Dentist collecting ancient artifacts for 25 years
BALIKESİR - Demirören News Agency
Dentist Özkan Arıkantürk, 69, collected 4,000 artifacts in 25 years, beginning collecting first after he bought a Roman-era glass bottle that he admired.
Living in the Burhaniye district in the western province of Balıkesir, Arıkantürk said, “A glass bottle caused me to start creating this collection. It was a very thin bottle that survived until today under the ground without getting any damage for more than 2,000 years.”
Throughout the years, Arıkantürk collected nearly 600 antique works such as glass, terracotta items, bronze works, ornaments and jewelries. His collection also includes 3,500 coins, which were used by civilizations that existed in the region.
Stating that he was interested in history and archaeology since his childhood, Arıkantürk said that he wanted to be an archaeologist, but he became a dentist in the course of life.
He said that his interest in history continued, adding, “I decided to create my own collection with the information I have read and learned over the years. With the collector certificate I received from the Culture Ministry 25 years ago, I started collecting ancient artifacts. During this time, I had nearly 600 works. There are many works such as glass, terracotta items, bronze works, ornaments, and many others.”
Speaking about the Roman-era glass bottle, his first item in the collection, Arıkantürk said, “It was a very thin bottle that survived underground without any damage for more than 2,000 years. Who knows, who got it? It was a great feeling to have this bottle. It is a great feeling to protect, preserve and even exhibit it today."
"In the following period, I improved my archaeological artifact collection. From war tools such as glass, which are actually perfume bottles and publicly known as tear bottles, to various jewelry, terracotta materials, ax used in wars, arrowheads and sling stones made of lead, I created a large collection that also includes olive oil lamps used in antiquity and the products used for food and beverage," he added.
From Troas to Mysia and Aiolis
Along with his nearly 600 artifacts, Arıkantürk also has another collection of 3,500 coins. He chose three ancient regions in northwestern Anatolia as the target area and is currently displaying coins of 70 ancient cities in his collection.
“The coins in my collection consist of the ones printed by the ancient cities around us. These are the periods that begin from the 6th century B.C. until the Byzantine and Roman times. The coins I collected belong to different periods of each city. Some cities printed Greek coins only, while others printed coins of even Roman times along with the Greek ones," he said.
"Among these ancient cities, for example Antandros is a city of Troas. Adramytteion, or today’s Edremit, belongs to Mysia region. There are 3,500 coins from three ancient regions including Aiolis, which includes today’s Cunda – Ayvalık,” he explained.
Founder of Sarıkız Kazdağı Ethnography Gallery, where the collection of Arıkantürk is exhibited, Uğur Bostancıoğlu said, “In our museum, we introduce Ida Mount and Edremit region, its mythology, culture, fauna and vegetation. We have also displayed Özkan Arıkantürk’s collection in our gallery with a special permission from the Culture Ministry for about three years. The collection, which generally contains works from the Roman and Byzantine periods, draws great attention.”