Today, the city known to everyone and attracting millions of people to Ephesus is known as Ephesus, number three. This place was excavated 150 years ago. Excavations, investigations and recovery, conservation, restoration and recursion still continue.
So far, roughly 20% of the city of Ephesus has been excavated. Actually the goal is not to dig all. It is not the goal to dig buildings and areas with the same function. The goal is to dig up different buildings and areas and reach new findings as much as possible. For this reason, magnetic camera shots are taken under ground to determine what is underneath and it is decided whether or not to excavate at that point.
The ancient city of Ephesus 3 was founded by the famous General Lysimachus nearly 2300 years ago and for a while carried the name of his wife Arsione. This city is located between the Nightingale and Pion Mountains. These two mountains were to form a natural line of defense, and Lysimachus built a 6-meter-high and 2-meter-thick city walls that was 9 km long.
In other words, Ephesus 3 was founded in the Hellenistic period. He had one of the most brilliant times in Roman Period. Most of the works seen today are dated to the Roman Period. When you visit Ephesus, you feel yourself in a Roman city. In the Byzantine period, people lived in this city. But at that time people were more clustered in the harbor area. At the time when Rome had a capital in Asia Minor, the population of Ephesus was 250,000. However, the population in the Byzantine period has fallen by 50,000. In the 13th century, it was transformed into a small village and was finally abandoned. This means that Ephesus 3, approximately 1000 years have been inhabited. For this reason, findings of different periods were encountered. In addition, burial sites dating back 2,500 years were found in the last excavations. This was used as a cemetery by Ephesus 2, before Ephesus 3.
Ephesus 3 was founded before Christianity. But 2000 years ago, the first Christians began living here. There are also Judaism and Egyptian religions at the same time as Paganism before Christianity. Therefore, Egyptian Temples and Synagogues were also built in Ephesus.
During the early Christian period, the Apostle and the Evangelist St. John lived for many years in Ephesus and died here. One of the seven churches was founded here by St. John. Also St. Paul spent two years at Ephesus. He preached in synagogues and Agora. St. Paul also sewed and sold Angora wool tents in Agora. Besides, Virgin Mary came to Ephesus with St. John and stayed for 2 years and died at Nightingale Mountain.
The most striking building in Ephesus is the Celsus Library. This is a very beautiful tomb monument and library built in the Roman period 2100 years ago. The Library of Celsus was restored in the 1970s and became the symbol of Ephesus.
One of the most important structures is the Ephesus Amphitheater. The world's largest and third largest theater in Turkey. 24000 people can take part in this Ephesus Theater. It is one of the oldest buildings in Ephesus. Even today, modern events are held in this theater.
Another beautiful building is the building known as the Temple of Hadrian. This is a small temple built 2200 years ago. There is a great workmanship in the Temple of Hadrian.
Trajan Fountain is also one of the beautiful structures of Ephesus. It was built at the point where the aqueduct, which brought water 39 km away, reached Ephesus and was built in honor of the goddess Artemis and Emperor Trajan. These last two buildings are located on Curetes Street.
There are 3 main streets in Ephesus, the names are Curetes, Marble and Liman Street. There are two agora in Ephesus. The Upper Agora is the State Agora, where politics and the city government are located. The other Agora is called the upper Agora and is the city's shopping center.
Odeon and Bouleuterion and Prytaneion were the administrative buildings. Odeon was also the place where concerts took place during the Roman period. Odeon was also where the Parliament meets.
The Temple of Domitian was built 2100 years ago and was the first temple built for a Roman Emperor in Ephesus. This temple is directly opposite the Domitian Fountain. Other than that there are also the Trajan fountain, the Basus fountain and the Hydraoin fountain in Ephesus. Again, Memnius Monument is located on Curetler Street.
Ephesus is also famous for its baths. There are baths of Varius and Scolastia. In addition, the Gymnasium and Baths located in the harbor, the Roman period construction Terrace houses are one of the things that make Ephesus special. It is possible to see 2 blocks in the terrace houses. A total of 13 villas were exposed in these two blocks. The so-called Terrace Houses 2, in 1999, had a special roof for protection purposes and was opened to visitors in 2002. The best preserved ancient houses in the world are the terrace houses of Ephesus. It shows how people lived in ancient times.
There are also temples of Isis and Serapis in Ephesus, and both were built for the Gods and Goddesses of Egypt. In addition, Octagon, Hadrian's Gate, and the brothel are the works found in Ephesus.
Again in the harbor area, there are Olympian dedicated to all the gods and the Virgin Mary Council church.
This Church is also called the double couple church. This Church of the Virgin Mary is a very important place in terms of Christianity, because the third ecumenical council held in A.D. 431 here and the Virgin Mary Dogma has been accepted here.
Today we know that the buildings we have mentioned above are only one-fifth of Ephesus. In the upcoming years, many more works will be revealed during the excavations. Today, an Ephesus sightseeing tour lasts at least 2 hours. One day when the whole of Ephesus is uncovered, perhaps even a whole day will not be enough to visit this magnificent city. Ephesus awaits people from all over the world, wishing to tour it with all its beauty. Ephesus, which is located on the Unseco World Heritage List, is open to visitors every day. Located near the famous cruise port city on Turkey's Aegean Sea Kusadasi, Ephesus is just 20 km away. Ephesus is 1 hour drive from Izmir one of the Turkey’s biggest city and has an international airport.