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A titular see of Caria, suffragan of Stauropolis. It was a colony from Trœzen in Argolis, and one of the six towns that formed the Dorian Hexapolis in Asia Minor. It was situated on Ceramic Gulf and the isthmus known as Zephyrion, whence its original name, Zephyria, was protected by many forts, and was the largest and strongest town in Caria. Its harbour was also famous. The Persians imposed tyrants on the town who subdued all Caria, and remained faithful to Persia, though they adopted the Greek language, customs, and arts. Its queen, Artemisia, and her fleet were present with Xerxes at Salamis. Another Artemisia is famous for the magnificent tomb (Mausoleum) she built for her husband, Mausolus, at Halicarnassus, a part of which is now in the British Museum. The town was captured and burnt by Alexander. Though rebuilt, it never recovered its former prosperity, and gradually disappeared almost from history. The historians Herodotus and Dionysius were born there. It is the modern Bodrum, the chief town of a caza in the vilayet of Smyrna, and has 6000 inhabitants, of whom 3600 are Mussulmans and 2200 Greeks. Halicarnassus is mentioned (I Mach., xv, 23) among the towns to which the consul Lucius sent the letter announcing the alliance between Rome and the high-priest Simon. To its Jewish colony the Romans, at a later date, gave permission to build houses of prayer near the sea coast (Josephus, Ant. jud., XIV, x, 23). In the "Notitiæ Episcopatuum" mention of it occurs until the twelfth or thirteenth century.. Lequien (Oriens Christ., I, 913) mentions three bishops: Calandion, who sent a representative to the Council of Chalcedon, 451; Julian, condemned in 536 as an Aphthartodocetist; Theoctistus, present at the Council of Constantinople, 553. At the Second Council of Nicæa in 787, the see was represented by the deacon Nicetas.
NEWTON, A History of Discoveries at Halicarnassus, Cnidus, and Branchidœ (London, 1862-3); SMITH, Dict. of Greek and Roman Geogr., s. v.; CUINET, La Turquie d'Asie (Paris, 1894), 662-664; BEURLIER in Vig., Dict. de la Bible, s. v.