The legendary ruins of Troy.
To the South of the Dardanelles, in a small space between the alluvial plain, where the waters of Kuchuk-Menderes flow, and the spurs of the hills of Khizarlyk, lie the ruins of this unique city, about which there are many myths and legends. As a result of excavations undertaken since the middle of the XIX century, traces of an ancient city have been found, which allows us to recreate the image, although incomplete, of the legendary city of Ilium, which was immortalized in his poem by the great Homer.
The first search attempts were made in 1870 by the German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann. He was convinced of the existence of a city near Khizarlik, contrary to the popular belief at that time that Troy was nothing but a legend sung by Homer. After Schliemann’s death, the work was continued by Wilhelm Dorpfeld and closed in 1894. Subsequent excavations conducted by Karl V. Blegen confirmed the presence of at least nine levels of urbanization (Troy I-IX). The first cultural layers can be attributed to 3000 BC. These included fortification of the structure. The period called Troy I lasted approximately five centuries and ended in a fire. Troy II, a more extensive and more developed period than the previous one, was also destroyed by a severe fire. Subsequent cultural strata Dating back to the bronze age did not yield much discovery, at least not until the period of Troy VI, which is the apogee in the history of this troubled city. In 1300 BC, a strong earthquake devastated the entire area. The reconstruction that followed soon gave birth to a new period called Troy VIIa, which, according to scientists, is referred to in the Iliad. According to tradition, 1184 BC is considered the year of the fall of classical Troy. Excavations can confirm the end of this period around 1200 BC, followed by a period called Troy VIIb (1200-1100 BC). the City, for many years in oblivion, reveals a new cultural layer by 700 BC. on the site of fortifications of the bronze age, a village arose. The period of Troy IX refers to Hellenism and the power of the Roman Empire. Then comes an era of decline, slow but steady, which led to the disappearance of the city in the fifth century ad. Since then, the trace of ancient Troy was lost, and this forgotten city continued to live only on the pages of Homer’s poem, until the sensational discoveries of Schliemann, which became a major milestone in the history of modern archaeology, appeared.
The road marked with signs first leads to the city rampart of Troy VI (1900-1300 BC). It is curved and dissected by the remains of walls. The Foundation wall of the Roman period (to the right of the road), exposed to the ground, allows you to track changes in construction equipment. Take the steps of the modern staircase, which has replaced the sloping entrance, and go up the hill past the residential buildings of Troy VI and VII. (The houses themselves, unfortunately, can not be viewed.). On a hill with a beautiful view of the surrounding area, you can see an interesting well of the Roman period. The Acropolis of Troy VI served both to protect the hill and to guard the so-called cistern (a reservoir with a supply of water; currently there is no access to it). The temple of Athena was built under the Emperor Augustus on the site of a Hellenic sanctuary. On the territory of the courtyard, there are minor remains of foundations made of hewn stone. The temple itself was destroyed to the ground. Only here and there are scattered drums of columns with flutes, remnants of Doric ceilings and fragments of a marble coffered ceiling. Then the road leads to the most ancient cultural layer of Troy, which is now the main focus of archaeologists. The fire discovered by recent excavations dates back to about 3700 BC.
The most impressive, of course, is the inclined entrance of Troy II (2500-2150 BC), 21 m long and 5.5 m wide. It crossed the mud walls of the second city. 20 meters to the North, Schliemann, according to his assumption, found the “Treasury of Priam”. A large structure to the East of the entrance, built during the period of Troy VI, served as a warehouse. The sanctuary on the other side of the ring of old city walls with several altars and altars in its present form arose in the Hellenic period and was expanded under the Romans. Two more Roman buildings adjacent from the West to the foot of the hill, the Odeon and bolivari (place of meetings). Both were built in the form of an amphitheater with rows of benches rising from the Central arena (access is currently closed). The southern city gate and the magnificent columned hall with dimensions in the plan of 20 x 12 m, belonging to Troy VI, can only be admired from afar today. The Museum that completes the tour contains only modest finds, mainly pottery.