History of Ephesus
The city of Ephesus was originally founded by the Carians. Due to its convenient location at the mouth of Cayster, it prospered as one of the most important commercial centers of Western Anatolia and served as the coastal gateway to the eastern world. Ephesus was one of the twelve Ionian cities to participate in the Persian and Peloponnesian wars. In 334 B.C., the city was taken by the Alexander the Great and throughout the Hellenistic period, the city became increasingly prosperous. After two hundred years, in 133 B.C. the region came under the Roman rule and it became the capital of the Roman province of Asia during Augustus' reign. It was a religious center of early Christianity and was visited by St. Paul and Virgin Mary. The city finally fell in the hands of the Goths in 262 A.D.