Anatolia (Turkish: Anadolu, Greek: Ανατολία, Anatolía), or Asia Minor, is a peninsular landmass comprising the Asian portion of the modern Republic of Turkey. Geographically, the region is bounded by the Black Sea to the north, the Caucasus to the northeast, the Aegean Sea to the west, the Mediterranean Sea to the south, Greater Syria (Upper Mesopotamia) to the southeast and Transcaucasia and the Iranian plateau to the east. The Sea of Marmara is at its northwest. Culturally, the islands of the eastern Aegean Sea are often included in the definition.
Anatolia lies at the meeting point of the continents of Asia and Europe, extending from the Bosporus and Aegean coast eastward to the borders of the Armenia, Georgia, Iran, and Iraq. Western Anatolia was called "Asia" by the Greeks and Ancient RomeRomans. Later the name "Asia Minor," or "Little Asia," was used to distinguish the peninsula from the land mass of the greater Asian continent.
Anatolia has historically served as a crossroads of both migration and invading armies. It has seen the birth of civilizations including the Byzantine and Ottoman Empires. Because of its strategic location at the meeting point of two continents, the region has played a major role in world history as a bridge connecting East and West. Its culture has a unique blend of Eastern and Western tradition, and is often described as a bridge between the two civilizations.