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Notes on the dating of the homeric poems dating old men

In fact, very many of the contextualizing details of both poems more clearly represent the historical context of the 9th-8th cent. The Early Iron Age was a period of growth and stability in Mainland Greece.

Political stability emerged from the development of a feudal system of land tenure.

From the archaeological record it appears that Troy was destroyed by an enemy force not long after 1200 BCE.

There is some likelihood that this is the event remembered in Greek tradition as the sack by the “Achaeans.” However, comparative study of medieval and other epic traditions where there is control from historical records shows that a tradition is capable of all kinds of distortion, exaggeration, and conflation of unrelated stories: men who lived in different centuries may be treated as contemporaries, traitors turned into heroes, defeats into victories.

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Although psychoanalysis from its early beginnings has shown – largely owing to Freud’s positing the Oedipus complex as the nuclear conflict – a distinct interest in classical Antiquity, the area of the great Homeric Epics has been singularly neglected as a chosen focus of psychoanalytic attention.

The ancients took it for granted that the Homeric heroes had once existed; some families claimed descent from them.

It was assumed that the Trojan War was a historical event, and that although the epics might well contain some poetic exaggeration and fictional embellishment, in general they gave a fair picture of conditions in the era they described.

Kings, known as "basileos" (singular) or "basileis" (plural) in Greek, maintained dominance over small pockets of arable land nestled within mountain valleys.

A group of retainers, called in Greek "hetairoi" (plural), supported the feudal lord in defense of his territory, for which they received dispensations of land.


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