Friday, January 13, 2017

Priam's treasure

Professor Mary Beard is visiting Russia today in her quest to examine Roman artifacts in various museums.

And has a photo of Helen of Troy's headdress.

The backstory of the headresss can be read in the 1996 NYTimes article. 

or at the Wikipedia link

Schlieman found it, snuck it out to Athens and gave it to the German museum.

He claimed it was Helen of Troy's, but it actually dates from 800-1000 years earlier, since it was found in the ruins of that city. (The Troy of Homer was not deep, and missed/destroyed by Schlieman. However, one has to note he didn't realize that Troy went back to 3000 BD, or that that the top was leveled off by the Romans so these facts could have confused him.

After WWII, the treasure disappeared and was assumed to be looted and melted down, but it seems the Russians confiscated it for their own museum, but kept that secret for 20 years. Now there is a big kerfuffle on who really owns it: Turkey, Greece, Germany or Russia. The "original" owner was the Ottoman Empire, which no longer exists, and just for good measure, the heirs of the guy who actually owned the sight are sueing also.

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