Temple of Artemis

This temple was built as a shrine to Artemis, who was the patron goddess of Gerasa. It lies inside the large courtyard of the sanctuary. Construction of the temple began in the 2nd century AD, however it was never finished and only 12 columns out of a planned total of 32 were erected.

The temple sits on an extensive system of underground vaults, the exact purpose of which is not known. At the back is an adytum, or an inner shrine, where only the Roman priest would be permitted. It comprises a niche for a deity and two side chambers. One of the chambers has a staircase leading down to the vaults, while the second has a staircase leading up to the roof, indicating that there may have been an altar on top.

The temple was used during later times as well, possibly as a church in the Byzantine era, by potters during Umayyad times and in the 12th century it may have been used as a fort by a group of Crusaders.
(From information on site)

© Photo: Haupt & Binder

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