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Epic, Hero Cults, History

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Heroes are used as corporate ancestors. Hero Cult at Troy. Tomb of Achilles ... Heroes in Art: Battle over Patroklos' Corpse 'Hero' of Corinth. Hero of Corinth ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Epic, Hero Cults, History


1
Epic, Hero Cults, History
  • 12/2/04

2
Sherratts Model
  • 2 periods when conditions of social or political
    fluidity and the need for legitimation are best
    seen in the archaeological record
  • 16th-14th centuries Shaft Grave period at
    Mycenae, lots of interest in artistic reps. of
    war.
  • Four centuries after the collapse of the
    Mycenaean palace culture, when social fluidity
    returns (8th c.). Maritime trade, cremation
  • Later 8th c. - same time as the establishment of
    the polis, emergence of something new. Renewed
    emphasis on military and funeral ideals in art,
    rise of panhellenic sanctuaries, rise of hero
    cults.

3
Mycenaean Warrior Krater
4
Epic Poetry
  • 16th-14th c. initial creation of bardic
    tradition, core of Homeric epic, perhaps inspired
    by a destruction of Troy c. 1400. Recurring siege
    motif in both literature and art was an important
    theme for the elite.
  • 14th - 12th c. maintenance of epic tradition in
    service of the status quo - stressing continuity
    with the past.
  • Post-palatial 12th-9th c. new creation and
    active formation of Homeric epic.

5
Mycenae, Grave Circle A
6
Pylos Lyre Player (Megaron)
7
Representations of War (Pylos)
8
Sherratts Stages Expressed Via Armor In Epic
9
Mycenaean Armor
10
Homeric Epic as We Have It
  • The absence of anything referable to the
    material culture of 7th or 6th c. Greece makes it
    clear that the epic traditions last role as an
    active instrument for heroic self-definition was
    over. As in the palatial period of the 14th -13th
    centuries, it had taken on a conservative
    function . . . Now, however, the added dimension
    of pan-Hellenic possession gave it a new
    permanent stability which was no longer capable
    of further transformation.

11
Classical Greek Aoidos
12
Archaic Script Iliad 1.1-5
13
An Archaeology of Ancestors (Carla Antonaccio)
  • Archaic and classical Greeks honored their
    progonoi (progenitors) by practicing
  • the cult of the dead (mortuary rituals, funeral,
    and disposal of contemporary dead)
  • tomb cult (family visits kin tombs for short
    duration)
  • hero cult

14
Tomb Cult
  • Antonaccio argues that tomb cult at Mycenaean
    tombs was neither hero cult nor strictly votive -
    instead it articulated a claim of kinship between
    the practitioners and those long dead.
  • Example The reuse of a Mycenaean tomb at Berbati
    in the Argolid, in which a Geometric (900-750)
    family interred a young woman with rich gifts of
    pottery. This shows a choice by her family to
    associate their dead with ancient dead.

15
Terracotta representing the discovery of a
Mycenaean Tholos Tomb, Arkhanes, Crete (800 BCE)
16
Rise of Mycenaean Tomb Cult
17
Tomb Cult in the Argolid
18
Archaic Offerings at Mycenaean Tholos Tomb
19
Kinship Claims
  • Reusing a Mycenaean tomb, making claims of
    kinship with the ancient dead, is an act of
    social display within the context of peer elite
    competition and control.
  • This archaeologically visible act paralleled
    social display with epic poetry as a means of
    legitimizing social and economic inequality.

20
Archaic Imitations of the Past (6th century
Corinthian)
21
Hero Cult
  • Antonaccio argues that this is distinct from tomb
    cult.
  • Tomb cult is of short duration, usually one
    family performs it only once or twice.
  • Hero cult has scheduled ritual action at
    specific locations, including processions,
    sacrifice, and games often emphasized by the
    construction of monuments.
  • Exists over a long time, often centuries.
  • Heroes are used as corporate ancestors.

22
Hero Cult at TroyTomb of Achilles
23
Troy - Tomb of Ajax
24
Heroes in Art Battle over Patroklos Corpse
25
Hero of Corinth
26
Hero of Corinth
  • 45 years old, tall, bad teeth, marked
    degenerative osteo-arthritis, fractured right
    hand.
  • Died in the Proto-Geometric period (1050-900).
  • Rediscovered at the end of the 7th c.
  • Corinthians built a temenos around him and other
    graves, made offerings such as a krater with a
    picture of Achilles in battle - this cult lasted
    until the sack of Corinth in 146 BC.
  • Probably thought from his size, broken hand, and
    antiquity that he was a hero, wanted to be in
    communication/association with him.

27
Mycenaean Grave Circle A Classical pottery for
the hero
28
LBA Aegean Relative Chronologies
  • See the handout. The Mycenaean pottery at Troy
    seems to establish a date for the fall of Troy
    VIIa in LHIIIc (1200-1050 BCE).

29
Mycenaean Pottery Distribution Patterns
  • LHIIIA1 (c. 1400) - first large-scale
    distribution of Mycenaean pottery outside of the
    mainland
  • LHIIIA2-B1 (1300-1200)- decorated pottery is
    exported at a far greater rate than ever recorded
    before in the Near East and central
    Mediterranean.
  • Range neat containers for small quantities of
    high quality, perhaps perfumed oil, table ware,
    trivia, cult odds and ends, and ceremonial vases
    of varying size and importance (Hankey 1979).

30
Argolid Control?
  • The majority of exported Mycenaean pottery tested
    by optical emission spectroscopy belongs to Type
    A, which has a wide range but is centered in the
    Argolid.
  • Seems to imply Argive dominance of the oil trade
    with the Near East.

31
LHIIIA2 Mycenaean Pottery
32
LHIIIC Mycenaean Pottery Types
33
LHIIIC Mycenaean Stirrup Jar
34
Joslyn Mycenaean Stirrup Jar c. 1150 BCE
35
Mycenaean Pottery in Troy VIIa
36
Knobbed Ware Troy VIIb
37
Blegens Chronology
38
Bryn Mawr Symposiums Take on Pottery Implications
  • Imported LHII and LHIIIA1 pottery gives a range
    of c. 1500-1375 BCE to the middle phases of Troy
    VI.
  • Late Troy VI continues with LHIIIA2 imports,
    lasts into the beginning of LHIIIB (early 13th
    c.).
  • After the ruin of VI, people rebuilt as VIIa in
    the course of LHIIIB ceramic period. This city
    was destroyed by fire in early LHIIIC, right
    after 1200.

39
Rutter Troy VII
  • Date of settlement life
  • Blegen - 1275-1240 BCE
  • Others - 1300/1280 - 1180 BCE (early
  • LH3C period, based on the latest
  • Mycenaean sherds found)
  • Destruction date
  • Blegen - 1240, altered to 1270.
  • Nylander - 1200/1190 on basis of latest
  • Mycenaean imports, which he and Mee think
  • include LH3C types.

40
Achaians on the Move
  • Around this time the city of Tarsus (in Cilicia,
    Asia Minor) is no longer an outpost of Hittite
    rule - is settled by Achaian refugees in LHIIIC.
  • Perhaps other Achaian refugees launched the raid
    that destroyed Troy VIIa?

41
Historicity?
  • IF Hisarlik is the site of Homeric Troy
  • (as Schliemann, Dorpfeld, Blegen and others
    think),
  • IF the Trojan War of Greek myth was an actual
    historical event,
  • Rutter asserts that Troy VIIa is most likely
    candidate for Priams city (Wood and others
    prefer Troy VIh).

42
For Tuesday
  • Marshall arguments of the scholars you have read
    to support or deny the historicity of the Trojan
    War.
  • Example The Trojan War must be historical
    because of the following evidence (cite scholars
    and evidence).
  • You may divide up the scholars/arguments among
    the people in your group, so that each student
    has responsibility for a particular
    article/author.
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