Temple of Artemis in Ephesus
Some structures in the ancient world were so fascinating and impressive that famous travelers of the ancient world agreed that these man-made structures should be seen. One of them is the Temple of Artemis in the ancient city of Ephesus. What made the temple of Artemis so special?
On the advice of Herodotus of Halicarnassos (Bodrum-Turkey), Philo of Byzantium, Antipater of Sidon, and Callimachus of Cyrene, the famous writers, and travelers of the ancient period, the constructions that are still existing or that once existed but that we cannot see now are 7 very large The building has taken its place today as the 7 wonders of the world. Upon the advice of Gaius Plinius Secundus the Elder, one of the world’s greatest authority researchers, the philosopher, admiral, and writer, the Temple of Artemis in Ephesus was accepted as the most magnificent structure of the Ancient Greek, in his own words Græcian magnificence.
The temple of Artemis, which is a magnificent Ionic temple, was inspected during its construction in the 1st century AD by the Roman writer Pliny the Elder and the master architect Chersiphron from Knossos.
The temple of Artemis, which was started to be built in 550 BC, was completed 120 years later. The temple of Artemis is the work of a project that took 120 years to be built by the Lydian King Kroisos. Antipater of Sidon, who compiled the seven wonders of the world, described the temple as follows.
“Above proud Babylon, I saw the wall of chariots, and the statue of Zeus in Alpheus, and the hanging gardens, and the column of the Sun, and the colossal work of the high pyramids, and the vast tomb of Mausolos; but when I saw the house of Artemis built on the clouds, all the other wonders lost their shine and I said, “There! Outside of Olympus, the Sun has never looked at anything this big.”
While the temple of Artemis was 129.5 meters (425 ft) long and 68.6 meters (225 ft) wide, it was twice the size of the Parthenon, the largest Greek structure of the time. There were 127 columns (69.5 X 30.9 m) 18.3 meters (60 ft) high and 1.2 meters (4 ft) in diameter. These magnificent columns are arranged in double rows on 4 sides, 8 or 9 rows on the short sides, and 20 or 21 rows on the long sides. The reliefs placed above the temple of Artemis featured scenes from Greek mythology.
The statue of Artemis was first made of Cedarwood.
The Temple of Artemis was among the largest structures of the time. In ancient times, people had great respect for these gigantic structures made by human hands. As a result, the Temple of Artemis was accepted as one of the 7 wonders of the world due to its size. But there are other events that people do not know about the temple of Artemis.
The temple of Artemis was the beginning of the first banking system of the ancient period.
For example, you, the goddess Artemis, during the festival, an Ephesian person was given a ring to show her respect and love. The valuable items given were recorded by the Artemis priests, and the valuable gifts recorded were stored in the sanctuary of the temple of Artemis, where people could not enter. These gifts were then melted down to be used in wars between countries or cities, and ammunition was provided for the Ephesian soldiers as well as financing for their travels.
The spoils obtained after the war are brought to the temple of Artemis. The registered people were rewarded with 2 rings by the goddess Artemis during the next festival or celebration. In this way, both the prestige and love of the goddess Artemis among the people increased, and the political and economic power of the priests of Artemis over the Ephesians. The power of the Goddess Artemis and the temple of Artemis continued for approximately 600 years.
In addition, the Temple of Artemis had another meaning for the Ephesians. Ephesus Fashion
According to rumors, a competition was held to dress the Artemis statue made of cedar wood for the Thargelia Festival, which was organized in the name of the goddess Artemis. Members of the richest families of the city participated in this competition as competitors, and the city’s leading politicians, commanders, priests, and people elected from the parliament were selected as juries.
At the end of the competition, a family dressing the statue of Artemis in the temple of Artemis was appreciated by the jury, and the statue of Artemis was brought before the Ephesians and visitors to the temple of Artemis.
In this way, every year before the festival, the goddess Artemis was brought before the Ephesians in her new clothes. In this way, the goddess Artemis would be equipped with her new clothes in every festival period, and she would always bring the wind of change to the Ephesians with her new clothes.
This was also a defining fashion of the ancient period. As a result, a special title was given to the family who dressed the Goddess Artemis from cedar wood. This title would belong to the chosen family for 1 year.
The destruction of the temple of Artemis was first burned by Herostratus, who is known as one of the worst arsonists of the ancient period. Herostratus burned the Temple of Artemis, saying that he would make a first that would make him very famous in the world.
According to the biography of Alexander the Great written by the Greek writer Plutarch, Alexander the Great was born on July 21, 356 BC, on the day the Temple of Artemis died. Also, Hegesias of Magnesia made a funny joke about this subject.
“As the goddess, Artemis was busy with the birth of Alexander the Great, the burning of the temple of Artemis is not an event to be exaggerated.”
Afterward, the Temple of Artemis was rebuilt with a stronger and more solid architecture than before, according to Strabo. The new temple of Artemis was built a little smaller than the old one. Its dimensions were 17.65 meters (58 ft) high, measuring 105 X 55 meters (344 X 180 ft) with the columns.
The Temple of Artemis is located in Ephesus, within the borders of the Selcuk district of İzmir province of Turkey.