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My Favourite Planet > English > Middle East > Turkey > Ephesus > photo gallery
Ephesus, Turkey Ephesus photo gallery 1 20 of 62

Fish fresco in the Terrace Houses, Ephesus at My Favourite Planet

Fish fresco in the Terrace Houses, Ephesus. Roman Imperial period.
The Terrace Houses

A cluster of peristyle, two-storey houses of wealthy families, built in terraces on the lower slopes of Mount Koressos (Bülbül Daği, Nightingale Mountain), at the lower end of Kuretes Street. The richly appointed homes are decorated with floor mosaics, marble wall panels and frescoes. The remains are reminiscent of the ruins of houses in Pompeii and Herculaneum.

The recently restored Terrace Houses are within the Ephesus Archaeological Site, but are privately run, and a separate ticket must be bought. Considering that the admission price to Ephesus has been increased (see above), it may seem a bit steep to have to buy yet another ticket. However, if you can afford it, this is definitely worth seeing.

The Houses have been set up as a covered museum-type space with metal walkways and stairs around and above the the restored rooms, courtyards and streets. This may make access difficult for disabled people. Ask at the entrance.

Open every day

Summer (April-October): 08:30 - 19:00
Winter (November-March) 08:00 - 17:00
Admission charge: 15 TL

Tickets on sale at the entrance to the Terrace Houses, not at the entrance to the Archaeological Site.

Since the Terrace Houses are in a sense a separate archaeological site, we had planned to feature them in a special section of this guide to Ephesus. We are still considering this. Further images and information will be added as soon as time allows.

Fresco of the muse Kleo in the Terrace Houses, Ephesus at My Favourite Planet

Fresco of the muse Kleo
in the Terrace Houses.
Roman period.
photos and articles:
© David John

See also:


the nearby town

galleries index

Selcuk photo gallery 1 - town of Selcuk, Turkey

gallery 1
around town

Selcuk photo gallery 2 - Ephesus Archaeological Museum, Turkey

gallery 2

Selcuk photo gallery 3 - Serbian folk dancers in Selcuk, Turkey

gallery 3
Serbian dancers
visit Selçuk

Mosaic head of Medusa in Terrace House 2, Ephesus at My Favourite Planet

The head of the Gorgon Medusa on a polychrome emblema (panel)
of a floor mosaic in Terrace House 2. Roman period, 3rd century AD.

Terrace House 2 (Hanghaus 2), Dwelling Unit 3, Room 16a.

The Gorgon's head is shown in the manner typical of the Roman era, with the tails of two snakes tied in a Herakles knot on her throat. The snake's bodies writhe around the sides of her winged head, and their heads appear above, facing each other. Medusa's round face is quite human, feminine and pretty. The x-shaped backgound has a pattern of grey scales, probably representing the aegis. The finely executed image has a black oval frame within a thinner black quadrilateral frame, surrounded by a large oblong mosaic area consisting of a black and white recurring pattern of intersecting circles.

The image has been dated stylistically to the 3rd century AD, although some scholars have suggested the 2nd century and even the 5th century (Volker Michael Strocka and Werner Jobst). [1]

In the same room, to the left (west) of this mosaic, is another of the same size and style with an emblema containing a bust of Dionysus.

See also:

a Gorgon relief in the "Temple of Hadrian", Ephesus

a Gorgoneion on the Library of Celsus, Ephesus

On the Gorgon Medusa pages in the MFP People section:

Gorgoneions on sarcophagi from Ephesus
Notes, references and links

1. Gorgon mosaic in Terrace House 2, Ephesus

See: David Parrish, Architectural function and decorative programs in the terrace houses in Ephesos, Topoi, volume 7/2, 1997, pages 579-633. At

An important article on the decoration of the Hanghäuser, with plans, photos and citations of the key studies of the subect. Parrish refers to Terrace House 2, Dwelling Unit 3 (on the plan "Hanghaus 2, Wohnung 3") as House 3.
Photos, articles and map: © David John,
except where otherwise specified.

Additional photos: © Konstanze Gundudis

All photos and articles are copyright protected.

Images and materials by other authors
have been attributed where applicable.

Please do not use these photos or articles without permission.

If you are interested in using any of the photos for your website,
project or publication, please get in contact.

Higher resolution versions are available on request.

Some of the information and photos in this guide to Ephesus
originally appeared in 2004 on
See also
The Cheshire Cat Blog
photo essays about Turkey:

Istanbul Essentials part 1

Istanbul Essentials part 2

Istanbul Essentials part 3
with video

Ionian Spring part 1

Ionian Spring part 2

Ionian Spring part 3
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