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800-Year-Old Skeleton Discovered in Troy Shows Signs of Death from a Fatal Infection

800-Year-Old Skeleton Discovered in Troy Shows Signs of Death from a Fatal Infection

Eight hundred years ago, in a hardscrabble farming community on the outskirts of what was once one of the fabled cities of the ancient world, Troy, a 30-year-old woman was laid to rest in a stone-lined grave.

Like others in the Byzantine era graveyard, the woman's bones bore the unmistakable signs of a hard agrarian existence. But something else caught the attention of Henrike Kiesewetter, an archaeologist affiliated with Project Troia at Tüebingen University, as she curated the skeleton: two calcified nodules, each the size of a strawberry, nestled at the base of the chest, just below the ribs.

"The preliminary thought was that these were tubercles arising from tuberculosis," says Caitlin Pepperell, a University of Wisconsin-Madison expert on the evolution of pathogens and a professor of medicine and medical microbiology. A bacterial infection, tuberculosis is characterized, often, by the growth of calcified nodules in the lungs or other tissues. DNA, elemental and microscopic analysis of the round white stones, however, ruled out tuberculosis as well as urinary or kidney stones as possibilities.

Caitlin Pepperell. ( University of Wisconsin )

Cracking open the nodules, researchers discovered extraordinarily well preserved microfossils, mineralized 'ghost cells,' that closely resembled bacteria from the genus Staphylococcus, a family that includes the highly pathogenic species S. aureus.

A cross section (measured in centimeters) of a calcified nodule found in a skeleton dating to Byzantine Troy, sometime around the 13th century. Cracking open the nodule, researchers discovered extraordinarily well preserved microfossils — mineralized ‘ghost cells’ — that closely resembled bacteria from the genus Staphylococcus, a family that includes many pathogenic species. The ghost cells yielded enough DNA for researchers to fully reconstruct their genomes. PHOTO: PATHOLOGIE NORDHESSEN

The nodules and the DNA locked inside their concentric layers of calcium were sent to McMaster University's Hendrik Poinar, an expert in ancient DNA whose lab is known for its prowess in extracting and reconstructing genetic material from ancient archaeological and paleontological remains.

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"Amazingly, these samples yielded enough DNA to fully reconstruct the genomes of two species of bacteria, Staphylococcus saprophyticus and Gardnerella vaginalis, which infected the woman and likely led to her death," says Poinar.

SEM micrograph of S. aureus colonies.

Writing in the journal eLife, a team led by Pepperell and Poinar provides a molecular portrait of the fatal infection. The work lends insight into the everyday hazards of life in the late Byzantine Empire, sometime around the early 13th century, as well as the evolution of Staphylococcus saprophyticus, a common bacterial pathogen.

"Calcification made little tiny suitcases of DNA and transported it across an 800-year timespan," says Pepperell of the nodules that formed while the woman was still alive, encasing the bacterial pathogens in calcium and preserving their genetic material. "In this case, the amount and integrity of the ancient DNA was extraordinary. One typically gets less than 1 percent of the target organism."

The nodules, says Pepperell, also contained human DNA of the woman and what looks to be her male fetus, but between 31 and 58 percent of the preserved DNA came from the bacteria responsible for the woman's infection. "There was something really interesting about the way this material was preserved," says Pepperell. "The quality of the (genetic) data is unparalleled."

The physical evidence, she says, suggests the cause of the woman's death, which occurred in the waning decades of the Byzantine Empire, was chorioamnionitis, a bacterial infection of the placenta, amniotic fluid and membranes surrounding the fetus. In addition to the woman's DNA, and that of the bacteria causing her infection, researchers identified ancient Y chromosome DNA, likely that of a male fetus. "Quite a few women died from complications during pregnancy and childbirth," notes Kiesewetter, a co-author of the eLife report.

High magnification micrograph chorioamnionitis. ( CC BY-SA 3.0 )

Finding a case of maternal sepsis in the fossil record, notes Poinar, is unique: "There are no records for this anywhere," he says. "We have almost no evidence from the archeological record of what maternal health and death was like until now."

The ability to extract DNA from ancient materials and, in this case, reconstruct the genomes of microorganisms responsible for a fatal infection, help fill in the picture of rural daily life eight centuries ago.

The strain of Staphylococcus saprophyticus, explains Pepperell, is different than the kind that typically infects humans today, and is more closely aligned with strains found in livestock. "The Troy isolate is in this really interesting position between the cow and human-associated staph. It looks like the bug that caused her disease was in a different niche than what we see associated with human infections today."

The genetic blueprint for the Staphylococcus saprophyticus bacterium, she notes, adds to "a pretty short list of ancient bacteria -- cholera, tuberculosis, leprosy, plague -- for which we have DNA."

Some strains of Staphylococcus bacteria, such as Staphylococcus aureus, are commonly found on human skin where they typically pose no health risk. But the bacterium can cause serious and even fatal infection if it penetrates deeper into the body.

Staphylococcus saprophyticus, on the other hand, can be acquired from the environment. "The strain from Troy belongs to a lineage that is not commonly associated with human disease in the modern world," Pepperell explains, noting that the historical record indicates Byzantine peasants typically lived with their livestock. "We speculate that human infections in the ancient world were acquired from a pool of bacteria that moved readily between humans, livestock and the environment."

Unknown variety of Staphylococcus. ( CC BY-SA 3.0 )

"Results from the osteological analyses of the Late Byzantine burials from Troy fit well to a picture of a rural population," says Kiesewetter of the burials amid the ruins of the city best known as the setting of the Trojan War as told in Homer's epic poem the Iliad. Degeneration of the spine and joints, found in more than half of the skeletons from the time, are believed to portray a life of hard labor in the fields.

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"People were struggling with physical strains and infectious diseases and only a few lived beyond the age of 50," explains Kiesewetter. "Many newborns did not survive infancy and almost all skeletons of children show signs of malnutrition and infection." Rampant tooth decay in the population, she adds, may have been the result of a rural diet rich in fruit such as figs and dates.

The skeleton of a woman who died 800 years ago on the outskirts of the ancient city of Troy in modern Turkey. Credit: Gebhard Bieg

The preservation of the bacterial DNA, like the infection itself, was likely an artifact of the woman's pregnancy, Pepperell notes. "The placenta is very prone to calcification as there is a lot of movement of calcium to the fetus. The biomineralization process can occur very quickly."


2,000-year-old skeleton identified as senior Roman soldier on Vesuvius rescue mission

ROME — A 2,000-year-old skeleton belonged to a senior Roman soldier who was likely sent on a rescue mission to the doomed towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum as Mount Vesuvius erupted, scientists have discovered.

Initially thought to be that of a regular solider, the skeleton was among 300 found at Herculaneum in the 1980s. But now researchers have concluded that it belonged to a high-ranking officer with a Roman fleet sent on a rescue mission to evacuate panic-stricken inhabitants running for their lives.

Both Pompeii and Herculaneum, popular Roman seaside resorts south of modern-day Naples, were obliterated by the violent eruption in A.D. 79, covering people and houses in lava, mud and ash, preserving them for future archaeologists to discover.

“When I arrived at Herculaneum in 2017 I realized that a lot of research went into the skeletons, but nobody thought of analyzing the tools found next to it,” Francesco Sirano, director of the archaeological site at Herculaneum, told NBC News. “So my team and I took a closer look, and what we found was astonishing.”

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When the skeleton was discovered 30 years ago, several clues set it apart from the hundreds of others unearthed by archaeologists. It still had a leather belt around its waist, and by its side there were a sword with an ivory hilt, a decorated dagger and a bagful of coins. Still, the skeleton was put on permanent exhibition and identified as a generic soldier.


Contents

The etymology of Helen's name continues to be a problem for scholars. Georg Curtius related Helen ( Ἑλένη ) to the moon (Selene Σελήνη ). Émile Boisacq considered Ἑλένη to derive from the well-known noun ἑλένη meaning "torch". [8] It has also been suggested that the λ of Ἑλένη arose from an original ν, and thus the etymology of the name would be connected with the root of Venus. Linda Lee Clader, however, says that none of the above suggestions offers much satisfaction. [9] [c]

More recently, Otto Skutsch has advanced the theory that the name Helen might have two separate etymologies, which belong to different mythological figures respectively, namely *Sṷelenā (related to Sanskrit svaraṇā "the shining one") and *Selenā, the first a Spartan goddess, connected to one or the other natural light phenomenon (especially St. Elmo's fire) and sister of the Dioscuri, the other a vegetation goddess worshiped in Therapne as Ἑλένα Δενδρῖτις ("Helena of the Trees"). [14]

Others have connected the name's etymology to a hypothetical Proto-Indo-European sun goddess, noting the name's connection to the word for "sun" in various Indo-European cultures. [15] [16] [17] In particular, her marriage myth may be connected to a broader Indo-European "marriage drama" of the sun goddess, and she is related to the divine twins, just as many of these goddesses are. [18] Martin L. West has thus proposed that Helena ("mistress of sunlight") may be constructed on the PIE suffix -nā ("mistress of"), connoting a deity controlling a natural element. [19]

None of the etymological sources appear to support the existence, save as a coincidence only, of a connection between the name of Helen and the name by which the classical Greeks commonly described themselves, namely Hellenes, after Hellen ( / ˈ h ɛ l ɪ n / Greek: Ἕλλην ) the mythological progenitor of the Greeks.

The origins of Helen's myth date back to the Mycenaean age. [20] Her name first appears in the poems of Homer but scholars assume that such myths derive from earlier Mycenaean Greek sources. Her mythological birthplace was Sparta of the Age of Heroes, which features prominently in the canon of Greek myth: in later ancient Greek memory, the Mycenaean Bronze Age became the age of the Greek heroes. The kings, queens, and heroes of the Trojan Cycle are often related to the gods, since divine origins gave stature to the Greeks' heroic ancestors. The fall of Troy came to represent a fall from an illustrious heroic age, remembered for centuries in oral tradition before being written down. [21] Recent archaeological excavations in Greece suggest that modern-day Laconia was a distinct territory in the Late Bronze Age, while the poets narrate that it was a rich kingdom. Archaeologists have unsuccessfully looked for a Mycenaean palatial complex buried beneath present-day Sparta. [22] Modern findings suggest the area around Menelaion in the southern part of the Eurotas valley seems to have been the center of Mycenaean Laconia. [23]

Birth Edit

In most sources, including the Iliad and the Odyssey, Helen is the daughter of Zeus and of Leda, the wife of the Spartan king Tyndareus. [24] Euripides' play Helen, written in the late 5th century BC, is the earliest source to report the most familiar account of Helen's birth: that, although her putative father was Tyndareus, she was actually Zeus' daughter. In the form of a swan, the king of gods was chased by an eagle, and sought refuge with Leda. The swan gained her affection, and the two mated. Leda then produced an egg, from which Helen emerged. [25] The First Vatican Mythographer introduces the notion that two eggs came from the union: one containing Castor and Pollux one with Helen and Clytemnestra. Nevertheless, the same author earlier states that Helen, Castor and Pollux were produced from a single egg. [26] Fabius Planciades Fulgentius also states that Helen, Castor and Pollux are born from the same egg. [27] Pseudo-Apollodorus states that Leda had intercourse with both Zeus and Tyndareus the night she conceived Helen. [28]

On the other hand, in the Cypria, part of the Epic Cycle, Helen was the daughter of Zeus and the goddess Nemesis. [29] The date of the Cypria is uncertain, but it is generally thought to preserve traditions that date back to at least the 7th century BC. In the Cypria, Nemesis did not wish to mate with Zeus. She therefore changed shape into various animals as she attempted to flee Zeus, finally becoming a goose. Zeus also transformed himself into a goose and raped Nemesis, who produced an egg from which Helen was born. [30] Presumably, in the Cypria, this egg was somehow transferred to Leda. [31] Later sources state either that it was brought to Leda by a shepherd who discovered it in a grove in Attica, or that it was dropped into her lap by Hermes. [32]

Asclepiades of Tragilos and Pseudo-Eratosthenes related a similar story, except that Zeus and Nemesis became swans instead of geese. [33] Timothy Gantz has suggested that the tradition that Zeus came to Leda in the form of a swan derives from the version in which Zeus and Nemesis transformed into birds. [34]

Pausanias states that in the middle of the 2nd century AD, the remains of an egg-shell, tied up in ribbons, were still suspended from the roof of a temple on the Spartan acropolis. People believed that this was "the famous egg that legend says Leda brought forth". Pausanias traveled to Sparta to visit the sanctuary, dedicated to Hilaeira and Phoebe, in order to see the relic for himself. [35]

Pausanias also says that there was a local tradition that Helen's brothers, "the Dioscuri" (i.e. Castor and Pollux), were born on the island of Pefnos, adding that the Spartan poet Alcman also said this, [36] while the poet Lycophron's use of the adjective "Pephnaian" (Πεφναίας) in association with Helen, suggests that Lycophron may have known a tradition which held that Helen was also born on the island. [37]

Youthful abduction by Theseus Edit

Two Athenians, Theseus and Pirithous, thought that since they were sons of gods, they should have divine wives they thus pledged to help each other abduct two daughters of Zeus. Theseus chose Helen, and Pirithous vowed to marry Persephone, the wife of Hades. Theseus took Helen and left her with his mother Aethra or his associate Aphidnus at Aphidnae or Athens. Theseus and Pirithous then traveled to the underworld, the domain of Hades, to kidnap Persephone. Hades pretended to offer them hospitality and set a feast, but, as soon as the pair sat down, snakes coiled around their feet and held them there. Helen's abduction caused an invasion of Athens by Castor and Pollux, who captured Aethra in revenge, and returned their sister to Sparta. [38] In Goethe's Faust, Centaur Chiron is said to have aided the Dioscuri brothers in returning Helen home.

In most accounts of this event, Helen was quite young Hellanicus of Lesbos said she was seven years old and Diodorus makes her ten years old. [39] On the other hand, Stesichorus said that Iphigenia was the daughter of Theseus and Helen, which obviously implies that Helen was of childbearing age. [40] In most sources, Iphigenia is the daughter of Agamemnon and Clytemnestra, but Duris of Samos and other writers followed Stesichorus' account. [41]

Ovid's Heroides give us an idea of how ancient and, in particular, Roman authors imagined Helen in her youth: she is presented as a young princess wrestling naked in the palaestra, alluding to a part of girls' physical education in classical (not Mycenaean) Sparta. Sextus Propertius imagines Helen as a girl who practices arms and hunts with her brothers: [42]

[. ] or like Helen, on the sands of Eurotas, between Castor and Pollux, one to be victor in boxing, the other with horses: with naked breasts she carried weapons, they say, and did not blush with her divine brothers there.

Suitors Edit

When it was time for Helen to marry, many kings and princes from around the world came to seek her hand, bringing rich gifts with them or sent emissaries to do so on their behalf. During the contest, Castor and Pollux had a prominent role in dealing with the suitors, although the final decision was in the hands of Tyndareus. [44] Menelaus, her future husband, did not attend but sent his brother, Agamemnon, to represent him.

Oath of Tyndareus Edit

Tyndareus was afraid to select a husband for his daughter, or send any of the suitors away, for fear of offending them and giving grounds for a quarrel. Odysseus was one of the suitors, but had brought no gifts because he believed he had little chance to win the contest. He thus promised to solve the problem, if Tyndareus in turn would support him in his courting of Penelope, the daughter of Icarius. Tyndareus readily agreed, and Odysseus proposed that, before the decision was made, all the suitors should swear a most solemn oath to defend the chosen husband against whoever should quarrel with him. After the suitors had sworn not to retaliate, Menelaus was chosen to be Helen's husband. As a sign of the importance of the pact, Tyndareus sacrificed a horse. [45] Helen and Menelaus became rulers of Sparta, after Tyndareus and Leda abdicated. Menelaus and Helen rule in Sparta for at least ten years they have a daughter, Hermione, and (according to some myths) three sons: Aethiolas, Maraphius, and Pleisthenes.

The marriage of Helen and Menelaus marks the beginning of the end of the age of heroes. Concluding the catalog of Helen's suitors, Hesiod reports Zeus' plan to obliterate the race of men and the heroes in particular. The Trojan War, caused by Helen's elopement with Paris, is going to be his means to this end. [46]

Seduction or kidnapping by Paris Edit

Paris, a Trojan prince, came to Sparta to claim Helen, in the guise of a supposed diplomatic mission. Before this journey, Paris had been appointed by Zeus to judge the most beautiful goddess Hera, Athena, or Aphrodite. In order to earn his favour, Aphrodite promised Paris the most beautiful woman in the world. Swayed by Aphrodite's offer, Paris chose her as the most beautiful of the goddesses, earning the wrath of Athena and Hera.

Although Helen is sometimes depicted as being raped by Paris, Ancient Greek sources are often elliptical and contradictory. Herodotus states that Helen was abducted, but the Cypria simply mentions that after giving Helen gifts, "Aphrodite brings the Spartan queen together with the Prince of Troy." [47] Sappho argues that Helen willingly left behind Menelaus and their nine-year-old daughter, Hermione, to be with Paris:

Some say a host of horsemen, others of infantry and others
of ships, is the most beautiful thing on the dark earth
but I say, it is what you love
Full easy it is to make this understood of one and all: for
she that far surpassed all mortals in beauty, Helen her
most noble husband
Deserted, and went sailing to Troy, with never a thought for
her daughter and dear parents.

Dio Chrysostom gives a completely different account of the story, questioning Homer's credibility: after Agamemnon had married Helen's sister, Clytemnestra, Tyndareus sought Helen's hand for Menelaus for political reasons. However, Helen was sought by many suitors, who came from far and near, among them Paris who surpassed all the others and won the favor of Tyndareus and his sons. Thus he won her fairly and took her away to Troia, with the full consent of her natural protectors. [49] Cypria narrate that in just three days Paris and Helen reached Troy. Homer narrates that during a brief stop-over in the small island of Kranai, according to Iliad, the two lovers consummated their passion. On the other hand, Cypria note that this happened the night before they left Sparta. [50]

In western painting, Helen's journey to Troy is usually depicted as a forced abduction. The Rape of Helen by Francesco Primaticcio (c. 1530–1539, Bowes Museum) is representative of this tradition.

In Guido Reni's painting (1631, Louvre, Paris), however, Paris holds Helen by her wrist (as he already did in Genga's painting shown here on the left), and leave together for Troia.

The Rape of Helen by Tintoretto (1578–1579, Museo del Prado, Madrid) Helen languishes in the corner of a land-sea battle scene. [51]

El Juicio de Paris by Enrique Simonet, c. 1904. This painting depicts Paris' judgement. He is inspecting Aphrodite, who is standing naked before him. Hera and Athena watch nearby.

In Egypt Edit

At least three Ancient Greek authors denied that Helen ever went to Troy instead, they suggested, Helen stayed in Egypt during the duration of the Trojan War. Those three authors are Euripides, Stesichorus, and Herodotus. [52] In the version put forth by Euripides in his play Helen, Hera fashioned a likeness of Helen (eidolon, εἴδωλον) out of clouds at Zeus' request, Hermes took her to Egypt, and Helen never went to Troy instead spending the entire war in Egypt. Eidolon is also present in Stesichorus' account, but not in Herodotus' rationalizing version of the myth. In addition to these accounts, Lycophron 822 states that Hesiod was the first to mention Helen's eidolon. [53] This statement may mean Hesiod stated this in a literary work or that the idea was widely known/circulated in early archaic Greece during the time of Hesiod and was consequently attributed to him. [53]

Herodotus adds weight to the "Egyptian" version of events by putting forward his own evidence—he traveled to Egypt and interviewed the priests of the temple (Foreign Aphrodite, ξείνη Ἀφροδίτη) at Memphis. According to these priests, Helen had arrived in Egypt shortly after leaving Sparta, because strong winds had blown Paris's ship off course. King Proteus of Egypt, appalled that Paris had seduced his host's wife and plundered his host's home in Sparta, disallowed Paris from taking Helen to Troy. Paris returned to Troy without a new bride, but the Greeks refused to believe that Helen was in Egypt and not within Troy's walls. Thus, Helen waited in Memphis for ten years, while the Greeks and the Trojans fought. Following the conclusion of the Trojan War, Menelaus sailed to Memphis, where Proteus reunited him with Helen. [54]

In Troy Edit

When he discovered that his wife was missing, Menelaus called upon all the other suitors to fulfill their oaths, thus beginning the Trojan War.

The Greek fleet gathered in Aulis, but the ships could not sail for lack of wind. Artemis was enraged by a sacrilege, and only the sacrifice of Agamemnon's daughter, Iphigenia, could appease her. In Euripides Iphigenia in Aulis, Clytemnestra, Iphigenia's mother and Helen's sister, begs her husband to reconsider his decision, calling Helen a "wicked woman". Clytemnestra tries to warn Agamemnon that sacrificing Iphigenia for Helen's sake is, "buying what we most detest with what we hold most dear". [55] [56]

Helen on the Ramparts of Troy was a popular theme in the late 19th-century art – seen here a depiction by Frederick Leighton.

In a similar fashion to Leighton, Gustave Moreau depicts an expressionless Helen a blank or anguished face.

Lithographic illustration by Walter Crane

Before the opening of hostilities, the Greeks dispatched a delegation to the Trojans under Odysseus and Menelaus they endeavored without success to persuade Priam to hand Helen back. A popular theme, The Request of Helen (Helenes Apaitesis, Ἑλένης Ἀπαίτησις), was the subject of a drama by Sophocles, now lost. [57] [58]

Homer paints a poignant, lonely picture of Helen in Troy. She is filled with self-loathing and regret for what she has caused by the end of the war, the Trojans have come to hate her. When Hector dies, she is the third mourner at his funeral, and she says that, of all the Trojans, Hector and Priam alone were always kind to her: [59] [60]

Wherefore I wail alike for thee and for my hapless self with grief at heart
for no longer have I anyone beside in broad Troy that is gentle to me or kind
but all men shudder at me. [61]

These bitter words reveal that Helen gradually realized Paris' weaknesses, and decided to ally herself with Hector. There is an affectionate relationship between the two, and Helen has harsh words for Paris when she compares the two brothers: [60] [62]

Howbeit, seeing the gods thus ordained these ills,
would that I had been wife to a better man,
that could feel the indignation of his fellows and their many revilings. [. ]
But come now, enter in, and sit thee upon this chair, my brother,
since above all others has trouble encompassed thy heart
because of shameless me, and the folly of Alexander. [63] [59]

After Paris was killed in combat, there was some dispute among the Trojans about which of Priam's surviving sons she should remarry: Helenus or Deiphobus, but she was given to the latter.

During the Fall of Troy Edit

During the fall of Troy, Helen's role is ambiguous. In Virgil's Aeneid, Deiphobus gives an account of Helen's treacherous stance: when the Trojan Horse was admitted into the city, she feigned Bacchic rites, leading a chorus of Trojan women, and, holding a torch among them, she signaled to the Greeks from the city's central tower. In Odyssey, however, Homer narrates a different story: Helen circled the Horse three times, and she imitated the voices of the Greek women left behind at home—she thus tortured the men inside (including Odysseus and Menelaus) with the memory of their loved ones, and brought them to the brink of destruction. [64]

After the deaths of Hector and Paris, Helen became the paramour of their younger brother, Deiphobus but when the sack of Troy began, she hid her new husband's sword, and left him to the mercy of Menelaus and Odysseus. In Aeneid, Aeneas meets the mutilated Deiphobus in Hades his wounds serve as a testimony to his ignominious end, abetted by Helen's final act of treachery. [65]

However, Helen's portraits in Troy seem to contradict each other. From one side, we read about the treacherous Helen who simulated Bacchic rites and rejoiced over the carnage of Trojans. On the other hand, there is another Helen, lonely and helpless desperate to find sanctuary, while Troy is on fire. Stesichorus narrates that both Greeks and Trojans gathered to stone her to death. [66] When Menelaus finally found her, he raised his sword to kill her. He had demanded that only he should slay his unfaithful wife but, when he was ready to do so, she dropped her robe from her shoulders, and the sight of her beauty caused him to let the sword drop from his hand. [67] Electra wails: [68]

Alas for my troubles! Can it be that her beauty has blunted their swords?

Fate Edit

Helen returned to Sparta and lived for a time with Menelaus, where she was encountered by Telemachus in Book 4 of The Odyssey. As depicted in that account, she and Menelaus were completely reconciled and had a harmonious married life—he holding no grudge at her having run away with a lover and she feeling no restraint in telling anecdotes of her life inside besieged Troy.

According to another version, used by Euripides in his play Orestes, Helen had been saved by Apollo from Orestes [69] and was taken up to Mount Olympus almost immediately after Menelaus' return. A curious fate is recounted by Pausanias the geographer (3.19.11–13), which has Helen share the afterlife with Achilles. [70]

Pausanias also has another story (3.19.9–10): "The account of the Rhodians is different. They say that when Menelaus was dead, and Orestes still a wanderer, Helen was driven out by Nicostratus and Megapenthes and came to Rhodes, where she had a friend in Polyxo, the wife of Tlepolemus. For Polyxo, they say, was an Argive by descent, and when she was already married to Tlepolemus, shared his flight to Rhodes. At the time she was queen of the island, having been left with an orphan boy. They say that this Polyxo desired to avenge the death of Tlepolemus on Helen, now that she had her in her power. So she sent against her when she was bathing handmaidens dressed up as Furies, who seized Helen and hanged her on a tree, and for this reason the Rhodians have a sanctuary of Helen of the Tree." [71]

Tlepolemus was a son of Heracles and Astyoche. Astyoche was a daughter of Phylas, King of Ephyra who was killed by Heracles. Tlepolemus was killed by Sarpedon on the first day of fighting in the Iliad. Nicostratus was a son of Menelaus by his concubine Pieris, an Aetolian slave. Megapenthes was a son of Menelaus by his concubine Tereis, no further origin.

In Euripides's tragedy The Trojan Women, Helen is shunned by the women who survived the war and is to be taken back to Greece to face a death sentence. This version is contradicted by two of Euripides' other tragedies Electra, which predates The Trojan Women, and Helen, as Helen is described as being in Egypt during the events of the Trojan War in each.

From Antiquity, depicting Helen would be a remarkable challenge. The story of Zeuxis deals with this exact question: how would an artist immortalize ideal beauty? [73] He eventually selected the best features from five virgins. The ancient world starts to paint Helen's picture or inscribe her form on stone, clay and bronze by the 7th century BC. [74] Dares Phrygius describes Helen in his History of the Fall of Troy: "She was beautiful, ingenuous, and charming. Her legs were the best her mouth the cutest. There was a beauty-mark between her eyebrows." [75]

Helen is frequently depicted on Athenian vases as being threatened by Menelaus and fleeing from him. This is not the case, however, in Laconic art: on an Archaic stele depicting Helen's recovery after the fall of Troy, Menelaus is armed with a sword but Helen faces him boldly, looking directly into his eyes and in other works of Peloponnesian art, Helen is shown carrying a wreath, while Menelaus holds his sword aloft vertically. In contrast, on Athenian vases of c. 550–470, Menelaus threateningly points his sword at her. [76]

The abduction by Paris was another popular motif in ancient Greek vase-painting definitely more popular than the kidnapping by Theseus. In a famous representation by the Athenian vase painter Makron, Helen follows Paris like a bride following a bridegroom, her wrist grasped by Paris' hand. [77] The Etruscans, who had a sophisticated knowledge of Greek mythology, demonstrated a particular interest in the theme of the delivery of Helen's egg, which is depicted in relief mirrors. [78]

In Renaissance painting, Helen's departure from Sparta is usually depicted as a scene of forcible removal (rape) by Paris. This is not, however, the case with certain secular medieval illustrations. Artists of the 1460s and 1470s were influenced by Guido delle Colonne's Historia destructionis Troiae, where Helen's abduction was portrayed as a scene of seduction. In the Florentine Picture Chronicle Paris and Helen are shown departing arm in arm, while their marriage was depicted into Franco-Flemish tapestry. [79]

In Christopher Marlowe's Doctor Faustus (1604), Faust conjures the shade of Helen. Upon seeing Helen, Faustus speaks the famous line: "Was this the face that launch'd a thousand ships, / And burnt the topless towers of Ilium." (Act V, Scene I.) Helen is also conjured by Faust in Goethe's Faust.

In William Shakespeare's play Troilus and Cressida, Helen is a minor character who adores Troilus.

In Pre-Raphaelite art, Helen is often shown with shining curly hair and ringlets. Other painters of the same period depict Helen on the ramparts of Troy, and focus on her expression: her face is expressionless, blank, inscrutable. [80] In Gustave Moreau's painting, Helen will finally become faceless a blank eidolon in the middle of Troy's ruins.

The major centers of Helen's cult were in Laconia. At Sparta, the urban sanctuary of Helen was located near the Platanistas, so called for the plane trees planted there. Ancient sources associate Helen with gymnastic exercises or/and choral dances of maidens near the Evrotas River. This practice is referenced in the closing lines of Lysistrata, where Helen is said to be the "pure and proper" leader of the dancing Spartan women. Theocritus conjures the song epithalamium Spartan women sung at Platanistas commemorating the marriage of Helen and Menelaus: [81]

We first a crown of low-growing lotus
having woven will place it on a shady plane-tree.
First from a silver oil-flask soft oil
drawing we will let it drip beneath the shady plane-tree.
Letters will be carved in the bark, so that someone passing by
may read in Doric: "Reverence me. I am Helen's tree."

Helen's worship was also present on the opposite bank of Eurotas at Therapne, where she shared a shrine with Menelaus and the Dioscuri. The shrine has been known as "Menelaion" (the shrine of Menelaus), and it was believed to be the spot where Helen was buried alongside Menelaus. Despite its name, both the shrine and the cult originally belonged to Helen Menelaus was added later as her husband. [82] Isocrates writes that at Therapne Helen and Menelaus were worshiped as gods, and not as heroes. Clader argues that, if indeed Helen was worshiped as a goddess at Therapne, then her powers should be largely concerned with fertility, [83] or as a solar deity. [84] There is also evidence for Helen's cult in Hellenistic Sparta: rules for those sacrificing and holding feasts in their honor are extant. [85]

Helen was also worshiped in Attica along with her brothers, and on Rhodes as Helen Dendritis (Helen of the Trees, Έλένα Δενδρῖτις) she was a vegetation or a fertility goddess. [86] Martin P. Nilsson has argued that the cult in Rhodes has its roots to the Minoan, pre-Greek era, when Helen was allegedly worshiped as a vegetation goddess. [87] Claude Calame and other scholars try to analyze the affinity between the cults of Helen and Artemis Orthia, pointing out the resemblance of the terracotta female figurines offered to both deities. [88]

Pre-modern Edit

Helen frequently appeared in Athenian comedies of the fifth century BC as a caricature of Pericles's mistress Aspasia. [91] In Hellenistic times, she was associated with the moon [91] due to the similarity of her name to the Greek word Σελήνη (Selēnē), meaning "Moon, goddess of the moon". [91] One Pythagorean source claimed that Helen had originally come from a colony on the moon, [91] where people were larger, stronger, and "fifteen times" more beautiful than ordinary mortals. [91] She is one of the eponymous women the tragedy The Trojan Women produced in 415 BC by the Greek playwright Euripides.

Dio Chrysostom absolved Helen of guilt for the Trojan War by making Paris her first, original husband and claiming that the Greeks started the war out of jealousy. [91] Virgil, in his Aeneid, makes Aeneas the one to spare Helen's life, rather than Menelaus, [91] and instead portrays the act as a lofty example of self-control. [91] Meanwhile, Virgil also makes Helen more vicious by having her betray her own husband Deiphobos and give him over to Menelaus as a peace offering. [91] The satirist Lucian of Samosata features Helen in his famous Dialogues of the Dead, in which he portrays her deceased spirit as aged and withered. [91]

In the early Middle Ages, after the rise of Christianity, Helen was seen as a pagan equivalent to Eve from the Book of Genesis. [91] Helen was so beloved by early medieval Christians that she even took on some of the roles of the Virgin Mary. [91] During the Renaissance, the French poet Pierre de Ronsard wrote 142 sonnets addressed to a woman named Hélène de Surgères, [91] in which he declared her to be the "true", French Helen, rather than the "lie" of the Greeks. [91]

Helen appears in various versions of the Faust myth, including Christopher Marlowe's 1604 play The Tragical History of Doctor Faustus, in which Faustus famously marvels, "Was this the face that launched a thousand ships / And burnt the topless towers of Ilium?" upon seeing a demon impersonating Helen. [89] The line, which is frequently quoted out of context, [89] [91] is a paraphrase of a statement from Lucian's Dialogues of the Dead. [90] [89] It is debated whether the phrase conveys astonishment at Helen's beauty, [89] or disappointment that she is not more beautiful. [89] The German poet and polymath Johann Wolfgang von Goethe re-envisioned the meeting of Faust and Helen. In Faust: The Second Part of the Tragedy, the union of Helen and Faust becomes a complex allegory of the meeting of the classical-ideal and modern worlds.

In 1803, when French zoologist François Marie Daudin was to name a new species of beautifully colored snake, the trinket snake (Coelognathus helena), he chose the specific name helena in reference to Helen of Troy. [92]

Modern Edit

In 1864, Paris saw the premiere of the operetta La belle Hélène by Jacques Offenbach.

Helen of Troy is a minor character in the opera Mefistofele by Arrigo Boito, which received its premiere in Milan in 1868.

In 1881, Oscar Wilde published a poem entitled "The New Helen", [91] in which he declared his friend Lillie Langtry to be the reincarnation of Helen of Troy. [91] Wilde portrays this new Helen as the antithesis of the Virgin Mary, [91] but endows her with the characteristics of Jesus Christ himself. [91] The Irish poet William Butler Yeats compared Helen to his muse, Maude Gonne, in his 1916 poem "No Second Troy". [93] The anthology The Dark Tower by C. S. Lewis includes a fragment entitled "After Ten Years". In Egypt after the Trojan War, Menelaus is allowed to choose between the real, disappointing Helen and an ideal Helen conjured by Egyptian magicians.

The English Pre-Raphaelite painter Evelyn de Morgan portrayed a sexually assertive Helen in her 1898 painting Helen of Troy. [91] Salvador Dalí was obsessed with Helen of Troy from childhood [91] and saw his wife Gala Dalí and the surrealist character Gradiva as the embodiments of Helen. [91] He dedicates his autobiography Diary of a Genius to "my genius Gala Gradiva, Helen of Troy, Saint Helen, Gala Galatea Placida." [91]

Minor planet 101 Helena discovered by James Craig Watson in 1868, is named after Helen of Troy.

John Erskine's 1925 bestselling novel The Private Life of Helen of Troy portrayed Helen as a "sensible, bourgeois heroine", [91] but the 1927 silent film of the same name, directed by Alexander Korda, transformed Helen into "a shopaholic fashion maven". [91]

In 1928, Richard Strauss wrote the German opera Die ägyptische Helena (The Egyptian Helena), which is the story of Helen and Menelaus's troubles when they are marooned on a mythical island. [94]

The 1938 short story, "Helen O'Loy", written by Lester del Rey, details the creation of a synthetic woman by two mechanics. The title is wordplay that combines "Helen of Troy" with "alloy".

The 1951 Swedish film Sköna Helena is an adapted version of Offenbach's operetta, starring Max Hansen and Eva Dahlbeck In 1956, a Franco-British epic titled Helen of Troy was released, directed by Oscar-winning director Robert Wise and starring Italian actress Rossana Podestà in the title role. It was filmed in Italy, and featured well-known British character actors such as Harry Andrews, Cedric Hardwicke, and Torin Thatcher in supporting roles.

The 1971 film The Trojan Women was an adaptation of the play by Euripides in which Irene Papas portrayed (a non-blonde) Helen of Troy.

In the 1998 TV series Hercules, Helen appears as a supporting character at Prometheus Academy as a student. Helen is caring and enthusiastic. She was the most popular girl in the academy and Adonis' girlfriend. Helen tries her best to keep Adonis from behaving stupidly, but mostly fails. She likes Hercules but as a friend. She is a princess as in the myth but is not a half-sister of Hercules in the series. She was voiced by Jodi Benson.

A 2003 television version of Helen's life up to the fall of Troy, Helen of Troy, in which she was played by Sienna Guillory. In this version, Helen is depicted as unhappy in her marriage and willingly runs away with Paris, with whom she has fallen in love, but still returns to Menelaus after Paris dies and Troy falls. Helen was portrayed by Diane Kruger in the 2004 film Troy. In this adaptation, as in the 2003 television version, she is unhappily married to Menelaus and willingly leaves with Paris, whom she loves. However, in this version she does not return to Sparta with Menelaus (who is killed by Hector), but escapes Troy with Paris and other survivors when the city falls. Jacob M. Appel's 2008 play, Helen of Sparta, retells Homer's Iliad from Helen's point of view. [95]

Inspired by the line, "Was this the face that launched a thousand ships. " from Marlowe's Faustus, Isaac Asimov jocularly coined the unit "millihelen" to mean the amount of beauty that can launch one ship. [96] Canadian novelist and poet Margaret Atwood re-envisioned the myth of Helen in modern, feminist guise in her poem "Helen of Troy Does Countertop Dancing". [97]

In the Legends of Tomorrow episode "Helen Hunt", Helen is portrayed by Israeli-American model and actress Bar Paly. In the episode, Helen is an anachronism and appears in 1930s Hollywood. She lands a job as an actress and unintentionally starts a war between two film studios. The Legends travel to the 1930s and try to get Helen back to the Bronze Age. She regretfully goes along telling the team she wishes to stay away. After analyzing historical records of her impact on history, Zari Tomaz finds the best time to take her away from the fighting of her time and takes her to Themyscira. [98] Helen reappears in the season three finale, "The Good, the Bad, and the Cuddly" as an Amazon warrior, who assists the Legends in defeating the demon Mallus's army. [99]

In the 2018 TV miniseries Troy: Fall of a City, Helen was portrayed by Bella Dayne. [100]

Pop singer-songwriter Al Stewart released a song called Helen and Cassandra on the reissue of his 1988 album Last Days of the Century. In it he addresses many aspects of the Helen myth and contrasts her with the seer Cassandra.


'Lost Golden City' Discovered In Egypt, Complete With A Mysterious Skeleton

Archaeologists in Egypt have discovered a 3,400-year-old lost city near Luxor, believed to be the largest ancient settlement ever uncovered in the nation.

“Many foreign missions searched for this city and never found it,” Zahi Hawass, who led the team that made the discovery, wrote in a news release on his Facebook page. He added that the city was “untouched” and “left by the ancient residents as if it were yesterday.”

The archaeologists also found a seal calling the city “the domain of the dazzling Aten,” but Hawass has nicknamed it “the Lost Golden City.”

Hawass’ team had originally been looking for the mortuary temple of Tutankhamun, the news release said. Instead, they found the city, which was active during the reign of Tut’s grandfather, Amenhotep III, who ruled from 1391 to 1353 B.C.

“The discovery of this lost city is the second most important archeological discovery since the tomb of Tutankhamun,” Betsy Bryan, Egyptology professor at Johns Hopkins University, said in the news release, adding that the discovery will “give us a rare glimpse into the life of the Ancient Egyptians at the time where the Empire was at his wealthiest.”

The city is made of mud brick walls, some nearly 10 feet high. Many of the rooms contained tools used in daily life as well as rings, scarabs, colored pottery vessels and mud bricks with the seal of Amenhotep III.

Seven months into the excavation, the archaeologists have so far found a bakery, including the ovens, as well as a workshop and tools used for industrial activities such as spinning and weaving.

“Everybody loves the thought of an exciting, untouched tomb, but actually this is probably more significant and more important than if it was a pharaoh’s tomb,” British archaeologist Hannah Pethen, who wasn’t involved in the dig, told NBC News. “We have a lot of tombs and we know a lot about them, but we don’t have a lot of evidence about how Egyptians lived and worked in their cities.”

The team also found a very unusual skeleton — “a person found with arms outstretched to his side, and remains of a rope wrapped around his knees,” the news release on Hawass’ Facebook page said. “The location and position of this skeleton are rather odd, and more investigations are in progress.”

After the golden parade, Egypt uncovers a 3000yo golden city.

Archaeologists also uncovered a residential and administrative area, fenced in by zigzag walls ― which were unusual in ancient Egypt ― with a single entry point, which may have been for security.

Egypt’s government hopes discoveries such as Aten will help lead to a resurgence in tourism to the country, according to The Washington Post.


The Embryo Project Encyclopedia

When scientists discovered a 3.3 million-year-old skeleton of a child of the human lineage (hominin) in 2000, in the village of Hadar, Ethiopia, they were able to study growth and development of Australopithecus afarensis, an extinct hominin species. The team of researchers, led by Zeresenay Alemseged of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology in Leipzig, Germany, named the fossil DIK 1-1 and nicknamed it Dikika baby after the Dikika research site. The Dikika fossil preserves much of the skull, including the jaw and teeth, which enabled scientists to study the teeth microstructures and to reconstruct the pace at which individuals of the hominin A. afarensis developed.

Researchers study fossils of juvenile hominins because those fossils illustrate the slow rate at which humans grow. One of the ways humans differ from their closest living relatives, chimpanzees and gorillas, is by their comparatively long childhood period, or period before they acquire the ability to reproduce. Researchers can study this extended childhood through the microstructures of teeth, which preserve the timing of when humans pass through stages such as weaning and tooth eruption. Scientists can reconstruct the life histories of human ancestors to learn when the evolution of the extended childhood appeared in the hominin lineage.

Alemseged recovered the partially exposed fossil in December 2000 from a block of sandstone within the Hadar Formation at a site called Dikika, located in northern Ethiopia. Part of the fossil´s face was exposed from the three-million-year-old strata, whereas the majority of the specimen´s skull remained surrounded by rock. Alemseged spent five years removing the solid material surrounding the fossil, material called matrix, to expose the complete fossil. In addition to the braincase and face, the Dikika baby fossil includes elements such as the shoulder blades and several vertebrae. When much of the fossil had been exposed, Alemseged and his coauthors published the discovery in a 2006 article titled "A Juvenile Early Hominin Skeleton from Dikika, Ethiopia."

In this publication, Alemseged´s team argued that the Dikika baby was especially useful for explaining the growth patterns of fossil hominin because the specimen included both the head and parts of the body (crania and post-crania). The discovery of many A. afarensis fossils enabled scientists to identify the Dikika baby as a member of that species. The Dikika fossil often referred to as Selam, or Lucy´s baby, referring to the specimen of A. afarensis, discovered in Hadar in 1974, called Lucy. The Dikika baby was the first relatively complete A. afarensis juvenile studied in detail. The authors claimed that Dikika was the first non-Neanderthal juvenile hominin preserved enough to study in order to explain A. afarensis development.

In the 2006 article, Alemseged and his team noted that their findings of the teeth led them to claim that the Dikika baby was around three years old. They first noted that the baby teeth, or milk teeth (deciduous teeth), were all erupted. They then used computer-processed X-rays to produce virtual images or slices of a specific area of a scanned object, called computed tomography (CT) scan, which revealed that the first molar crowns were not erupted but were fully formed.

The research team also noted the presence of unerupted teeth such as the canine and incisor crowns, which appeared to be at differing stages of development. The scientists then examined the microstructures of the erupted deciduous teeth, based on the methods of Timothy Bromage of the University of Toronto in Toronto, Canada, and of Christopher Dean of the University College London in London, UK. Those methods count striations on the surface of the tooth crowns, which form the molars, in order to estimate growth periods. Then, following the work of Bromage and Dean, Alemsefad and his team compared these dental developmental stages to a model of African ape molar formation. Bromage and Dean demonstrated that hominins likely had shorter growth periods than humans. They based their estimates on African apes, which develop faster than humans.

In addition to providing information on hominin growth and development, the Dikika fossil raised questions about behavior and possible arboreal habits in Australopithecines. In 2002, Alemseged, along with David J. Green from Midwestern University in Downers Grove, Illinois published an article titled "Australopithecus afarensis Scapular Ontogeny, Function, and the Role of Climbing in Human Evolution." They argued that the preserved shoulder blades, or scapulae, of the Dikika baby indicated that members of the species spent a lot of time climbing. This result contributed to a debate on how much time Australopithecines spent climbing versus walking. Based on the Dikika baby shoulder blades, some scientists suggested that Australopithecines may have climbed in trees to forage or to make nests to sleep.

In the early decades of the twenty-first century, the Dikika baby was the oldest hominin fossil found that provided information on early hominin growth and development. It provided a detailed example of tooth development in a juvenile. In addition to fossils that approach Homo sapiens more closely, such as Homo erectus and Homo neanderthalensis, this fossil helps scientist to reconstruct the evolution of humans´ extended developmental period.


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Fall of Troy: The Legend and the Facts Ancient Origins

  • In Greek mythology, the tale of the fall of Troy was recorded in two epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey, traditionally attributed to Homer and written about 400 years after these events
  • 800-Year-Old Skeleton Discovered in Troy Shows Signs of Death from a Fatal Infection History Versus Legend: In Search of Aeneas, the Trojan Refugee

Fall of Troy: the legend and the facts

In Greek mythology, the tale of the fall of Troy was recorded in two epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey, traditionally attributed to Homer and written …

Is the fall of Troy a true story

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  • Considering this, was the fall of Troy a true story? The site was discovered in 1863 by Frank Calvert but it really became famous thanks to the excavations conducted by the German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann in 1870
  • The work of Schliemann made the story come true and resulted in renewed interest in Troy and its history.

Troy story: Real tale behind siege of war and passion

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  • Troy: Fall of a City is on BBC1 on Saturday, 9.10pm
  • An updated version of Michael Wood’s bestseller In Search of the Trojan War is published by BBC books

Troy: Fall of a City (TV Series 2018– )

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Storyline Based loosely on Homers ancient Greek epic poem 'Iliad', Troy: Fall of a City tells the story of the 10 year siege of the ancient city of Troy by the Greeks, after Paris, the young prince of Troy falls in love with the wife of a Greek king and elopes with her.

The Trojan War and the Fall of Troy

  • This story, of course, is taken almost entirely from Homer
  • The Iliad, however begins after the Greeks have reached Troy, when Apollo sends the pestilence upon them
  • It does not mention the sacrifice of Iphigenia, and makes only a dubious allusion to the Judgment of Paris
  • I have taken Iphigenia's story

The True Story of Troy: Ancient War

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  • Sign up to Swagbucks and earn $100s a year by browsing the web as normal and shopping online
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Siege of Troy Summary Britannica

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  • No war has had a more tenacious hold over the Western imagination than that of the Siege of Troy (1250 bce), as related in Homer’s Iliad
  • It was long assumed to be the stuff of legend, yet it has recently been suggested that it might be a part of history as well.

What is the theme of the fall of Troy

  • After the fall of Troy surviving Trojan Princes were killed or enslaved and surviving Princesses (Cassandra, Andromache, Hecuba) handed out to various Greeks as spoils of war apart from one who was sacrificed to the ghost of Achilles
  • Also to know, what is the message of the Trojan Horse?

The fall of troy mythology story: Trojan real war:Trojan

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Biography of Helen of Troy, Cause of the Trojan War

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  • Helen of Troy is a character in Homer's classic epic poem, the "Iliad," written in the 8th century about the Trojan War, imagined by the Greeks to have occurred about 500 years earlier
  • Her story is one of the most dramatic love stories of all time and is said to be one of the main reasons for a 10-year war between the Greeks and Trojans, known

Legend of the Trojan Horse for Kids (Beware of Greeks

  • The Trojan Horse (cartoon video for kids) Apollo and Cassandra & the Trojan War
  • Aphrodite, Helen of Troy - the face that launched a thousand ships, and the Trojan War - myth, loosely retold
  • 3 Stories: The Trojan Horse, Troy, and Helen (click on download, that means play audio stories now) Did ancient Troy really exist?

CHAPTER XXVIII. The Fall Of Troy- Return Of The Greeks

  • THE story of the Iliad ends with the death of Hector, and it is from the Odyssey and later poems that we learn the fate of the other heroes

Mythology: Part Four, Chapters I–II SparkNotes

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  • Summary: Chapter II —The Fall of Troy We stand at the same point of pain
  • Our children are crying, calling to us with tears, “Mother, I am all alone
  • ." See Important Quotations Explained
  • The war itself does not end with Hector’s funeral, and Virgil continues the account.

Cassandra of Troy: Everything You Need To Know About the

In the epic poem The Fall of Troy by Quintus Smyrnaeus, Cassandra takes physical action to avert the disaster manufactured by the Greeks.

Research on the History of the Trojan War: [Essay Example

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  • Agamemnon had previously met an oracle from Delphi that Troy would fall when the heroes of Greece fought amongst each other
  • In Homer, the crossing to Troy starts immediately, but in the following story, the Greeks accidentally land in Mysia, in the country of Telephus, They’re scattered by a storm and driven back to Greece, and then assemble

AP Latin Unit 3.1 Book II The Burning of Troy Fiveable

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  • The Burning of Troy begins with Aeneas telling the tale, at the request of Dido, of the fall of Troy and the story of the Trojan Horse
  • The Trojans are thought to believe that the Greeks fled and deserted their camp, but are left wondering what this huge wooden horse is doing on the beach.

The Fall of Troy Young at Hearst Magazines

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  • The Fall of Troy Hearst hired a belligerent leader to disrupt its magazine business
  • Now it’s left with — what, exactly?

Moral Lesson Of Helen Of Troy, Essay Sample

  • The Greeks set up a plan to attack and encroach Troy and make off with their fortunes
  • Concurrently, the father of Prince Paris, the King of Troy gave his son a designation to go to Sparta and demonstrate their nonviolent intentions
  • There are tremendous moral lessons derived from Helen of Troy.

10 Management Lessons from the Movie ‘Troy’

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The film narrates the story of Trojan War – one of the most important events in Greek mythology, where Greeks attacked the city of Troy, after Helen, queen of …

Troy • Greek Gods & Goddesses

  • Troy was founded in 3000 BC and abandoned in 500 AD
  • Troy was the battleground in which the Trojan war was fought
  • The Achaeans (Greeks) declared war against the city of Troy after Paris of Troy kidnapped Helen
  • While the exact date for the fall of Troy remains unknown, the Greeks won the fight, and the city was left in shambles.

First Sacking of Troy in Greek Mythology

  • Troy is arguably the most famous city to appear in the stories of Greek mythology, after all, Troy was the city around which a ten year war was fought, as famously recounted in the Iliad
  • The conflict saw the Achaean’s struggle to break through the walls of Troy, despite the likes of Achilles, Diomedes and Ajax the Great being amongst the ranks.

The fall of Troy : Quintus, Smyrnaeus : Free Download

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  • A circle with a left pointing chevron
  • QUINTUS SMYRNAEUS THE FALL OF TROY WITH AN ENGLISH TRANSLATION BY ARTHUR S
  • CAMBRIDGE, MASSACHUSETTS HARVARD UNIVERSITY PRESS LONDON WILLIAM HEINEMANN LTD MCMLXXXIV
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The Fall of Troy by Peter Ackroyd

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  • Fakes, forgeries and plagiarism abound in Ackroyd’s brilliant historical novel, set in the 19th century during the excavation of the Bronze Age site of Troy
  • “I cannot wait to bring you to the plain of Troy
  • To show you the place where Hector and Achilles fought
  • To show you the palace of Priam.

Di Leo: Learning the Lessons from the Fall of Troy

  • But the lesson of the Fall of Troy is this: don’t invite that horse into the city gates, no matter WHAT color it’s painted, no matter WHAT name or visage it has, no matter WHAT promises are written on the message it bears
  • The Democratic Party has become the enemy of the rule of law, the enemy of the Constitution, the enemy of the middle

Balbharati solutions for English Kumarbharati 9th Standard

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Chapter 1.4: Have you thought of the verb ‘have’ Chapter 1.5: The Necklace Chapter 2.1: Invictus Chapter 2.2: A True Story of Sea Turtles Chapter 2.3: Somebody’s Mother Chapter 2.4: The Fall of Troy Chapter 2.5: Autumn Chapter 2.6: The Past in the Present Chapter 3.1: Silver Chapter 3.2: Reading Works of Art Chapter 3.3: The Road Not


3,000-year-old lost Egyptian city discovered by archaeologists

Archaeologists have discovered a 3,000-year-old “lost golden city” in Egypt — the “largest” ever found there and the most important find since the tomb of Tutankhamun.

The city, called “The Rise of Aten” was unearthed by a team of archeologists led by Zahi Hawass under the sand on the western bank of Luxor, about 300 miles south of Cairo.

The archaeologists first excavated the site in September 2020 in an attempt to search for King Tut’s mortuary temple.

They soon uncovered their stunning find — well-kept mud bricks formations that turned out to be a large city dating to the golden age of pharaohs 3,000 years ago.

“Within weeks, to the team’s great surprise, formations of mud bricks began to appear in all directions,” Hawass said in a statement. “What they unearthed was the site of a large city in a good condition of preservation, with almost complete walls, and with rooms filled with tools of daily life.”

Most of the city’s southern portion has been unearthed, but the northern part still remains under the sand.

The city was founded by King Amenhotep III, the ninth king of the 18th dynasty who ruled from 1391 to 1353 B.C., according to Hawass.

A human skeleton in Luxor, Egypt, found in the discovery of the 3,000-year-old “lost golden city” via REUTERS

The city was active during the king’s co-regency with his son, Amenhotep IV, also known as Akhenaten.

Akhenaten ruled alongside his wife, Nefertiti, and worshipped the sun, according to National Geographic. His young son — better known as King Tut — took over after his death.

The newly discovered royal metropolis may hold some clues as to why Akhenaten abandoned Thebes, which had been ancient Egypt’s capital for more than 150 years, according to the report.

“Many foreign missions searched for this city and never found it,” Hawass said in the release.


Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Early Neanderthals Had Religion Before Modern Humans?

This paper passed beneath my radar last August but it illustrates something rather nice about science - the way it continually challenges our assumptions and, if we are honest, causes us to change our minds and revise our understanding. It also shows that Neanderthals may have had religion before modern humans had left Africa.

The paper deals with the discovery in a French cave of artefacts which could only have been made by Neanderthals and a very long time ago.


Bacterial Evolution Recorded in Byzantium

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The skeleton of a woman who died 800 years ago on the outskirts of the ancient city of Troy in modern Turkey

A 30 year-old woman who died 800 years ago in what was Troy has unwittingly left us a snapshot of evolving bacteria and a serious infection in humans as it was 800 years ago.

The bacteria were recovered from calcified nodules found just below the ribs of a skeleton of the woman who died during pregnancy and who showed skeletal evidence of a hard, agrarian existence which may have made her vulnerable to infection. The recovered genome of two species of bacteria are of such high quality that they can be used to compare changes in one of the bacteria, Staphylococcus saprophyticus, in the intervening 800 years. The other bacteria, Gardnerella vaginalis, showed little change.

Abstract
Pregnancy complications are poorly represented in the archeological record, despite their importance in contemporary and ancient societies. While excavating a Byzantine cemetery in Troy, we discovered calcified abscesses among a woman’s remains. Scanning electron microscopy of the tissue revealed ‘ghost cells’, resulting from dystrophic calcification, which preserved ancient maternal, fetal and bacterial DNA of a severe infection, likely chorioamnionitis. Gardnerella vaginalis and Staphylococcus saprophyticus dominated the abscesses. Phylogenomic analyses of ancient, historical, and contemporary data showed that G. vaginalis Troy fell within contemporary genetic diversity, whereas S. saprophyticus Troy belongs to a lineage that does not appear to be commonly associated with human disease today. We speculate that the ecology of S. saprophyticus infection may have differed in the ancient world as a result of close contacts between humans and domesticated animals. These results highlight the complex and dynamic interactions with our microbial milieu that underlie severe maternal infections.

eLife digest
Why and how have some bacteria evolved to cause illness in humans? One way to study bacterial evolution is to search for ancient samples of bacteria and use DNA sequencing technology to investigate how modern bacteria have changed from their ancestors. Understanding the evolution process may help researchers to understand how some bacteria become resistant to the antibiotics designed to kill them.

Complications that occur during pregnancy, including bacterial infections, have long been a major cause of death for women. Now, Devault, Mortimer et al. have been able to sequence the DNA of bacteria found in tissue collected from a woman buried 800 years ago in a cemetery in Troy. Some of the woman’s tissues had been well preserved because they had calcified (probably as the result of infection), which preserved their structure in a mineralized layer. Two mineralized “nodules” in the body appear to be the remains of abscesses. Some of the human DNA in the nodules came from a male, suggesting that the woman was pregnant with a boy and that the abscesses formed in placental tissue.

Sequencing the DNA of the bacteria in the abscess allowed Devault, Mortimer et al. to diagnose the woman’s infection, which was caused by two types of bacteria. One species, called Gardnerella vaginalis, is found in modern pregnancy-related infections. The DNA of the ancient samples was similar to that of modern bacteria. The other bacteria species was an ancient form of Staphylococcus saprophyticus, a type of bacteria that causes urinary tract infections. However, the DNA of the ancient S. saprophyticus bacteria is quite different to that of the bacteria found in modern humans. Instead, their DNA sequence appears more similar to forms of the bacteria that infect currently livestock. As humans lived closely with their livestock at the time the woman lived, her infection may be due to a type of bacteria that passed easily between humans and animals.

Overall, the results suggest that the disease-causing properties of bacteria can arise from a wide range of sources. In addition, Devault, Mortimer et al. have demonstrated that certain types of tissue found in archeological remains are a potential gold mine of information about the evolution of bacteria and other microbes found in the human body.

Results from the osteological analyses of the Late Byzantine burials from Troy fit well to a picture of a rural population. People were struggling with physical strains and infectious diseases and only a few lived beyond the age of 50. Many newborns did not survive infancy and almost all skeletons of children show signs of malnutrition and infection.

From this sample it seems that S. saprophyticus was in transition from a generalised species that could affect cattle as well as humans to the specialised species we have today where a strain of S. saprophyticus is now specific to humans.

This supports the general view that humans acquire many of our common pathogens (of which we seem to have a very large number compared to other species) due to our close association with domestic animals. This finding can be seen as S. saprophyticus being caught in the act of transitioning from cattle to humans. This is of course entirely as the TOE predicts - an environmental change leads to adaptive evolution as new or changed niches are exploited.

The Troy isolate is in this really interesting position between the cow and human-associated staph. It looks like the bug that caused her disease was in a different niche than what we see associated with human infections today.

The general condition of the skeleton of this relatively young (by today's standards) woman is interesting from a historical perspective too. It shows how difficult life had become for ordinary in the latter stages of the Byzantine Empire - the remnant of the once mighty Roman Empire, or at least of the eastern half of it. A poor diet combined with the hard work needed just to survive made the population susceptible to infection and early death. Most people died by the age of 50 and child mortality due to malnutrition was high. Bacteria such as S. saprophyticus would have found it relatively easy to exploit this weak and vulnerable population.

Creationists who managed to read this far might like to note how the TOE offers a full explanation for the differences between this 800 year-old sample of S. saprophyticus and modern strains and how the evidence from history as well as biology reinforce one another. Maybe a creationist could explain this in terms of intelligent (sic) design.


Archaeology bombshell: How 4,000-year-old skeleton's 'crouching position' stunned experts

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The woman&rsquos skeleton is thought to be between 4,000 and 4,500 years old and was unearthed during excavations in Uckermark in Brandenburg, Germany. It has left researchers puzzled over the woman's life and where she might hial from.

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Laid on her right side, the woman had her legs and arms pulled towards her chest, and her gaze facing north, according to Deutsche Welle (DW).

One of the oldest forms of positioning, the courting shape is typical of burials in Neolithic Europe.

This period lasted from around 6,000 to 2,000 BCE and saw humans transition from foraging and hunting to farming.

The find has largely eluded archaeologists.

Archaeology: The body was found in a crouching similar to the one pictured (Image: GETTY)

Neolithic era: Some stone tools that our human ancestors used in everyday life (Image: GETTY)

Their current &ldquoworking hypothesis&rdquo is that the remains date to about 2,500 BCE, Christof Krauskopf from the Brandenburg State Office for the Preservation of Monuments told the Evangelical Press Service.

The exact date, however, is unclear.

Further research is needed in order to determine both the age of the skeleton and how old the woman was when she died.

The discovery could help &ldquoanswer questions about the spread of cultures in the development of mankind,&rdquo Mr Krauskopf told broadcaster Rundfunk Berlin-Brandenburg (RBB) 24.

Burial grave: Neolithic burial graves were stone structure sometimes built into the land (Image: GETTY)

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Adding to the mystery of the burial is the absence of any grave goods.

Items in graves often provide some immediate clues to the deceased&rsquos status.

Philipp Roskoschinski, one of the archaeologists involved in the dig, told Tagesspeigel: "Unfortunately there were no other finds in the grave that could tell us more about the life of the woman.

"But the place was lovingly bordered with field stones."

Ancient history: Capel Gormon burial chamber, North Wales (Image: GETTY)

Arthur's Stone: The stone is a Neolithic chambered tomb, or Dolmen, dating from 3,700 BC-2,700 BC (Image: GETTY)

Mr Roskoschinski and other archaeologists involved in the dig said the body was buried in a pit near a settlement rather than in a cemetery.

The next steps in identifying the woman will involve laboratory tests to clarify and, potentially, correct the age of the skeleton.

An anthropologist will also be invited to analyse the border to check the bones for signs of diseases and any clues relating to the woman&rsquos eating habitats.

Prehistory: The neanderthals lived years before the Neolithic age (Image: Express Newspapers)

The goal of such analysis will also include identifying a cause of death.

Genetic testing could also be used to determine her connection to modern-day Uckermark, a district an hour's drive north of Berlin.

The results may help researchers work out if she had ancestors in the area, or if she had travelled from outside.

Ancient graves: Neolithic graves usually contain items that gives clues of the deceased's identity (Image: GETTY)

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Roskoschinski and Christoph Rzegotta, a fellow archaeologist at Archaeros, an archaeology consulting company, came across the skeleton during excavations for a wind turbine.


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