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Arsuz is located in Turkey
Location in Turkey
Coordinates: 36°24′46″N 35°53′12″E / 36.41278°N 35.88667°E / 36.41278; 35.88667Coordinates: 36°24′46″N 35°53′12″E / 36.41278°N 35.88667°E / 36.41278; 35.88667
Country Turkey
ProvinceHatay Province
 • MayorNazım ÇULHA (CHP)
25 m (82 ft)
 • Total2,257
Time zoneUTC+2 (EET)
 • Summer (DST)UTC+3 (EEST)
Postal code
Area code(s)0326
Licence plate31

Arsuz (Arabic: أرسوز‎, Greek: Αρσούς), also known as Uluçınar is a city in Hatay Province, southern Anatolia (Asian Turkey), and under its Ancient name Rhosus (Ancient Greek: Ῥῶσός and Ῥωσός[1]) a former bishopric and titular see.


Arsuz 36°24′46″N 35°53′12″E / 36.41278°N 35.88667°E / 36.41278; 35.88667 was a part of İskenderun ilçe [district] of Hatay Province. The town center is located 40 kilometres (25 mi) South of İskenderun and 118 kilometres (73 mi) from Antakya (administrative center of Hatay Province). The population was 2257 [2] as of 2012. While Arsuz is technically just a small town near the end of a coastal road leading south from İskenderun, the entire coastal region between İskenderun and Arsuz is often simply referred to as Arsuz. This area is predominantly small rural farms (usually located inland towards the mountains) and small groups of summer homes (usually located near the coastline). Arsuz was declared the center of Arsuz ilçe (district) in 2012 by the Metropolitan Law in Turkey.

New district[edit]

According to Turkish law no. 6360, in 2014 Arsuz became a district including seven towns and 25 villages in the rural area of the district.


Arsuz had many names throughout history, including: Rhosus, Rhossus, Rhopolis, Port Panel/Bonnel, Kabev and Arsous. The earliest documents about it date from the Seleucid Empire, of whose Antioch became the capital. Malalas writes that the city was founded by Cilix son of Agenor.[3][4] Arsuz was then an important seaport on the Gulf of Issus. In 64 BC it was annexed by the Roman Empire. Under the name Rhosus, it was a city and bishopric (see below) in the late Roman province of Cilicia Secunda, with Anazarba as its capital. It is mentioned by Strabo,[5] Ptolemy,[6] Pliny the Elder[7] and Stephanus Byzantius; and later by Hierocles[8] and George of Cyprus.[9][10]

Some Christians in Rhosus accepted as truth the Docetic Gospel of Peter and for them in around AD 200 Serapion of Antioch composed a treatise condemning the book.[11] Theodoret,[12] relates the history of the hermit Theodosius of Antioch, founder of a monastery in the mountain near Rhosus, who was forced by the inroads of barbarians to retire to Antioch, where he died and was succeeded by his disciple Romanus, a native of Rhosus; these two religious are honoured by the Greek Orthodox Church on 5 and 9 February.[10]

In 638 the city was incorporated into the Rashidun Caliphate. In 969 it was taken by the Byzantine Empire, in 1084 by the Seljuk Turks, in 1039 by the Crusades, in 1296 by the Egyptian Mamluks and in 1517 by the Ottoman Turks.[13]

Between 1918 and 1938 the town was under French Mandate for Syria and the Lebanon with the rest of Iskenderun district. In 1938 it became part of the independent Hatay Republic, but in June 1939 the Hatay legislature voted to join Turkey.

Ecclesiastical history[edit]

Rhosus was a diocese in the sway of the Patriarchate of Antioch, originally as a suffragan of its Metropolitan in provincial capital of Cilicia Secunda, the Archdiocese of Anazarba, as mentioned in the Notitiae Episcopatuum in the 6th century[14] and one dating from about 840.[15] In another of the 10th century Rhosus is included among the 'exempt' sees, directly subject to the Patriarch.[16]

Six residential Suffragan bishops of Rhosus are known:[17]

Titular see[edit]

No later than the 15th century the diocese was nominally restored as Latin titular bishopric of Rhosus (Latin) / Rosea (until 1925) / Roso (Curiate Italian) / Rhosien(sis) (Latin adjective)

It is vacant since decades, having had the following incumbents, so far of the fitting Episcopal (lowest) rank:[18]


  1. ^ Stephanus of Byzantium, Ethnica, §R548.17
  2. ^ Statistical Institute page Archived 2015-01-29 at the Wayback Machine
  3. ^ Malalas, Chronography, Book 8.198
  4. ^ Malalas, Chronography, Book 8.201
  5. ^ XIV, 5; XVI, 2.
  6. ^ V, 14.
  7. ^ V, xviii, 2.
  8. ^ Synecdemus 705, 7.
  9. ^ Descriptio orbis romani, 827.
  10. ^ a b Wikisource-logo.svg Pétridès, Sophron (1912). "Rhosus" . In Herbermann, Charles (ed.). Catholic Encyclopedia. 13. New York: Robert Appleton Company.
  11. ^ Eusebius, "Histor. eccles.", VI, xii, 2.
  12. ^ Philoth. Histor., X, XI.
  13. ^ Town page (in Turkish) Archived October 8, 2010, at the Wayback Machine
  14. ^ Vailhé in "Échos d'Orient", X, 145.
  15. ^ Gustav Parthey, Hieroclis synecd. et notit. gr. episcopat., not. Ia, 827.
  16. ^ Vailhé, ibid. 93 seq.
  17. ^ Le Quien, Oriens christianus, II, 905.
  18. ^

Sources and external links[edit]

  • Pius Bonifacius Gams, Series episcoporum Ecclesiae Catholicae, Leipzig, 1931, p. 436
  • Michel Lequien, Oriens christianus in quatuor Patriarchatus digestus, Paris, 1740, Tomo II, coll. 905-908
  • Konrad Eubel, Hierarchia Catholica Medii Aevi, vol. 1, p. 423 (note 4 on 'Rosensis'); vol. 2, pp. 224–225; vol. 3, p. 287; vol. 5, p. 334; vol. 6, p. 357