Which city was the most important in the 13-14th century Konya, Kayseri or Ankara?


Ad Honorem
Nov 2010
Western Eurasia
Konya definetly, it was the Seljuk and then later in the 14th century the Karamanid capital and the biggest city in Anatolia, most important economic and cultural center too. Ankara shouldn't even be in the top 3, the three most important cities were Konya, Kayseri and Sivas. At least as i remember Claude Cahen also rates these 3 cities in the 13-14th century as the most important, with Konya being the first. (Claude Cahen, Pre-Ottoman Turkey: a general survey of the material and spiritual culture and history, c. 1071-1330).
Last edited:
Oct 2016
On a magic carpet
I'd say Konya. It was the capital of Rum Sultanate and had a strong religious importance. Rumi the famous Sufi poet lived there and a Sufi order is based there. Kayseri was not so important at this time and Ankara is hardly mentioned.

The city of Izmir (Smyrna) and Iznik (Nicaea) were also important, although not under Turk rule yet. Iznik was the capital of a Greek state in the 13th century which captured Istanbul and made a new Byzantine Empire. In 14th century Turkish beyliks arrived and then Ottomans.
Last edited:
May 2009
I'd say it's almost a tie between Konya and Kayseri because while Konya was the capital, Kayseri was a more extravagant city and had livelier trade. The Seljuqs liked to move around a lot, so they built palaces and residences in many cities. In fact I believe the palace in Kayseri was bigger and more extravagant than the one in Konya. The Sultans Qilij Arslan I and Qilij Arslan II made Konya the capital in the 12th century and put a lot of effort into building it up (along with other cities), but the building of palaces, mosques, etc. didn't reach its peak until the 13th century. By that time I think Konya was definitely the dominant city, not just because it was the capital, but because it was also the location of the royal burial ground. This gave it spiritual significance to the Seljuqs. But Kayseri wasn't far behind.
Mar 2016
I think Ankara wouldn't come to prominence if it wasn't for national resistance.