Tarsus = "a flat basket"
1) a major city in Cilicia and the birthplace and early home of Paul. Acts 9:11; 21:39; 22:3. Even in the flourishing period of Greek history it was an important city. In the Roman civil wars, it sided with Caesar and on the occasion of a visit from him its name changed to Juliopolis. Augustus made it a free city. Its was renowned as a place of education under the early Roman emperors. Strabo compares it in this respect to Athens and Alexandria. Tarsus also was a place of much commerce. It was situated in a wild and fertile plain on the banks of the Cydnus. No ruins of any importance remain.