Biblical History in Ephesus
Vicinity of Western Asia Minor near Ephesus is housing many Biblical sites worth visiting. City of Ephesus which was the capital of the Roman Empire during its heyday. Very fertile location in between two rivers – Cayster River and Maeander River- and also a huge port city along the Aegean Coast of Asia Minor.
House of Virgin MARY
The house of Virgin Mary, who is considered to be the holy mother of Christianity, is situated on Mount Bülbül. Jesus Christ asked St John, one of his disciples, to provide protection for his mother Mary, before he died on the cross.
It’s beleived that based on this, St John thought that it’d be unwise for for Virgin Mary to stay in Jerusalem, so brought her to Ephesus with him. Here she remained hidden in a cottage. Surrounded by dense trees, on the outskirt of Mount Bülbül. Virgin Mary stayed here until she passed away. It was discovered by Italian monks with the help of an envisions of German nun Anne Katherine Emmerick who was a blinde lady an deven though she never travelled out from germany, she gave a clear instruction of the exact location of the House of Virgin Mary.
St John’s Basilica
According to the Christian Tradition emerging at the beggining of the 2nd Century, St John, one of Jesus Christ’s disciples, is cited as being one of the authors of Bible. Following his death a simple grave was built for him on the southern slope of the Ayasuluk Hill. A wooden roofed basilica was built on this grave at the beggining of the 5th Century. But this basilica was replaced by Emperor Justinian in the mid 6th C AD with a new domed basilica based on a cross design. From the 6th C onwards the relocation of Ephesians to Ayasuluk, St John’s basilica became the bishopric church, and the hill was encircled by perimeter walls. From 1974, following fundememtal restoration work on the basilica and its environs turned into a archaeological park. From this point you can see shrines of different eras such as IsaBey Mosque and Temple of Artemis.
Cave of Seven Sleepers
It’s estimated that the structure was built in a period betweenthe 5th and 6th Centuries, and the location of the Grotto where the Seven Sleepers beleived to sleep for almost 300 years, became a religious centre.
Legend has it that, prior to the adoption of Christianity as the official religion. Seven youth took a shelter here, They escaped from the devotees of idol worshippers, and in this cave they fell asleep, waking up two centuries later. When they woke up, christianity already had become the official religion of the roman empire. Following this miraculous phenomenon, a giant monument was erected int the place where these seven young people were buried after their death.