1911 Encyclopædia Britannica/Soli (Asia Minor)

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SOLI (mod. Mezetlü), an ancient town of Asia Minor, on the coast of Cilicia, between the rivers Lamus and Pyramus, from each of which it is about 62 m. Colonists from Argos in Greece and Lindus in Rhodes are described as the founders of the town, which is first mentioned at the time of the expedition of the younger Cyrus. In the 4th century B.C. it was so wealthy that Alexander exacted a fine of 200 talents. In the Mithradatic War, Soli was destroyed by Tigranes, but it was subsequently rebuilt by Pompey, who settled there many of the pirates whom he had captured, and called the town Pompeiopolis. Soli was the birthplace of Chrysippus the Stoic and of the poets Philemon and Aratus. The bad Greek spoken there gave rise to the term σολοικισμός, solecism, which has found its way into all the modern languages of Europe. The ruins, which lie on the right bank of the Mezetlü Su have been lately plundered to supply building material for Mersina, and little remains except part of the colonnade which flanked the main street leading to the harbour. The place is easily reached from Mersina by carriage in about 1½ hours.  (D. G. H.)