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Afrin in Lines » The Archeological Sites in Afrin » Basouta Castel

Nine Kilometers to the south of Afrin is a beautiful village known as Basouta which is surrounded fruit orchards and there is a fresh water spring coming up from the bottom of Leloon mountain surrounding Basouta from the east and south. But many hundred meters to the west of its orchards Afrin river crossing narrow path located between/ Leloon mountain/ and
/Bozeke mountain/ , and the government had constructed a dam at the end of that path beside "Borj Abdalo" village on the side of Afrin river.

The citadel is surrounded with a vast fertile plain at the north and west and this plain is connected with Basouta and Ein Dara villages. In the middle of the village there is a big rocky hill ranges in height from 30 meters to 50 meters and it is a steep rocky shaped of about seven hectares and it seems that it was a part of Leloon mountain and it separated from it in the ancient geological cades and famous fresh spring. Therefore, the famous citadel of Basouta had been built on that hill.

The history of citadel:
The date of the citadel building exactly is unknown.

It was mentioned for the first time in /Mohammed Ali Al Ozaymi/ book(The History of Aleppo) 1090-1161 and he talked about events took place in 1145. In details, he talked a battle that happened there.

Although Ozaymi didn't mention anything about the governor and the people of Basouta , but it is noticed that Basouta was an independent province and it didn't submit to the Zenki authority in Aleppo. Perhaps the governor of Basouta at that time was from the native people of the area, or he was a Byzantine leader and Josline, the governor of Arraha, was controlling /Leloon Mount/ in1145.

In the Ayobian era (i.e. at the end of the 12thand at the beginning of the 13thcentury )Ayobian gave Al-Quseir Province to al-Mendi family , and this village is about 20 Kilometers to the southern west and this family controlled this Province until the beginning of the 17thcentury. It seems that the importance ofthis castel was reduced in the time of Ibn-Alshouhna(1402- 1485) because it is said in the 'Selected Pearl' page 127 that the castle had been ruined so the village became weak and unable to defend itself.

In the latest three centuries, many Kurdish governors controlled the citadel of Basouta and the most famous were:

Robary Family in the first part of the 18thcentury, then Kenji Family and Battal Families came in the second part of the 18thcentury and the first part of the 19thcentury. But Sultan Mahmud's plans to make the central authority strong led to the reduction of these families' authority. So the citadel was careless and destroyed.

The ruins of this citadel is still existed until the beginning of this century , but the people of Basouta used most of the citadel stones to build their houses. Therefore, the famous families in Ein Dara(Safa family from Aleppo ) used its stones to build their palace which is existed in the middle of the village. Al-Kenj also had taken some of the citadel stones to Jalame village to build their houses , and now we can see only some meters of the bases of the eastern wall and a big room in the north which seems as if it was as a barn for animals , and up till now it is used for keeping animals in.

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Afrin in Lines » The Archeological Sites in Afrin » Basouta Castel