Antioch on the Orontes (k/; Ancient Greek: Ἀντιόχεια ἡ ἐπὶ Ὀρόντου, Antiókheia hē epì Oróntou; also Syrian Antioch)[note 1] was an ancient Greek 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 fourth 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 Royal Road. It eventually rivaled Alexandria as the chief city of the Near East. The city was the capital of the Seleucid Empire until 63 B.C. when the Romans took control, making it the seat of the Roman governor. From the early 4th century the city was the seat of the Count of the Orient, head of the regional administration of sixteen provinces. It was also the main center of Hellenistic Judaism at the end of the Second Temple period. Antioch was one of the most important cities in the eastern Mediterranean of Rome's dominions. It covered almost 1,100 acres (4.5 km2) within the walls of which one quarter was mountain, leaving 750 acres (3.0 km2) about one-fifth the area of Rome within the Aurelian Walls.