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Friday, May 27, 2011

Deste Oi Magisses Tis Smirnis

The story starts in Smyrna in 1887. Katina is an intelligent and unethical young girl from Smyrne. She lives in a poor neighbourhood, where she meets Attarti, a Turk, who agrees to teach her about magic. After that, no obstacle is big enough, nothing can stand in the way of Katina climbing the social ladder. Love potions, filtres, concoctions and magic prove to be unmistakable. She marries four men. Each richer than the other, each more powerful than the previous one. Climbing the social structure of Smyrna, Katina gets involved with her husbands' businesses and dealings. She manages trade deals, banks tobacco and one day gets to run Smyrna.
Her writings, her potion recipes and her magic filtres were found, by chance, in a dusty case, a hundred years later, in her house in the island of Egina.

zmir is a large metropolis in western Anatolia and the capital of the İzmir Province in Turkey. It is Turkey's third most populous city and the country's second-largest port city after Istanbul. It is located along the outlying waters of the Gulf of İzmir on the eastern shoreline of the Aegean Sea. The city was formerly known as Smyrna.
The city of İzmir is composed of several districts. Of these, Konak district corresponds to historical İzmir, this district's area having constituted "İzmir Municipality" area until 1984, Konak until then having been a name for a central neighborhood around Konak Square, still the core of the city. With the constitution of "Greater İzmir Metropolitan Municipality", the city of İzmir became a compound bringing together initially nine, and since recently eleven metropolitan districts, namely Balçova, Bayraklı, Bornova, Buca, Çiğli, Gaziemir, Güzelbahçe, Karabağlar, Karşıyaka, Konak and Narlıdere. Almost each of these settlements are former district centers or neighborhoods which stood on their own and with their own distinct features and temperament. In an ongoing processus, the Mayor of İzmir was also vested with authority over the areas of additional districts reaching from Aliağa in the north to Selçuk in the south, bringing the number of districts to be considered as being part of İzmir to twenty-one under the new arrangements, two of these having been administratively included in İzmir only partially.
In all probability, modern name "İzmir" derives from the former Greek name "Smyrna", through the first two syllables of the phrase "εις Σμύρνην" ( pronounced "is Smirnin"), which means "to Smyrna". A similar etymology also applies for other Turkish cities with former Greek names, such as İznik ( from the phrase "is Nikaean", meaning "to Nicaea") and Istanbul ( from the phrase "is tan Polin" or "to the City").
In ancient Anatolia, the name of a locality called Ti-smurna is mentioned in some of the Level II tablets from the Assyrian colony in Kültepe (first half of the 2nd millennium BC), with the prefix ti- identifying a proper name, although it is not established with certainty that this name refers to modern day İzmir.[5]
The region of İzmir was situated on the southern fringes of the "Yortan culture" in Anatolia's prehistory, the knowledge of which is almost entirely drawn from its cemeteries,[6] and in the second half of the 2nd millennium BC, in the western end of the extension of the yet largely obscure Arzawa Kingdom, an offshoot and usually a dependency of the Hittites, who themselves spread their direct rule as far as the coast during their Great Kingdom. That the realm of the 13th century BC local Luwian ruler who is depicted in Kemalpaşa Karabel rock carving at a distance of only 50 km (31 mi) from İzmir was called the Kingdom of Myra may also leave ground for association with the city's name.[7]
The newest rendering in Greek of the city's name we know is the Aeolic Greek Μύρρα Mýrrha, corresponding to the later Ionian and Attic Σμύρνα (Smýrna) or Σμύρνη (Smýrnē), both presumably descendants of a Proto-Greek form *Smúrnā. Some would see in the city's name a reference to the name of an Amazon called Smyrna who would have seduced Theseus, leading him to name the city in her honor.[8] Others link the name to the Myrrha commifera shrub, a plant that produces the aromatic resin called myrrh and is indigenous to the Middle East and northeastern Africa. The Romans took this name over as Smyrna which is the name that is still used in English when referring to the city in pre-Turkish periods. The name İzmir (Ottoman Turkish: إزمير İzmir) is the modern Turkish version of the same name. In Greek it is Σμύρνη (Smýrni), Իզմիր (Izmir) in Armenian, Smirne in Italian, Esmirna in Spanish, Smyrne in French, and Izmir (without the Turkish dotted İ) in Ladino.

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