Geographical sites:

  • Cyzicus (click here to focus in map) (see also Pleiades #511218)
    Pleiades_icon Cyzicus settlement, amphitheatre Geocontext: Belkiz Kale
    Description: An ancient city of Mysia in Anatolia.


Text #6198

Malalas. The Chronicle of John Malalas
[Malal. 11.16. Translated by Elizabeth Jeffreys and Michael Jeffreys and Roger Scott . Australian Association for Byzantine Studies. 1986 p. 147]

During the reign of the most sacred Hadrian, Kyzikos, which is the great metropolis of the province of Hellespont, suffered an earthquake from the wrath of God on the night of 10th November. He gave generously to the city and restored it.

Text #6199

Editorial comment by Zadig

The capital of the province of the Hellespont, Cyzicus, was ruined by a large earthquake. Malalas dates it to 10 November in an unspecified year during the reign of Hadrian (117-138). Ambraseys connects Malalas’ earthquake with a passage from the Chronicon Paschale (PG 92, p. 615) which does not mention the earthquake, but only Hadrian’s construction programme in Nicomedia, Nicaea and Cyzicus, which is dated to 123. The construction programme of Hadrian began soon after his progress through Asia Minor in 124. According to Ambraseys, to have merited imperial assistance, Cyzicus must have been struck by the earthquake only shortly before, so probably on 10 November 123.

Guidoboni, who syncretises this event with the one in Nicomedia in 120, links it with two passages from the Sibylline Oracles mentioning a tsunami and an earthquake affecting both Cyzicus and Cibyra.

Guidoboni, Catalogue of ancient earthquakes in the Mediterranean area up to the 10th century, 1994, p. 233-234 Ambraseys, Earthquakes in the Mediterranean and Middle East, 2009, p. 126

Text #6256

The Sibylline Oracles
[Bk. 3 Verse 515 p. 92]



And, Cyzicus, from thee the sea shall tear Vast wealth away.

Text #6257

The Sibylline Oracles
[Bk. 4 Verse 120 p. 118]



And Sybaris shall fall, and Cyzicus, When earthquakes shake the land, and cities perish.

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