1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Afium-kara-hissar

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AFIUM-KARA-HISSAR (afium, opium), the popular name of Kara-hissar Sahib, a city of Asiatic Turkey, in the vilayet of Brusa, nearly 200 m. E. of Smyrna, and 50 m. S.S.E. of Kutaiah. Pop. 18,000 (Moslems, 13,000; Christians, 5000). Called Nicopolis by Leo III. after his victory over the Arabs in 740, its name was changed by the Seljuk Turks to Kara-hissar. It stands partly on level ground, partly on a declivity, and above it rises a precipitous trachytic rock (400 ft.) on the summit of which are the ruins of an ancient castle. From its situation on the route of the caravans between Smyrna and western Asia on the one hand, and Armenia, Georgia, &c., on the other, the city became a place of extensive trade, and its bazaars are well stocked with the merchandise of both Europe and the East. Opium in large quantities is produced in its vicinity and forms the staple article of its commerce; and there are, besides, manufactures of black felts, carpets, arms and saddlery. Afium contains several mosques (one of them a very handsome building), and is the seat of an Armenian bishop. The town is connected by railway with Smyrna, Konia, Angora and Constantinople.

See V. Cuinet, Turquie d’Asie (Paris, 1894), vol. iv.