Turkey

 

 

WOW, What can I say about Turkey?  If you like Ancient buildings and History then Ephesus is the place…except it’s really a whole city, not just a few buildings. I was sooo excited to be here. It was really a surprise I hadn’t expected Turkey to have such a place even though I knew it was one of the big three, Rome, Antioch, Ephesus.

 

EPHESUS

Ephesus! Located in what is now the Republic of Turkey, Ephesus is about 10 km inland from the Aegean coast and approx 700 km south of Istanbul. If you look at a modern map of the Mediterranean and follow the line south east from Samos in the Greek islands to the Turkish coastline you will find the city of Kusadasi. We arrived by cruise ship into this port city and took the bus for what knocked me off my feet after missing the History Channel and Discovery channel for so long in Iraq. Ephesus!!!!!!!  

 

 

     

 

Ephesus, one of the 12 cities of Ionia (an ancient Greek district on the western coast of Asia Minor), located near modern İzmir, Turkey. As a port city at the mouth of the Cayster (modern Küçükmenderes) River, it was a major departure point for trade routes into Asia Minor. Known in antiquity for its sacred shrines, notably a famous temple (one of the Seven Wonders of the World) to the goddess Artemis, or Diana, the city was also an important center of early Christianity.

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World

The Seven Wonders of the Ancient World are on a list made by the Greeks and Romans.

 

This archaeological site ranks right up there with the Colossus, Pyramids of Giza and others (see above) in being one of the wonders of the world. One walks the same path of the Romans on their way to the brothel or to take a bath. I was overwhelmed by the  many different elements of Ancient Greek and Roman culture. A considerable amount of restoration has been done to recreate the city (and so much more needs be done). What distinguishes Ephesus from any other set of ancient ruins in the western world is the completeness of its layout.

 

According to the old legends, Ephesus was founded by the female warriors known as the Amazons. The name of the city is thought to have been derived from "APASAS", the name of a city in the "KINGDOM OF ARZAWA" meaning the "city of the Mother Goddess". Ephesus was inhabited from the end of the Bronze Age onwards. Carians and Lelegians are to have been among the city's first inhabitants. Ionian migrations are said to have begun in around 1200 B.C. The region was devastated during the Cimmerian invasion at the beginning of the 7th century B.C. Under the rule of the Lydian kings, Ephesus became one of the wealthiest cities in the Mediterranean world. The defeat of the Lydian King Croesus by Cyrus, the King of Persia, prepared the way for the extension of Persian influences over the whole of the Aegean coastal region. At the beginning of the 5th century, when the Ionian cities rebelled against Persia, Ephesus quickly dissociated itself from the others, thus escaping destruction.

 

 

 

 

 

Our very knowledgeable tour guide.

 

Parliament..sort of..Odeum

    

 

Part of my travel gang.

 

Temple of Domitian built in 81-96 A.D. and the first one built in the name of the emperors in Ephesus.

 

 

Nike (Victory)

 

 

Hospital

 

 

So much is still uncovered.

 

 

Trajan Fountain

The fountain was erected between 102 and 104 A.D. and as the attached inscription reads, was consecrated to the Emperor Trajan. The many sculptured figurations which once populated this fountain (members of the Imperial Family, Dionysus, Aphrodite, Satry) have been carried to the Museum.

 

Dedicated to a Female Doctor

 

 

Nice floor but the good stuff wasn’t open to the public to see yet. :–(

 

 

This is the Temple of Hadrian built between 117 and 138 A.D.   It measures 7.20 by 5 meters. The triangular pediment is supported by four Corinthian columns. The middle two columns support a rounded arch which has Os its keystone a bust of Cybele. According to the Roman oracles, if it were possible to bring to Rome the sacred statue of Cybele from Pessinus in AsIa Minor, Rome would conquer Carthage. The statue was taken to Rome and in this way, since Rome was victorious over Carthage, Cybele became the emblem of Rome and of Italy.

 

 

From the opposite part of the Temple of Hadrian the interesting complex of the so-called "Houses on the slope" faces out onto Curetes Street. These houses were inhibated by the most qualified and wealthy social class and for this reason they are also known as "houses of the rich" or "palaces on the slopes" . Each house had a door which opened onto the side street from a terrace and a peristyle (courtyard) surrounded by rooms. Most of these houses were three storeyed and the courtyards in the center measured between 25-50 meters. The courtyard was surrounded by a colonade and paved with marble. The houses had running water.

The houses were heated by a system similar to the one used in spas. The inside rooms had frescoed walls depicting especially mythological subjects, while the floors were usually adorned with refined mosaics.

Hillside HousesHillside HousesHillside Houses

 

 

“Honey, I’m going to the Library”

The famous Ephesus Library was situated to the south of the Agora. This elegant monument was built in A.D. 135 by Julius Aquila in memory of his father, Celsus Polemaeanus of Sardis, Roman Senator and Proconsul of the province of Asia.  Behind me is the Brothel next to the Tavern and Public Toilets but I was interested in the Library…honest.

 

A peristyle house on the corner of Curetes Street and the Marble Road is known as the brothel, because in the excavations, a statue of Priapus with an oversize phallus was found in the house. The statue is now presented in Ephesus Museum. The construction of the building dates to the Trajan (98-117 A.D.) It has two entrances, one from the Marble Road and one from the Curetes Street. It has a hall on the first floor , and on the second floor there are number of small rooms. On the west side of the house there is a reception area with colored mosaics on the floor, symbolizing the four season. The chamber next to it is the bath of the house with an elliptical pool. On the floor of the pool, there is a mosaic describing three women eating and drinking, a waitress standing, a mouse and a cat nibbling crumbs.

 

The latrina built in the first century A.D. are the public toilets of Ephesus. The toilets were ranged side by side with no partition between them. In the middle was a square pool. The floor was paved with mosaics.

LatrianaLatriana

 

Turning back around and to the right of the library, the Gate of Augustus, also called the Gate of Mazaeus and Mithridates, leads into the 110-metresquare commercial agora where food and craftwork items were sold. The monumental gate, dedicated to the honor of the Emperor Augustus.

Gate of Augustus

 

Look back at the Library and Gate

 

 

The Agora

 

Harbor Road. The water at one time came all the way up to here but now it’s 10km away.

 

One last look.

The Great Theater, magnificently set on the western slope of Panayirdag. Building was begun in the reign of the Emperor Claudius (A.D. 41-54) and completed in the reign of the Emperor Trajan (98-117 A.D.). The theater could seat 24,000 people but most of the seats have been removed and used In the construction of later buildings.

 

My travel group to Greece and Turkey.

 

 

Saying Goodbye L

 

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