Library of Celsus in Ephesus

History and Details of Celsus Library in Ephesus, Turkey

Library of Celsus in Ephesus is one of the most beautiful works of the Roman period, located in the Ephesus Ruins in Turkey. Celsus Library is the work of the famous Roman architect Vitruoya. The Library of Celsus was built in 135.

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Governor Julius Celsus Polemaenus

The library was built in the name of late Ephesus Governor Julius Celsus Polemaenus. It was founded by his son Julius Aguila. The tomb of Celsus is located under the western wall of the library. It was used both as a library and as a mausoleum during its period. The statue of Celsus’s grave is located in the Istanbul Archeology Museum today. Some even speculate that Celsus wanted a library in the city center Ephesus but after being declined, he decided to build a library to gain a place for his mausoleum.

Arhitecture of Celsus Library

Celsus Library consists of a single hall which is 15 meters high. Actually the library has three floors although it looks like two floors from the outside. The restoration was made in between 1970 and 1980. They did not have paper books back in those days, instead, they were using parchment paper which was made out of calfskin. The library had an additional wall, creating proper protection from moisture getting inside and tainting parchment paper.

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There are four statues in front of the Library of Celsus. They represent four virtues of governor Celsus: Sophia (Wisdom), Arete (Bravery), Episteme (Knowledge) and Ennoia (Thought).

The Celsus Library hosted the training of scientists and thinkers of the time. Celsus library is a must-see in any Ephesus tour. I liked to spend some time there with my guests and take some memorable photos of them.

Tours to Celsus Library

You can write to me to learn more about the Library of Celsus in Ephesus or You can book a tour to Ephesus to see the library and more. See you soon, Hasan Gülday.

Hasan Gülday

Hasan Gülday. Professional licensed tour guide working in Turkey.

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