Thursday, April 20, 2023

What we stand to learn about the Trojans

"Not much is known about the actual Trojans," writes Eric H. Cline (who excavated at Troy) on page 33 of his The Trojan War (2013, Oxford U Press).  

Almost no writing has been found on Hisarlik.  Romans leveled the hill when they built their city, wiping out a great deal of the bronze age remains.  Schliemann also destroyed parts of the bronze age cities.  

Outside the enclosure walls, there is another city, known as the lower city.  This area contains plenty of bronze age remains, but they have Greek and Roman constructions on top of them.  It is not easy to get to the bronze age material because lots of iron age material has to be excavated and processed first.  

Professor C. Brian Rose (who excavated at Troy) discusses this problem starting at 6:26 in the following film.  

Dr. Rose is saying that it will take "decades" to dig up a significant amount of bronze age remains in the lower town on Hisarlik because they lie under Greek and Roman era houses, and those houses "are filled with pottery", all of which must be processed. 

Conclusion: significantly more knowledge of the Trojans will not come from the outer district on the hillside any time soon.  

However, there is a huge, unnatural mound in the plain that is unexplored.  A stratigraphy study found artifacts in the plain.  There are surely more.  According to Zangger, bricks and building remains were found in the drill cores.  

No archive has been found at Troy.  I figure that if the Hittite kings were writing letters to the kings of Wilusa, and these kings lived at Hisarlik, then at one time there was an archive on Hisarlik.  If the archive survived underground into the Greek era, then Romans probably destroyed it when they leveled the hilltop and removed most of the bronze age city.  

I have been working with the thought that the city in the plain may have been destroyed in the same earthquake that destroyed Troy VI.  Although the city on Hisarlik was rebuilt, the city in the plain may have been lost for good at that point, perhaps due to flooding and/or the loss of important flood control measures.  Of course, there is evidence of earthquake damage on Hisarlik in other layers as well.  The city in the plain may have been lost long before Troy VI.  

A lot of trade took place at Troy, and writing is associated with trade.  So, there is hope of finding writing in the mound, even if it is not a royal archive.  Furthermore, if it was lost due to natural causes, the city in the plain may not have been looted.  Instead, plenty of loot may remain in the mound.  

My thesis is that there probably is a great deal to learn about the Trojans, but it will not be learned on Hisarlik.  It will be learned in the plain.  

No comments:

Post a Comment

On Atlantis, Graham Hancock and Ignatius Donnelly

Perhaps the most pernicious habit of Atlantis interpreters is the one pointed out by Dr Miano on Youtube: The typical Atlantis interpreter ...