Cappadocia, an ancient division of Asia Minor, in the east of that peninsula, between the Taurus, which separated it from Cilicia, and the Euxine, and the middle Halys and the upper Euphrates. It was traversed by the Anti-Taurus, and watered, besides the rivers mentioned, by the Melas, the Sarus, and the Pyramus. It was inhabited by a sturdy people of Semitic race, often designated as White Syrians. It was conquered by the Persians under Cyrus. After the era of Alexander the Great and his immediate successors it was ruled by independent kings till A. D. 17, when it was reduced to a Roman province by Tiberius. Christianity was early introduced into Cappadocia, as we learn by the First Epistle of St. Peter. Under the Persians or Macedonians the province was divided into two parts, Cappadocia ad Pontum, or simply Pontus, in the north, and Cappadocia ad Taurum, called afterward by the Romans Cappadocia Magna, also Cappadocia simply. The chief town of the latter was Mazaca, afterward Csesarea, and the country was celebrated for its fine pastures and its superior breed of horses, mules, and sheep.
Cappadocia shared the fate of the Eastern empire until it fell into the power of the Turks, in whose possession it still remains, forming part of several modern eyalets of Asiatic Turkey.