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Lycia (lĭshˈə) [key], ancient country, SW Asia Minor. Egyptian sources ally the Lycians to the Hittites at the time of Ramses II; the Lycians spoke an Anatolian language. Lycia was frequently mentioned by Homer in Greek mythology. In historic times it was held by the Persians, the Seleucids, and the Romans (from 189 B.C.). Its chief towns included Xanthus, Patara, and Myra. Ruins include many rock-cut Lycian tombs and later Grecian sculptures dating from the 5th cent. B.C.

The Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, 6th ed. Copyright © 2012, Columbia University Press. All rights reserved.

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