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Tekirdağ (pronounced [tekiɾdaɣ]; see also its other names), is a city in Turkey. It is a part of the region historically known as Eastern Thrace. Tekirdağ is the capital of Tekirdağ Province. The city population as of 2009 was 140,535.[3] There are honorary consulates of Hungary and Bulgaria in Tekirdağ.

Tekirdağ was called Bisanthe or Bysanthe (GreekΒισάνθη/Βυσάνθη),[4][5] and also Rhaedestus (Ῥαίδεστος) in classical antiquity. The latter name was used till the Byzantine era,[6] transformed to Rodosçuk after it fell to the Ottomans in the 14th century (in western languages usually rendered as Rodosto). After the 18th century it was called Tekfurdağı, based on the Turkish word tekfur, meaning "Byzantine lord". In time, the name mutated into the Turkish Tekirdağ, and this became the official name under the Turkish Republic. The historical name "Rhaedestos" (transcribed also as Raidestos) was continuously used till today in Greek Orthodox ecclesiastical context (e.g. Bishop of Raidestos,[7] Metropolitanate of Heraclia and Raidestos[8] (18th-19th centuries)

The history of the city of Tekirdağ dates back to around 4000 BC.[10] The ancient Greek city of Rodosto is said to have been founded by Samians. In Xenophon’s Anabasis it is mentioned to be a part of the kingdom of the Thracian prince Seuthes. It is also mentioned as Bisanthe by Herodotus (VII, 137).

Its restoration by Justinian I in the 6th century AD is chronicled by Procopius. In 813 and again in 1206, after the Battle of Rodosto, it was sacked by the Bulgarians, but it continued to appear as a place of considerable note in later Byzantine history. It was also ruled by the Venetians between 1204-1235. The 11th-century Byzantine historian Michael Attaleiates owned property in Raidestos which he describes in his will.

In the Ottoman period the city was successively a part of the Rumelia Eyalet, then of the Province of the Kapudan Pasha, the Silistra Eyalet, and Edirne Vilayet. After 1849 it was the seat of the Sanjak of Tekfürtaği.

In 1905, the city had a population of about 35,000; of whom half were Greeks[11] who were exchanged with Muslims living in Greece under the 1923 agreement for Exchange of Greek Orthodox and Muslim Populations between the two countries.

Tekirdağ was for many years a depot for the produce of the Edirne province, but its trade suffered when Alexandroupolis became the terminus of the railway up the river Maritsa.