Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Sleuths close in on Odysseus home


Where exactly is the ancient island of Ithaca? It is the reported home of Homer's hero Odysseus. Some believe that the island is mythical but there is now some evidence that it really existed.

CNN has an article titled Sleuths close in on Odysseus home. The article notes, "Finding Ithaca could rival the discovery of ancient Troy on the Turkish coast in the 1870s. No one can be certain whether Odysseus or his city really existed. But the discovery of the ruins of Troy, where Odysseus and other legendary Greek heroes did battle, has led scholars to believe there is more to Homer's tales than just legend. Until now, the kingdom of Ithaca was thought to have been on the Ionian island of Ithaki. But Bittlestone's team say they believe it is on Paliki, a peninsula on the island of Kefalonia, west of Ithaki."

One of the reasons that Ithaca may have remained undiscovered for so long may be due to changes in Ithaca's landscape. Robert Bittlestone said, ""There is every evidence we are on the right track. For thousands of years people thought Homer was wrong in how he described the location of Ithaca. I believe Homer was right but we didn't see it because the landscape has changed."

This is certainly an exciting discovery if true. I can only imagine what wonders may be unearthed in an archaeological dig at Kefalonia (Ithaca).

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