Germencik 104 km (64 mile) far to Aydin. Germencik is an old settlement, first founded by ‘Hidir Bey’ of the Aydinind Principality under the name “Degirmencik” (little mill). Later, it has also been called “Igneabad”. The town obtained district’s status in 1948. The remains of the antique city of Magnesia on the Maeander are located on the west side of Route D525 between Ortaklar and Soke, just west of the village of Tekin, in Aydin Province at 37°51’N 27°31’E.

See Magnesia on the Maeander for more details of this city, founded by Ancient Greeks from Thessaly and in its day a key trading partner of Priene, Ephesus, Tralles and other major Aegean cities. The ruins have been excavated and include a theatre, temples and an Ancient Roman gymnasium, and baths. Magnesia was commercially and strategically at an important location in the triangle of Prien, Ephesus and Tralles.

The first excavations at the archaeological site were made in 1891 by Carl Humann of the Berlin Museum. 21 Month long excavations revealed (partially or fully) the theatre, Artemis temple, agora, Zeus temple and prytaneion. Excavations resumed at the site, after almost 100 years, in 1984, by Prof. Dr. Orhan Bingöl on assignment from Ankara Üniversitesi and Turkish Ministry of Culture. Findings at the archaeological site are now displayed at museums of Istanbul, as well as Berlin and Paris, where they were illegally smuggled.

The most important and the biggest piece smuggled outside Turkey is the whole façade of the Zeus temple (smuggled by the German archeological team), which is currently in possession of the Berlin Bergama Museum. The Turkish government has made several unsuccessful attempts to date, to return it.

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