Sabine Ladstätter, Ephesos Tour Through Terrace House 2 (Istanbul 2013).
S. Ladstättter - L. Lammerhuber, Ephesos. The Beauty of Destruction (Baden 2013).
S. Ladstättter et al., Terrace House 2 in Ephesos. An archaeological guide (Istanbul 2013).
The function of the small, temple-form building, which was constructed in 117/118 A.D. on the Curetes Street and which forms a structural unity with the adjacent Varius Baths, is still not completely clear. The assumption that it is the official cult temple for Emperor Hadrian, a temple for whose construction Ephesos received permission, has by now been disproved, yet this notion continues to live on in the designation of the building as the ›Temple of Hadrian‹. Shortly after its excavation between the years 1956–1958, the structure was rebuilt using not only original elements but also modern additions. Today the ›Temple of Hadrian‹, along with the Library of Celsus, the Theatre and Terrace House 2, counts amongst the most prominent monuments in Ephesos and is a defining element of the landscape of ruins.
In the last 50 years the condition of the building has drastically deteriorated. Therefore, the OeAI, with the support of the J. M. Kaplan Fund, has undertaken a comprehensive restoration project.
The corrosion of iron elements represents a massive problem; these were employed in the form of rebars within the concrete as well as for the bonding and static reinforcement of the stone construction during the rebuilding. These iron elements create fissures in the adjacent mineral substance, ultimately endangering the statics of the construction. Indeed on the upper surfaces of the worked blocks, numerous clamps show an already advanced stage of disintegration.
The second substantial cause of damage is the uncontrolled runoff of rainwater. Particularly serious consequences can be seen on the highly decorative façade architecture. Here, the water can seep into the interstices practically unhindered, and is a decisive accelerating factor in the corrosion of the clamps and reinforcements. Particularly negatively affected are the surfaces with relief decoration, which in many areas exhibit so-called sugar decay. This disintegration of the fabric of the stone, which can be attributed primarily to fluctuations in temperature, results in the breaking off of individual calcite crystals of the marble. The upper surface is also afflicted by the formation of crusts and biogenic layers.
The most important restoration measures consist of the replacement of iron bonding elements with non-rusting steel or fibreglass rods, the improvement of the water runoff, the static safeguarding of endangered areas, and the conservation of all of the materials. In this connection, essential interventions in the substance relate above all to the entablature, consisting of 23 blocks; this needs to be removed down to its lowest stone layer. In addition, all the joints must be sealed and rainwater purposely redirected elsewhere, in order to prevent it from penetrating into the substance of the building. To protect the sculpted decoration effectively, the sima, which is preserved over long stretches, will be restored with spouts reconstructed in suitable stone for the drainage of rainwater.
It is planned to complete the restoration work by the end of July 2014, and then to open the ›Temple of Hadrian‹ to visitors again.