From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [1]

(א has Λαοδικία everywhere. B has this form of the word in  Colossians 2:1,  Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 3:14, but Λαοδίκεια in  Colossians 4:13;  Colossians 4:15-16 [the latter is the form used by almost all Gr. authors]; Lat. Laodicea [in-correctly Laodicia ]).-Laodicea was an important seat of commerce in the Roman province of Asia, one of three cities in the Lycus valley which were evangelized about the same time. It was 11 miles W. of Colossae and 6 miles S. of Hierapolis. Founded probably by the Seleucid king Antiochus ii. (261-246 b.c.), and named after his wife Laodice, it was known as ‘Laodicea on the Lycus’ (Λαοδικία ἡ πρὸς [or ἐπὶ] τῷ Λυκῷ, Laodicea ad Lycum ). Being some distance east of ‘the Gate of Phrygia,’ it is classed by Polybius (v. 57) and Strabo (xii. viii. 13) among Phrygian cities, while Ptolemy sets it down as Carian. It stood on a small plateau about 2 miles S. of the Lycus, and had behind it to the S. and S.W. the snow-capped mountains Salbakos and Kadmos, each over 8,000 ft. above sea-level. Designed, like the other Seleucid foundations in Asia Minor, to be at once a strong garrison city and a centre of Hellenic civilization, it occupied a strategic position on the great eastern trade-route, where the narrow Lycus gorge opens into the broad Maeander plain. ‘Formerly a small town’ (Strabo, xii. viii. 16), its prosperity dated from the peaceful time which followed the Roman occupation (133 b.c.).

‘The country around Laodicea breeds excellent sheep, remarkable not only for the softness of their wool, in which they surpass the Milesian sheep, but for their dark or raven colour. The Laodiceans derive a large revenue from them, as the Colosseni do from their flocks, of a colour of the same name’ (Strabo, xii. viii. 16).

The native religion of the district was the cult of Carian Men, whom the Hellenists of Laodicea identified with Zeus. His temple was at Attuda, 13 miles W. from Laodicea. In connexion with it, but probably in Laodicea itself, was ‘a large Herophilian school of medicine under the direction of Zeuxis, and afterwards of Alexander Philalethes’ (Strabo, xii. viii. 20). The physicians of Laodicea were skilful oculists, and a preparation for weak eyes, called ‘Phrygian powder’ (τέφρα φρυγία), was well known. Nearly the whole basin of the Maeander was subject to earthquakes ( ib. 17). Imperial funds were usually given for the restoration of cities thus injured, and Laodicea accepted a grant from Tiberius after such a calamity, but of a later visitation Tacitus writes: ‘The same year [a.d. 60] Laodicea, one of the most famous cities of Asia, having been prostrate by an earthquake, recovered herself by her own resources (propriis opibus revaluit), and without any relief from us’ ( Ann. xiv. xxvii.). She had long been rich and increased in goods, and had need of nothing ( Revelation 3:17). More than a century before (in 51 b.c.), Cicero proposed to cash his treasury Bills of Exchange at a Laodicean bank ( Ep. ad Fam . iii. 5).

Such a thriving commercial centre had great attractions for a colony of Jews. If the first settlers were sent thither by the founder of the city, or by Antiochus the Great, who is said to have planted 2,000 Jewish families in Phrygia and Lydia (Jos. Ant. xii. iii. 4), they would enjoy equal rights of citizenship with the Greeks. When Flaccus, Roman governor of Asia (62 b.c.), forbade the Jews to send contributions of money to Jerusalem, he seized as contraband twenty pounds weight in gold in the district of which Laodicea was the capital (Cicero, pro Flacco , 28). Calculated at the rate of a half-shekel for each man, this sum represents a Jewish population of more than 11,000 adult freemen, women and children being exempted. Josephus preserves a letter from ‘the magistrates of the Laodiceans to Caius Rubilius’ (circa, about48 b.c.), guaranteeing religious liberty to the Jews of the city ( Ant. xiv. x. 20).

The details of the founding of the Church of Laodicea have to be pieced together from allusions in the Acts and Epistles. St. Paul was not directly the founder. His words in  Colossians 2:1, ‘I strive for … them at Laodicea, and for as many as have not seen my face in the flesh,’ imply that he had not personally laboured in the Lycus valley. In his third missionary tour he did not go to Ephesus by the ordinary route of commerce, which would have brought him to the Lycus cities, but passed through ‘the upper country’ (τὰ ἀνωτερικὰ μέρη,  Acts 19:1), probably by Seiblia and the Cayster valley. His influence in the former region was indirect. During his three years’ residence in Ephesus ‘all they who dwell in Asia heard the word’ (19:10). The truths which he proclaimed in the metropolis were quickly repeated all over the province, and especially in the cities along the great roads. His evangelist of the Lycus glen was Epaphras, whom St. Paul regarded as his deputy ( Colossians 1:7 [Revised Version], reading ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν instead of ὑμῶν), and whose labour on behalf of the three communities evoked a warm encomium ( Colossians 4:12-13). The close relations subsisting between the churches of Laodicea and Colossae are indicated by the injunction that the Epistle to Colossians should be read in the Church of the Laodiceans, and that the Colossians should read ‘the Epistle from Laodicea.’ The latter was perhaps the canonical ‘Epistle to the Ephesians,’ which Marcion expressly names the Epistle ‘to the saints who are at Laodicea.’

The last of the Epistles to the Seven Churches of Asia is addressed to Laodicea ( Revelation 3:14-22). The severity of the prophet’s rebuke has made ‘Laodicean’ for ever suggestive of lukewarmness in religion. Once fervent, Laodicea became so tepid that her condition excited a feeling of moral nausea. Each of the Seven Epistles is of course concerned with a Christian church rather than with a city, but the Christians were citizens, and the spirit of the city could not be kept out of the church. The allusions to the circumstances and character of Laodicea are unmistakable. The famous commercial and banking city, too proud to accept an Empire’s aid, is invited to come to the poor man’s market and buy from the Sender of the letter (παρʼ ἐμοῦ is emphatic) gold refined by fire ( Revelation 3:17-18). She who has innumerable flocks on her Phrygian hills, and whose fine black woollen fabrics are prized everywhere, has need of white garments to cover her own moral nakedness ( Revelation 3:18). Her aesculapian school of medicine has no Phrygian powder for the healing of her spiritual blindness, which requires the eye-salve ( collyrium ) of another Physician ( Revelation 3:18). Rich Laodicea, well-clothed, and well-fed, self-reliant and self-satisfied, is in danger of being rejected with loathing. Yet her absent Lord loves her, and writes her so incisively only because He hopes to find her chastened and penitent when He returns and knocks at her door ( Revelation 3:19-20).

Little is known about the post-apostolic history of Laodicea. Traditions regarding Archippus, Nymphas ( Colossians 4:15), and Diotrephes ( 3 John 1:9) are worthless. The so-called ‘Epistle to the Laodiceans’ (in Latin) is a forgery. The subscription of 1 Tim., ‘written from Laodicea, which is the chiefest city of Phrygia Pacatiana,’ has no authority. The ruins of Laodicea are many but not impressive.

Literature.-W. M. Ramsay, The Letters to the Seven Churches , 1904, pp. 413-430; W. J. Hamilton, Researches in Asia Minor, Pontus, Armenia , 1842, i. 515f.; W. M. Leake, Journal of Tour in Asia Minor , 1824, p. 251f.; Murray’s Handbook to Asia Minor , 1895.

James Strahan.

Fausset's Bible Dictionary [2]

A city of Phrygia. Originally Diospolis, then Rheas, then Laodicea. Site of one of the seven churches addressed by Christ through John ( Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 3:14). In Paul's epistle to the COLOSSIANS ( Colossians 4:13-16) Laodicea is associated with Colossae and Hierapolis, which exactly accords with its geographical position, 18 miles W. of Colossae, six miles S. of Hierapolis. It lay in the Roman province "Asia," a mile S. of the river Lycus, in the Maeander valley, between Colossae and Philadelphia. A Seleucid king, Antiochus II, Theos, named it from Laodice his wife. Overthrown often by earthquakes. It was rebuilt by its wealthy citizens, without state help, when destroyed in A.D. 62 (Tacitus, Annals 14:27). This wealth (Arising From Its Excellent Wools) led to a self satisfied "lukewarm" state in spiritual things, which the Lord condemns as more dangerous than positive icy coldness ( Revelation 3:14-21).

The two churches most comfortable temporally are those most reproved, Sardis and Laodicea; those most afflicted of the seven are the most commended, Smyrna and Philadelphia. Subsequently the church was flourishing, for it was at a council at Laodicea, A.D. 361, that the Scripture canon was defined. "The epistle from Laodicea" ( Colossians 4:16) is Paul's epistle to the Laodiceans which the Colossians were to apply to them for. Not the epistle to the Ephesians, for Paul was unlikely to know that his letter to the Ephesians would have reached Laodicea at or near the time of the arrival of his letter to the Colossians. In  1 Corinthians 5:9 similarly an epistle is alluded to, no longer extant, the Holy Spirit not designing it for further use than the local and temporary wants of a particular church. The apostle's epistles were publicly read in the church assemblies, being thus put on a level with the Old Testament and Gospels, which were similarly read.

The angel of the Laodicean church is supposed to be Archippus whom Paul 30 years before had warned to be diligent in fulfilling his ministry ( Colossians 4:17). The "lukewarm" state, if the transitional stage to a warmer, is desirable (For A Little Religion, If Real, Is Better Than None) , but fatal when an abiding state, for it is mistaken for a safe state ( Revelation 3:17). The danger is of disregarded principle; religion enough to lull the conscience, not to save the soul; halting between two opinions ( 1 Kings 18:21;  2 Kings 17:41;  Ezekiel 20:39;  Matthew 6:24). The hot (at Hierapolis) and cold springs near Laodicea suggested the simile. As worldly poverty favors poverty of spirit ( Matthew 5:3, compare  Luke 6:20), so worldly riches tend to spiritual self sufficiency ( Hosea 12:8).

Paul's epistle to the neighbouring Colossae was designed for Laodicea also, though Paul had not seen the Christians there at the time ( Colossians 2:1;  Colossians 2:3;  Colossians 4:6); it tells Laodicea "in whom" to find "hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge," whereas she thought she had all sufficiency in herself, "because thou sayest I am rich," etc. He endured a sore conflict, striving in anxious prayer in behalf of the churches of Ephesus and Laodicea that they might be delivered from Judaizing teachers, who blended Eastern theosophy and angel worship with Jewish asceticism and observance of new moons and sabbaths, professing a deeper insight into the world of spirits and a nearer approach to heavenly purity and intelligence than the simple gospel afforded ( Colossians 2:8-9;  Colossians 2:16-23). A few arches and part of an amphitheater are all the remains left of Laodicea Now Denishu.

Holman Bible Dictionary [3]

 Colossians 2:1 Colossians 4:13-16 Colossians 4:16

Laodicea was well known in the ancient world for its wealth. The extent of its wealth is illustrated by the fact that Laodicea was rebuilt without the financial help of Rome after the disastrous earthquake of A.D. 60. Laodicea earned its wealth in the textile industry in the production of black wool and in the banking industry. Laodicea was also known for its medical school which concocted a spice nard for the treatment of ears and an eyesalve. The major weakness of Laodicea was its lack of a water supply. This need was met by bringing water six miles north from Denizli through a system of stone pipes (another sign of Laodicea's wealth).

Laodicea is best known today to readers of Revelation where Jesus criticized Laodicea, using imagery drawn from its daily life ( Revelation 3:14-22 ). First, Jesus said Laodicea is neither cold (like the cold, pure waters of Colossae) nor hot (like the therapeutic hot springs of Hierapolis). Laodicea is lukewarm and provides neither refreshment for the spiritually weary nor healing for the spiritually sick ( Revelation 3:15-16 ). Despite their apparent spiritual uselessness, the Laodiceans were claiming a spiritual wealth equal to their material wealth; and further, they were claiming to have acquired both by their own efforts. In reality, however, the Laodiceans, while they may have had material wealth, were spiritually poor, blind, and naked ( Revelation 3:17 )—an obvious reference to the textile and banking industry and medical school of Laodicea. According to Jesus, what the Laodiceans needed more than anything else was the true gold, white (not black) garments, and eyesalve that only Christ could give ( Revelation 3:18 ). A true spiritual foundation is laid only in Christ, not human effort.

The letter of the risen Christ to the church at Laodicea ( Revelation 3:14-22 ) contains numerous allusions to conditions in the city. A five-mile-long aqueduct supplied the city with tepid water that served as an image for “lukewarm” Christianity ( Revelation 3:15-16 ). The Laodicean claim to be rich and prosperous reflects the self-reliant refusal of this city to accept Roman aid for rebuilding after an earthquake of about A.D. 60 ( Revelation 3:17 ). The charge that the Laodicean Christians were naked, blind, and in need of clothing and eyesalve ( Revelation 3:17-18 ) reflects the city's well-known school of ophthalmology and its fine garments of raven-black wool of local sheep.

Phil Logan

Bridgeway Bible Dictionary [4]

Like Colossae and Hierapolis, Laodicea was situated in a fertile valley east of Ephesus in the Roman province of Asia. It was an important educational, commercial and administrative centre.

Although Paul was the first to take the gospel to Asia, there is no indication that he visited the town during his missionary travels recorded in Acts ( Colossians 2:1). The church was probably founded at the time of Paul’s lengthy stay in Ephesus during his third missionary journey, when the zealous Ephesian converts took the gospel throughout the surrounding countryside ( Acts 19:8-10;  Colossians 4:12-13). (For map and other details see Asia .)

When Paul wrote to the church in Colossae, he wrote also to the church in Laodicea. He wanted the two churches to exchange their letters, so that both churches could read both letters ( Colossians 4:16). This letter to the Laodiceans was never collected as part of the sacred writings.

Another letter to the Laodicean church has been preserved, this one written towards the end of the first century ( Revelation 3:14). The letter is Christ’s message to the church and is largely one of criticism. The citizens of Laodicea in general were prosperous and self-satisfied, and this spirit of self-satisfaction carried over into the church.

The Laodiceans prided themselves that they had all they needed, and even believed that their material prosperity had resulted from their spiritual goodness. Because of their reliance on material things they could not exercise true faith in God, and their lives could not demonstrate that Christ brings complete satisfaction. Jesus condemned their comfortable spiritual pride and tried to make them see themselves as he saw them – poor, blind and naked. They had to realize that Christ alone could produce truly spiritual qualities in their lives, and he could do this only when they turned from their sin and humbly sought his help ( Revelation 3:15-22).

Smith's Bible Dictionary [5]

Laodice'a. (Justice Of The People). A town in the Roman province of Asia, situated in the valley of the Maeander, on a small river called the Lycus, with Colossae and Hierapolis a few miles distant to the west. Built, or rather rebuilt, by one of the Seleucid monarchs, and named in honor of his wife, Laodicea became, under the Roman government, a place of some importance. Its trade was considerable; it lay on the line of a great road; and it was the seat of a conventus.

From the third chapter and seventeenth verse of Revelation we should gather it was a place of great wealth. Christianity was introduced into Laodicea, not, however, as it would seem, through the direct agency of St. Paul. We have good reason for believing that when, in writing from Rome to the Christians of Colossae, he sent a greeting to those of Laodicea, he had not personally visited either place. But the preaching of the gospel at Ephesus,  Acts 18:19;  Acts 19:41, must inevitably have resulted in the formation of churches in the neighboring cities, especially where Jews were settled; and there were Jews in Laodicea.

In subsequent times, it became a Christian city of eminence, the see of bishop and a meeting-place of councils. The Mohammedan invaders destroyed it, and it is now a scene of utter desolation, as was prophesied in  Revelation 3:14-22 and the extensive ruins near Denislu justify all that we read of Laodicea in Greek and Roman writers.

Another biblical subject of interest is connected with Laodicea. From  Colossians 4:16, it appears that St. Paul wrote a letter to this place when he wrote the letter to Colossae. Ussher's view is that it was the same as the Epistle to the Ephesians, which was a circular letter sent to Laodicea among other places. The apocryphal Epistola ad Laodicenses is a late and clumsy forgery.

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [6]

LAODICEA was situated in the valley of the Lycus, a tributary of the Mæander in Asia Minor. It was founded by Antiochus ii. about the middle of the 3rd cent. b.c. It was planted in the lower Lycus glen, Colossæ being situated in the upper. The Lycus glen was the most frequented path of trade from the interior of the country to the west, and the great road passed right through Laodicea. The city was nearly square, and strongly fortified, but dependent for its water supply on an acqueduct 6 miles long. It played a comparatively small part in the dissemination of Greek culture. Its prosperity advanced greatly under the Romans. It was an important manufacturing centre, for instance, for a soft glossy black wool, which was made into garments of various kinds (cf.   Revelation 3:18 ). In connexion with the temple of the Phrygian god Men Karou (13 miles W. of Laodicea), there grew up a celebrated school of medicine. Its most famous medicines were an ointment made from spice nard, which strengthened the ears, and Phrygian powder, obtained by crushing Phrygian stone, which was used for the eyes (  Revelation 3:18 ). There were many Jewish inhabitants of Laodicea, and the population as a whole was of very mixed race. There is a want of Individuality about the life of this city, which has been called ‘the city of compromise.’ The church there was not founded by St. Paul, but probably by one of his coadjutors, perhaps Epaphras (cf.   Colossians 4:13 ). It was no doubt one of the cities which received the ‘Epistle to the Ephesians’ (  Colossians 4:16 ), as well as the Epistle to the Colossians (  Colossians 4:16 ). It was one of the ‘seven churches’ of the Apocalypse (  Revelation 3:14-22 ). Its condemnation is perhaps the severest of all.

A. Souter.

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [7]

There were several cities of this name, but the Scripture. speaks only of that in Phrygia, upon the river Lycus, near Colosse. Its ancient name was Diospolis: it was afterward called Rhoas. Lastly, Antiochus, the son of Stratonice, rebuilt it, and called it Laodicea, from the name of his wife Laodice. It became the mother church of sixteen bishoprics. Its three theatres, and the immense circus, which was capable of containing upward of thirty thousand spectators, and spacious remains of which (with other ruins buried under ruins), are yet to be seen, give proof of the greatness of its ancient wealth and population; and indicate too strongly that in that city where Christians were rebuked, without exception, for their lukewarmness, there were multitudes who were lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God. The amphitheatre was built after the Apocalypse was written, and the warning of the Spirit had been given to the church of the Laodiceans to be zealous and repent. There are no sights of grandeur, nor scenes of temptation around it now. Its own tragedy may be briefly told. It was lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot; and therefore it was loathsome in the sight of God. And it has been blotted from the world. It is now as desolate as its inhabitants were destitute of the fear and love of God. It is, as described in his Travels by Dr. Smith, "utterly desolated, and without any inhabitants except wolves, and jackals, and foxes." It can boast of no human inhabitants, except occasionally when wandering Turcomans pitch their tents in its spacious amphitheatre. The finest sculptured fragments are to be seen at a considerable depth, in excavations which have been made among the ruins. And Colonel Lake observes, "There are few ancient cities more likely than Laodicea to preserve many curious remains of antiquity beneath the surface of the soil. Its opulence, and the earthquakes to which it was subject, render it probable that valuable works of art were often there buried beneath the ruins of the public and private edifices."

American Tract Society Bible Dictionary [8]

A large and opulent city of Asia Minor, the metropolis of Phrygia Pacatiana. It was situated on the river Lycus, not far above its junction with the Meander, and in the vicinity of Colosse and Hierapolis. Its earlier name was Diopolis; but after being enlarged by Antiochus II, it was called Laodicea, from his wife Lodice. About A. D. 65 or 66, this city, together with Hieropolis and Colosse, was destroyed by an earthquake, but was quickly rebuilt by Marcus Aurelius. It is now in ruins, and the place is called Eskihissar, or the old castle. A Christian church was early gathered here. It was addressed by Paul in his letter to Colosse, and in another now lost,  Colossians 2:1   4:13-16 , though some think the "Epistle to the Ephesians" is the one alluded to. The church at Laodicea was probably visited by Paul, A. D. 63, and is one of the seven which received special messages from Christ after his ascension,  Revelation 1:11   3:14-22 . We know little of its after-history, except that an important council was held there near the middle of the fourth century, and that some form of Christianity lingered there until the time of the Turks.

Morrish Bible Dictionary [9]

An important city in the district of Phrygia in Asia Minor. It forms a triangle with Hierapolis and Colosse. Its ancient name was Diospolis, but when Antiochus Theos rebuilt it he called it Laodicea, after the name of his wife. It became a wealthy city: on one occasion when it was destroyed by an earthquake the inhabitants were able to rebuild it without asking aid from the state: cf.  Revelation 3:17 . Its destruction has been complete: its ruins are called Eski-hissar.

There is no account of Paul having visited this city, but it is evident that the church there was on his heart and that he sought its welfare. All that is known of the state of the Laodicean church is gathered from the address sent to it through the apostle John (see REVELATION). Colossians 2:1;  Colossians 4:13,15,16;  Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 3:11 .

People's Dictionary of the Bible [10]

Laodicea ( La-Ŏd-I-Sç'Ah ), the old city (Greek Diospolis), stood on the banks of the Lycus, a branch of the Meander, a few miles distant from Colosse and Hierapolis, in the Roman province of Asia, in Asia Minor. Seleucus II. enlarged it, and named it after his wife Laodicea. A Christian church was early established here, probably from Ephesus, and to this church Paul sent a salutation when writing to the Colossians,  Colossians 4:15; it is also mentioned in  Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 3:14. From  Colossians 4:16 it appears that Paul wrote a letter to the Laodiceans, which some think is the same as the Epistle to the Ephesians.

Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary [11]

A city rendered famous from its connection with Scripture history. (See  Colossians 2:1; Col 4:16. See also  Revelation 1:11; Rev 3:14-22.) What an awful consideration, that not a vestige of this church remains, but the place where it stood is now inhabited by infidels!

Easton's Bible Dictionary [12]

 Revelation 3:14 Colossians 2:1 4:15 Revelation 1:11

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia [13]

- od - i - sē´a ( Λαοδικία , Laodikı́a ): A city of Asia Minor situated in the Lycos valley in the province of Phrygia, and the home of one of the Seven Churches of Rev (  Revelation 1:11 ). Distinguished from several other cities of that name by the appellation Ad Lycum, it was founded by Antiochus Ii (261-246 BC) of Syria, who named it for his wife Laodike, and who populated it with Syrians and with Jews who were transplanted from Babylonia to the cities of Phrygia and Lydia. Though Laodicea stood on the great highway at the junction of several important routes, it was a place of little consequence until the Roman province of Asia was formed in 190 BC. It then suddenly became a great and wealthy center of industry, famous specially for the fine black wool of its sheep and for the Phrygian powder for the eyes, which was manufactured there (compare  Revelation 3:18 ). In the vicinity was the temple of Men Karou and a renowned school of medicine. In the year 60 AD, the city was almost entirely destroyed by an earthquake, but so wealthy were its citizens that they rejected the proffered aid of Rome, and quickly rebuilt it at their own expense (compare  Revelation 3:17 ). It was a city of great wealth, with extensive banking operations (compare  Revelation 3:18 ). Little is known of the early history of Christianity there; Timothy, Mark and Epaphras ( Colossians 1:7 ) seem to have been the first to introduce it. However, Laodicea was early the chief bishopric of Phrygia, and about 166 Ad S agaris, its bishop, was martyred. In 1071 the city was taken by the Seljuks; in 1119 it was recovered to the Christians by John Comnenus, and in the 13th century it fell finally into the hands of the Turks.

The ruins, now called Eski Hissar , or old castle, lie near the modern Gonjelli on the railroad, and they have long served as a quarry to the builders of the neighboring town of Denizli . Among them nothing from before the Roman period has appeared. One of the two Roman theaters is remarkably well preserved, and there may still be seen the stadium, a colonnade, the aqueduct which brought the water across the valley to the city by an inverted siphon of stone pipes, a large necropolis, and the ruins of three early Christian churches.

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [14]

There were four places of this name, which it may be well to distinguish, in order to prevent them from being confounded with one another. The first was in the western part of Phrygia, on the borders of Lydia; the second, in the eastern part of the same country, denominated Laodicea Combusta; the third, on the coast of Syria, called Laodicea ad Mare, and serving as the port of Aleppo; and the fourth, in the same country, called Laodicea ad Libanum, from its proximity to that mountain. The third of these, that on the coast of Syria, was destroyed by the great earthquake of Aleppo in August, 1822, and at the time of that event was supposed by many to be the Laodicea of Scripture, although in fact not less than four hundred miles from it. But the first named, lying on the confines of Phrygia and Lydia, about forty miles east of Ephesus, is the only Laodicea mentioned in Scripture, and is that one of the 'seven churches in Asia' to which St. John was commissioned to deliver the awful warning contained in . The fulfillment of this warning is to be sought, as we take it, in the history of the Christian church which existed in that city, and not in the stone and mortar of the city itself; for, although it is true that the city is utterly ruined, it is not the city, but 'the church of the Laodiceans,' which is denounced.

Laodicea was the capital of Greater Phrygia and a very considerable city at the time it was named in Scripture; but the frequency of earthquakes, to which this district has always been liable, demolished, some ages after, great part of the city, destroyed many of the inhabitants, and eventually obliged the remainder to abandon the spot altogether.

Laodicea is now a deserted place, called by the Turks Eski-hissar (Olds Castle). From its ruins, Laodicea seems to have been situated upon six or seven hills, taking up a large extent of ground. To the north and north-east runs the river Lycus, about a mile and a half distant; but nearer it is watered by two small streams, the Asopus and Caprus, the one to the west, and the other to the south-east, both passing into the Lycus, which last flows into the Maeander.

Laodicea preserves great remains of its importance as the residence of the Roman governors of Asia under the emperors; namely, a stadium, in uncommon preservation, three theaters, one of which is 450 feet in diameter, and the ruins of several other buildings. Col. Leake says: 'There are few ancient sites more likely than Laodicea to preserve many curious remains of antiquity beneath the surface of the soil; its opulence, and the earthquakes to which it was subject, rendering it probable that valuable works of art were often there buried beneath the ruins of the public and private edifices.'

The Nuttall Encyclopedia [15]

Eight ancient cities bore this name; the chief, situated on the Lycus, in Phrygia, lay on the way between Ionia and the Euphrates; was a city of great commerce and wealth, the seat of schools of art, science, medicine, and philosophy, and of an early Christian bishopric; though the Church was stigmatised in the Revelation, two councils assembled here in A.D. 363 and 476, the former of which influenced the determination of the canon of both Testaments; the city, destroyed by the Mohammedan invasions, is now in ruins.