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Period I-V | VI | VII-IX

TROY I. (3000-2500 B.C.)

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The first inhabitants of Troy built their houses on a 16 m. high, indigenous rock at the western end of the ridge. The city was fortified by a wall made of rough stones. Today we can see only a short segment of this wall, some 12 m. long, and the main gate with two square towers. The thickness of the fortification wall is about 2.50 m. The other remains of the first Troy we can see today are some foundations of houses in Schliemann's north-south trench. These houses were long believed to be megaron houses. But according to the latest research they do not have megaron plans. Manfred Korfmann, the head of the latest excavation team, who cleared the trench and made some reconstructions there in 1988, calls them "row of long houses". Megarons, the prototype of the Greek temples, were freestanding houses consisting of a single room with an entrance hall. But these long and narrow houses, which were built of mudbricks over stone foundations, were not free standing houses. Some of them had the entrance in the corner. The stone foundation walls of some of these houses were built in herringbone style. Although this type of workmanship is seen in Mesopotamia too, there was no direct influence since it was already known all over Anatolia and can be seen even today on the walls of some Turkish houses. We can also see the same design very often in the ceramics of Troy I.

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We do not know much about the building technique but we think the fish bone designs on their ceramics show us that the artisans might well be influenced by their daily life. Fishing was a very important occupation for the first inhabitants of Troy. A fishing hook made of copper, which was found recently in the ruins of Troy I, strengthens this opinion.

In one of these long houses two infant burials were found just beneath the floor. One of them was in a shallow pit covered by a flat stone, the other one was in an urn. More examples of the same type of burial have been uncovered in open spaces in the city, but no adult burials were encountered in the acropolis. This can be explained by children's need for protection. They believed that babies, especially new-born babies, needed protection even after death. This is why babies were buried in the houses or in the gardens, and adults outside the city walls.

The Early Bronze Age inhabitants of Troy I made their tools of copper, stone and bone. Stone vessels and pottery were in constant use. All pots were shaped by hand, without the use of the potter's wheel. Some spindle whorls and loom weights have been found, showing that spinning and weaving were familiar occupations for these natives of north western Asia Minor.

Troy I, which had ten building phases, was eventually wiped out by a great fire.

TROY II. (2500-2300 B.C.)

troy-plan-I,II,IV_s.jpg (9308 bytes)The second settlement at Hisarlık was built on top of the ruins of Troy I. It seems that the inhabitants of Troy I. completely reconstructed the citadel after the disaster. There is evidence that the culture of Troy I. continued in this period. Megarons were the general style of houses. Some of them were quite large and some of them had more rooms but the design was basically the same.

During recent excavations, a wall from the biggest megaron was uncovered, under a cone which was used as a measuring point and left unexcavated by Schliemann. The cone was excavated by Prof. Günter Mansfeld, one of the archeologists in the German team. As well as some findings belonging to different periods, the mudbrick wall of the biggest megaron-which can be accepted as the palace of Troy II- was unearthed. The plaster of the brick wall was found in very good condition. Due to a great fire the plaster and the bricks turned red. This 4500 year old palace wall was buried again at the end of the 1991 excavation season to preserve it for future generations.

Troy II had a roughly circular plan about 110m. in diameter. It was a little larger than Troy I. The powerful defensive fortification wall was built of relatively small unworked stones and had a broadly sloping outer face. Sloping walls are stronger against earthquakes and easier to built. The upper part of the wall was supported by a vertical superstructure of sun-dried brick. Small rectangular towers, at intervals of approximately 10m. would have strengthened the defensive arrangements. In some places the wall is seen to have been built in separate parallel sections. These are the different building phases of Troy II. One of the early Troy II. towers was reconstructed in 1992.

There were two main gates; one on the southeast, the other one on the southwest. Both display o peculiar plan with fairly large covered corridors which ran directly beneath a huge tower and jutted out from the wall. The sides of the corridor were shored up with vertical timbers. They presumably also supported transverse beams to prevent the stonework of the tower falling into the corridor.

The southwestern gateway is better preserved and the roadway, which was paved with great slabs of limestone, rose 5m. to the level of the gate by means of a ramp 21 m. long and 7.55m wide which was bordered on each side by a stone wall. It was however too steep for wheeled traffic. The southeastern gate has the same plan as the southwestern except for the paved ramp. There is another small gateway about 8m. long and 5m. wide to the south which leads to a cobbled court. The findings show us that the inhabitants of Troy II. had quite a high standard of living. The treasure found by Schliemann of gold, silver, electron (an alloy of gold and silver) and bronze all belong to this period. Objects included among this treasure make it clear that the women of this time led a life of relative luxury. The artisans who made these handicrafts were very skilful. The potters started using the potter's started using the potter's wheel and made beautiful ceramics. Two-handled depas for wine were characteristic pots of this period.

A vast amount of jewelry and traces of fire led Schliemann to believe that this level was the Troy of Priam and Homer. Latter, with the help of architect Wilhelm Dörpfeld, he accepted Troy VI as the city of Priam. However the American expedition concluded that the Troy of Priam was level VIIa.

Troy II was burned down by a warrior nation.

TROY III. IV. V. (2300-1700 B.C.)

After the disaster that brought Troy II. to an end, the survivors rebuilt the whole town. The absence of any fresh influence from outside the Troad indicates that there was no break in cultural continuity. The same people followed the some way of life and clung to the same traditions.

Probably the invaders of Troy II. left this place and emigrated somewhere else, or mixing with the natives they lost their own character and lived together, for a long era, through Troy III. Troy IV. and Troy V. till the end of the Early Bronze Age.

Although each of these settlements had a greater population and occupied a larger area, none could create a better civilization than its predecessor. Each was like e village with irregular blocks of houses, separated by narrow streets. This can be explained in terms of people living in fear of another disaster. Actually during this period Anatolia had many invasions. The Hittites in particular became a great power at this time. Because Schliemann removed all the walls of these periods, there are hardly any remains left today, nor do we know what brought each of them to an end.

During recent excavations in the southern excavations in the southern part of Schliemann's north-south trench some sturdy walls were uncovered. These walls, which look like defense walls, may be the city walls of these periods. Further excavations will enable us to get more informations about these periods.

Period I-V | VI | VII-IX

Turkish Ministry of Culture