Arcadian Street

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Harbor Street, initially built in the Hellenistic Period to run between the Harbour and the Great Theatre, was renamed Arcadian Street in the 1st century AD after it was renovated under the reign of Emperor Arcadius. This street was one of the main streets through the city and it lead to the harbor with an entrance from the port. This was the first street sailors and merchants encountered when they arrived Ephesus. It was also the primary way kings, emperors, and councilors from other cities would enter the city. These official visitors would be officially greeted on the street so it was decorated to impress visitors. Huge columns, marble slabs, colonnades, and sculptures adorned the sides of the street.

Arcadian Street was approximately 530 metres long and 10 meters wide. At its entrance were the Harbour Baths or Port Baths. Later those baths became known as The Baths of Constantine for they were rebuilt by Emperor Constantine II. Shops and galleries would have lined either side of the street. Huge gates with high arches ran along the road and in the middle of Arcadian Street were four higher columns with statues of four apostles. This statue is knowns known as the Four Apostle Monument and it highlights the Christian influence on the city.

Other structurally important features were the water and sewer channels ran beneath the marble flagstones, and the streetlamps. At the time, Arcadian Street was one of only three lighted streets in the empire. The others were Rome and Antioch. An impressive 50 streetlights were placed on the road to light up its colonnades. The street ends near the Theatre Gymnasium, a 2nd century AD building that was used for a sports ground.

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