The Turkish Archaeological and Mythological City: Troy Uncovered in Engaging Presentation

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On March 7, 2024, Yunus Emre Institute, USA organized an online lecture hosted by Professor Rüstem Aslan exploring the ancient city of Troy located in Türkiye in collaboration with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Prof. Aslan started the online presentation with a discussion on the location of Troy and its importance as a trading site between Asia and Europe during the Bronze Age. Because of the city’s importance in controlling sea traffic and large wealth, it garnered a reputation and became the setting of influential literary works such as Homer’s Iliad and the Odyssey. The mythological status of this city became so great that many scholars wondered if the city or the Trojan War was fake or a myth.

Prof. Aslan then explained the unique structure of the city and its nine archaeological layers due to the city being repeatedly destroyed and rebuilt on top of previous layers. The rediscovery of Troy and its artifacts was led by archaeologists such as Frank Calvert and Heinrich Schliemann and uncovered many unknown secrets such as the prevalence of the Hittite Language. 

Today, the city of Troy still has attracted the interests of both archaeologists and the public alike as the site has since been added as a UNESCO World Heritage site. 

After the event, many questions were asked to Prof. Aslan about Troy and new excavations at the site, illustrating how engaged the audience was in understanding this Turkish archaeological marvel and further immersing themselves in Turkish history.