Research at the Serapis Temple is going on!

The second campaign of the Ephesus Foundation Project at the monumental temple started in July. This year, the flight of stairs and its steps are to be studied in particular.
To get access to the stairs it was necessary to lift the blocks lying in front of the stairs and store them in immediate proximity to the temple within the temple complex. All together, 407 blocks (between 8 and 20 tons) were removed. Thereof are 40 new blocks – until now hidden underground or beneath other blocks.
Work was carried out by the restorer Sinan Ilhan and his team.

The next step will be the documentation of the blocks. In September, Thekla Schulz-Brize and her students from the university of applied sciences Regensburg will draw the architectural parts and feed all necessary data (like specifications, photos and architectural survey data) into an architectural inventory.

Photo Credit: ÖAI/Niki Gail

The so-called Serapeion, a temple of the Imperial period, was converted into a church in Late Antiquity. Byzantine monograms incised on the staircase can be read as “Ioannou” (John) and a 1 m huge graffito shows a stork with a snake in his beak. This very typical early Christian image can be interpreted as the fight between (the Christian) god and the devil (pagan gods).