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Essay on Trojan War

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Did the Trojan War occur?

The existence of a war in Troy is undeniable; however it is not the Trojan war of Homer’s Iliad. It is believed that Homer’s account may have been based on a real event therefore having some truth but due to the mythological nature of the source, the unreliability of oral transmission and the exaggerated romantic theme, the account is not a valid source for historians. Written evidence such as the Hittite records and the different theories presented by archaeologists Schliemann, Dorpfield, Blegen and Korfmann strongly suggest the occurrence of a war in troy and have some links to the Iliad. Despite these links, there is only enough evidence to support the existence of a war in Troy but not explicitly Homer’s
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Heinrich Schliemann was one of the first archaeologists who discovered the site based on geological descriptions in Homer’s Iliad. Through the excavation of the site, Schliemann uncovered nine major layers on the mound and concluded that level 2 was Homer’s Troy. Archaeologists who came later criticised Schliemann’s amateurish excavation methods and concluded that level two was too early to be the Homeric Troy. Despite Schliemann’s destruction and false claims of the site, his discovery of Hissarlik proved that there is some truth to Homer’s account and deserves some credit for setting the foundation for archaeologists such as Blegen, Dorpfield and Korfmann. Schliemann’s discovery of the site proved that there is no doubt Troy existed and that the city’s destruction was definite.

Wilhelm Dorpfield was one of many archaeologists who began excavations and studies at Hissarlik. Level VI was the level that Dorpfield believes is the legendary Troy. He argued that Level VI fitted Homer’s description as being a grand city surrounded by high limestone walls. However, there was no evidence of Greek camps outside the walls of the city that supported Homer’s account of a ten year siege, thus leading us to conclude that Level VIIa must’ve been the Homeric Troy. Layers of charcoal uncovered by Korfmann that dated to roughly 1250 BC, the approximate end of Homer’s Troy is evidence of fire
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