Its original location was about 10 km southwest of Eskişehir, at a place now known as Karaca Hisar; about the end of the fourth century B.C. it was moved to a location north of modern Eskişehir.
The city existed under the Phrygians but may have been much older. It was a Roman trading post. It also was probably a key city of the route the Apostle Paul took on his Second Missionary Voyage in 50 AD.
Dorylaeum was the site of two battles during the crusades. In 1097, during the First Crusade, the crusaders defeated the Seljuks there, in their first major victory. During the Second Crusade it was the site of a major defeat, which effectively ended the German contribution to the crusade.
Byzantine emperor Manuel I Comnenus fortified Dorylaeum in 1175, but according to some authorities the Turks recaptured it in 1176 after the Battle of Myriokephalon. However, the contemporary Byzantine historian Niketas Choniates relates that Manuel did not destroy the fortifications of Dorylaeum, as he had agreed to do as part of the treaty he negotiated with the Seljuk Turkish sultan Kilij Arslan II immediately after Myriokephalon. The sultan's response to this development was not a direct attack on Dorylaeum but the dispatch of a large army to ravage the rich Meander valley to the south.
Dorylaeum was described by the Muslim author al-Harawi (died 1215) as a place of medicinal hot springs on the frontier at the end of Christian territory.
Dorylaeum became a bishopric under the Byzantine Empire.
Seven bishops are known from the fourth to the ninth century, the most famous being Eusebius. The see is mentioned as late as the twelfth century among the suffragans of Synnada, but must have been suppressed soon after.
- Lindner, R.P., (2007) Explorations in Ottoman Prehistory, Published by University of Michigan Press. ISBN 0-472-09507-2
- Treadgold, Warren (1997). A History of the Byzantine State and Society. Stanford University Press. ISBN 0-8047-2630-2.
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