The forces which drive and which draw human beings into clusters have seemingly been operative since time immemorial. These clusters have evolved into diverse forms with differences in size and function. Increasingly, they present bewildering complexities that the geographer and other social scientists study and analyze as they try to explain and classify them. This article, using, in part, a functional classification, deals with 146 urban settlements in Turkey with a population of 10,000 or more. In addition, five communities ranging in population from 3,818 to 8,526 have been included because they are provincial centers (vilayet merkezleri)
Frequently. eiıher the type of agglomeration or the number of its functions is the basis for distinguishing the city from other concentrations. Stated in another way, “the activities ıhat make the existence and the development of a city possible and supply the vital sources” 2 3 has become one criterion for making a distinction between urban and rural settlements.
Some writers do not consider agriculture, which is the principal, and often the almost exclusive function in rural settlements, to be as urban function. They contend that such settlements do not engage in activities which play a part ın the economy of the region in which they are located and therefore these concentrations are properly “villages” even if they have a population exceeding 40,000.“ “İn an urban çenter, most of the people are engaged in activities other than the direct use of land” is a common statement \vhich is expanded to specifically identify such purstıits as manufacturing, commerce, collection, distribution, transfer, administration, and recreation as constituting urban functions.