Ephesus - a wonder of the ancient world
01.10.2011 32 °C
Six thousand cruise ship passengers in nearby Kusadasi were just starting breakfast this morning when we arrived at the gates of the ancient Roman city of Ephesus and startled the sleepy girl in the ticket office. But being the early worms really paid off for us, and for you, because here are some rarely seen views of the totally deserted city at dawn...
This is the library of Celsus that once held 12,000 scrolls...
Roman Ephesus was the capital of Asia Minor in the 1st century AD and had a population of a quarter of a million. Three earthquakes and bands of marauding Christians eventually reduced the place to rubble and it is still being put back together.
This is the 25,000 seat Grand Theatre, circa AD 41, where for one sestertius (or an as for a seat in the gods), the good citizens could watch gladiators hack each other to death every Saturday night. But today is Friday and all we have to watch is the sunrise.
Ephesus is an absolute 'must' on any tour of Turkey as we discovered when the cruise ships' mobs finally swarmed ashore and overran us at about 9.30am, but by then we had wandered these ancient streets alone for more than an hour and had imagined ourselves surrounded by Roman citizenry in flowing robes. Here is the main street in the light of dawn... can you see the apparitions of Centurians and their wives?
We even got to imagine the early morning sight and the smell in this building...Yuk!
No prizes for guessing what this place was 2,000 years ago? Need a clue? We don't think so.