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The classic epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey record a [#permalink]
07 Sep 2013, 23:21
The classic epic poems The Iliad and The Odyssey record a series of tales about war, courage, trickery and love. The Iliad records a conflict between a confederation of warriors called “Greeks” and the walled city of Troy.The Odyssey relates the adventures of Odysseus, a warrior whose 10-year voyage home was fraught with peril. Both poems are credited to Homer, a bard whom tradition holds was blind, but most historians believe that the poems are remnants of a pre-Greek civilization known as the Mycenaean, which had thrived in the same area several hundred years before. Though the epics have been popular for millennia, many historians long believed that Homer had simply invented geographical details about two of the poems’ most important locations, the city of Troy and Odysseus’ island home of Ithaca.
In the nineteenth century, however, an amateur archeologist named Heinrich Schliemann used information from The Iliad and other literary texts to locate ruins now widely accepted as the site of ancient Troy. Schliemann and others after him uncovered evidence that up to six cities had been built one on top of the other at Hisarlik, a town on the Western coast of modern Turkey. This location is several miles from another site popularly thought a likely candidate for Troy before Schliemann’s discovery. The layer Schliemann claimed was ancient Troy seemed to have been destroyed by fire, which would align with Mycenaean methods of warfare. Archeologists also uncovered human remains displaying signs of sudden, violent death.
Inspired by Schliemann’s success, twentieth century amateurs also searched for the true site of Ithaca, the island home of Odysseus. In 2005, a British consultant named Robert Bittlestone claimed that a peninsula on the Western edge of a large island called Cephallonia is the location of historical Ithaca. Bittlestone and the academics who support his theory claim that the peninsula was once an island itself, but that earthquakes and rockslides joined the smaller landmass to the larger one.Bittlestone claims that the modern Greek island of Ithaki, traditionally considered the home of Odysseus, is not the actual site. He was led to this conclusion because Ithaki is mountainous, whereas The Odyssey describes Ithaca as “low-lying.”
1)The passage is primarily concerned with a) giving credit to amateur archeologists such as Schliemann and Bittlestone. b) arguing that the site of ancient Troy is located in modern Turkey. c) comparing the historical reliability of The Iliad and The Odyssey. d) describing a process by which poetic descriptions became more historically reliable. e) discussing the historical impact of Homer’s epic poems.
2) Which of the following is an assumption made by both Schliemann and Bittlestone in their searches for true locations? a)The warriors called “Greeks” in the epic poems were actually Mycenaeans. b)Homer’s blindness likely prevented him from giving accurate geographic descriptions. c)Violence and destruction by fire had occurred at both Troy and Ithaca. d)Modern Greece and Turkey are also interested in determining the true locations of Troy and Ithaca. e)Literary texts are often more accurate than local tradition as a way of determining true locations.
3) The passage suggests which of the following about academic acceptance of Bittlestone’s theory? a)Most academics see serious flaws in Bittlestone’s theory. b)Geologists and archeologists are the biggest proponents of Bittlestone’s theory. c)Bittlestone has gained some academic support for his theory. d)Academics in the twentieth century were largely opposed to Bittlestone’s theory. e)Academics who support Schliemann’s claims also support Bittlestone’s.
4) According to the passage, which of the following is a piece of evidence supporting the claim that the island of Ithaki is not the ancient home of Odysseus? a)Cephallonia is a larger island than the Ithaca described in the poem. b)Modern Ithaki has mountains, whereas Homer describes Ithaca as flat. c)Homer does not mention earthquakes or rockslides in The Odyssey. d)Ancient Ithaca has been joined to a larger island because of geographic upheaval. e)Ithaki is a modern Greek name, whereas Ithaca is ancient Greek.
5)Which of the following is an assumption made by both Schliemann and Bittlestone in their searches for true locations? a)The warriors called “Greeks” in the epic poems were actually Mycenaeans. b)Homer’s blindness likely prevented him from giving accurate geographic descriptions. c)Violence and destruction by fire had occurred at both Troy and Ithaca. d)Modern Greece and Turkey are also interested in determining the true locations of Troy and Ithaca. e)Literary texts are often more accurate than local tradition as a way of determining true locations. Appreciate if someone can elaborate the answers for Q1 ,Q2 and Q5