Ephesos Museum (Vienna)

Ephesos Museum Vienna


Tel. 5252 44031
Open: 10am- 6pm Wed- Mon

Subway: Volkstheater, Herrengasse



Description of the Ephesos Museum

Ephesos Museum contains a large collection of artefacts that were discovered during archaeological digs in the ancient town of Ephesus in Turkey. Additionally Ephesos Museum contains a collection of items from the Greek island of Samothrace that was excavated in 1870's. One of the main exhibits in the museum is the colossal frieze dedicated to Lucius Verus's victory over the Parthians in 165 AD.


The collection
Between 1896 and 1906 a total of seven transports with finds from Ephesos arrived in Vienna. At the beginning of the 20th century, the finds were exhibited in various locations, including the Lower Belvedere and the collection of antiquities in the Kunsthistorisches Museum. In 1911, the temporary exhibition in the Theseus Temple had to be closed due to damage to the show pieces. From 1934 to 1944, however, it was used again to display a selection from the entire collection. From 1947 to 1978, some ephesian sculptures were shown in the columned courtyard of the Corps de Logis in the New Castle. It was not until 1978 that all of the temporary restorations were replaced by the newly designed Ephesus Museum in the New Castle. As an annex, the museum is associated with architecture and architectural sculpture from the mystery sanctuary of the Greek island of Samothrace. In the entrance area of ​​the museum the architecture of the late classical altar of the Artemision of Ephesos is built. A staircase leads to a large hall that contains the frieze of the Parthian monument. Other important exhibits include a 1: 500 scale model of the ancient city of Ephesus and numerous sculptures, including the bronze statue of the athlete.

The Ephesus Museum offers the possibility to view not only works of sculpture, but also original architecture in Central Europe away from the ancient centers. Excavations with Austrian participation are being carried out in Ephesus. The scientific inventory of the museum inventory is carried out in cooperation with the relevant Vienna University Institutes, the Austrian Academy of Sciences and the Austrian Archaeological Institute.


Some significant exhibits
Amazon from the Artemision Altar
In the 6th century BC The Temple of Artemi, one of the seven wonders of the world, was erected. After it burned down, the new building was surrounded in the 4th century BC. The sacrificial altar of Artemis Ephesia in front of the temple with a magnificent surrounding wall. From this comes the top of the wounded amazon.

The Partherdenkmal is the most important relief work of Roman times in Asia Minor. It glorifies the Roman emperor and the Roman Empire in five thematic areas. The reconstruction of the individual plates is not entirely certain, since they were found in a second or third use. In a reconstruction proposal, the panels were arranged in the form of a monumental altar. Of the figure friezes, which were around 70 meters long, 40 meters are on display. In an older interpretation, the monument was associated with the Emperor Lucius Verus and his Parthian campaign in AD 161-165 (hence the name). It is more likely that the monument under Antoninus Pius was erected in the 1940s of the 2nd century AD.

Bronze statue of an athlete
A fragmented Roman copy of a Greek original from the last quarter of the 4th century BC, showing a young athlete cleaning his scraping iron, which was used after a competition to cleanse the body (Apoxyomenos). The statue cannot be attributed to a specific Greek artist, but was a well-known and popular motif in ancient times.