Ancient city of Troy contact us troy movie helen of troy trojan war troy videos troy photos about troy troy information

City of TroyThe ruins of the ancient city of Troy are situated in northwest Turkey at the entrance of the Dardanelles and are one of the oldest and most famous archaeological sites. It had been thoroughly studied through two series of excavations - by Heinrich Schliemann and Wilhelm Dörpfeld from 1871-91 and by Carl W. Blegen from the University of Cincinnati from 1932-38. The hill lies at the crossing between the Orient and southwest Europe, and between the Aegean and the Black Sea. Because of its nearly continuous occupation for more than 3000 years, this site is an important point of reference for the chronology of the ancient world from the early Bronze Age through the Roman Empire. Archaeologists call an archaeological site like Troy a tell. A tell is a human settlement built up over many years. When one city collapses, burns down or is destroyed, a new city is built on top the ruins. Eventually what is left behind is a big mound consisting of layers and Troy has nine of these main layers or levels.

City of TroyAncient people, during the times after the end of the Bronze Age, considered the story of the Trojan War as their own history and for that reason they often made pilgrimages to Troy. Alexander the Great considered himself to be descended from Achilles and for this reason he set out to avenge the Greeks against the Persians. He stopped at Troy to honor the heroes, especially Patroclus, and Athena and also went into the treasury of Athena where armor said to have belonged to the Trojan War heroes was being stored. Alexander swapped his own armor with that of Achilles, which he wore into his next battle. He won the battle and promised the Trojans that their goddess Athena would get a new temple. Although another century would go by before the promise was fulfilled. Troy's strategic location at the border between Europe and Asia meant that there was often conflicts. Warring rulers would visit the tombs of heroes and the temple of Athena Ilias to make sacrifices, believing that powerful forces would be on their side if they showed proper respect at Troy. The Persian King Xerxes, on his way to attack the Athenian Greeks in 480 BCE, sacrificed a thousand cattle at Troy’s most sacred site and for a while things did actually go well for Xerxes.

City of TroyThe big new temple was visited by Julius Caesar who considered himself to be descended from Aeneas. This started a trend in which Roman Emperors made these pilgrimages to Troy. Augustus left inscriptions praising his own generosity to Athena. The Emperor Hadrian helped build the small theater, or Odeion, probably as a place to present his own poem about Hector. In 1993 archaeologists discovered a statue of Hadrian in the Odeion. There are literally dozens of works retelling the stories of Troy as well as in the movies. Among them will certainly be Homer's Iliad and Odyssey. The Iliad tells the story of a few dozen days in the next to last year of the Greek siege of Troy. The Odyssey tells the tale of Odysseus' return home after the Trojan War. But wonderful as this ancient literature may be, it does not tell all the stories handed down about Troy. The fact is that tales of the Trojan War along with events that led up to it and the events that followed it were part of a vast oral tradition. It included more elaborate versions in rhythmic poetry performed at festivals or in palace courts. It also probably included all the varieties of storytelling people make use of from dramatizations to dance performances as well as versions for particular audiences or occasions.


 Turkey Holiday Information

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