A city in Asia Minor not far from Laodicea, which had come to exceed it in wealth and importance. There was a big Jewish population in the 1st cent., but the greater part was Greek, and Greek was the predominant language. There was a flourishing trade in wool, and possibly Christians enjoyed an affluence similar to their neighbours in greater Laodicea (Rev. 3: 17 ff.). Roman religion did not extirpate the old Phrygian cults and the mother goddess of fertility had her home in neighbouring Hierapolis. The impression is of a lively and fairly tolerant community in which there were mixed Jewish–Gentile marriages and the dilution of strict Jewish worship with elements of Hellenistic paganism. Archaeological remains of the city are scanty.
Subjects: Biblical Studies.