Lagina (Ancient Greek: τὰ Λάγινα) or Laginia (Λαγινία)[1] was a town in the territory of Stratonicea, in ancient Caria. It contained a most splendid temple of Hecate, at which every year great festivals were celebrated.[2] Tacitus, when speaking of the worship of Trivia among the Stratoniceans, evidently means Hecate.[3]

Its site is located near Turgut, Asiatic Turkey.[4][5]

Recent studies have shown that the site had been inhabited and/or employed in an uninterrupted manner during a time span stretching back to the Bronze Age. Seleucid kings conducted a considerable reconstruction effort in the sacred ground of Lagina and transformed it into a foremost religious center of its time, with the nearby (at a distance of 11 kilometers) site of Stratonicea becoming the administrative center. The two sites (Lagina and Stratonkeia) were connected to each other in antiquity by a holy path.

The archaeological research conducted in Lagina is historically significant in that it was the first to have been done by a Turkish scientific team, under the direction of Osman Hamdi Bey and Halit Ethem Bey. In 1993, excavation and restoration work was resumed under the guidance of Muğla Museum, by an international team advised by Professor Ahmet Tırpan.

The friezes of the Hecate sanctuary are displayed in the Istanbul Archaeology Museums. Four different themes are depicted in these friezes. These are, on the eastern frieze, scenes from the life of Zeus; on the western frieze, a battle between gods and giants; on the southern frieze, a gathering of Carian gods; and on the northern frieze, a battle of Amazons.

Lagina was Christianised at an early date and was the seat of a bishop; no longer a residential see, it remains a titular see of the Roman Catholic Church.[6]

The Sanctuary of Hecate in Lagina, Caria, Turkey (17263493936)
Temple of Hecate


  1. ^ Stephanus of Byzantium. Ethnica. s.v.
  2. ^ Strabo. Geographica. xiv. p.660. Page numbers refer to those of Isaac Casaubon's edition.
  3. ^ Tacitus. Annals. 3.62.
  4. ^ Richard Talbert, ed. (2000). Barrington Atlas of the Greek and Roman World. Princeton University Press. p. 61, and directory notes accompanying.
  5. ^ Lund University. Digital Atlas of the Roman Empire.
  6. ^ Catholic Hierarchy

 This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domainSmith, William, ed. (1854–1857). "Lagina". Dictionary of Greek and Roman Geography. London: John Murray.

Coordinates: 37°22′42″N 28°02′21″E / 37.378275°N 28.039242°E

Ancient Greek temple

Greek temples (Ancient Greek: ναός, romanized: naós, lit. 'dwelling', semantically distinct from Latin templum, "temple") were structures built to house deity statues within Greek sanctuaries in ancient Greek religion. The temple interiors did not serve as meeting places, since the sacrifices and rituals dedicated to the respective deity took place outside them, within the wider precinct of the sanctuary, which might be large. Temples were frequently used to store votive offerings. They are the most important and most widespread building type in Greek architecture. In the Hellenistic kingdoms of Southwest Asia and of North Africa, buildings erected to fulfill the functions of a temple often continued to follow the local traditions. Even where a Greek influence is visible, such structures are not normally considered as Greek temples. This applies, for example, to the Graeco-Parthian and Bactrian temples, or to the Ptolemaic examples, which follow Egyptian tradition. Most Greek temples were oriented astronomically.

Between the 9th century BC and the 6th century BC, the ancient Greek temples developed from the small mudbrick structures into double porched monumental buildings with colonnade on all sides, often reaching more than 20 metres in height (not including the roof). Stylistically, they were governed by the regionally specific architectural orders. Whereas the distinction was originally between the Doric and Ionic orders, a third alternative arose in late 3rd century BC with the Corinthian order. A multitude of different ground plans were developed, each of which could be combined with the superstructure in the different orders. From the 3rd century BC onwards, the construction of large temples became less common; after a short 2nd century BC flourish, it ceased nearly entirely in the 1st century BC. Thereafter, only smaller structures were newly begun, while older temples continued to be renovated or brought to completion if in an unfinished state.

Greek temples were designed and constructed according to set proportions, mostly determined by the lower diameter of the columns or by the dimensions of the foundation levels. The nearly mathematical strictness of the basic designs thus reached was lightened by optical refinements. In spite of the still widespread idealised image, Greek temples were painted, so that bright reds and blues contrasted with the white of the building stones or of stucco. The more elaborate temples were equipped with very rich figural decoration in the form of reliefs and pedimental sculpture. The construction of temples was usually organised and financed by cities or by the administrations of sanctuaries. Private individuals, especially Hellenistic rulers, could also sponsor such buildings. In the late Hellenistic period, their decreasing financial wealth, along with the progressive incorporation of the Greek world within the Roman state, whose officials and rulers took over as sponsors, led to the end of Greek temple construction. New temples now belonged to the tradition of the Roman temple, which, in spite of the very strong Greek influence on it, aimed for different goals and followed different aesthetic principles (for a comparison, see the other article).

The main temple building sat within a larger precinct or temenos, usually surrounded by a peribolos fence or wall; the whole is usually called a "sanctuary". The Acropolis of Athens is the most famous example, though this was apparently walled as a citadel before a temple was ever built there. This might include many subsidiary buildings, sacred groves or springs, animals dedicated to the deity, and sometimes people who had taken sanctuary from the law, which some temples offered, for example to runaway slaves.


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Stratonicea – (Greek: Στρατoνικεια, or Στρατονίκεια) also transliterated as Stratoniceia and Stratonikeia, earlier Indi, and later for a time Hadrianapolis – was an ancient city in the valley of the Caicus river, between Germe and Acrasus, in Lydia, Anatolia; its site is currently near the village of Siledik, in the district of Kırkağaç, Manisa Province, in the Aegean Region of Turkey.

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Black Sea
Central Anatolia
Eastern Anatolia


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