From BiblePortal Wikipedia

Bridgeway Bible Dictionary [1]

Ephesus was the chief city of the Roman province of Asia (part of present-day Turkey). The church in Ephesus probably began through the work of Priscilla and Aquila, whom Paul left in Ephesus after visiting the city briefly at the end of his second missionary journey ( Acts 18:18-21). (For map of the region see Asia .)

Early developments

An important visitor during the early days of the Ephesian church was Apollos, a Jewish teacher from Alexandria in Egypt. Though eloquent, Apollos was lacking in the knowledge of certain Christian teachings, till Priscilla and Aquila taught him more accurately ( Acts 18:24-28). The time of the church’s greatest growth came when Paul returned at the beginning of his third missionary journey and spent three years in the city ( Acts 20:31). During this time the zealous Ephesian converts evangelized most of the province of Asia ( Acts 19:8-10).

The people of Ephesus were well known for their superstition and magic, and some dramatic events accompanied the people’s response to Paul’s preaching ( Acts 19:11-20). The city was considered to be the home of the goddess Artemis (or Diana) and contained a magnificent temple built in her honour ( Acts 19:27-28;  Acts 19:35). As the people of Ephesus turned in increasing numbers from the worship of Artemis to faith in Jesus, tensions arose in the city. The silversmiths who made small household shrines of the goddess found themselves going out of business and stirred up a riot. It took the city authorities several hours to restore order ( Acts 19:23-41).

Some time during his three years in Ephesus, Paul wrote the letter we know as First Corinthians ( 1 Corinthians 16:8-9;  1 Corinthians 16:19). While in Ephesus Paul met violent opposition and suffered physical harm. On one occasion he almost lost his life ( 1 Corinthians 15:32;  1 Corinthians 16:8-9; cf.  2 Corinthians 1:8-9). Ephesus was no doubt the scene of some of the sufferings that Paul later records in  2 Corinthians 11:23-29, and possibly he suffered one of his imprisonments there.

Later difficulties

Before leaving Ephesus at the end of his third missionary journey, Paul warned that false teachers would trouble the church ( Acts 20:17;  Acts 20:28-31). This proved to be so, and Paul’s letter to the Ephesians, which he wrote during his first imprisonment in Rome, deals with some of the wrong ideas that had become widespread in and around Ephesus (see Ephesians, Letter To The )

After his release from Rome, Paul revisited the church in Ephesus to try to correct the wrong teaching. When he moved on, he left Timothy behind to continue corrective teaching. He also wrote Timothy two letters to help him in this task ( 1 Timothy 1:3-7;  1 Timothy 6:3-5;  2 Timothy 1:18;  2 Timothy 2:14-16). The false teaching that the apostle John condemned in his letters (written towards the end of the first century) was also centred in Ephesus ( 1 John 2:18-22;  1 John 4:1;  2 John 1:9-11).

Later the Ephesian church was troubled by another group of false teachers, the Nicolaitans. These people encouraged Christians to demonstrate their freedom by eating food that had been offered to idols and by engaging in sexual immorality ( Revelation 2:2;  Revelation 2:6; cf.  Revelation 2:14-15).

Unfortunately, the Ephesian Christians had become so concerned with opposing false teaching year after year, that in the process their love for Christ had lost its original warmth. They had become harsh, critical and self-satisfied. God warned them that if they did not change and regain their original spirit of love, he would act against them in judgment and bring their church to an end. But those who triumphed over these attitudes would enjoy the fulness of eternal life ( Revelation 2:1-7).

Hastings' Dictionary of the New Testament [2]

(Ἔφεσος, a graecized form of a native Anatolian name)

The town of Ephesus was a little south of latitude 38°N., at the head of a gulf situated about the middle of the western coast of Asia Minor. It lay on the left bank of the river Cayster, at the foot of hills which slope towards the river. In ancient times the river reached to the city pates, but its mouth has gradually silted up so that the city is now some four to six miles from the sea. The effect of the river’s action has been to raise the level of the land all over. The ruins, the most extensive in Asia Minor, give an idea of how large the ancient city was. The extent of the area covered by it cannot now be exactly estimated; but, as the population in St. Paul’s time was probably about a third of a million, and in ancient times open spaces were frequent and ‘sky-scrapers’ unknown, the city must have been large, even according to our standards. The temple of Artemis (see Diana), the ruins of which were discovered by Wood, lies now about five miles from the coast, and was the most imposing feature of the city. Its site must have been sacred from very early times, and successive temples were built on it. Other notable features of the city were the fine harbour along the banks of the Cayster, the aqueducts, and the great road following the line of the Cayster to Sardis, with a branch to Smyrna. The heat in summer is very great, and fever is prevalent. The harvest rain storms are violent. The site was nevertheless so attractive that it must have been very early occupied. The ancients dated the settlement of Ionian Greeks there early in the 11th cent. b.c., and the city long before St. Paul’s time had become thoroughly Greek, maintaining constant intercourse with Corinth and the rest of Greece proper.

The history of the city, with its changing government, need not be traced here. It fell under Roman sway, with the rest of the district, which the Romans called ‘Asia’ ( q.v. [Note: quod vide, which see.] ) by the will of Attalus iii. (Philometor), the Pergamenian king, in 133 b.c. In 88 b.c. the inhabitants sided with Mithridates, king of Pontus, and slaughtered all resident Romans. They were punished in 84 by Sulla, who ravaged the city. During the rule of Augustus the city was embellished by a number of new buildings.

When Ephesus came into contact with Christianity, it still retained all its ancient glory. With its Oriental religion, its Greek culture, its Roman government, and its world-wide commerce, it stood midway between two continents, being on the one hand the gateway of Asia to crowds of Western officials and travellers, as Bombay is the portal of India to-day, and on the other hand the rendezvous of multitudes of Eastern pilgrims coming to worship at Artemis’ shrine. Traversed by the great Imperial highway of intercourse and commerce, it had all nationalities meeting and mingling in its streets. No wonder if it felt its ecumenical importance, and believed that what was said and done by its citizens was quickly heard and imitated by ‘all Asia and the world’ (ἡ οἰκουμένη,  Acts 19:27).

In Ephesus a noble freedom of thought and a vulgar superstition lived side by side. The city of Thales and Heraclitus contained many men of rich culture and deep philosophy, who were earnest seekers after truth. Prominent citizens like the Asiarchs ( q.v. [Note: quod vide, which see.] ), who were officially bound to foster the cultus of Rome and the Emperor, yet regarded St. Paul and his message with marked friendliness ( Acts 19:31). Nothing but a wide-spread receptivity to fresh ideas can account for the wonderful success of the first Christian mission in the city, and for the reverberation of the truth ‘almost throughout all Asia’ ( Acts 19:26). The best mind of the age was wistfully awaiting a new order of things. Having tried eclecticism and syncretism in vain, it was ‘standing between two worlds, one dead, the other powerless to be born.’ When, therefore, the startling news came from Syria to Ephesus that the Son of God had lived, died, and risen again, it ran like wildfire; its first announcement created another Pentecost ( Acts 19:6); and in two years ‘all they who dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord, both Jews and Greeks’ ( Acts 19:10).

Every spiritual revival has ethical issues, and Ephesus quickly recognized that the new truth was a new ‘Way’ ( Acts 19:23). The doctrine now taught in the School or Tyrannus, formerly the home of one knows not what subtle and futile theories, had a direct bearing upon human lives. That was why it made ‘no small stir’ ( Acts 19:23). The message which St. Paul delivered ‘publicly and from house to house’ ( Acts 20:20), admonishing men ‘night and day with tears’ ( Acts 20:31), was morally revolutionary. It was a call to repentance and faith ( Acts 20:21); and, though no frontal attack was made upon the established religion of Ephesus, and no language used which could fairly be construed as offensive ( Acts 19:37), yet it soon became apparent that the old order and the new could not thrive peacefully side by side. The gospel of mercy to all was a gage of battle to many. St. Paul, therefore, found that, while Ephesus opened ‘a door wide and effectual’ (ἐνεργής) there were ‘many adversaries’ ( 1 Corinthians 16:9). This did not surprise or disappoint him. The fanatical hatred of Ephesus was better than the polite scorn of Athens. As the city of Artemis lived largely upon the superstition of the multitude, not only the priests who enjoyed the rich revenues of the Temple, but also the artisans who made ‘shrines’ for pilgrims, felt that if Christianity triumphed their occupation would be gone. Religion was for Ephesus a lucrative ‘business’ (ἐργασία,  Acts 19:24-25), and the ‘craft’ (τὸ μέρος, this branch of trade) of many was in danger. Indeed, the dispute which arose affected the whole city, being regarded as nothing less than a duel between Artemis and Christ. If He were enthroned in the Ephesian heart, she would be deposed from her magnificence, and the greatest temple in the world ‘made of no account’ ( Acts 19:27). The situation created a drama of real life which was enacted in and around the famous theatre of Ephesus. The gild of silversmiths, led by their indignant president Demetrius ( q.v. [Note: quod vide, which see.] ); the ignorant mob, excited to fanatical frenzy; the crafty Jews, quick to dissociate themselves from their Christian compatriots; the brave Apostle, eager to appear before ‘the people’ (τὸν δῆμον) of a free city; the friendly Asiarchs, constraining him to temper valour with discretion; the calm, dignified, eloquent Secretary (γραμματεύς), stilling the angry passions of the multitude; and behind all, as unseen presences, the majesty of Imperial Rome, the sensuous charm of Artemis, the spiritual power of Christ-these all combined to give a sudden revelation of the soul of a city. The practical result was that a vindication of the liberty of prophesying was drawn from the highest municipal authority, who evidently felt that in this matter he was interpreting the mind of Rome herself. To represent Christianity as a religio licita was clearly one of the leading aims of St. Luke as a historian.

The fidelity of St. Luke’s narrative in its political allusions and local colour has received confirmation from many sources. As the virtual capital of a senatorial province, Ephesus had its proconsuls (ἀνθύπατοι,  Acts 19:38), but here the plural is merely used colloquially, without implying that there could ever be more than one at a time. As the head of a conventus iuridicus , Ephesus was an assize town, in which the judges were apparently sitting at the very time of the riot ( Acts 19:38). Latin was the language of the courts, and ἀγοραῖοι ἄγονται is the translation of conventus aguntur . As a free city of the Empire, Ephesus had still a semblance of ancient Ionic autonomy; her affairs were ‘settled in a regular assembly’ (v, 39), i.e. either at an ordinary meeting of the Demos held in the theatre on a fixed day, or at an extraordinary meeting called by authority of the proconsul. Irregular meetings of the populace were sternly prohibited ( Acts 19:40) and, indeed, the powers of the lawful assembly were more and more curtailed, till at last it practically had to content itself with registering the decrees of the Roman Senate. The proud claim of Ephesus to be the temple-warden (νεωκόρον, lit.[Note: literally, literature.]‘temple-sweeper’) of Artemis ( Acts 19:35) is attested by inscriptions and coins (W. M. Ramsay, Cities and Bishoprics of Phrygia , 1895, i. 58; Letters to the Seven Churches , 232). The Asiarchs who befriended St. Paul had no official connexion with the cult of Artemis; they were members of the Commune whose function it was to unite the Empire in a religious devotion to Rome.

St. Paul’s pathetic address at Miletus to the elders of Ephesus ( Acts 20:16-35), in which he recalls the leading features of his strenuous mission in the city-his tears and trials ( Acts 20:19), his public and private teaching ( Acts 20:20), his incessant spiritual and manual toil ( Acts 20:31-34)-and declares himself pure from the blood of all men ( Acts 20:26), presents as high an ideal of the ministerial vocation as has ever been conceived and recorded. There is no reason to doubt that it gives an approximate summary of his original words (cf. J. Moffatt, Introd. to Literature of the New Testament (Moffatt). , p. 306).

With the religious history of Ephesus are also associated the names of Priscilla and Aquila ( Acts 18:18), Apollos ( Acts 18:24,  1 Corinthians 16:12), Tychicus ( Ephesians 6:21), Timothy ( 1 Timothy 1:3,  2 Timothy 4:9), and especially John the Apostle and John the Presbyter. After the departure of St. Paul the Ephesian Church was injured by the activity of false teachers ( Acts 20:29-30;  Revelation 2:4), but the Fall of Jerusalem greatly enhanced its importance, and the influence of the Johannine school made it the centre of Eastern Christianity. In the time of Domitian it had the primacy among the Seven Churches of Asia ( Revelation 2:1). The Letter to the Church of Ephesus is on the whole laudatory. The Christian community commanded the writer’s respect by its keen scrutiny of soi-disant apostles, by its intolerance of evil, and its hatred of the libertinism which is the antithesis of legalism. But it had declined in the fervent love which alone made a Church truly lovable to the Apostle. A generation later, however, Ignatius in his Ep. to the Ephesians uses the language of profound admiration:

‘I ought to be trained for the contest by you in faith, in admonition, in endurance in long-suffering (§ 3); ‘for ye all live according to the truth and no heresy hath a home among you; nay, ye do not so much as listen to any one if he speak of aught else save concerning Jesus Christ in truth’ (§ 6); ‘you were ever of one mind with the Apostles in the power of Jesus Christ’ (§ 11).

Ephesus had a long line of bishops, and was the seat of the council which condemned the doctrine of Nestorius in a.d. 431. The ruins of the ancient city, on Coressus and Prion, are extensive and impressive. The theatre in which the riot (Acts 19) Look place is remarkably well preserved, and in 1870 the foundation of the Temple of Artemis was discovered by J. T. Wood. The modern village lying beside the temple bears the name of Ayasoluk , which is a corruption of ἄγιος θεολόγος, the title of St. John the Divine which was given to the Church of Justinian.

Literature.-W. M. Ramsay, Letters to the Seven Churches , 1904; Murray’s Handbook to Asia Minor , 1895; G. A. Zimmermann, Ephesos im ersten christl. Jahrhundert , 1874; article‘Ephesus’ in Pauly-Wissowa[Note: auly-Wissowa Pauly-Wissowa’s Realencyklopädie.], v. [1905]; J. T. Wood, Discoveries at Ephesus , 1876; E. L. Hicks, Ancient Greek Inscriptions in the Brit. Museum , iii. 2 [1890]; D. G. Hogarth, Excavations in Ephesus: the Archaic Artemisia , 2 vols., 1908.

Alexander Souter and James Strahan.

Hastings' Dictionary of the Bible [3]

EPHESUS . The capital of the Roman province Asia; a large and ancient city at the mouth of the river Cayster, and about 3 miles from the open sea. The origin of the name, which is native and not Greek, is unknown. It stood at the entrance to one of the four clefts in the surrounding hills. It is along these valleys that the roads through the central plateau of Asia Minor pass. The chief of these was the route up the Mæander as far as the Lycus, its tributary, then along the Lycus towards Apamea. It was the most important avenue of civilization in Asia Minor under the Roman Empire. Miletus had been in earlier times a more important harbour than Ephesus, but the track across from this main road to Ephesus was much shorter than the road to Miletus, and was over a pass only 600 ft. high. Consequently Ephesus replaced Miletus before and during the Roman Empire, especially as the Mæander had silted up so much as to spoil the harbour at the latter place. It became the great emporium for all the trade N. of Mt. Taurus.

Ephesus was on the main route from Rome to the East, and many side roads and sea-routes converged at it ( Acts 19:21;   Acts 20:1; Act 20:17 ,   1 Timothy 1:3 ,   2 Timothy 4:12 ). The governors of the provinces in Asia Minor had always to land at Ephesus. It was an obvious centre for the work of St. Paul, as influences from there spread over the whole province (  Acts 19:10 ). Corinth was the next great station on the way to Rome, and communication between the two places was constant. The ship in   Acts 18:19 , bound from Corinth for the Syrian coast, touched first at Ephesus.

Besides Paul, Tychicus ( Ephesians 6:21 f.) and Timothy (according to   1 Timothy 1:3 ,   2 Timothy 4:9 ), John Mark (  Colossians 4:10 ,   1 Peter 5:13 ), and the writer of the Apocalypse (  Revelation 1:11;   Revelation 2:1 ) were acquainted with Asia or Ephesus.

The harbour of Ephesus was kept large enough and deep enough only by constant attention. The alluvial deposits were (and are) so great that, when once the Roman Empire had ceased to hold sway, the harbour became gradually smaller and smaller, so that now Ephesus is far away from the sea. Even in St. Paul’s time there appear to have been difficulties about navigating the channel, and ships avoided Ephesus except when loading or unloading was necessary (cf.  Acts 20:16 ). The route by the high lands, from Ephesus to the East, was suitable for foot passengers and light traffic, and was used by St. Paul (  Acts 19:1; probably also   Acts 16:6 ). The alternative was the main road through Colossæ and Laodicea neither of which St. Paul ever visited (  Colossians 2:1 ).

In the open plain, about 5 miles from the sea, S. of the river, stands a little hill which has always been a religious centre. Below its S. W. slope was the temple sacred to Artemis (see Diana of the Ephesians). The Greek city Ephesus was built at a distance of 1 2 miles S. W. of this hill. The history of the town turns very much on the opposition between the free Greek spirit of progress and the slavish submission of the Oriental population to the goddess. CrÅ“sus the Lydian represented the predominance of the latter over the former, but Lysimachus (b.c. 295) revived the Greek influence. Ephesus, however, was always proud of the position of ‘Warden of the Temple of Artemis’ ( Acts 19:35 ). The festivals were thronged by crowds from the whole of the province of Asia. St. Paul, whose residence in Ephesus lasted 2 years and 3 months (  Acts 19:8;   Acts 19:10 ), or roughly expressed, 3 years (  Acts 20:31 ). at first incurred no opposition from the devotees of the goddess, because new foreign religions did not lessen the influence of the native goddess; but when his teaching proved prejudicial to the money interests of the people who made a living out of the worship, he was at once bitterly attacked. Prior to this occurrence, his influence had caused many of the famous magicians of the place to burn their books (  Acts 19:13-19 ). The riot of 19:32 was no mere passing fury of a section of the populace. The references to Ephesus in the Epistles show that the opposition to Christianity there was as long-continued as it was virulent (  1 Corinthians 15:32; 1Co 16:9 ,   2 Corinthians 1:8;   2 Corinthians 1:10 ).

The scene in  Acts 19:23 ff. derives some Illustration from an account of the topography and the government of the city. The ruins of the theatre are large, and it has been calculated that it could hold 24,000 people. It was on the western slope of Mt. Pion, and overlooked the harbour. The Asiarchs (see Asiarch), who were friendly to St. Paul, may have been present in Ephesus at that time on account of a meeting of their body (  Acts 19:31 ). The town-clerk or secretary of the city appears as a person of importance, and this is exactly in accordance with what is known of municipal affairs in such cities. The Empire brought decay of the influence of popular assemblies, which tended more and more to come into the hands of the officials, though the assembly at Ephesus was really the highest municipal authority (  Acts 19:39 ), and the Roman courts and the proconsuls (  Acts 19:38 ) were the final judicial authority in processes against individuals. The meeting of the assembly described in Acts was not a legal meeting. Legal meetings could be summoned only by the Roman officials, who had the power to call together the people when they pleased. The secretary tried to act as intermediary between the people and these officials, and save the people from trouble at their hands. The temple of Artemis which existed in St. Paul’s day was of enormous size. Apart from religious purposes, it was used as a treasure-house: as to the precise arrangements for the charge of this treasure we are in ignorance.

There is evidence outside the NT also for the presence of Jews in Ephesus. The twelve who had been baptized with the baptism of John ( Acts 19:3 ) may have been persons who had emigrated to Ephesus before the mission of Jesus began. When St. Paul turned from the Jews to the population in general, he appeared, as earlier in Athens, as a lecturer in philosophy, and occupied the school of Tyrannus out of school hours. The earlier part of the day, beginning before dawn, he spent in manual labour. The actual foundation of Christianity in Ephesus may have been due to Priscilla and Aquila (  Acts 18:19 ).

‘Ephesian’ occurs as a variant reading in the ‘Western’ text of  Acts 20:4 for the words ‘of Asia,’ as applied to Tychicus and Trophimus. Trophimus was an inhabitant of Ephesus (  Acts 21:29 ), capital of Asia; but Tychicus was probably merely an Inhabitant of the province Asia; hence they are coupled under the only adjective applicable to both. It is hardly safe to infer from the fact that Tychicus bore the letter to the Colossians that he belonged to Colossæ (province Asia); but it is possible that he did.

A. Souter.

Fausset's Bible Dictionary [4]

Chief city of the Ionian confederacy and capital of the Roman province "Asia" (Mysia, Lydia, Caria), on the S. side of the plain of Cayster, and partly on the heights of Prion and Coressus, opposite the island of Samos. A leading scene of Paul's ministry (Acts 18; 19; 20); also one of the seven churches addressed in the Apocalypse ( Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 2:1), and the center from from whence John superintended the adjoining churches (Eusebius, 3:23). Ephesus, though she was commended for patient labors for Christ's name's sake, is reproved for having "left her first love." The port was called Panormus. Commodious roads connected this great emporium of Asia with the interior ("the upper coasts," i.e. the Phrygian table lands,  Acts 19:1); also one on the N. to Smyrna, another on the S. to Miletus, whereby the Ephesian elders traveled when summoned by Paul to the latter city.

On a N.E. hill stands the church Ayasaluk, corrupted from Hagios Theologos , "the holy divine," John, Timothy, and the Virgin Mary who was committed by the Lord to John ( John 19:26), were said to have been buried there. It was the port where Paul sailed from Corinth, on his way to Syria ( Acts 18:19-22). Thence too he probably sailed on a short visit to Corinth; also thence to Macedonia ( Acts 19:21-27;  Acts 20:1; compare  1 Timothy 1:3;  2 Timothy 4:12;  2 Timothy 4:20). (See 1 CORINTHIANS.) Originally colonized by the hardy Atticans under Androclus, son of Codrus, it subsequently fell through the enervation of its people under Lydian and Persian domination successively; then under Alexander the Great, and finally under the Romans when these formed their province of Asia (129 B.C.).

A proconsul or "deputy" ruled Asia. In  Acts 19:38 the plural is for the singular. He was on circuit, holding the assizes then in Ephesus; as is implied, "the law is open," margin "the court days are (now being) kept." Besides a senate there was a popular assembly such as met in the theater, the largest perhaps in the world, traceable still on mount Prion ( Acts 19:29). The "town clerk" had charge of the public records, opened state letters, and took notes of the proceedings in the assembly. His appeal, quieting the people, notices that Paul was "not a blasphemer of the Ephesian goddess," a testimony to Paul's tact and wisdom in preaching Christ. The friendly warning of the Asiarchs to Paul, not to venture into the theater, implies how great an influence the apostle had gained at Ephesus. (See Asiarchs .)

Besides being famed as the birthplace of the two painters Apelles and Parrhasius, and the philosopher Heraclitus, Ephesus was notorious for its magical arts and amulets of parchment with inscribed incantations (Ephesia grammata), valued at enormous prices (50,000 pieces of silver), yet freely given up to the flame when their possessors received a living faith ( Acts 19:19). In undesigned coincidence with Acts, Paul writing to Timothy ( 2 Timothy 3:13) says "seducers ( Goeetees , "conjurors") shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived." The "special miracles" which God wrought by the hands of Paul were exactly suited to conquer the magicians on their own ground: handkerchiefs and aprons from his body brought as a cure to the sick; evil spirits cast out by him; and when exorcists imitated him, the evil spirits turning on them and rending them.

The Diana of Ephesus, instead of the graceful Grecian goddess of the chase, was a mummy-shaped body with many breasts, ending in a point, and with the head of a female with mural crown, and hands with a bar of metal in each; underneath was a rude block. An aerolite probably gave the idea "the image that fell from heaven." After frequent burnings, the last building of her temple took 220 years. (See Diana .) Some read Pliny's statement, "the columns were 120, seven of them the gifts of kings"; the diameter of each is six feet, the height 60 feet, according to Ward's measurement. The external pillars according to Wood's arrangement are 88; the whole number, internal and external, 120. The glory of Ephesus was to be "a worshipper of the great goddess" (see margin), literally, a caretaker, warden, or apparitor of the temple ( Neokoros ), and the silversmiths had a flourishing trade in selling portable models of the shrine.

Perhaps Alexander the "coppersmith" had a similar business. The "craftsmen" were the designers, the "workmen" ordinary laborers ( Acts 19:24-25). The imagery of a temple naturally occurs in  1 Corinthians 3:9-17 written here, also in  1 Timothy 3:15;  1 Timothy 6:19;  2 Timothy 2:19-20, written to Ephesus; compare also  Acts 20:32. Demetrius would be especially sensitive at that time when Diana's sacred month of May was just about to attract the greatest crowds to her, for  1 Corinthians 16:8 shows Paul was there about that time, and it is probable the uproar took place then; hence we find the Asiarchs present at this time ( Acts 19:31).

Existing ancient coins illustrate the terms found in Acts, "deputy," "town clerk," "worshipper of Diana." The address at Miletus shows that the Ephesian church had then its bishop presbyters. Paul's companions, Trophimus certainly and Tychicus possibly, were natives of Ephesus ( Acts 20:4;  Acts 21:29;  2 Timothy 4:12.) Also Onesiphorus ( 2 Timothy 1:16-18;  2 Timothy 4:19), Hymeneus and Alexander, Hermogenes and Phygellus, of Ephesus, were among Paul's opponents ( 1 Timothy 1:20;  2 Timothy 1:15;  2 Timothy 4:14).

Watson's Biblical & Theological Dictionary [5]

a much celebrated city of Ionia, in Asia Minor, situated upon the river Cayster, and on the side of a hill. It was the metropolis of the Proconsular Asia, and formerly in great renown among Heathen authors on account of its famous temple of Diana. This temple was seven times set on fire: one of the principal conflagrations happened on the very day that Socrates was poisoned, four hundred years before Christ; the other, on the same night in which Alexander the Great was born, when a person of the name of Erostratus set it on fire, according to his own confession, to get himself a name! It was, however, rebuilt and beautified by the Ephesians, toward which the female inhabitants of the city contributed liberally. In the times of the Apostles it retained much of its former grandeur; but, so addicted were the inhabitants of the city to idolatry and the arts of magic, that the prince of darkness would seem to have, at that time, fixed his throne in it. Ephesus is supposed to have first invented those obscure mystical spells and charms by means of which the people pretended to heal diseases and drive away evil spirits; whence originated the ‘Εφεσια γραμματα , or Ephesian letters, so often mentioned by the ancients.

2. The Apostle Paul first visited this city, A.D. 54; but being then on his way to Jerusalem, he abode there only a few weeks,

 Acts 18:19-21 . During his short stay, he found a synagogue of the Jews, into which he went, and reasoned with them upon the interesting topics of his ministry, with which they were so pleased that they wished him to prolong his visit. He however declined that, for he had determined, God willing, to be at Jerusalem at an approaching festival; but he promised to return, which he did a few months afterward, and continued there three years,  Acts 19:10;  Acts 20:31 . While the Apostle abode in Ephesus and its neighbourhood, he gathered a numerous Christian church, to which, at a subsequent period, he wrote that epistle, which forms so important a part of the Apostolic writings. He was then a prisoner at Rome, and the year in which he wrote it must have been 60 or 61 of the Christian aera. It appears to have been transmitted to them by the hands of Tychicus, one of his companions in travel,  Ephesians 6:21 . The critics have remarked that the style of the Epistle to the Ephesians is exceedingly elevated; and that it corresponds to the state of the Apostle's mind at the time of writing. Overjoyed with the account which their messenger brought him of the steadfastness of their faith, and the ardency of their love to all the saints,  Ephesians 1:15; and, transported with the consideration of the unsearchable wisdom of God displayed in the work of man's redemption, and of his amazing love toward the Gentiles, in introducing them, as fellow-heirs with the Jews, into the kingdom of Christ, he soars into the most exalted contemplation of those sublime topics, and gives utterance to his thoughts in language at once rich and varied. The epistle, says Macknight, is written as it were in a rapture. Grotius remarks that it expresses the sublime matters contained in it in terms more sublime than are to be found in any human language; to which Macknight subjoins this singular but striking observation, that no real Christian can read the doctrinal part of the Epistle to the Ephesians, without being impressed and roused by it, as by the sound of a trumpet.

3. Ephesus was one of the seven churches to which special messages were addressed in the book of Revelation. After a commendation of their first works, to which they were commanded to return, they were accused of having left their first love, and threatened with the removal of their candlestick out of its place, except they should repent,   Revelation 2:5 . The contrast which its present state presents to its former glory, is a striking fulfilment of this prophecy. Ephesus was the metropolis of Lydia, a great and opulent city, and, according to Strabo, the greatest emporium of Asia Minor. Its temple of Diana, "whom all Asia worshipped," was adorned with one hundred and twenty-seven columns of Parian marble, each of a single shaft, and sixty feet high, and which formed one of the seven wonders of the world. The remains of its magnificent theatre, in which it is said that twenty thousand people could easily have been seated, are yet to be seen. But a few heaps of stones, and some miserable mud cottages, occasionally tenanted by Turks, without one Christian residing there, are all the remains of ancient Ephesus. It is, as described by different travellers, a solemn and most forlorn spot. The Epistle to the Ephesians is read throughout the world; but there is none in Ephesus to read it now. They left their first love, they returned not to their first works. Their "candlestick has been removed out of its place;" and the great city of Ephesus is no more. Dr. Chandler says, "The inhabitants are a few Greek peasants, living in extreme wretchedness, dependence, and insensibility; the representatives of an illustrious people, and inhabiting the wreck of their greatness: some, in the substructions of the glorious edifices which they raised; some, beneath the vaults of the stadium, once the crowded scene of their diversions; and some, by the abrupt precipice, in the sepulchres which received their ashes. Its streets are obscured and overgrown. A herd of goats was driven to it for shelter from the sun at noon; and a noisy flight of crows from the quarries seemed to insult its silence. We heard the partridge call in the area of the theatre and the stadium. The glorious pomp of its Heathen worship is no longer remembered; and Christianity, which was here nursed by Apostles, and fostered by general councils, until it increased to fulness of stature, barely lingers on in an existence hardly visible." "I

was at Ephesus, says Mr. Arundell, "in January, 1824; the desolation was then complete: a Turk, whose shed we occupied, his Arab servant, and a single Greek, composed the entire population; some Turcomans excepted, whose black tents were pitched among the ruins. The Greek revolution, and the predatory excursions of the Samiotcs, in great measure accounted for this total desertion. There is still, however, a village near, probably the same which Chisull and Van Egmont mention, having four hundred Greek houses."

St. John passed the latter part of his life in Asia Minor, and principally at Ephesus, where he died.

Holman Bible Dictionary [6]

Location The ancient city of Ephesus, located in western Asia Minor at the mouth of the Cayster River, was an important seaport. Situated between the Maeander River to the south and the Hermus River to the north, Ephesus had excellent access to both river valleys which allowed it to flourish as a commercial center. Due to the accumulation of silt deposited by the river, the present site of the city is approximately five to six miles inland.

Historical Background The earliest inhabitants of Ephesus were a group of peoples called Leleges and Carians who were driven out around 1000 B.C. by Ionian Greek settlers led by Androclus of Athens. The new inhabitants of Ephesus assimilated the native religion of the area, the worship of a goddess of fertility whom they identified with the Greek goddess Artemis, the virgin huntress. (Later the Romans identified Artemis with their goddess Diana.)

Around 560 B.C. Croesus of Lydia conquered Ephesus and most of western Asia Minor. Under Croesus' rule, the city was moved farther south and a magnificent temple, the Artemision, was constructed for the worship of Artemis. In 547 B.C., following the defeat of Croesus by Cyrus of Persia, Ephesus came under Persian control. Disaster struck the city in 356 when fire destroyed the Artemision.

Alexander the Great, who was reportedly born on the same day as the Artemision fire, took over the area in 334 B.C. His offer to finance the ongoing reconstruction of the temple was diplomatically declined. The rebuilt temple, completed about 250 B.C., became known as one of the Seven Wonders of the World.

Lysimachus, one of Alexander's generals, ruled over Ephesus from about 301 to 281 B.C., when he was killed by Seleucus I. Under Lysimachus the city was moved again, this time to higher ground to escape the danger of flooding. City walls were built; a new harbor was constructed; and new streets were laid out. After the death of Lysimachus, Ephesus fell under the control of the Seleucids until their defeat by the Romans in 189 B.C. Rome gave the city to the king of Pergamum as a reward for his military assistance. In 133 B.C., at the death of the last Pergamum ruler, the city came under direct Roman control.

Under the Romans, Ephesus thrived, reaching the pinnacle of its greatness during the first and second centuries of the Christian era. At the time of Paul, Ephesus was probably the fourth largest city in the world, with a population estimated at 250,000. During the reign of the emperor Hadrian, Ephesus was designated the capital of the Roman province of Asia. The grandeur of the ancient city is evident in the remains uncovered by archaeologists, including the ruins of the Artemision, the civic agora, the temple of Domitian, gymnasiums, public baths, a theater with seating for 24,000, a library, and the commercial agora, as well as several streets and private residences. Also discovered were the head and forearm of a colossal statue of the emperor Domitian. Today the Turkish town of Seljuk occupies the site of ancient Ephesus.

Ephesus in the New Testament Paul stopped at Ephesus at the end of his second missionary journey, left Priscilla and Aquila there, and returned to Antioch ( Acts 18:18-21 ). Apollos preached in Ephesus soon thereafter and met Priscilla and Aquila who “expounded unto him the way of God more perfectly” ( Acts 18:26 ). Paul, on his third journey, spent more than two years in Ephesus teaching and preaching in the synagogue and in the hall of Tyrannus. The success of his preaching at Ephesus triggered a riot headed by the silversmiths who feared that their business of selling miniature replicas of Artemis (Diana) or her temple would suffer severely ( Acts 19:24-41 ). After the town clerk quelled the disturbance, Paul left Ephesus for Macedonia. At the conclusion of this missionary endeavor, on his way back to Palestine, Paul stopped at Miletus and sent for the elders of the church in Ephesus so that he might speak with them ( Acts 20:17 ).

Ephesus is also mentioned in  1 Corinthians 15:32 . Paul noted that he had fought with beasts at Ephesus. Many commentators understand this statement to be only a figurative reference to strong and dangerous opposition. At the close of 1Corinthians, Paul wrote that he would remain at Ephesus until Pentecost “for a great door and effectual is opened unto me, and there are many adversaries” ( 1 Corinthians 16:8-9 ).

Elsewhere in the New Testament Ephesus appears as the location of one of the seven churches addressed in Revelation ( Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 2:1 ). Ephesus, the leading city of Asia Minor, is appropriately the first of the seven churches. In the opening verse of the letter to the Ephesians some manuscripts describe the recipients of the letter as the saints who are “at Ephesus.” The earliest and most reliable manuscripts, however, do not include the reference to Ephesus. In 1,2Timothy, Ephesus is mentioned three times. Timothy was urged to remain at Ephesus ( 1 Timothy 1:3 ); reference is made to Onesiphorus and “in how many things he ministered unto me at Ephesus” ( 2 Timothy 1:16-18 ); and the writer stated that Tychicus had been sent to Ephesus ( 2 Timothy 4:12 ).

Christian tradition from the second century and later claimed that the apostle John moved to Ephesus, and after living to an old age, died a natural death there. Another, more dubious tradition states that Mary the mother of Jesus also died in Ephesus. See Asia Minor; Ephesians; Revelation, Book of; Timothy .

Mitchell G. Reddish

Smith's Bible Dictionary [7]

Eph'esus. (Permitted). The capital of the Roman province of Asia, and an illustrious city in the district of Ionia, nearly opposite the island of Samos.

Buildings. - Conspicuous at the head of the harbor of Ephesus was the great Temple Of Diana or Artemis, the tutelary divinity of the city. This building was raised on immense substructions, in consequence of the swampy nature of the ground. The earlier temple, which had been begun before the Persian war, was burnt down in the night when Alexander the Great was born; and another structure, raise by the enthusiastic co-operation of all the inhabitants of "Asia," had taken its place. The magnificence of this sanctuary was a proverb throughout the civilized world. In consequence of this devotion the city of Ephesus was called neo'koros ,  Acts 19:35, or "warden" of Diana.

Another consequence of the celebrity of Diana's worship at Ephesus was that a large manufactory grew up there of portable shrines, which strangers purchased, and devotees carried with them on journeys or set up in the houses. The Theatre , into which the mob who had seized on Paul,  Acts 19:29, rushed, was capable of holding 25,000 or 30,000 persons, and was the largest ever built by the Greeks. The Stadium or circus, 685 feet long by 200 wide, where the Ephesians held their shows, is probably referred to by Paul as the place where he "fought with beasts at Ephesus."  1 Corinthians 15:32.

Connection with Christianity - The Jews were established at Ephesus in considerable numbers.  Acts 2:9;  Acts 6:9. It is here and here only that we find disciples of John the Baptist explicitly mentioned after the ascension of Christ .  Acts 18:25;  Acts 19:3. The first seeds of Christian truth were possibly sown here immediately after the great Pentecost .  Acts 2:1. St. Paul remained in the place more than two years,  Acts 19:8;  Acts 19:10;  Acts 20:31, during which he wrote the First Epistle to the Corinthians. At a later period, Timothy was set over the disciples, as we learn from the two Epistles addressed to him. Among St. Paul's other companions, two, Trophimus and Tychicus, were natives of Asia,  Acts 20:4, and the latter was probably,  2 Timothy 4:12, the former certainly,  Acts 21:29, a native of Ephesus.

Present condition. - The whole place is now utterly desolate, with the exception of the small Turkish village at Ayasaluk . The ruins are of vast extent.

Easton's Bible Dictionary [8]

 1 Corinthians 4:9 9:24,25 15:32

Many Jews took up their residence in this city, and here the seeds of the gospel were sown immediately after Pentecost ( Acts 2:9;  6:9 ). At the close of his second missionary journey (about A.D. 51), when Paul was returning from Greece to Syria (18:18-21), he first visited this city. He remained, however, for only a short time, as he was hastening to keep the feast, probably of Pentecost, at Jerusalem; but he left Aquila and Priscilla behind him to carry on the work of spreading the gospel.

During his third missionary journey Paul reached Ephesus from the "upper coasts" ( Acts 19:1 ), i.e., from the inland parts of Asia Minor, and tarried here for about three years; and so successful and abundant were his labours that "all they which dwelt in Asia heard the word of the Lord Jesus, both Jews and Greeks" (19:10). Probably during this period the seven churches of the Apocalypse were founded, not by Paul's personal labours, but by missionaries whom he may have sent out from Ephesus, and by the influence of converts returning to their homes.

On his return from his journey, Paul touched at Miletus, some 30 miles south of Ephesus ( Acts 20:15 ), and sending for the presbyters of Ephesus to meet him there, he delivered to them that touching farewell charge which is recorded in  Acts 20:18-35 . Ephesus is not again mentioned till near the close of Paul's life, when he writes to Timothy exhorting him to "abide still at Ephesus" ( 1 Timothy 1:3 ).

Two of Paul's companions, Trophimus and Tychicus, were probably natives of Ephesus ( Acts 20:4;  21:29;  2 Timothy 4:12 ). In his second epistle to Timothy, Paul speaks of Onesiphorus as having served him in many things at Ephesus ( 2 Timothy 1:18 ). He also "sent Tychicus to Ephesus" (4:12), probably to attend to the interests of the church there. Ephesus is twice mentioned in the Apocalypse (1:11; 2:1).

The apostle John, according to tradition, spent many years in Ephesus, where he died and was buried.

A part of the site of this once famous city is now occupied by a small Turkish village, Ayasaluk, which is regarded as a corruption of the two Greek words, hagios theologos; i.e., "the holy divine."

American Tract Society Bible Dictionary [9]

The capital of Ionia, a celebrated city of Asia Minor, situated near the mouth of the Cayster, about forty miles southeast of Smyrna. It was chiefly celebrated for the worship and temple of Diana, which last was, accounted one of the seven wonders of the world. See  Acts 18:19,21 . This first brief visit was followed by a longer one towards the close of the same year, and continuing through the two following years,  Acts 19:10   20:31 . The church thus early established, enjoyed the laborers of Aquila and Priscilla, of Tychicus and Timothy. It was favored with one of the best of Paul's epistles; its elders held an interview with him at Miletus, before he saw Rome, and he is supposed to have visited them after his first imprisonment. Here the apostle John is said to have spent the latter part of his life, and written his gospel and epistles; and having penned Christ's message to them in the isle of Patmos, to have returned and died among them. Christ gives the church at Ephesus a high degree of praise, coupled with a solemn warning,  Revelation 2:1-5 , which seems not to have prevented its final extinction, though it remained in existence six hundred years. But now its candlestick is indeed removed out of its place. The site of that great and opulent city is desolate. Its harbor has become a pestilential marsh; the lovely and fertile level ground south of the Cayster now languishes under Turkish misrule; and the heights upon its border bear only shapeless ruins. The outlines of the immense theatre,  Acts 19:29 , yet remain in the solid rock; but no vestige of the temple of Diana can be traced.

Morrish Bible Dictionary [10]

A renowned city of Ionia, and in the time of the Romans the capital of the part called 'the province of Asia,' being the west portion of Asia Minor. Being near the sea it was a place of great commerce, and as the capital of the province it had constant intercourse with the surrounding towns.The celebrated temple of Diana also brought multitudes of heathen. Its inhabitants are supposed to have been of Greek origin, with also a large number of Jews engaged in commerce.  Acts 18:19-24;  Acts 19:1,17,26,35;  Acts 20:16,17;  1 Corinthians 15:32;  1 Corinthians 16:8;  Ephesians 1:1;  1 Timothy 1:3;  2 Timothy 1:18;  2 Timothy 4:12;  Revelation 1:11;  Revelation 2:1 . It is now named Ayasolook. The ruins are extensive: the sea has retired, leaving a pestilential morass of mud and rushes.

People's Dictionary of the Bible [11]

Ephesus ( Ef'E-Sŭs ). The commercial city of Asia Minor, "one of the eyes of Asia." It stood upon the south side of a plain, with mountains on three sides, and the sea on the west. The river Caÿster ran across the plain. Paul visited Ephesus on his second tour,  Acts 18:19-21; Apollos was instructed there by Aquila and Priscilla,  Acts 18:24-26; Paul dwelt there three years,  Acts 19:1-41; charged the elders of the church.  Acts 20:16-28; the angel of the church of Ephesus is named in  Revelation 2:1-7. The city is now desolate: the ruins of the stadium and theatre remain.

Hawker's Poor Man's Concordance And Dictionary [12]

The celebrated city to which Paul sent his Epistle. And one of the seven churches to whom the Lord Jesus sent his message. (See  Acts 19:1;  Ephesians 1:1;  Revelation 2:1)

Kitto's Popular Cyclopedia of Biblial Literature [13]

Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature [14]

Copyright StatementThese files are public domain. Bibliography InformationMcClintock, John. Strong, James. Entry for 'Ephesus'. Cyclopedia of Biblical, Theological and Ecclesiastical Literature. https://www.studylight.org/encyclopedias/eng/tce/e/ephesus.html. Harper & Brothers. New York. 1870.

International Standard Bible Encyclopedia [15]

ef´ē̇ - sus ( Ἔφεσος , Éphesos , "desirable"): A city of the Roman province of Asia, near the mouth of the Cayster river, 3 miles from the western coast of Asia Minor, and opposite the island of Samos. With an artificial harbor accessible to the largest ships, and rivaling the harbor at Miletus, standing at the entrance of the valley which reaches far into the interior of Asia Minor, and connected by highways with the chief cities of the province, Ephesus was the most easily accessible city in Asia, both by land and sea. Its location, therefore, favored its religious, political and commercial development, and presented a most advantageous field for the missionary labors of Paul. The city stood upon the sloping sides and at the base of two hills, Prion and Coressus, commanding a beautiful view; its climate was exceptionally fine, and the soil of the valley was unusually fertile.

Tradition says that in early times near the place where the mother goddess of the earth was born, the Amazons built a city and a temple in which they might worship. This little city of the Amazons, bearing at different times the names of Samorna, Trachea, Ortygia and Ptelea, flourished until in the early Greek days it aroused the cupidity of Androclus, a prince of Athens. He captured it and made it a Greek city. Still another tradition says that Androclus was its founder. However, under Greek rule the Greek civilization gradually supplanted that of the Orientals, the Greek language was spoken in place of the Asiatic; and the Asiatic goddess of the temple assumed more or less the character of the Greek Artemis. Ephesus, therefore, and all that pertained to it, was a mixture of oriental and Greek Though the early history of the city is obscure, it seems that at different times it was in the hands of the Carians, the Leleges and Ionians; in the early historical period it was one of a league of twelve Ionfan cities. In 560 bc it came into the possession of the Lydians; 3 years later, in 557, it was taken by the Persians; and during the following years the Greeks and Persians were constantly disputing for its possession. Finally, Alexander the Great took it; and at his death it fell to Lysimachus, who gave it the name of Arsinoe, from his second wife. Upon the death of Attalus Ii (Philadelphus), king of Pergamos, it was bequeathed to the Roman Empire; and in 190, when the Roman province of Asia was formed, it became a part of it. Ephesus and Pergamos, the capital of Asia, were the two great rival cities of the province. Though Pergamos was the center of the Roman religion and of the government, Ephesus was the more accessible, the commercial center and the home of the native goddess Diana; and because of its wealth and situation it gradually became the chief city of the province. It is to the temple of Diana, however, that its great wealth and prominence are largely due. Like the city, it dates from the time of the Amazons, yet what the early temple was like we now have no means of knowing, and of its history we know little except that it was seven times destroyed by fire and rebuilt, each time on a scale larger and grander than before. The wealthy king Croesus supplied it with many of its stone columns, and the pilgrims from all the oriental world brought it of their wealth. In time the temple possessed valuable lands; it controlled the fishcries; its priests were the bankers of its enormous revenues. Because of its strength the people stored there their money for safe-keeping; and it became to the ancient world practically all that the Bank of England is to the modern world.

In 356 bc, on the very night when Alexander the Great was born, it was burned; and when he grew to manhood he offered to rebuild it at his own expense if his name might be inscribed upon its portals. This the priests of Ephesus were unwilling to permit, and they politely rejected his offer by saying that it was not fitting for one god to build a temple to another. The wealthy Ephesians themselves undertook its reconstruction, and 220 years passed before its final completion.

Not only was the temple of Diana a place of worship, and a treasure-house, but it was also a museum in which the best statuary and most beautiful paintings were preserved. Among the paintings was one by the famous Apelles, a native of Ephesus, representing Alexander the Great hurling a thunderbolt. It was also a sanctuary for the criminal, a kind of city of refuge, for none might be arrested for any crime whatever when within a bowshot of its walls. There sprang up, therefore, about the temple a village in which the thieves and murderers and other criminals made their homes. Not only did the temple bring vast numbers of pilgrims to the city, as does the Kaaba at Mecca at the present time, but it employed hosts of people apart from the priests and priestesses; among them were the large number of artisans who manufactured images of the goddess Diana, or shrines to sell to the visiting strangers.

Such was Ephesus when Paul on his 2nd missionary journey in Acts ( Acts 18:19-21 ) first visited the city, and when, on his 3rd journey ( Acts 19:8-10;  Acts 20:31 ), he remained there for two years preaching in the synagogue ( Acts 19:8 ,  Acts 19:10 ), in the school of Tyrannus ( Acts 19:9 ) and in private houses ( Acts 20:20 ). Though Paul was probably not the first to bring Christianity to Ephesus, for Jews had long lived there ( Acts 2:9;  Acts 6:9 ), he was the first to make progress against the worship of Diana. As the fame of his teachings was carried by the pilgrims to their distant homes, his influence extended to every part of Asia Minor. In time the pilgrims, with decreasing faith in Diana, came in fewer numbers; the sales of the shrines of the goddess fell off; Diana of the Ephesians was no longer great; a Christian church was rounded there and flourished, and one of its first leaders was the apostle John. Finally in 262 ad, when the temple of Diana was again burned, its influence had so far departed that it was never again rebuilt. Diana was dead. Ephesus became a Christian city, and in 341 ad a council of the Christian church was held there. The city itself soon lost its importance and decreased in population. The sculptured stones of its great buildings, which were no longer in use and were falling to ruins, were carried away to Italy, and especially to Constantinople for the great church of Saint Sophia. In 1308 the Turks took possession of the little that remained of the city, and deported or murdered its inhabitants. The Cayster river, overflowing its banks, gradually covered with its muddy deposit the spot where the temple of Diana had once stood, and at last its very site was forgotten.

The small village of Ayasaluk , 36 miles from Smyrna on the Aidin R.R., does not mark the site of the ancient city of Ephesus, yet it stands nearest to its ruins. The name Ayasaluk is the corruption of three Greek words meaning "the Holy Word of God." Passing beyond the village one comes to the ruins of the old aqueduct, the fallen city walls, the so-called church of John or the baths, the Turkish fort which is sometimes called Paul's prison, the huge theater which was the scene of the riot of Paul's time, but which now, with its marble torn away, presents but a hole in the side of the hill Prion. In 1863 Mr. J.T. Wood, for the British Museum, obtained permission from the Turkish government to search for the site of the lost temple of Diana. During the eleven years of his excavations at Ephesus, ,000 were spent, and few cities of antiquity have been more thoroughly explored. The city wall of Lysimachus was found to be 36,000 ft. in length, enclosing an area of 1,027 acres. It was 10 1/2 ft. thick, and strengthened by towers at intervals of 100 ft. The six gates which pierced the wall are now marked by mounds of rubbish. The sites and dimensions of the various public buildings, the streets, the harbor, and the foundations of many of the private houses were ascertained, and numerous inscriptions and sculptures and coins were discovered. Search, however, did not reveal the site of the temple until January 1, 1870, after six years of faithful work. Almost by accident it was then found in the valley outside the city walls, several feet below the present surface. Its foundation, which alone remained, enabled Mr. Wood to reconstruct the entire temple plan. The temple was built upon a foundation which was reached by a flight of ten steps. The building itself was 425 ft. long and 220 ft. wide; each of its 127 pillars which supported the roof of its colonnade was 60 ft. high; like the temples of Greece, its interior was open to the sky. For a further description of the temple, see Mr. Wood's excellent book, Discoveries at Ephesus .