Hama
635 CE/14 AH (Capitulation to Muslim Armies)
Syria

Hama is a city located north of Homs on the Orontes River, in the western part of Syria. It is a city of great antiquity, and was a provincial city in kingdoms including the Mitannian, Aramaean, Assyrian, and Roman Empires before incorporation into the lands of Islam. The first occurrence of the toponym related to its modern Arabic name "Hama" dates to the ninth century BCE. However, Neolithic and Chalcolithic ruins within the citadel mound demonstrate that the site was inhabited already in the fifth millennium BCE. In the second century BCE, the city was renamed Epiphaneia, after Seleucid ruler Antiochus IV Epiphanes (r. 175-164 BCE), although the Hellenistic presence at Hama may predate this change in name. Hama became part of the Muslim Empire in 636-637/15 AH, where it remained a provincial center. During the Islamic period, Hama became a famous manufacturer of silk and major trade center on caravan routes. 

The city's unique geographic location, on the Orontes while facing the desert, created a distinctive architectural form. Unlike its neighboring city Homs, Hama situates itself on the river. The open streets and riverside houses expose gardens and shaded terraces into public realms while interiors enclose private spaces from the harsh environment on the edges. The buildings of Hama are similar to the stone ones of Aleppo, particularly the Ottoman structures. The many important architectural sites of Hama include: the Roman water wheels and aqueducts, Jami' Hama al-Kabir (the Great Mosque, founded at the time of the city's incorporation in the Muslim Empire), and the 18th century Ottoman Azem Palace. These sites in addition to smaller mosques and khans form the city that occupies the heart of Syria. 


Sources

Ball, Warwick. Syria A Historical and Architectural Guide. New York: Interlink Books, 1994. 

Sinclair, T., David BraundR. TalbertJohan ÅhlfeldtJeffrey BeckerW. RölligTom ElliottH. KoppDARMCSean GilliesB. Siewert-MayerDiane BraundFrancis Deblauwe and Eric Kansa. "Amaseia: a Pleiades place resource." Pleiades: A Gazetteer of Past Places, 2016. https://pleiades.stoa.org/places/668182

Todt, Klaus-Peter, and Bernd Andreas Vest. Syria (Syria Prōtē, Syria Deutera, Syria Euphratēsia), 2: 1129-1139. Vienna: Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften, 2014.

Associated Sites
Images & Videos
Collections
Variant Names
حماة
Original
Hama
Transliterated
Hamah
Alternate transliteration
Hamat
Alternate transliteration
Hamath
Alternate transliteration
Ἐπιφάνεια
Formerly known as
Epiphaneia
Transliterated
Epiphania
Alternate transliteration