Kayalipinar Samuha Hittite Ancient City

Kayalıpınar is a village situated around 50 kilometers from the city of Sivas, where evidence of an ancient Hittite settlement was discovered during excavations. Archaeologists believe that this settlement was the city of Samuha, one of the major cities of the Hittites.

The five excavated Hittite settlements' ancient names are known, and the identification of Kayalıpınar as Samuha is considered an important discovery. Originally a small market for Assyrian merchants, Samuha developed into a prominent trading center in the 18th century BC.

Kayalipinar Samuha Hittite Ancient City

In 2014, excavations uncovered written documents and an Old Assyrian language tablet belonging to an Anatolian merchant, shedding light on the history of Samuha. According to written sources, the Hittite King Telepinu (~1500 BC) established an official warehouse in Samuha, an important city during the Hittite Kingdom period (17th-13th century BC), where several Hittite great Kings ruled the country.

The tablets indicate that King Tuthaliya ruled from Samuha in the 16th century BC with his palace advisors and died there. His son and successor, King Suppiluliuma I, also came out of Samuha. Many seals belonging to Hittite kings, princes, and officials were found during the excavations.

A limestone block in the city, around 1.2 meters high and 1 meter wide, depicts a deity with a demi-cone shaped headpiece, holding a drinking cup and sitting on a stool. A bird's stone carving is visible but only covers about half of its body, while the stone figure of a chair shows a seated person and an additional foot protruding from the back. This relief is found in other Hittite carvings and is believed to date to around the 13th century BCE or earlier. The limestone block was moved to the Sivas Museum, and a replica was placed at its original location.