Library of Celsus

Library of Celsus, Ephesus

Library of Celsus is one of the symbols of Ephesus. It was built by Aquila for the famous governor Celsus as a monument and library. It is the third largest library in the ancient times. It is said that there were 12.000 papyrus rolls in Celsus Library. It was destroyed in an earthquake and was rebuilt according to the original on the restorations held between 1970 and 1978.


Celsus Library is the first example of a Grave Monument-Library. After a short time the second one was built in Sagalassos. The tomb of Celsus is under the central niche of the library. In the 3rd Century AD Goths burnt the library. In the 11th Century AD an earthquake destroyed the structure. The copies of the four women statues are visible today. Originals are in the museum of Vienna. In the second story there are basements. On each of these basements three bronze statues of Celsus and one statue of Aquila were situated. Both Celsus and his son were Proconsuls of Ephesus. But they are not found. Faces of Medusa who is related to death can be seen on the top of the Library.

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