A Local Architectural Example of Cappadocia Region: Byzantine Period Rock Carved ApiariesDerya Güneri
In order to ensure their historical and geographical continuity, bees, need to use their hives in the best way. Therefore, different methods have been developed. Among these methods, sometimes natural and sometimes man-made hives have been used. Hive use can change depending on the region. The common purpose to do this is to protect hives and bees from climate conditions and negative environmental factors, use bees and bee products most efficiently and utilize the present material. Indeed, beekeeping and collecting applications have subsisted in various styles and methods since ancient times, and have been shaped following their purposes in the Byzantine Period and survived until today. Rockcarved apiaries, which were designed together with the structures of the valley they were located in Cappadocia during the Byzantine Period, are among the local architectural examples presented that the society provides and the important agricultural structures of rural context. “Rock-carved apiaries”, which are the subject of our research and that we can date to the Byzantine Period, are located in the Keşlik, Soğanlı, Uçhisar, Göreme, Kızılçukur and Güllüdere 2 valleys in the Cappadocia Region in their original form. In the study, the Byzantine Period the rock–carved apiaries determined during the field studies conducted in the Cappadocia Region and recorded were introduced, the typology was created, architectural drawings were made, and they were documented through photographs. It was aimed to handle the rockcarved apiaries as local architecture and to introduce them to the science world.
Kapadokya Bölgesinin Yerel Mimari Örneği: Bizans Dönemi Kayaya Oyma ArılıklarDerya Güneri
Arıların tarihî ve coğrafi devamlılığını sağlamak için kovanlarını en üst seviyede kullanmaları gerekmektedir. Bunun için de farklı yöntemler geliştirilmiştir. Bu yöntemler arasında bazen doğal bazen de insan yapımı kovanlar kullanılmıştır. Kovan kullanımı bölgesel olarak değişebilmektedir. Bunu yapmaktaki ortak amaç kovanları ve arıları iklim koşullarından ve olumsuz çevre faktörlerinden korumak, en etkili şekilde arı ve arı ürünlerinden faydalanmak ve mevcut malzemeyi değerlendirmektir. Esasen arıcılık ve bal toplama uygulamaları, Antik Çağ’dan beri çeşitli biçim ve yöntemlerle varlığını sürdürmüş, Bizans Dönemi’nde de amaçlarına uygun olarak şekillenmiş ve günümüze kadar gelmiştir. Arılık olarak bilinen ve Bizans Dönemi’nde Kapadokya’da, bulundukları vadinin yapılarıyla beraber tasarlanmış olan kayaya oyma arılıklar, toplumun sunmuş olduğu yerel mimari örnekler arasında olup kırsal bağlamın önemli zirai yapıları içerisinde yer almaktadır. Araştırma konusunu oluşturan ve Bizans Dönemi’ne tarihlendirilen “kayaya oyma arılıklar” özgün biçimleriyle Kapadokya Bölgesi’nde Keşlik, Soğanlı, Uçhisar, Göreme, Kızılçukur ve Güllüdere 2 vadilerinde bulunmaktadır. Çalışmada Kapadokya Bölgesi sınırları içerisinde gerçekleştirilen saha araştırmalarında tespit edilen ve belgelenen Bizans Dönemi kayaya oyma arılıkları tanıtılmış; tipolojisi çıkarılmış, mimari çizimleri yapılarak fotoğraflarla belgelemeye gidilmiştir. Kayaya oyma arılıkların bir yerel mimari ürünü olarak ele alınıp bilim dünyasına tanıtılması amaçlanmıştır.
Apiculture and honey collection practices have existed in various forms and methods since ancient times and have survived to the present day. Bee fossils found in amber are accepted as the first ancestors of bees. Important evidence related to bees and beekeeping has been achieved in the cave paintings of prehistoric periods. The honey collection scene in a wall painting in Eastern Spain, the honeycomb and beehouse depiction found in Çatalhöyük and the honey harvest depiction in Castello are some of them. A wall painting in the Nile Delta dating 2400 B.C. is important since it reflects the first beekeeping activity carried out by man under control and systematically. Honey appears in all religions and cultures. The fact that the symbol of royalty was a bee in Egypt, the vapor pots unearthed in Macedonia dating Bronze Age that depict Minos people presented honey to God by fermenting and transforming it to liqueur and the presence of the information about beekeeping on a cuneiform of Hittites are the evidence of the existing of apiculture from ancient times. It is known that honey that was produced in Lycia in Hellenistic Period was exported to Egypt.
Honey was a multipurpose nutrient in Ancient Greek and Roman cultures. It has been claimed that beehives were started to be used in Athens in the last quarter of the 5th century B.C., and the practice started after the immigration of Athenians living in rural areas in order to escape from Spartans in the Battle of Peloponnesus. It is known that they brought the beehives with them and most probably, they placed the hives in the present structures such as city walls horizontally. A great number of clay hives unearthed during the agora excavations have confirmed that honey production was conducted in the city. The earliest evidence of rural apiculture is from the farmhouse dating Classical Period in Vari, Attica. Solon, assigned as archon between the years of 639-599 B.C., emphasized that one who newly started beekeeping should place his hives 300 meters from the hives set by others, and this reveals that the issue was so important as necessitating an arrangement. Many authors living in Roman Period mentioned honey. It is known that there were horizontal beehives in Rome. Varro referred in the 2nd century A.D. that some were round and made of wicker, some made of carved logs, and some were rectangular and made of cane. Undoubtedly, honey was valuable for the Byzantine world. Therefore, it appears as the most preferred agricultural activity both in monasteries and in private life. Honey, is known to be used in monks’ monastic diet, torture of martyrs, rituals, cooking, enhancing the flavor of wine, protecting clothing, healing wounds and trading. It can be found in the anthology collections of the 10th century, in Byzantine church music, in hymnos praising the bee, in the vitas of saints who are considered the protectors of the hive and honey, and in Byzantine-influenced roll miniatures. Bees have also entered iconography in painting. Bees accompany the “Birth of Jesus” scene in three miniature paintings dated between the 9th and 12th centuries, prepared in the Southern Italy Monastery. Bees come out of their hives and greet Jesus. In doing so, their main purpose should be to obey Jesus and Mary and celebrate the birth. They appear as symbols of cleanliness and purity. Honey was also important in the old Turkish States and Ottoman Period. Beekeeping and the taxes received from beekeeping were among the important public revenues in Ottoman Empire. It is known that steps were taken to increase honey and bee wax production in Turkiye in the early Republic Period. Concerning that, the tith was waived, reports for executing modern apiculture were presented in the 1st Agriculture Congress, participating in training activities held abroad and increasing the allowance allocated from the budget of the Ministry of Agriculture every year regularly.
The topographic structure and appropriate climate conditions of Turkiye ensure an appropriate environment for apicultural activities. One of the important regions providing this environment is Cappadocia. Since the structure of Cappadocia was suitable, honey production was tried to be made in the apiaries carved by hand in the rocky structure. Today, this type of apiculture continues. “Rock-carved apiaries”, which are the subject of our research and that we can date to the Byzantine Period, are located in the Keşlik, Soğanlı, Uçhisar, Göreme, Kızılçukur and Güllüdere 2 valleys in the Cappadocia Region in their original form. The apiaries, which are as high as being reached by a ladder, consist of a human-sized entrance door to collect honey or to control the bees, small holes coplanar sorted and thin parallel vertical slits that allow the bees to enter the hives. Inside, there are niches with or without shelves carved into the rock with 30-40 cm width and 85-100 cm depth suitable for these holes and slits. Rock-carved apiaries in the region can be classified in four types those with holes and vertical shelves in niches, with holes and horizontal shelves without niches, with thin parallel vertical slits in the niches without shelves and with both holes in the niches with shelves and with thin parallel vertical slits in the niches without shelves. Some apiaries having both plan types but there are also some having only holes and vertical or horizontal shelves, or some having only vertical slits. The apiary located at the entrance of Soğanlı is in the first plan type with holes and vertical shelves in niches, the one in Keşlik is in the second type with holes and horizontal shelves without niches, the one in Uçhisar is in the third type with thin parallel vertical slits in niches without shelves and the apiary in Güllüdere 2 is in the fourth type with both holes and shelves in niches and with thin parallel vertical slits in niches without shelves. It is seen that the apiaries in Cappadocia were built with local elements like all rural architectural elements, namely by carving in rocks, and located in generally high places getting sunlight above the valley. It is believed that a two-hive system of fixed hives and movable basket hives was used and fixed hives were placed on holes and basket hives placed in vertical slits. Beekeepers could treat honeycombs from behind without damaging the arrangement of the bees. It is thought that the architectural forms of the rock-carved apiaries, which are an important agricultural structure type, meanly the holes and vertical slits on the rock surfaces might have arisen peculiarly to the region in order to fulfil the needs, and it is seen that holes were generally located towards west or east to receive maximum sunlight. Rock-carved apiaries, which were designed together with the structures of the valley they were located in Cappadocia during the Byzantine Period, are among the local architectural examples presented that the society provides and the important agricultural structures of rural context. Based on the history of the valleys and the rock structures around them, the apiaries coincided with the Middle Byzantine Period and continued in the form of changing built structures in modern rural areas, as in the 10th or 11th century has also been found to be actively used.