areas in the east and the continental centre to vast subarctic and polar areas in Siberia.


The Eshrefids or Ashrafids (Modern Turkish: Eşrefoğulları or Eşrefoğulları Beyliği ) was one of the Anatolian beyliks.

Hittite sites

The geography of the Hittite Empire is inferred from Hittite texts on the one hand, and from archaeological excavation on the other. Matching philology to archaeology is a difficult and ongoing task, and so far, only a handful of sites are identified with their ancient name with certainty.

The Hittite kingdom was centered on the lands surrounding Hattusa and Neša, known as "the land of the Hatti" (URUHa-at-ti). After Hattusa was made the Hittite capital, the area encompassed by the bend of the Halys River (which they called the Marassantiya) was considered the core of the empire, and some Hittite laws make a distinction between "this side of the river" and "that side of the river". For example, the reward for the capture of a runaway slave after he managed to flee beyond the Halys is higher than that for a slave caught before he could reach the river.

To the south of the core territory was the land of Kizzuwatna in the area of the Taurus Mountains.

To the west, the confederacies of Arzawa and Assuwa, the second of which in particular may not have indicated a contiguous geographic area.

To the north, the mountain people of the "Kaskians".

To the east, the Mitanni.

After the incorporation or association of Arzawa and Mitanni (under Suppiluliuma I), the Hittite sphere of influence under Mursili II bordered on the "Hayasa-Azzi" to the east, on the "Ahhiyawa" and the newly-forming Assuwa league to the west, on Egypt-controlled Canaan to the south, and on Assyria to the south-east.

List of ancient kingdoms of Anatolia

Below is a list of ancient kingdoms in Anatolia. Anatolia (most of modern Turkey) was the home of many ancient kingdoms. This list does not include the earliest kingdoms, which were merely city states, except those that profoundly affected history. It also excludes foreign invaders (such as The Achaemenid Empire, the Macedonian Empire, Roman Empire etc.).

List of continent name etymologies

This is a list of the etymologies of continent names as they are currently found on Earth.

List of political entities in the 13th century BC

Political entities in the 14th century BC – Political entities in the 12th century BC – Political entities by century

This is a list of political entities in the 13th century BC (1300–1201 BC).

List of years in Turkey

This is a list of years in Turkey. See also the timeline of Turkish history. For only articles about years in Turkey that have been written, see Category:Years in Turkey.

Lukka lands

The term Lukka lands (sometimes Luqqa lands), in Hittite language texts from the 2nd millennium BC, is a collective term for states formed by the Lukka people in south-west Anatolia. The Lukka were never subjected long-term by the Hittites, who generally viewed them as hostile. It is commonly accepted that the Bronze Age toponym Lukka is cognate with the Lycia of classical antiquity (8th century BC to 5th century AD).

There are two somewhat different hypotheses with regard to the extent of the Lukka lands. The maximalist hypothesis is upheld by Trevor Bryce, who discusses the occurrences of Lukka in Bronze Age texts. "From these texts we can conclude the Lukka, or Lukka lands, referred to a regions extending from the western end of Pamphylia, through Lycaonia, Pisidia and Lycia. "The minimalist hypothesis is upheld by Ilya Yakubovich, who concludes based on the analysis of textual evidence: "[W]e have positive philological arguments for the presence of Bronze Age Lukka settlements in classical Lycia, but not anywhere else in Asia Minor or beyond it."

Soldiers from the Lukka lands fought on the Hittite side in the famous Battle of Kadesh (c. 1274 BC) against the Egyptian Pharaoh Ramesses II. A century later, the Lukka had turned against the Hittites. The Hittite king Suppiluliuma II tried in vain to defeat the Lukka. They contributed to the collapse of the Hittite Empire.

The Lukka are also known from texts in Ancient Egypt as one of the tribes of the Sea Peoples, who invaded Egypt and the Eastern Mediterranean in the 12th century BC.

Manapa-Tarhunta letter

The Manapa-Tarhunta letter (CTH 191; KUB 19.5 + KBo 19.79) is a Hittite letter discovered in the 1980s. It was written by a client king called Manapa-Tarhunta to an unnamed Hittite king around 1295 BCE.

The only datable Manapa-Tarhunta was the one who became undisputed king of Seha River around the time of the death of Arnuwanda II (1322 BCE). This letter further mentions a Kupanta-Kurunta. A treaty between Mursili II (1322-1295 BCE) and a Kupanta-Kurunta, who is king of Mira (Western Asia Minor), survives which mentions this Manapa-Tarhunta as still alive.

The letter also mentions a "Piyama-Radu", "Atpa" (King of Miletus according to the Tawagalawa letter), and an attack on Hatti's historic ally Wilusa. These figures and events associate the Manapa-Tarhunta letter with an early stage of the events mentioned in the Tawagalawa letter (c. 1250 BCE). The Tawagalawa in that letter was the brother of Ahhiyawa's king, and is suggested to be the legendary Eteocles, who lived a generation before the Trojan War. No king of Ahhiyawa is on record before Mursili III's reign (c. 1272 BCE); at most there might have been a "man from Ahhiya" as under Arnuwanda I (1400-1360 BCE).

Manapa-Tarhunta had passed on the succession to Manapa-Kurunta (presumably Tarhunta's son) by the time of the treaty between Muwatalli II (1295-1272 BCE) and Alaksandu of Wilusa. The Manapa-Tarhunta letter would then have been written in the later years of Mursili or else the earlier years of Muwatalli II.

Piyama-Radu is further mentioned, as a past figure, in the Milawata letter (c. 1225 BCE); which like the other two letters handles the aftermath of events in Wilusa which did not go the Hittites' way.

The Manapa-Tarhunta letter mentions first an attack on Wilusa, and then how a notorious local troublemaker called Piyama-Radu is harrying the western lands. The Hittite king has apparently ordered Manapa-Tarhunta to drive out Piyama-Radu himself, but Manapa-Tarhunta's attempt has failed, so that a Hittite force is now sent out to deal with the problem. Before marching to Wilusa, the expeditionary force camps at the land near the Seha River, placing Wilusa in the north-west corner of Anatolia.

For Trevor Bryce, this led to the conclusion that the location of Wilusa is related or identical to that of the archeological site of Troy (Illios).


Pervâneoğlu (in Turkish plural Pervâneoğulları - the sons of Pervâne) was an Anatolian beylik centered in Sinop on the Black Sea coast and controlling the immediately surrounding region in the second half of the 13th century and the beginning of the 14th (1261–1326).

The founder of the Beylik, the Pervâne Mu‘in al-Din Suleyman. His grandson the Gazi Çelebi, last Bey of Pervane, transformed his realm into a serious regional naval power, conducting raids against Genoese possessions in the Black Sea and Crimea, as well as against the Empire of Trebizond.

Sahib Ataids

Sahib Ataids (Modern Turkish: Sâhipataoğulları or Sâhipataoğulları Beyliği) was an Anatolian beylik centered in Kara Hisar-i Sâhib (Afyonkarahisar) and founded by one of the last viziers of the Seljuk Sultanate of Rûm, Fakhr al-Din Ali, also known as Sâhib Ata. The beylik was founded c.1275 and absorbed by the neighboring Germiyanids in 1341. The Sâhipataoğulları left important works of architecture.

Tawagalawa letter

The Tawagalawa letter (CTH 181) was written by a Hittite king (generally accepted as Hattusili III) to a king of Ahhiyawa around 1250 BC. This letter, of which only the third tablet has been preserved, concerns the activities of an adventurer named Piyama-Radu against the Hittites, and requests his extradition to Hatti under assurances of safe conduct. It is so named because it mentions a brother of the king of Ahhiyawa named Tawagalawa, a name suggested by numerous scholars to be a Hittite representation of the Greek name Eteocles (Etewoklewes).Originally, it was assumed that the beginning of this letter concerned the activities of Tawagalawa. After Itamar Singer and Suzanne Heinhold-Krahmer stated their preferences for Piyama-Radu in 1983, most scholars relegated Tawagalawa to a minor role in the letter. There are technical difficulties, however, with accepting Piyama-Radu as the man who asked to become the Hittite king's vassal.Piyama-Radu is also mentioned in the Manapa-Tarhunta letter (c. 1295 BC) and, in the past tense, in the Milawata letter (c. 1240 BC). The Tawagalawa letter further mentions Miletus (as Millawanda) and its dependent city Atriya, as does the Milawata letter; and its governor Atpa, as does the Manapa-Tarhunta letter (although that letter does not state Atpa's fiefdom).

The letter bears a conversational style which has commonly been associated with Hattusili III (1265-1235 BC). However Oliver Gurney in "The authorship of the Tawagalawas Letter" (Silva Anatolica, 2002, 133-41) argues that the letter belongs to his older brother Muwatalli II (1295-1272 BC). But if the Milawata letter postdates this letter, and if that letter is taken as a letter of Mursili II (1322-1295 BC), then the Tawagalawa letter might belong to Mursili in the late 14th century BC, but after the end of his annals.

In this letter, the Hittite king refers to former hostilities between the Hittites and the Ahhiyawans over Wilusa, which had now been resolved amicably:

"Now as we have come to an agreement on Wilusa over which we went to war..."As most scholars identify Wilusa with Troy, this reference has been said to provide "a striking background for Homeric scholars researching the origin of the tradition of the Achaean attack on Ilios." The letter also makes reference to a city called Waliwanda.

Trojan War

In Greek mythology, the Trojan War was waged against the city of Troy by the Achaeans (Greeks) after Paris of Troy took Helen from her husband Menelaus, king of Sparta. The war is one of the most important events in Greek mythology and has been narrated through many works of Greek literature, most notably Homer's Iliad. The core of the Iliad (Books II – XXIII) describes a period of four days and two nights in the tenth year of the decade-long siege of Troy; the Odyssey describes the journey home of Odysseus, one of the war's heroes. Other parts of the war are described in a cycle of epic poems, which have survived through fragments. Episodes from the war provided material for Greek tragedy and other works of Greek literature, and for Roman poets including Virgil and Ovid.

The war originated from a quarrel between the goddesses Hera, Athena, and Aphrodite, after Eris, the goddess of strife and discord, gave them a golden apple, sometimes known as the Apple of Discord, marked "for the fairest". Zeus sent the goddesses to Paris, who judged that Aphrodite, as the "fairest", should receive the apple. In exchange, Aphrodite made Helen, the most beautiful of all women and wife of Menelaus, fall in love with Paris, who took her to Troy. Agamemnon, king of Mycenae and the brother of Helen's husband Menelaus, led an expedition of Achaean troops to Troy and besieged the city for ten years because of Paris' insult. After the deaths of many heroes, including the Achaeans Achilles and Ajax, and the Trojans Hector and Paris, the city fell to the ruse of the Trojan Horse. The Achaeans slaughtered the Trojans (except for some of the women and children whom they kept or sold as slaves) and desecrated the temples, thus earning the gods' wrath. Few of the Achaeans returned safely to their homes and many founded colonies in distant shores. The Romans later traced their origin to Aeneas, Aphrodite's son and one of the Trojans, who was said to have led the surviving Trojans to modern-day Italy.

The ancient Greeks believed that Troy was located near the Dardanelles and that the Trojan War was a historical event of the 13th or 12th century BC, but by the mid-19th century AD, both the war and the city were widely seen as non-historical. In 1868, however, the German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann met Frank Calvert, who convinced Schliemann that Troy was a real city at what is now Hissarlik in Turkey. On the basis of excavations conducted by Schliemann and others, this claim is now accepted by most scholars.Whether there is any historical reality behind the Trojan War remains an open question. Many scholars believe that there is a historical core to the tale, though this may simply mean that the Homeric stories are a fusion of various tales of sieges and expeditions by Mycenaean Greeks during the Bronze Age. Those who believe that the stories of the Trojan War are derived from a specific historical conflict usually date it to the 12th or 11th century BC, often preferring the dates given by Eratosthenes, 1194–1184 BC, which roughly corresponds with archaeological evidence of a catastrophic burning of Troy VII.

Tudḫaliya I

Tudhaliya I (sometimes referred to as Tudhaliya II, or even Tudhaliya I/II) was a king of the Hittite empire (New kingdom) ca. the early 14th century BC (short chronology).


Wilusa, (Hittite: 𒌷𒃾𒇻𒊭 URUwi5-lu-ša) or Wilusiya, was a major city of the late Bronze Age in western Anatolia. It was described in 13th century BC Hittite sources as being part of a confederation named Assuwa.

The city is often identified with the Troy of the Ancient Greek Epic Cycle. Many modern archaeologists have suggested that Wilusa corresponds to an archaeological site in Turkey known as Troy VIIa, which was destroyed circa 1190 BC. Ilios and Ilion (Ἴλιος, Ἴλιον), which are alternate names for Troy in the Ancient Greek language, are linked etymologically to Wilusa. This identification by modern scholars has been influenced by the Chronicon (a chronology of mythical and Ancient Greece) written circa 380 AD by Eusebius Sophronius Hieronymus (also known as Saint Jerome). In addition, the modern Biga Peninsula, on which Troy VIIa is located, is now generally believed to correspond to both the Hittite placename Taruiša and the Troas or Troad of late antiquity.

Not all scholars have accepted the identification of Wilusa with Troy. There is an alternative hypothesis, for example, that Wilusa was located near Beycesultan, which was known in the Byzantine era as "Iluza" (Ἴλουζα).Wilusa per se is known from six references in Hittite sources, including:

the Manapa-Tarhunta letter (c. 1310–1280 BC); which places it beyond the Seha river;

the Alaksandu treaty (c. 1280 BC), between Alaksandu of Wilusa and Muwatalli II of Hatti;

the Tawagalawa letter (c. 1250 BC), addressed to the king of the Ahhiyawa by Hattusili III, mentioning a military conflict over Wilusa, and;

the Milawata letter (C. 1240 BC), believed to be written by Tudhaliya IV of Hatti, discussing the reinstallation of Walmu as king of Wilusa.

Bronze Age
Iron Age
Classical Age

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