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Homer's Troy

Launcher karenb
Status Closed Mediated Closed 3 years, 5 months ago
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Is Homer's Troy a real city?

If you think Homer's Troy truly existed, what is the best evidence that you can cite that proves this and where was the city's most likely location?

Answers (1)

  • Moriarty
    Aug 11, 2011

    Event though past historians once thought that the ancient city of Troy, described by Homer in his tale the Iliad, as nothing more than myth, it should be remembered that even legends no matter how far fetched do have basis in fact. Small grains of truth hidden under layers of fable, folklore and dramatic license.

    Homer's Iliad is set during the ending days of the Trojan War, a conflict spanning ten years in which the eponymous city of Troy was besieged by a coalition of Greek armies led by King Agamemnon of Mycenae against Paris of Troy who had ensnared the affection of the wife of King Menelaus of Sparta, Helen (as legend states, through the help of Aphrodite the Greek goddess of love as a reward for choosing her as the winner of a divine beauty contest of sorts), and bringing her back to his city. The story itself only spans a few weeks towards the final year of the conflict but gives background of how the war began. [1]

    According to Homer's epic, Troy (known as Troia or Ilium in the story) was located on a hill on the plain of Scamander near the mouth of a river of the same name where the Greek armies had established an encampment so as to besiege the city.

    It is popularly believed that the River Scamander is the present day River Karamanderes. [5] Although the mouth of the present river is located at least 5km from the present archaeological site believed to be Homer's Troy, recent geological discoveries have indicated that 3,000 years ago the ancient mouth of Scamander corresponds and actually confirms Homer's geographical description of the ancient city [2]

    The city itself was rediscovered by Heinrich Schleimann in 1868 In the Province of Canakkale, about 30 km south-west of the Provincial capital of the same name in the country of Turkey[4]. The ruins are separated into 9 levels that correspond to several ruins that were built on top of each other over the centuries of disaster and rebuilding of the city. Before Schleimann started his excavations in 1871 the site had become a mound that rose to a height of 105 feet (32 meters). Schleimann's belief that the Troy of Homer's Iliad was located at the deepest level made him hastily dig through the ruins destroying the upper levels[5]. This earned him the enmity of the archaeological community, but considering that they did not even believe of the existence of Troy to begin with, it can be said that had he not made his discovery then the fact that the ancient city did actually exist would not have been uncovered till much later or maybe not at all.

    The levels of the ruin are divided as follows:

    Troy I 3000–2600 BC (Western Anatolian Early Bronze Age1) Troy II 2600–2250 BC (Western Anatolian Early Bronze Age 2)

    Troy III 2250–2100 BC (Western Anatolian Early Bronze Age 3 [early])

    Troy IV 2100–1950 BC (Western Anatolian Early Bronze Age 3 [middle])

    Troy V: 20th–18th centuries BC (Western Anatolian Early Bronze Age 3 [late])

    Troy VI: 17th–15th centuries BC Troy VIh: late Bronze Age, 14th century BC

    Troy VIIa: ca. 1300–1190 BC, most likely setting for Homer's story

    Troy VIIb1: 12th century BC

    Troy VIIb2: 11th century BC

    Troy VIIb3: until ca. 950 BC

    Troy VIII: around 700 BC

    Troy IX: [Hellenistic]Ilium, 1st century BC

    It is widely believed by experts that Homer's Troy is in Layer VIIa as indicated in the list.







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