Ancient Greek city in modern-day Turkey, in Mysia, north-western Anatolia, 16 miles from the Aegean Sea, located on a promontory on the north side of the river Caicus (modern day Bakırçay), that became the capital of the Kingdom of Pergamon during the Hellenistic period, under the Attalid dynasty, 281–133 BC. Today, the modern city of Bergama is located nearby.
The museum is in Bergama and Asklepion, hospital) is out of the city. It is comprehended that Asklepion, built in the name of Aesculapius, the god of Health and Medicine, has existed since the 4th century BC. It contains premises such as a small theater with a capacity of 3,500 people, rooms where the patients were cured by the sound of water and music, the temple of Asklepion and the library. Here, the dreams of the patients were analyzed by their doctors (priests) 2000 years before Sigmund Freud did. One of the important personalities of Asklepion was Galen from the 2nd c. AD.
The Asklepion gained in prominence under the Romans in the 2nd century AD, but a sacred site existed here as early as the 4th century BC. Many of the treatments employed at Pergamum, in complement with a sacred source of water that was later discovered as having radioactive properties, have been used for centuries and are once again finding modern application.
The treatments included psychotherapy, massage, herbal remedies, mud and bathing treatments, the interpretation of dreams, and the drinking of water. Quite unlike modern hospitals, everybody who was anybody was dying to get in to the Asklepion: patients included Hadrian, Marcus Aurelius, and Caracalla.
But then again, the Asklepion was more like a modern spa than a hospital: therapy included mud baths, music concerts, and doses of water from the sacred fountain. Hours of therapy also probed the meaning of the previous night's dreams, as patients believed dreams recounted a visit by the god Asklepios, who held the key to curing illness. Galen, the influential physician and philosopher who was born in Pergamum in 129 AD, trained and then later became an attendant to the gladiators here..