The capital of Ionia, a celebrated city of Asia Minor, situated near the mouth of the Cayster, about forty miles southeast of Smyrna. It was chiefly celebrated for the worship and temple of Diana, which last was, accounted one of the seven wonders of the world. See DIANA. Paul first visited Ephesus about A. D. 54, Acts 18:19,21. This first brief visit was followed by a longer one towards the close of the same year, and continuing through the two following years, Acts 19:10 20:31. The church thus early established, enjoyed the laborers of Aquila and Priscilla, of Tychicus and Timothy. It was favored with one of the best of Paul’s epistles; its elders held an interview with him at Miletus, before he saw Rome, and he is supposed to have visited them after his first imprisonment. Here the apostle John is said to have spent the latter part of his life, and written his gospel and epistles; and having penned Christ’s message to them in the isle of Patmos, to have returned and died among them. Christ gives the church at Ephesus a high degree of praise, coupled with a solemn warning, Revelation 2:1-5, which seems not to have prevented its final extinction, though it remained in existence six hundred years. But now its candlestick is indeed removed out of its place. The site of that great and opulent city is desolate. Its harbor has become a pestilential marsh; the lovely and fertile level ground south of the Cayster now languishes under Turkish misrule; and the heights upon its border bear only shapeless ruins. The outlines of the immense theatre, Acts 19:29, yet remain in the solid rock; but no vestige of the temple of Diana can be traced.