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Saturday, November 14, 2009

Ephesus: A Historical Site


Ephesus was considered one of the most beautiful cities in the Mediterranean area and a dazzling paradise of nature. The Historical site of Ephesus is now part of Turkey, not Greece.

Old sources record that the city was founded by the Amazones of the goddess Artemis—goddess of hunting and chase-- who was born there according to Homer’s immortal work. Temples to Artemis, Athena and Apollo adorned the ancient city.




Ruins of stadiums, gymnasiums and theaters can still be seen, together with the famous two-story library.



We saw remains of houses and the public baths. Our guide explained, that before going to work the men would stop at the public male restrooms. There they relieved themselves while discussing and conducting business. But the benches with holes were made of marble and quite cold in winter, so an hour earlier, they would send their slaves to reserve and warm their places. The women stayed home!!!


The first city built in 2000 bc was abandoned, buried by the sand carried by rivers.

A new city was built later a few miles away from the site of the first one with a huge cathedral erected by Emperor Justinian, one of the first Roman emperors to convert to the new faith.



What remains of the Christian city were the ruins of the Cathedral and the tomb of St. John the Evangelist who came to Ephesus, lived there and wrote the fourth book of the New Testament.




But St. John didn’t come alone to Ephesus. He brought with him the Virgin Mary after the death of Jesus on the cross. St. Mary lived in Ephesus the last years of her life until her dormition. Both the cathedral and the house of Mary were destroyed and disappeared.

In 1822, a Bavarian woman, Catherine Emmerich, who never left her village received revelations about the exact site of the house of the Virgin Mary. Those revelations were transmitted to the Pope and then to the Turkish government who agreed to perform excavations. The remaining of the house of St. Mary and the cathedral were unearthed at the place mentioned by the pious Bavarian woman. A little chapel was built at the place of the house. We were able to visit it.




Here I am drinking from the spring water that has contributed to so many miraculous cures. It is now canalized into a fountain.

Next to the little house, there was a wall where prople left their petitions.


Ephesus is an amazing place where Egyptian, Greek, Roman, and later early Christian civilizations developed.



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25 comments:

Barbara Monajem said...

Thank you for the blog and the lovely photos, Mona. Fascinating stuff. The bathrooms are quite something!

Mary Marvella said...

loved the information and the photos. Fancy bathrooms even then and the men hogged them! You and Scarlet make me want to go there.

Skhye said...

Wish I could have gone on pilgrimmange with you! I love ruins, especially those pieced back into a structure. Good thing after the two World Wars! Keep sharing your trips with us. :)

Celia Yeary said...

MONA--gorgeous photos. I drank from a special fountain in Rome in the restored Forum. It shot up in an arc and you had to lean over and capture it. I laughed myself silly watching four British ladies trying to take a drink--they were having trouble with it, and laughing so hard, one had to sit down and cross her legs. Celia

Susan said...

Thank you for letting us share your trip! Beautiful and fascinating. Someday I'm there!

Susan Shay
http://the-twisted-sisters.com
http://writingsluts.com

Mary Ricksen said...

Beautiful pictures Mona, you take me as close as I will ever get in my lifetime. Wonder where the women went in the morning?
Did you feel better after the water?

Lindsay Townsend said...

Wonderful blog, Mona! I really enjoyed it. Thanks for sharing.

Maggie Toussaint said...

How Lovely, Mona. I feel like I"m getting to see the world and not having to leave my office. I was quite fascinated by the history of Ephesus.

Mona Risk said...

Barbara, we laughed so much at the bathrooms stories. The guide explained that the Romans built sewers under the holes to get rid of the human excrements. Also the fact that the stalls, so to speak were in open air, eliminated bad smells.

Mona Risk said...

Mary, we asked where did the women go, but History didn't record anything about women's activity. Oh except the brothels. Yes, M'am we visited some. The ruins were fancy and had erotica painting.

Mona Risk said...

Skhye, I will keep sharing. I take my pictures while thinking about the best pictures to go on the blog. When I entered the chapel, I was in awe, feeling I was in a sacred place, excatly like in a pilgrimmage, although I have never been on one. Maybe it's time to plan something.

Mona Risk said...

Celia, you're lucky you were able to walk in the Forum. we were not given time to go out of the bus in Rome.

Mona Risk said...

Susan, if you have the opportunity, go to Greece, Italy and Turkey. They are worth the effort.

Mona Risk said...

Mary, I will keep sharing with you. I guess women had to go in the woods as I did in Russia when we traveled on business. They stopped the cars every two hours and said bathroom time. Men went on one side of the road, and women on the other side. In the woods, exposing delicate flesh to the freezing cold in winter or the mosquitoes in summer.

Mona Risk said...

Lindsay, glad you enjoyed this post.

Mona Risk said...

Maggie, I had other pictures of the brothel and a figurine with a humongous xyz. Quite interesting, but not for blushing faces. The strange thing was that the most erotic temples and statues were only a couple of miles away from one of most religious Christian sites.

Margaret Tanner said...

Hi Mona,
Wonderful blog and such gorgeous pictures. I bet it has given you a million ideas for future novels.
Regards
Margaret

Mona Risk said...

Yes Margaret, I came back with two new beginnings of manuscripts, one set in a Greek island and the other...I am going to tour several countries.

Sandra Cox said...

What a wonderful experience, Mona!

Scarlet Pumpernickel said...

Mona, you trip makes me so long to return to Italy! I love the pictures you have shared with us! What a wonderful vacation this was for you and your husband. This year my DH accompanied me, he really enjoyed the trip.

P.L. Parker said...

How wonderful. I am so jealous. I would just love to see that in real life.

Autumn Jordon said...

Oh my God, Mona. I'm so jealous. What a wonderful trip. To think you were standing where are our Lord's mother walked. Thnak you for taking the time to share this experience. The pictures are awesome.

((HUGS))

AJ

Jana Richards said...

Thank you for the beautiful pictures, Mona. What a wonderful holiday you must have had. I appreciate the window you opened to a fascinating part of the world.

Jana Richards

Mona Risk said...

Sandra, Scarlet, PL, Autumn, Jana, I am so happy you enjoyed the pictures. Ephesus was an awsome experience I am glad to share with you.

Linda Rader said...

Great photos and fascinating information. I love archeology. Glad I found your blog.