Temple of Hadrian

sights / Historic

Temple of Hadrian information

Ephesus (Efes) , Turkey
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One of Ephesus' star attractions, this ornate, Corinthian-style temple honours Trajan's successor, and originally had a wooden roof and doors. Note its main arch; supported by a central keystone, this architectural marvel remains perfectly balanced, with no need for cement or mortar. The temple's designers also covered it with intricate decorative details and patterns – Tyche, goddess of chance, adorns the first arch, while Medusa wards off evil spirits on the second.

Sailors and traders in particular invoked Tyche, to protect them on their long journeys. After the first arch, in the upper-left corner is a relief of a man on a horse chasing a boar – a representation of Ephesus' foundation myth. At shoulder height are backwards swastikas representing the nearby Meander River.