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Ephesus Ancient City

ephesus library          ephesus hadrian temple

Ephesus is not just an ancient city located in Turkey also it is one of the best preserved Roman cities in Mediterranean. Ephesus is located in the middle of a rich valley and Ephesus used to be a popular trading port. All of the important people in Roman times paid their visits to Ephesus. Apostle Paul, Saint John the Evangelist, Virgin Mary, Kleopatra and many more did stopped in Ephesus, Turkey. Ephesus, home of Great Temple of Artemis, was founded by Greek prince Androlocos in 11th century B.C. City was Greek till 546 B.C. and The Persian rule lasted until Alexander the Great (334 B.C.). After the death of Alexander city went under his commander's rule and Ephesus stayed as a small city till Roman Empire arrived the area. Ephesus became the capital of Asia Minor state of Roman Empire then the things became better than ever for Ephesians. Ephesus turned into the second biggest city in the ancient world and it was one of the biggest economies alive. As we know port of Ephesus was silted by sands carried by Meander River than they had to leave the city.

Today Ephesus is really rich with number of well preserved ruins. Most significant ones are, the odeon, used as a concert hall and city council with the capacity of 1.500 people, Temple of Hadrian dating back to the second century where one of the best sculpture craftsmanship can be seen,Curettes Street hosting many monuments and countless colums on the sides of its marble paved ground, fountain dedicated Emperor Trajan where a part of a remaining statue shows us that Romans knew the round shape of the world in the first century AD long before than Galileo Galilei, Latrines (toilets) where it can be seen how they cared about public sanity. Apart from the ones above two of Ephesus's outstanding monuments holds an importance not just for their home city also for world's cultural and architectural heritage. The first one is library of Celsus which is located at the end of the Curettes Street. Celsus library looks like a two storeyed building seen from the facade but as we know it used to have three stories inside. Facade of the building shows us a rare found craftsmanship. Also the library used to be the third biggest library of the ancient world, having after the libraries of Alexandria and Pergamon. Anyone who stands in front of this monumental building can understand why did it take twenty years (115 AD to 135 AD) to complete it. The second one is Ephesus' grand theatre which had the capacity of 25.000 spectators. It was not just a place of art also as we know it was used for animal and gladiator fights. With its great dimensions it makes one think about how miniscule my moment in time really is. It's one of the sacred ruins of Ephesus, according to the Acts of the Apostles (19:23-41), the theater was the site of the "riot of the silversmiths" in which those who made silver figures of Artemis the pagan godess of the city rioted because Paul's preaching was bad for business. In the 1st century AD, the Apostle Paul spent over three years in Ephesus and he sermonized many times, disapproving pagan worship, in this theater.

Ephesus, Turkey Crash Course

  • Home of one of the seven wonders of the ancient world: The Temple of Artemis, one of the seven wonders of the ancient world, was in Ephesus.
  • Celsus Library: There are visible ruins of a library which was built in the name of Proconsul Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemeanus which housed nearly 15,000 scrolls.
  • Population: Ephesus used to be a Roman city with population of 250.000 people. It was the second largest city of the Roman Empire.
  • History: Ephesus dates back to some time between 1500-1000 B.C.
  • Restoration: Ephesus was discovered in 1800s and the ancient city is still being restored. Today only around ten percent of the city is open for the public visit.
  • Diverse: A big city not just for pagans. Christians, Jews, Egyptians and many more nations were living in Ephesus.
  • Religious: Ephesus was one of the most important cities for early Christianity, that the third ecumenical council was held there in A.D. 431.
  • Ephesus was the site of Saint Paul's ministry for three years.
  • Home of Heraclitus Presocratic philosopher, Zeuxis (5th century BC) painter, Agasias (2nd century BC) Greek sculptors, Manuel Philes (c. 1275 – 1345) Byzantine poet.
  • Current Ephesus: Ephesus is now Selçuk, located on the Asian side of Turkey (Anatolia). Ephesus is still considered to be one of the biggest ancient sites in the world and attracts millions of people every year.
  • Ephesus was visited by Pope Benedict XVI, Pope Paul VI, Pope John Paul II.
  • Ephesus Amphitheater used to host 25.000 people!
  • There was totally 127 columns on the Temple of Artemis before ''Herostratus'' burned it down to become famous.

ephesus pictures