The Historic Accuracy of Homer’s Iliad Essay

The Historic Accuracy of Homer’s Iliad Essay

Length: 2935 words (8.4 double-spaced pages)

Rating: Powerful Essays

Open Document

Essay Preview

Homer’s Iliad has been a European myth for many millennia , the long poetic narrative written in the 8th century B.C. recounts a fearsome war fought over a beautiful woman. The reliability of Homers Iliad as a true historical document has been challenged for hundreds of years and only through archaeological studies can the truth be deciphered. The Iliad was written five centuries after the war, where the stories had been passed down through the oral tradition, therefore the type of society reflected within the poems resemble much more the time of Homer . The fact and fiction of the Iliad has been uncovered through archaeology. Archaeologist found a site in which they thought to have been ‘Troy’ destroyed by the powerful country of Mycenae in the late Bronze Age. They found large amount of material culture from where they could reconstruct the society, this included pottery, engravings, murals and clay tablets. A reason for the Trojan War has always inspired great controversy. The Trojan War according to Homer was fought over the abduction of a beautiful women but this theory appears improbable. Other causes which could have sparked a war is Troy’s geographical positioning. This made it extremely opulent, where other countries of the Aegean would trade there goods and use its harbour. The Mycenaean’s being an extremely imperial, violent and militaristic country would have seen Troy as a great opportunity to gain territory and wealth, on this motive the war took place.
The Iliad alone would never have been a reliable source without archaeological evidence to verify the actuality of a Trojan war. Therefore archaeologists have been working on the site known as hissarlik since the 1800’s to uncover truths about the myth. Frank Calv...


... middle of paper ...


...iece together circumstantial evidence relating to the Iliad, such as the layers of Troy, the citadel of Mycenae and the shaft graves revealing numerous clues into what the Mycenaean civilisation was like. Mycenaean pottery found in Troy gives evidence to the importance of late Bronze Age trade and the wealth, inevitably leading to the Achaeans sacking Troy. The Hittite archives give outstanding evidence to this proving that the Mycenaean’s really did fight at Troy, although instead of it being a ten year time span, it was over hundreds. Therefore Homers legend seems to have been based on a real conflict between two super powers of the late Bronze Age. These conflicts were distilled into a tradition of a single war lasting around 10 years . It seemed the war occurred because Troy was a wealthy city with a strategic location and both super powers wanted to control it.

Need Writing Help?

Get feedback on grammar, clarity, concision and logic instantly.

Check your paper »

Essay about Honor as the Theme in Homer’s The Iliad

- There are different forms and examples of exemplary and classic literature which have been deemed as significant works that are highly esteemed worldwide. These examples of literature would awe the world with how much literary skill they entailed when they were composed and written: attention to details as to formation of characters, the most crafty of plots, the most eloquent speeches and lines, the most astounding of twists of scenes, and most of all, the most universal and meaningful of themes....   [tags: Honor, Homer, Iliad]

Powerful Essays
2018 words (5.8 pages)

The Gods in Homer's The Iliad and The Odyssey Essay

- The Gods in Homer's The Iliad and The Odyssey The stories told in the Iliad and Odyssey are based on stories handed down over several generations, for they preserve (as we have seen) memories of an already quiet far distant past. The two pomes show clear connection in their language and style, in the manner in which their incidents presented, and in the combination of agreement with level, which distinguish their creation. The work was written by one author but gave two diverse views on the nature of the Olympian Gods, their relationship to humankind, and the general lot of mortals throughout their all too brief lives....   [tags: Homer The Iliad The Odyssey]

Powerful Essays
1407 words (4 pages)

Essay on Hector as the True Hero of Homer’s Iliad

- Hector is the True Hero of Iliad        In today's society, a man's mind is his most important tool. In the past, however, a man's courage and strength is all that he had to keep him alive. In Homer's Iliad, courage is valued over honesty and even faithfulness to one's wife. If a hero is the most courageous man in the bunch, then Hector is more heroic than Achilles and King of the Myrmidons. Hector is the true hero of Homer's Iliad. Although Achilles and Hector are both leaders of men, Hector leads with a mature sense that gives his men reason to respect him....   [tags: Homer’s Iliad Essays]

Powerful Essays
2380 words (6.8 pages)

Essay about The Mysterious Homer, Author of The Odyssey and The Iliad

- The Mysterious Homer, Author of The Odyssey and The Iliad  A sketchy figure by the name of Homer is given credit for the two great epic poems of ancient Greece. The Odyssey and The Iliad influenced Greek culture, education, and morality. Little is known about Homer and many scholars question whether he existed at all. (Encarta) Some say two different unknown authors wrote the two poems. (Britannica) Others say that many oral poets were responsible for the finished products. (Britannica) In this report I will discuss the theories that support the existence of an author named Homer....   [tags: Homer]

Powerful Essays
675 words (1.9 pages)

The Role Of Zeus in Homer's Iliad Essay examples

- The Role Of Zeus in Homer's Iliad In the era of Homer, divine intervention was thought to be typical, and one of his foremost works, The Iliad, reflects this. Nearly all of the Greek gods are involved in the outcome of the Trojan War, which happens to be the background story of this epic poem. The gods are used by Homer to add twists on an otherwise standard plot of war. I shall concentrate on Zeus, however, and reflect on his actions and their outcomes on the Trojan War, and more importantly, the story of The Iliad....   [tags: Iliad essays]

Free Essays
1952 words (5.6 pages)

Essay on The Lack of Credibility in Homer's Iliad

-     Much of the criticism of Homer's Iliad is focused on the events of the story: the significance of the images, symbols, the role of the Greek Gods, the characters of the story. It seems that many of the critics have forgotten the very important role of Homer as the narrator of the events. His narration undermines the story. He is the medium through which the story is told.  Perhaps the ambiguity of not knowing exactly who Homer is, and the fact that it was an oral story long before it was written in the form it is today, is the cause of oversight of the narrative qualities of Homer's Iliad by many critics....   [tags: Iliad essays]

Powerful Essays
1392 words (4 pages)

The Character Achilles in Homer's The Iliad Essay

- The Character Achilles in Homer's The Iliad "The first book of The Iliad, appropriately titled the "Rage of Achilles," sets the scene for the remainder of the epic" (selu.edu/Academics/Depts/WritingCenter/The_Growth_of_Achilles.htm). "This rage is invoked by pride, a theme of pivotal importance for the Greeks. Pride is the source of the conflict between Achilles and Agamemnon in Book 1. The incident that provoked Achilles rage took place in the tenth and final year of the Achaean attack on Troy....   [tags: Iliad essays]

Powerful Essays
979 words (2.8 pages)

Homer's Iliad is an Anthropocentric Epic Essay

-       "So the immortals spun our lives that we, wretched men / live on to bear such torments...." (The Iliad bk.24, ln.613-614)      This pessimistic explanation of the human condition was a tradition observed and preserved by the ancient Greeks through the composition of Homer's Iliad. This one statement, made by the godlike Achilles to King Priam in the last chapter of the work, provides the reader a contextual summary of what the Greeks believed was their role in the cosmos. Homer's Iliad, among many other themes contained in the poem, “is an anthropocentric epic exposing the ancient Greek's views about man and his relationships”(Clarke 129)....   [tags: Iliad essays]

Powerful Essays
1545 words (4.4 pages)

Essay about Achilles' Honor in Homer's Iliad

- Achilles' Honor in Homer's Iliad   The Greeks placed great importance on personal honor. Why is this. Is it because to them man I nothing without honor. Or is it that the honor is more important than the man. "Honor to the Greeks is something that is won by a man's prowess, his ability to fight and be victorious on the battle field"(Schein 62). This is just one example of how honor is obtained. A second method of gaining honor is to be a great orator, one must posses the ability to speak in the assembly and express his ideas eloquently, and persuasively to the gathered body....   [tags: Iliad essays]

Powerful Essays
1308 words (3.7 pages)

Femininity in Homer’s Iliad Essay

- Femininity in Homer’s Iliad In Homer’s Iliad, predominant feminine presence inspires the events of the poem and the destinies of the men involved. This feminine presence is not a product of the actions and decisions of the women in the poem, but rather a conceptual, creative feminine force without which the poem and even human life would not exist. Homer personifies this presence in nature and maintains it through the voice of the Muse, his inspiration. There is a deeper essence of a feminine presence in the poem, however, which lies in the characteristics of life itself....   [tags: Iliad essays]

Powerful Essays
1888 words (5.4 pages)