No Light


One of my migraine triggers is a lack of natural light.  I had a lot of problems with that when I worked in a cube farm.  My cube was tucked away in a corner where there were no windows.  Most days I felt a little off.  It took me a long time to figure it out, but essentially, a lack of natural light screws with my brain and it’s ability to tell time and will trigger a migraine.

If I spend all day downstairs at my house, I have a similar problem.  Which got me thinking, how many problems would exist for people like me if they were living in an underground city?  A city like Derinkuyu…

Derinkuyu is not the only subterranean city we have discovered, just the largest.  Located in Turkey, Derinkuyu is an architectural wonder.  It has five levels; a wine press, an oil press, areas for livestock, and can hold about 20,000 people.  There is a five mile tunnel that connects it to another underground city, Kaymakli.

Interestingly, the province of Turkey where Derinkuyu was built contains around 300 subterranean cities of varying sizes.  It was basically a sunken fortress.  There are doors on each of the five levels that can only be opened or closed from the outside, and the same door system is found at the main entrance to the city.  No one really knows when or why or how Derinkuyu was built.

The working theory is that they were built by the Phrygians during early Roman times to protect the Greek Phrygians from Romans and Asian raiding parties.  Phrygians were Greeks that had moved into Turkey during the days of Greek conquest in the 10th century BCE and intermarried with the Turkish natives already there.  History has largely ignored the Phrygians because the ancient peoples didn’t contribute much to early civilizations in the way that the Egyptians, Romans, or Sumerians did.

However, while Derinkuyu may not be the hanging Gardens of Babylon or the Great Pyramid, it is a wonder of the ancient world and the Phrygians got shafted for their contributions to early civilization simply because their masterpieces weren’t pointing skyward.

If you find yourself in Turkey, Gobekli Tepe is only 300 miles from Derinkuyu, and a large number of the underground cities including Derinkuyu and Kaymakli are open to the public for viewing.

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