The ancient city of Ephesus is located in Selçuk district, about 80 km south of Izmir. Situated to the west coast in Turkey is visited by many domestic and foreign tourists every year.
One of the legends of the city was founded by Ionian Prince Androclos in the 11th century BC. Androclos is looking for a place to establish a new Greek settlement. He travels to Delphi to guide the locator. The tribes tell him that a fish and a pig will show the place of the new city.
One day As Androclos fried the fish, one of the fish jumped out of the pan and fell on the wild boar hiding behind the bushes. Wild boar escaped fear. Androclos followed the pig and founded Ephesus where he killed him.
According to another legend, the city of Ephesus was founded by amazons in 3000 BC. Some sources say that “Ephesos” came from the name of a successful Amazon queen called Apasas.
Places to Visit in Ancient City of Ephesus
Ancient Temple of Ephesus
The theater of Ephesus is the most magnificent building in the ancient city of Ephesus. The Great Theater of Ephesus is easily visible on the hillside of the fairground, across the street from the Harbor Street and entering the Ephesus from the south entrance. It was first built in the Hellenistic Period, in the 3rd century BC during the Lysimachos period, but expanded during the Roman Period and formed the style seen today.
The stage building has three floors and is 18 meters high. The façade facing the audience is decorated with reliefs, niche columns, windows and sculptures. There are five doors opening to the orchestra area, the middle of which is wider than the others. This facilitates the appearance of the scene and gives it a larger, monumental appearance.
The theater of Ephesus was not only used for concerts and plays, but also for religious, political and philosophical debates, as well as for gladiators and animal fights.
The Celsus Library is one of the most beautiful buildings in Ephesus. The Celcius Library was built in 107 AD by Galius Julius Aquila for his father. Gaius Julius, the governor of the Asian state, is a monumental tomb for Celsus Polemaeanus. Because Athena was the goddess of wisdom.
The handwriting of the inscriptions was kept in the cupboards in the niches on the walls. There were double walls behind the bookcases to protect them from excessive heat and humidity. The library’s capacity was more than 12,000 scrolls. After Alexandra and Pergamum, it was the third richest library in ancient times.
At the southern end of Domitian Street, the first building known to be dedicated to an emperor in Ephesus was built on a high and wide terrace measuring 50×100 meters on the foundations. The northern dimension of the terrace is two storeys high, accessed by stairs. The stairs are still visible today.
There were eight columns on the short side of the temple, thirteen columns on the long side and four more columns in front of the cella. On the north side, there was an altar in the form of u, which is currently on display in the Izmir museum.
St. John’s Basilica
The basilica is included in UNESCO’s Historical Heritage List. Evangelical St. It is believed that John spent his last years in the region around Ephesus and was buried on the southern slope of Ayosolug Hill. Three hundred years after St. John’s death, a small chapel was built on the tomb in the 4th century. St. John’s Church was turned into a magnificent basilica in the Emperor Justinian District (527-565 AD).
Ephesus Terrace Houses
Ephesus terrace houses are located on the hill opposite Hadrian’s Temple. They are also called “rich houses.. Therefore, it gives us information about family life during the Roman period.
There are six settlements on three terraces at the lower end of the slope of Bulbul Mountain. The oldest building BC 1st century and M.S. It continues to be used for residence until the 7th century.