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28 May 20:18

Myndus

TR > Mu─čla Province > Bodrum

Myndus or Myndos was an ancient Dorian colony of Troezen, on the coast of Caria in Asia Minor, (Turkey), sited on the Bodrum Peninsula, a few miles northwest of Halicarnassus. The site is now occupied by the modern village of Gümüslük.

Myndos was protected by strong walls, and had a good harbor. (Paus. ii. 30. § 8; Strabo xiv. p. 658; Arrian, Anab. i. 20, ii. 5.) Otherwise, the place is not of much importance in ancient history. Both Pliny (v. 29) and Stephanus of Byzantium (s. v.) mention Palaemyndus

as an ancient Carian settlement near to Myndus, which seems to have

become deserted after Dorian Mynduse was founded. (Comp. Strab. xiii.

p. 611). Mela (i. 16) and Pliny (l. c.) also speak of Neapolis

in the same peninsula and as no other authors mention such a place in

that part of the country, it had been supposed that Myndus (the Dorian

colony) and Neapolis were the same place. Pliny, however, mentions both

Myndus and Neapolis as two different towns, and modern scholars

differentiate the two.

The cynic philosopher Diogenes of Sinope

visited Myndos and noticed how large the city gates were, relative to

the town; he cynically remarked; "Oh men of Myndos, I urge you to shut

the city gates, as your town might exit from these!".

Sections of the town walls and gate have been restored with financial assistance from private companies.

Myndian ships are mentioned in the expedition of Anaxagoras against Naxos. (Herod. v. 33.) Herodotus

relates the story of how a captain from Myndus, Scylax, was found to

have left no guards on his ship while a Persian force was preparing to

attack the island of Naxos. The Persian commander, Megabates, flew into a rage and had him put in stocks, at which point Aristagoras, a tyrant from Miletus

helping several Naxian oligarchs to retake Naxos, discovered what had

happened to his guest-friend Scylax. Pleading with Megabates to no avail

for Scylax, he released him anyway, incurring the Persian commander's

wrath. The consequence of this falling out was that, according to

Herodotus, Megabates warned the Naxians of what was afoot, ruining the

expedition and in turn Aristagoras who, with nowhere to go, stirred up

the Ionian Revolt.

This is a classic example of Ionian αταξιη (lack of discipline,

disorder, licentiousness), a charge commonly levelled at them,

especially in the 5th century by Athens.

At a later time, when Alexander the Great

besieged Halicarnassus, he was anxious first to make himself master of

Myndus; but when he attempted to take it by surprise, the Myndians, with

the aid of reinforcements from Halicarnassus repulsed him with some

loss. (Arrian, l. c.; comp. Hecat. Fragm. 229; Polyb. xvi. 15, 21; Scylax, p. 38; Ptol. v. 2. § 9; Liv. xxxvii. 15; Hierocl. p. 687.) Athenaeus (i. 32) states that the wine grown in the district of Myndus was good for digestion.

Remains of the city are visible in and around Gümüslük and in the

adjacent waters; it is supposed that some unrecorded earthquake caused

seafront sections of the ancient town to be submerged. As a result, much of the land and offshore areas are protected from interference and development.