Borboleta - Caria mantinea (Felder & Felder, 1861) | ©Almir Cândido de Almeida   (Rio Cristalino, Alta Floresta, MT, Brazil)

The genus Caria contains some of the most beautiful and elusive species of butterflies on Earth. Although fairly common they are rarely seen due to their secretive habits, and are virtually impossible to follow in flight. Once seen these glittering jewels of the Amazon are never forgotten.

Known as Green MantleCaria mantinea (Riodinidae) is distinguished from other species in the genus, very similar in the green metallic upperside coloration, by a single large red blotch at the base of the underside forewings [1].



LOCATED at the crossroads of many ancient civilizations, Turkey is a haven for archaeology lovers. Over the centuries, a succession of empires and kingdoms – Hittite, Lydian, Persian, Greek, Roman, Byzantine and, finally, Ottoman – ruled over Anatolia. The country’s unique cultural legacy, its remarkably beautiful landscape as well as the friendliness of its people make visiting Turkey a rewarding experience. 

The country is scattered with so many archaeological wonders that each visit always seems too short. I have myself come back several times discovering one fascinating place after another. 

Having visited most of the great classical sites in western Turkey, I invite you to discover the ancient treasures of Caria, a region of considerable historical importance and geographical diversity.

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Photos and info by Carole Raddato/Following Hadrian on Ancient History Encyclopedia 

The Ionic Stoa in the Agora along the flooded sacred way at Miletus

The site of Miletus was occupied from Neolithic times though the 4th century AD when the Maeander River silted up, rendering the harbor useless. The great city fell to ruins after that.

In the early and middle Bronze Age, the settlement came under Minoan influence. Legend has it that an influx of Cretans occurred displacing the indigenous Leleges and the site was then renamed Miletus after a place in Crete. The Late Bronze Age saw the arrival of Luwian language speakers from south central Anatolia calling themselves the Carians. Later in that century the first Greeks arrived. The city at that time rebelled against the Hittite Empire. The city was destroyed in the 12th century BC after the fall of the Hittite Empire but was resettled extensively around 1000 BC by Ionian Greeks.

The ruins of Miletus are located on the western coast of Anatolia, near the mouth of the Maeander River in ancient Caria (near the modern town of Balat in Aydin Province, Turkey).

Rainbow Metalmark - Caria trochilus 

Belonging to a genus that contains some of the most beautiful and elusive species, Caria trochilus (Riodinidae) is one of the 9 species of Caria that can be found in Amazonia and the foothills of the eastern Andes. These butterflies have an almost black ground color and metallic blue scales, and have a rapid and erratic flight. 

Reference: [1]

Photo credit: ©Pablo MDS | Locality: Peru (2012)


Inktober Week in review:

15. Artemisia I of Caria

16. AEthelflaed

17. Lady K'abel (she doesn’t have a wikipedia page! She needs one, tumblr.)

18. Elizabeth I

19. Rani Lakshmibai of Jhansi

I included Wikipedia links on the names not because Wikipedia is always the best source, but because it’s a great place to start finding out about historical figures (the citations are a great way to find good source material). Also, if anyone who reads them his more accurate info they can edit the page.

Rare Greek Tetradrachm from Rhodes (Islands off Caria), c. 380 BC

Among the finest of all Rhodian tetradrachms, this is a masterpiece that is also in near mint condition.

The obverse shows the facing head of Helios, his attenuated hair radiating from the head. The reverse shows the inscription POΔION over a budding rose, undulating tendrils emerging from its base, all within an incuse square.

Harmonia Mantle

Caria rhacotis (Riodinidae) is a striking species of butterfly distributed from Mexico to Peru, and commonly referred as Harmonia Mantle.

As other species in the genus, Caria rhacotis is not often seen, mainly for their secretive habits. The adults seem to spend much of their time in the canopy, but males descend on hot sunny days to imbibe moisture from river beaches, or from the beds of dry streams.

Reference: [1]

Photo credit: ©Jeffrey Glassberg

Locality: Apuya, Napo, Ecuador

What Becomes of Kenlos || Caria

Carlos was watching as the snow falling down from the sky. Smiling and thinking how amazing his was going. He had Kendall, friends that care about him and his parents had left on a business trip. He was now meeting Aria at the park. He put his coat on and began walking to the park. Everything was perfect and he wouldn’t want anything to change.

Aphrodisias, Turkey

Aphrodisias was a small ancient Greek city in Caria (western Turkey) named after the goddess of love. She had a unique cult image here and was known as Aphrodite of Aphrodisias. According to the Byzantine encyclopedic compilation called the Suda, before being known as Aphrodisias, the city had held three previous names: Lelegon Polis (City of the Leleges), Megale Polis (Great City) and Ninoe.

The city was built near a marble quarry that was extensively exploited in the Hellenistic and Roman periods, and sculpture in marble from Aphrodisias became famous in the Roman world. Many examples of statuary have been unearthed in Aphrodisias, and some representations of the Aphrodite of Aphrodisias also survive from other parts of the Roman world, as far afield as Pax Julia in Lusitania (modern Portugal and part of Spain).

Aphrodisias is in an earthquake zone and has suffered a great deal of damage at various times, especially in the severe tremors of the 4th and 7th centuries. An added complication was that one of the 4th century earthquakes altered the water table, making parts of the town prone to flooding. Aphrodisias never fully recovered from the 7th century earthquake, and fell into disrepair.

The site of Aphrodisias is located near the modern village of Geyre, Turkey.

More about Aphrodisias…