In 1868, the German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann met Frank Calvert, who convinced Schliemann that Troy was a real city at what is now Hissarlik in Turkey. On the basis of excavations conducted by Schliemann and others, this claim is now accepted by most scholars.

Many scholars believe that there is a historical core to the tale, though this may simply mean that the Homeric stories are a fusion of various tales of sieges and expeditions by Mycenaean Greeks during the Bronze Age. Those who believe that the stories of the Trojan War are derived from a specific historical conflict usually date it to the 12th or 11th century BC, often preferring the dates given by Eratosthenes, 1194–1184 BC, which roughly corresponds with archaeological evidence of a catastrophic burning of Troy VII, and the Late Bronze Age collapse.

The city of Troy / Image: Christoph Haussner Munich

The city of the archaeological layer known as Troy VIIa and appears to have been destroyed by a war, dated on the basis of pottery styles from the mid- to late-13th century BC, lasted for about a century, with a destruction layer at c. 1190 BC. It is the most frequently cited candidate for the Troy of Homer and is believed to correspond to Wilusa, known from Hittite sources dating to roughly 1300–1250 BC.

In Greek mythology was waged against the city of Troy by the Achaeans after Paris of Troy took Helen from her husband Menelaus, king of Sparta. The war is one of the most important events in Greek mythology and has been narrated through many works of Greek literature, most notably Homer’s Iliad.

Walls of Troy / Image: Wikipedia
The ruins of Troy / Image: mattandlisatravel
A stone block with Greek writing sits at the ruins of Troy / Image: Alex Khripunov Shutterstock

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Websites: kulturportali.gov.tr



 

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