Mark Twain said, "It 's easier to fool people than to convince them that they have been fooled".
Homer is a constant source of frustration for archaeologists, for philologists and all commentators ... hundreds of pages with thousands of names, events, references, locations,
etc. But they end up confusing rather than help us to clarify them. But if the solution was different from those painstakingly elaborated over the centuries by writers? Why Homer continued to praise the art of deception? Because he slept ... or because it is he who has deceived all of us for 3000 years? And the myths are only fairy tales, or are born from real events of which we just begin to glimpse the origin?

Seven articles of Alberto Majrani on the site of archaeologist Pierluigi Montalbano with automatic translation (you can click on google translator and select INGLESE as language)

Many other abstract in italian here
from the new book by Alberto Majrani entitled L'ASTUTO OMERO The CUNNING HOMER – Ulysses, Nobody, Philoctetes and the ingenious deception of the Odyssey

venerdì 26 agosto 2016

Homer told of Nordic sagas?

Iliad and Odyssey. Homer told of  Nordic sagas?
by Alberto Majrani

Who was Homer? And who was Ulysses? Is there a hidden truth behind the immortal verses of the Iliad and the Odyssey?
For three millennia, these questions have intrigued generations of scholars from all over the world. Giambattista Vico used the term "Homeric question" to define the infinite series of puzzles created by the two poems: an authentic indigestible brick for the poor students and the equally poor teachers.
And again: is the Trojan war a truly historic event, or is it only the invention of one or more poets, lived in different ages?
And do the archaeological remains found in the Turkish village of Hissarlik really belong to the city of Priam and Hector, or is this identification only the fruit of the lucid madness of Heinrich Schliemann, an amateur archaeologist, as fortunate as incompetent?
In reality nothing is sure, or scientifically proven. It is a long series of more or less plausible theories and assumptions that have given rise to endless polemics among scholars. At the beginning of the 1990s, two books were published that definitely place the environment where Ulysses and his companions operate in the north. The first is by journalist Iman Wilkens, entitled Where once Troy stood, which locates the ancient Troy in England, recently re-launched thanks to the quote of the novelist Clive Cussler in his Trojan Odyssey. The other, more convincing, albeit with some minor errors that we will examine, is the result of the careful research of a nuclear engineer fond of ancient literature, Felice Vinci, published in an essay titled Omero nel Baltico, published in five Italian editions and recently translated into English with the title The Baltic Origins of Homer's Epic Tales. The Iliad, the Odyssey and the Migration of Myth; the book is also translated  in Russian, Swedish, Estonian, Danish, Lithuanian. and German;  you can read three articles:

The two books have undermined one of the few certainties, namely the Greek origin of  poetry and classical mythology, because although it is true that the poems are written in Greek (but the Homeric Greek is quite different from the classical), the location of the places described by Homer cannot be reconciled with the homonymous localities of the Mediterranean, so much to have generated the rumor according to which "Homer is a poet and not a geographer". I don't know if there is a union of poets that can organize a protest demonstration against the idea that a poet must necessarily be incompetent in geography! And then Homer was a fussy who described everything with a meticulous accuracy, he would hardly always and systematically be wrong right on the core of his stories, that is the life of heroes and navigating peoples. Moreover, is it possible that no one, while he was declaiming his verses in the courts, among warriors, merchants, sailors and other singers, had ever pointed this out to him?
Vinci explains how the Homeric poems are likely to be some Nordic sagas that reached the Mediterranean along the way of amber. This justifies the geographical and climatic incongruities of the stories, such as the cold, often stormy and foggy weather (and the sailing season was summer), the absurd travel routes, the descriptions that do not square, the blond hair of many protagonists, and so on. According to our engineer, the Nordic navigators, went down to Greece to found in the XVI B.C. the Mycenaean civilization (soon we will see how to change this data), they would begin to rename the Mediterranean places based on their places of origin, handed down by mythologies and religions, in the same way as in America or Australia the European colonizers would have made centuries later . We know from the historical testimonies that the ancient geographers renamed the Mediterranean localities; the only substantial novelty introduced by Vinci is that this work was a little wider than previously believed. After a long period of oral transmission, the dark centuries of the so-called Hellenic Middle Ages, the poems would have been put in writing around VIII B.C., when the first written traces and the first representations are found. Synthesizing the myriad of cues of Vinci's volume is impossible; It is amazing that many insiders still ignore it, perhaps for having superficially branded the thesis as absurd without having examined it with the accuracy it requires. We can only add that the preface of the book was written by Professor Rosa Calzecchi Onesti, one of Homer's leading translators, and that prestigious scientific journals have published long essays.

Several Etruscan urns represent Ulysses and the sirens, with a double prows ship, with square sail and shields on the edges, just like the Viking ships.
At the end of 2013, the academic world finally moved: a special issue of the prestigious (and expensive) magazine of Classical and Medieval Culture was published   entirely dedicated to "Scandinavia and the Homeric poems". The vincian theory is appreciated by many scholars, opposed by bitter detractors, and totally ignored by others. In the appendix of my essay "Ulysses, Nobody, Philoctetes" (Logisma editore and now in the new "L'ASTUTO OMERO" (which you can buy in the form of an ebook here) I took the trouble to make some corrections, both from a geographical point of view and, even more important, from the historical and archaeological one. With the traditional Mediterranean localization of the events, since in the 800 BC the world described by Homer no longer existed for about 400 years, we were forced to hypothesize a long period of oral transmission of the poems, before someone put them in writing. Even Vinci supports the idea of ​​oral transmission, starting even from the sixteenth century. But changing its origin in the Nordic seas everything changes! For example, the Iron Age in Northern Europe began in full force only around VI B.C., so it is not surprising that the weapons described by Homer are made of bronze. The poems could have arrived in the Hellenic world even shortly before the end of the eighth century and immediately transcribed. In this way there is no longer even the need to imagine a long period of orality, moreover with a warlike Middle Ages in the middle, before the poems were put in writing: everything may have happened a few years after the arrival of the storyteller Homer, or someone from his school, in Greece. According to some authors, the Iliad and the Odyssey were officially put in writing for the first time around the VI B.C., at the time of the Athenian tyrant Pisistrato (but this news is not entirely certain). The scholars of the time would have collected and merged into two organic stories the different versions of the poems that were going around in Greece at that time, which could justify some dialectal variations that are found. As for the language, the Greek has much more affinity with the Germanic and Scandinavian languages ​​than with the Mediterranean ones; Greece and some other areas of the Mediterranean have undergone several invasions from the north during the protohistory, and therefore the poems may have come along with one of these migrations, while other invasions in different times and places have brought different languages ​​and dialectal variations in the islands and in the localities of our sea. Or, it can also be hypothesized that the Homeric Greek represented a kind of lingua franca in use along the street of amber, spoken and understood by all the peoples who traded the precious gem. Or we may think that the wandering storytellers, who were in a certain sense the intellectual elite of the time, knew the use of writing, unlike the vast majority of other ancient men. With this new temporal location, the Nordic origin becomes even more plausible, and justifies the absence of archaeological evidence prior to the eighth century. They seem to me to be much more logical hypotheses than that of an oral tradition that lasted centuries, of which there is no trace (not only writings, but not even graffiti, vases, statues), and which gives rise to infinite contradictions. In any case, all these hypotheses, of which each does not automatically exclude the others, but rather can add its effect in various ways, do not undermine the theory, but greatly expand the range of possible dates of the event. However, I would like to recommend to all the scholars of archeology, philology, mythology and simple enthusiasts the book of Felice Vinci, because the amount of suggestions worthy of attention is truly impressive. In other interventions on this site we can see another key , perhaps even more surprising, allows us to identify the origin of certain mythologies of which so far has never been understood much, as well as to clarify further obscure points to which we have mentioned, highlighting the extraordinary coherence of Homer's works and revaluing fully the mastery of their author . Replicating, however, the interpretations that are still taught in schools and universities of the world, the Homeric poems would seem to be a practically unique case, out of all the schemes and all the logic. Without a purpose, without an author, without a client, and that tell stories never happened of characters never existed in places unobtainable, if not at the cost of continuous forcing interpretative. Maybe there's something wrong.

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