The Celsus Library of Ephesus
Posted: Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:36 pm
The Celsus Library of Ephesus, named after the city’s former Roman governor and constructed in the 2nd century CE, was a repository of over 12,000 scrolls and one of the most impressive buildings in the Roman Empire.
Commissioned in 114 CE by Tiberius Julius Acquila, the library was built to commemorate his father Tiberius Julius Celsus Polemaeanus, who had been, from 105 to 107 CE, the Roman proconsul of Ephesus, the then capital of Rome’s Asian province. Celsus had also been consul in Rome in 92 CE, where he was responsible for all public buildings. The library was probably completed in 117 CE. Celsus himself was entombed under the library in a lead coffin encased in a decorated marble sarcophagus.
In 262 CE the library was destroyed by fire during a Gothic invasion. However, the facade survived and repairs were made to the library in the 4th century CE and a fountain added in front.