A man in Turkey’s Nevşehir province broke down the wall of his basement and found an ancient underground ‘subterranean city’.
According to the accounts, this guy used a sledgehammer to break his wall and discovered a tunnel behind it, followed by tunnels further away. Later, exploration will find it to be an 18-story underground city with a chapel, school, and stables.
The city was discovered called Derinkuyu, a city that has been abandoned for generations, possibly a place of local emergency relief. According to archaeologists from the Turkish Ministry of Culture, the construction of the city, which may have numbered 20,000 people, may have begun as early as the 8th and 7th centuries BC.
The Phrygians there started the work, but it wasn’t complete yet, built from rock, created by layers of volcanic ash, very soft. The underground houses were large enough for a family, livestock and food, according to a document from around 370 BC, possibly about Derinkuyu.
The entrance and exit system of this ‘underground city’ has secret entrances, vents, wells and aqueducts through a network of tunnels and passages.
It is possible that the local people initially exploited soft rock as a food storage to keep the food at a stable, cool temperature. However, they have probably become a ‘base city’ as they have all the efficiency and elements needed in the old days to defend battles.
For example, to prevent competitors from contaminating the water supply, residents of lower floors were able to cut off the flow from the upper floors to the underground levels. The corridors themselves were so small that any intruder would have to line up one after another to get under, and the tunnels could be closed from the inside with spherical stone doors.
For many years, the city provided refuge for many people in times of war. There are also similar caves that have been used as safe havens from danger; Derinkuyu isn’t even the biggest underground city.
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