Cats have been beloved companions of humans for thousands of years, and the ancient city of Ephesus in modern-day Turkey was no exception. The cats of Ephesus were well-known and highly respected throughout the ancient world, and they played an important role in the daily life of the city.
Stray cats seem to have established their own kingdom in the Ancient City of Ephesus. Cats of Ephesus, which have always been the guardians of Ephesus, which is visited by millions of tourists in Turkey and famous around the whole world, attracting as much attention as the ancient structures.
Cats were revered in the ancient world for their ability to protect homes and crops from pests, and they were often associated with the goddess Artemis. The cats of Ephesus were especially prized, and they were given special treatment by the city’s residents. They were often depicted in art and literature, and they played a prominent role in the city’s religious rituals.
One of the most famous stories about the cats of Ephesus involves a group of cats who lived in the temple of Artemis. According to legend, the cats were sacred to the goddess and were treated with great care by the temple priests. When the Persians invaded the city in the 5th century BCE, the cats were said to have helped defend the temple from the invaders. The story goes that the Persians were so terrified of the cats that they fled the temple, allowing the priests to drive them out of the city.
An Ephesian cat group is stationed at the lower entrance gate and another one is at the upper gate. Cats of Ephesus take turns showing themselves to tourists as they pass through the turnstile. All they want is love and petting, if possible, from the chin and cheeks.
The staff of the Ancient City of Ephesus treats them with love, they always have fresh food and water, and they even go through health checks from time to time. The food and water needs of the cats are met by the officials and animal lovers in the ancient city. Some staff voluntarily leave food for them. Volunteers of some animal care foundations also bring food, especially during the wintertime. Noticing the cats, tourists also give them food too. While visiting the ancient city, it is often possible to see cat food among ancient artifacts.
There is a group of posers around Celsus Library and Hadrian’s Temple. They lie on the stones and columns like a sphinx and change pose as you press the shutter button just like a supermodel! The mothers and the kittens act like they are responsible for the security of the ancient city while following the security guards who give them food and show love.
Despite their high status in ancient Ephesus, the cats of the city faced many challenges. Like all cats, they were vulnerable to diseases and injuries, and they had to contend with the dangers of living in an urban environment. However, the people of Ephesus took great care to protect and care for their beloved cats, and they played a vital role in the city’s daily life and culture.
Today, the cats of Ephesus are remembered as a symbol of the city’s rich history and cultural heritage. Despite the passage of time, their legacy lives on, and they continue to be a source of fascination and inspiration for cat lovers around the world.
Cats roaming freely among the nearly 3,000-year-old artifacts rest in the shade of those historical ruins in summer and are protected from the cold in houses built for them in winter. It is not known when the cats came to the Ancient City of Ephesus, but it is good that they did. They don’t harm anyone and indeed they spread happiness. ❤️😹
The Cats of Ephesus Book
The cats of Ephesus, which attracted great attention, appeared in the book called “Cats of Ephesus”. This book was printed in Turkish, German, and English. Cats of Ephesus book was written by the Austrian scientist Sabine Ladstätter. She is the head of the Ephesus excavations, as well as the winner of the best scientist award in Austria in 2011. Ladstätter took with her photographer Lois Lammerhuber and Ephesus excavations photographer Niki Gail. You can find the link to buy this book and many more books of Sabine Ladstätter on Amazon.
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Ephesus is my first love since I grew up nearby her and Ephesus was the first ancient city that I visited. Cats of Ephesus make it fun for everyone while you are visiting this fascinating city. Contact me to learn more about Ephesus and to hire a professional licensed tour guide for Ephesus ancient city.