The story of the temple of the goddess Artemis

Her first temple was probably built around 800 BC, on a small strip of land by the river in Ephesus. Artemis, or many people are often confused with Diana in Greek mythology, but it is not. She is the son of Zeus, the twin sister of Apollo. A symbol of hunting and reproduction, she is depicted with the image covered with eggs or breasts around her body, the symbol of abundant fertility, from her waist to her shoulders.

In the beginning, it was just a small temple, containing a sacred stone, thought to be a meteorite "fallen from Jupiter". Later, the temple was destroyed and rebuilt several times over the next few hundred years. By about 600 BC, the city of Ephesus became a major trading port and an architect named Cherisphron decided to redesign a new, larger temple. However, the temple did not last long. According to historical records, in 550 BC, King Croesus of Lydia kingdom conquered Ephesus and other cities of Asia Minor, so in the war, the temple was destroyed. But many archaeological investigations claim that the temple was destroyed due to a flood that swept through at the same time of the war.

So again a new temple is undergoing restoration, the architect designed this time is a man named Theodorus. Theodorus's temple is about 90m long and 45m wide, 4 times the area of ​​the old temple, more than 100 large stone pillars were built to support the roof, on those high pillars are gently sculpted. interesting enemies. After completion, the new temple was the pride of the Ephesus until another tragedy occurred in 356 BC. A young man named Herostratus wanted his name to go down in history and set fire to this sacred temple, the fire was completely burned down and the people were extremely indignant at this action, so the next day he tortured him. I died, later the city government issued a decree that anyone who mentioned his name would die.

However, on that very fire night, one of the legends was born, that is Alexander the Great. According to the folklore that the goddess Artemis was so busy that night with the safe birth of Alexander, she could not save her own temple from the intense destruction of the fire.

Reconstruction of a new temple for the goddess

Not long after the fire, the idea of ​​a new temple was once again raised under the financial support of Alexander the Great. The architect was Mr. Scopas of Paros, one of the most famous sculptors of the time. By this time, Ephesus was one of the largest cities in Asia Minor and this new temple would be a "great monument to the magnificence of the Greeks and one of the most admirable things in the dragon." every citizen ”.

Built on old ground with many layers of crushed coal underneath and covered with layers of fleece. There are many reasons to rebuild right on the old location but they think this will help protect the temple from earthquakes in this area. The temple is believed to be the first building built entirely of marble. Like its predecessor, the temple has 36 columns with the lower part carved intricately. Inside the temple there are many works of art such as four bronze statues of Amazon women. According to legend, the Amazons came here and founded this city while fleeing from the pursuit of Heracles - a Greek god.

Excavations to find the ruins

After being rebuilt under the command of Alexander the Great, the temple did not last long when it was once again invaded and destroyed by the Goths in 268 AD, which was then repaired and officially closed in 391 AD by the Roman Emperor Theodosius The Emperor approved Christianity as the state religion and closed all polytheistic temples. Gradually the temple and the whole city of Ephesus lost its value and were forgotten over time, people could dismantle the temple parts as construction materials. By the end of the medieval century, the ancient city of Ephesus and its majestic temple had left no trace and no one remembered where they had once been.

Until 1904, an expedition by the British Museum under the leadership of archaeologist Hograth continued to unearth and recover the remains of ancient wonders. Through many online researches and many years of searching, he finally found the foundation of the temple under the 6m thick alluvial layer and many valuable treasures.

Today, the site of the temple near the modern town of Selcuk, the sacred goddess temple is just a mud field. A single column has been erected to remind visitors when traveling to Europe, especially Turkey that once existed one of the wonders of the ancient world.

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