Prytaneion is the name given to sacred places where the holy fire of Hestia is represented in every Greek city-state, representing the independence and sovereignty of the city.
The word comes from the words of Prytan (the managerial position of the democratic Greek city), where sacred rituals and meetings with the food of the city’s executives are held, and beyond them all, important decisions are made for city administration. In this respect, the most important of the official buildings and also the center of the city in the parts of these buildings also had the official guesthouse.
Both Hestia, the goddess of the hearth, and the Prytaneion assemblies in every city aimed to maintain the healthy, orderly and permanent existence of the cities. This meant that the “stove” symbolized that Hestia’s fire was burning. Ephesus Prytaneion has an important place in that these structures are one of the few examples that have remained up to date.
Ephesus Prytaneion is located at the western edge of the Basilica. Except for the side structures, the front part is composed of a porch courtyard and a large closed hall behind it. There are eight high columns and thick Dor style column on the forehead and it looks like a great temple. Two of the columns were repaired and placed in their places. The inside of the Prytaneion is also highly garish in accordance with its external appearance.
In the middle of the hall, there is an altar foundation built from basalt. Artemis Sculptures exhibit at the Ephesus Ancient Museum were found in this sacred area. Prytaneion was built for the first time in the 3rd century BC, the last shape of which took in the period of Emperor Agustus. After the building was demolished for various reasons, some of the columns and architectural parts were used in the construction of the Skolastic Baths. Some of the columns were brought back from the excavation work to Prytaneion.
There is a large basilical building between Agora and Odeon. There is a commercial court on one side and a customs office on the other. There must be a municipal building. The most sacred place after the Temple of Artemis in the ancient city of Ephesus is Prytaneion, the Ephesus Municipality Palace. The person called Prytan had the major role. Prytaneion is surrounded by sculptures of emperors and goddesses. Therefore, it is accepted that this palace is a sanctuary. The international court must be in this building. The proximity of the Odeon to Prytaneon (Municipal Building) suggested the belief that a Bouleterion is the oldest parliament building. Bouleterion, which had a seating capacity of 1,300 people, was covered with a tiled roof.