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During this time the underground city was known as Malakopea (Greek: Μαλακοπέα).
Early Christians used the tunnels to escape persecution during raids from the Muslim Over time the need for underground shelter in Cappadocia ebbed and flowed with different ruling empires.
Hidden for centuries, The Cappadocia region of Anatolia is rich in volcanic history and sits on a plateau around 3,300 feet (1,000m) tall.
The area was buried in ash millions of years ago creating the lava domes and rough pyramids seen today.
Derinkuyu was more than just residences, storage, and tunnels.
Volcanic ash deposits consist of a softer rock – something the Hittites of Cappadocia discovered thousands of years ago when they began carving out rooms from the rock.The elaborate subterranean network included discrete entrances, ventilation shafts, wells, and connecting passageways.It was one of dozens of underground cities carved from the rock in Cappadocia thousands of years ago.Archaeologists believe the underground cities of Cappadocia could number in the hundreds. The underground city at Derinkuyu is neither the largest nor oldest, but it fascinates as it is the deepest of the underground cities and was only recently discovered in 1963.(The largest, , has been inhabited continuously since first constructed).