Antioch on the Orontes (/ˈæntiˌɒk/; also Syrian Antioch)[note 1] was an ancient Greco-Roman city on the eastern side of the Orontes River. Its ruins lie near the modern city of Antakya, Turkey, and lends the modern city its name.
Antioch was founded near the end of the 4th century BC by Seleucus I Nicator, one of Alexander the Great's generals. The city's geographical, military, and economic location benefited its occupants, particularly such features as the spice trade, the Silk Road, and the Persian Royal Road. It eventually rivaled Alexandria as the chief city of the Near East. It was also the main center of Hellenistic Judaism at the end of the Second Temple period. Most of the urban development of Antioch was done during the Roman Empire, when the city was one of the most important in the eastern Mediterranean area of Rome's dominions.