ETYMOLOGY OF NAME ‘MALATYA’
Malatya is referred to as ‘Melitae’ in Kültepe sources, and as ‘Maldia’ in Hittite ones. In the Assyrian sources, the name becomes ‘Meliddu, Melide, Melid, Milidia’. Urartians called the city as ‘Melitea’ while Romans and Byzantines ‘Melitene’, Arabs ‘Malatiyye’. Finally the Turks named city ‘Malatya’. The Czech linguist Bedrich Hrozny, who deciphered the ancient Hittite language, proposed that the meaning of the name Malatya in Hittite is “honey and orchard”. In Hittite hieroglyphic texts, Malatya is represented by a calf’s head or bull’s foot.
The Nemrut Mountain National Park is located within the borders of the Büyüköz village of the Pütürge district, Malatya and the Kahta district of Adıyaman. The hierotheseion (final sacred resting place) of the Antiochos I (69-34 BC), the king of Commagene, is one of the magnificent monuments of the World. In this unique place Antiochos I is represented as a descendant of Darius by his father Mithridates Kallinikos and a descendant of Alexander the Great by his mother Loadice. So it proves the ambition of the king to remain independent of the western and eastern powers.