THE BRONZE AGE The Bronze Age began in 2800 and lasted till 1050BC. This was almost 2000 years ago. This time period started to replace the use of stone and iron with bronze. The development of trading began with the Aegean and Mediterranean regions. Crete was responsible for major development during the Bronze Age. Their society was based on structures of extravagant places. The Minoans for the next 500 years had had the power in the Aegean but by 1450BC they were over run by the Mycenaean’s which was an important place of the time. They ruled for 500 more years. THE TROJAN LEGENDS
Homer is the first and greatest writer of all Greek literary form known as the Epic. People referred to his works for information and about this specific form. Homer’s name will always be linked with the Trojan War because Homer wrote about the conflict between the Trojans and the return vogues of the Greek leaders. He is known for telling us the whole story of the Trojan War but that’s not true. There are plenty of other writers of what’s called the epic cycle who also wrote about the Trojan War which is not noted in Homer’s writing. The epic cycle is a series of stories from ancient Greece.
The epic cycle focuses on the Trojan War. Besides the illade and the odyssey, the Trojan War stories include * Kypria * Aithiopus * Little illiad * The sack of illion * The return of reigns Heros; and * Telegony All the stories combined, contribute to the story of the Trojan War. DISCOVERY OF TROY There have been many people that have had a part in the discovery of the city of Troy. Some include, Frank Calvert, Heinrich Schliemann, William Dorpfield, Carl Belgen and Manfred Korfman. Frank Calvert was a British archeologist. He started his work in the town of Hissarlik in Turkey.
He was positive the city of Troy was located beneath the city. Seven yeas later after Frank Calvert’s arrival, the German archeologist, Heinrich Schliemann commenced his own excavation. He was a wealthy man and was able to organize his own digs. He first started at the city of Hissarlik. This was a long and stressful process. He hired 160 workers. They removed over 325,000 cubic yards of soil. For all this excavation there were some rewards. Heinrich found several cities on top of each other, but one of them had evidence of burning and destruction.
He came to the conclusion that he did find the Troy of Homer’s stories. However, Heinrich also managed to destroy some city remains in the process. Heinrich also had his sets on the Treasure of Prim. This was a room which consisted of all sorts of jewellery. Some included earrings, bracelets, rings and much more. It was estimated that there was up to 8,700 pieces of treasure. It can be said that although Heinrich destroyed many findings, he also uncovered a large part of the city of Troy. William Dorpfield was next on the scene. He ended up discovering 2 more cities.
He also found large houses, defensive walls and watch towers. Carl Belgan was able to dig in areas where it had been untouched by previous excavators. He ended up discovering that Troy VI was destroyed by earthquakes and that the houses were poorly built. He also learnt that the city was burnt after 30 years of inhabitance. Manfred Korfman was the most recent person to conduct his excavation of the area. This was in 1988. He too, managed to excavate areas that had been untouched. Heinrich started to excavate at Mycenae as well. This was according to him, the home of Agamemnon the leader of the Greeks.
Homer had described this city as the ‘rich in gold’. He uncovered a circle of shaft graves. This was found with 15 skeletons covered in gold. Heinrich thought that there were kings and at the bottom was a gold mask on a skeleton which was thought to be Agamemnon’s. However evidence proved this was not the case. The Linear 13 tablets came about by accident. The inscriptions on them were preserved due to natural disasters. They have been dated to the Mycenaean period of 1600-1200BC. The inscription describes such things like economy – in particular wheat and barley.
The tablets of Pylos however, mention things such as ‘men watching the coastline’, as well as reference to military equipment and chariots. Some tablets mentioned officials. These gave us clues regarding the Trojan War. According to Homer’s Iliad, the Trojan War began because of Helen’s abduction. The llliad mentions a heroic age and the need for the army to defend enemies. This was an age where the men fought and the women married to have more babies. After the destruction of Troy, the remaining women and children were sold into slavery and the men killed.
However, if you were from a powerful family, there were political, military and economical advantages. The Hittites were a fierce civilization. Their time period was in the late Bronze Age, this means they existed in the same time period as the Mycenaean’s. Their scripture were also preserved on clay tablets, they were called cuneiform. HELEN OF TROY Helen of Troy maybe the most famous Greek woman in history. It was her abduction by the Trojan, Paris that began the war of Troy. Helen was a demi-god. A female hero worshiped at shrines in the regions of the Mediterranean.
Helen is sometimes not considered human by some scholars. She is described as a mortal with a natural-goddess face. FUNCTION OF MYTH Like most other mythological traditions, Greek myths served several purposes. First, Greek myths explained the world. Second, they acted as a means of exploration. Third, they provided authority and legitimacy. Finally, they provided entertainment. Greek myths lent structure and order to the world and explained how the current state of things had come about. Myths helped worshipers make sense of a religious practice by telling how the practice originated. Myths were used through difficult territory, examining contradictions and ambiguities. For instance, Homer’s Iliad explores the consequences during the Trojan War of the Greek leader Agamemnon’s decision to deprive one of the warrior’s prizes of a female slave. This warrior feels that Agamemnon has assailed his honor but wonders how far he should go in getting back at him. One of this poem’s themes explores the limits of this. TROJAN WAR – FACT OR FICTION Because of all the past discoveries, I believe it is now more likely than not that there were several armed conflicts in and around Troy at the end of the Late Bronze Age.
We do not know whether all or some of these conflicts were collected in later memory into the “Trojan War” or whether there was an especially memorable, single “Trojan War. ” Whatever the case, everything currently points that Homer should be taken seriously, that his story of a military conflict between Greeks and the people of Troy is based on a memory of historical events – whatever these may have been. In conclusion, if someone came up to me and asked if the Trojan War DID happen, my response, after studying the material would be: why not?