Remember A Real Holiday..

Hey everyone,

You know that today, I didn’t go to my college because of bad air condition which means snow holiday today. I woke up a snowy day again and I remembered my real holiday last summer. I found some photograph from my last summer vacation in Ephesus and Didyma/ Turkey :) I chose some of them in my collection.

p.s. All photos are taken by my camera. :D

Apollon Tample, Didyma/Aydin/Turkey

Also called DIDYMI, or BRANCHIDAE, ancient sanctuary and seat of an oracle of Apollo, located south of Miletus in modern Turkey. Before being plundered and burned by the Persians (c. 494 BC), the sanctuary was in the charge of the Branchids, a priestly caste named after Branchus, a favorite youth of Apollo. After Alexander the Great conquered Miletus (334), the oracle was re sanctified; the city administered the cult, annually electing a prophet. About 300 BC the Milesians began to build a new temple, intended to be the largest in the Greek world. The annual festival held there, the Didymeia, became Panhellenic in the beginning of the 2nd century BC. Excavations made between 1905 and 1930 revealed all of the uncompleted new temple and some carved pieces of the earlier temple and statues.

Symbol of Temple, Apollon Temple, Didyma/Aydin/Turkey

Kehanet Kaynağı ve Avlu merdivenleri, M.Ö 7.yy, Apollon Temple, Didyma/Aydin/Turkey

Medusa head at Apollon Temple, Didyma/Aydın/Turkey

MEDUSA MYTH

The gorgon, in Greek mythology, is a female monster, or most commonly known as a Gorgo. These creatures were favorite subjects in art, being horrific, yet pungently humorous at the same time. The most famous of the Gorgons was Medusa.

A Gorgon head was most feared, as evidenced in the Odyssey, where Odysseus fears a Gorgon head might confront him if he stayed too close to Hades. The fear people had of the Gorgo was based on early poetry depicting these female creatures as furiously spirited with serpents writhing on their heads and piercing eyes that could turn a mortal to stone.

The three Gorgon sisters were daughters of ancient Sea Gods, Ceto and Phorcys. Two, Stheno and Eluryah were immortal, but the third, Medusa was not. She had been a female of absolute beauty, mostly her long, silky hair. She bragged at being more beautiful than the Goddess Athena, and one day, while in her temple, she was ravished by the Sea God Neptune. Athena was outraged by this and turned Medusa into the Gorgon she became famous for being. She turned her beautiful hair into snakes and let it be that she could no longer see the handsome men who came to court her, as they would instantly be turned to stone if they looked into her eyes.

Perseus, in trying to rescue his mother Danae from King Polydectes, was challenged to retrieve the head of Medusa. He was able to do so with the help of Athena and Hermes. Perseus was given a shield of reflection and a curved sword to remove her head. The blood of a Gorgon was said to be all powerful. It could be a lethal poison or hold magical powers, as it was used to grant Erichthonius the power to reanimate the dead. When Medusa was dying, she sprang forth from her blood the winged horse Pegasus and the giant Chrysaor, who later became the King of Iberia. While fleeing the other two Gorgons, Perseus used the helmet of Hermes which made him invisible and allowed him to escape unharmed.

Ovid and other poets told of the beauty of Medusa before she took on the characteristics of the Gorgon. In fact, Medusa was a very likable character, until her transformation. She bragged of her beauty but she was sought after by many suitors. The wrath of Athena was typical of the Gods in punishing Greeks who did not lavish or respect their ways. After the death of Medusa, Perseus was said to bring her head to Athena after having used it in battle to defeat his enemies. Athena cast the head into her shield and there it remained.

The Gorgon has been depicted in artwork throughout archaic Greece. Shields bore a Medusa head in order to fight off evil spirits. Doorways had Gorgon plaques above the archways to prevent evil from entering the homes. The Gorgon face, or gorgoneion, is similar to many other cultures’ icons to ward off the spirits.

Though the Gorgons were not numerous throughout Greek art and literature, their presence was well noted. Many modern pieces of literature and art reflect a knowledge of Medusa and the metaphor of the Gorgon. It has been written that if you brag of your beauty, you will reflect like that of Medusa. So, is this a lesson to be learned from the Greek scholars, or a myth that has channeled through history to entertain yet another generation of beauties? It might be left to question, since we never quite know when we may invite the wrath of those ancient Gods.

Apollon Temple, Didyma/Aydin/Turkey

Ephesus/Selcuk/Turkey

Ancient shoes, Ephesus/Selcuk/Turkey

The Curetes Street (Kudretler Caddesi), Ephesus/Selcuk/Turkey

The Curetes Street (in antiquity, the Embolos) running through the valley depression between the two city mountains as the former Processional Way, does not follow the orthogonal street grid of the Hellenistic-Roman city. The 210m long main boulevard was prestigiously equipped with porticoes and marbie paving in the early Imperial period.

Domitian Square (Domitian Meydanı) Ephesus/Selcuk

The ‘Rhodian Peristyle’ and The Prytaneum (‘Rodos Tipi Peristil’ ve Prytaneion), Ephesus/Selcuk

The courtyard, lying to the west of the Bouleuterion and enclosed on all three sides corresponds to the type of the ‘Rhodian Peristyle’ with its elevated columnar architecture at the east. An Altar or two smaller temples were located on a raised podium to the west side. The sacred quarter, probably built in the Austan period (27 B.C.-A.D. 14), was dedicated to the deified Caesar and Goddess Roma or Artemis and Emperor Augustus.

Japanese Tourists, Ephesus/Selcuk/Turkey

Ephesus/Selcuk/Turkey

p.s. All photos are taken by my camera. :)

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