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Culture and history info
The earliest record of the name of Cappadocia dates from the late 6th century BC, when it appears in the trilingual inscriptions of two early Achaemenid kings, Darius I and Xerxes, as one of the countries (Old Persian) of the Persian Empire. In these lists of countries, the Old Persian name is Katpatuka, the land of beautiful horses.
History of Cappadocia dates back to Paleolithic Age. The prehistoric settlements of the area are Koskhoyuk (Kosk Mound) in Nigde, Aksaray Asikli Mound, Nevsehir Civelek cave and, in the southeast, Kultepe, Kanis and Alisar in the environs of Kayseri.
First known local people in history of Cappadocia are Assurians, establishing trade colonies in Anatolia and formed first trade colonies.
This area with unusual topographic characteristics was regarded as sacred and called, in the Scythian/khatti language, as “Khepatukha” meaning “the Country of the People of the Chief God Hepat”. The tablets called Cappadocian Tablets and the Hittite works of art in Alisar are of the important remains dating from 2000s B.C. After 1200s B.C., the Tabal principality, of the Khatti Branches of Scythians, became strong and founded the Kingdom of Tabal. Following the Late Hittite and Persian aras, the Cappadocian Kingdom was established in 332 B.C.
During the Roman era the area served as a shelter for the early escaping Christians. There are also several underground cities used by early Christians as hideouts in Cappadocia. After Romans, Cappadocia was under domination of Seljuks and Ottomans.