Tour of the Site, Troy
The site of Troy is revealed in a series of information points.
Information Point 1
Information Point 1Visitors to the site follow a recommended route which comprises twelve information points. Information Point 1 is the starting point of the tour, from where a flight of steps leads to Information Point 2 on the wall which encompasses the area of the Roman Temple.
Information Point 2
Information Point 2This point offers a view over the whole site. The East Wall, a part of the hill's defenses in Troy VI, consisted of an embanked substructure some 6m/20ft high, 5m/16ft thick and exposed on the outside. On top of this, 1m/40in above the ground- level of the settlement, was a vertical superstructure of flat rectangular stones, almost regularly dressed. The surface has been rebuilt with clay bricks.South-East TowerThe South-East Tower was originally two-storyed. One of the characteristic features of the wall, the vertical offsets, can be seen in this area. They are spaced out at regular 9-10m/30-33ft intervals.Mycenaean houses Troy VIBeyond the wall and the tower, large houses of the Mycenaean settlement are visible: first House VI G, then to the northeast away from the wall House VI F and further north Houses VI E and VI C. The houses of Troy VI were built round the hill on a number of concentric terraces with almost certainly the king's palace on the highest point.Building VI F had pillars suggesting a second floor. Passing through the gate it will be clear that House VI E was particularly well built. It needs to be remembered that at the time these grandiose buildings were built, iron or steel had not been discovered. The quality of the stonemasonry is therefore all the more impressive.East GateThe wall projecting from the East Gate is overlaid with a Roman wall of dressed stone which bore the columns at the east end of the temple. The defensive wall from the south helped to form a curving passage some 10m/33ft long and 1.80m/6ft wide.From one of more than 20 limestone altars which surrounded the Temple of Athena, it is possible to see the massive tower of the North-East Gate in the Mycenaean walls.
Information Point 3
Information Point 3North-East BastionThe 8m/26ft high substructure of fine dressed stone with a receding embankment once bore a clay brick superstructure giving the gate a commanding height. Within the gate is a square well hewn from the rock and descending to a considerable depth. It remained in use for a long period.In the Troy VIII period a flight of steps was constructed on the north side of the tower leading down to another well outside the tower. The great retaining wall to the southeast dates from the Roman period. In the background, the auditorium of the Greek and Roman theater can be seen with the Dümrek Çayi plain (Simois) beyond.
Information Point 4
Information Point 4Altars and Temple of AthenaOnly the altars and mounds give any indication of the existence of the Temple of Athena. It has to be imagined lying to the west and north of the altars. The magnificent new temple which had been promised by Alexander the Great was built by Lysimachos but little survives. Columns, parts of the coffered ceiling, as well as other marble fragments from the temple built by Augustus, "strayed" into the levels of Troy II during the course of the excavations.These fragments were gathered together there by the researchers so that they could discover more information on the construction of the temple.ViewFrom these heights there is a fine view over the Dardanelles, European Turkey and the Menderes (Skamander) river plain. In the foreground lie remains of the "Burnt Town" (Troy II), which Schliemann believed was the city of Priam.
Information Point 5
Information Point 5Fortified wallAt Information Point 5 stands a cross-section of Troy I's fortifications with a tower-like projection behind which the then South Gate was situated. The gateway was only 2m/6ft wide. Troy I was built directly on to the rock floor and layers 4m/13ft deep would suggest that this period endured for many years (ca. 3000 to 2500 B.C.). Troy I covered the smallest surface area and in the course of time this settlement spread out to the south. Further finds from Troy I can be found at Information Point 7. Immediately above the tower stands a small propylon from Troy III. Its massive 3m/10ft long and 1.10m/3.5ft wide stone threshold is still in place.
Information Point 6
Information Point 6PalaceThe propylon was the entrance to a group of buildings in the center of Troy II citadel which were probably occupied by the city's ruler. The dwellings of the ruler and his family led off a graveled courtyard. The main building directly opposite the propylon known as the Megaron consisted of a porch and a main hall with a hearth in the middle. The structure of the walls (1.44m/4ft 9in) can be clearly seen here, but the height cannot be ascertained. It would have had a flat roof with an opening over the hearth. To the right was a smaller building with a porch, main room and rear chamber. On either side were buildings of a similar type opening off the courtyard but they were all destroyed by fire, leaving a 2m/6.5ft thick layer of stone and ash (Schliemann's "Burnt Town"). Many interesting finds have been unearthed in this level.The Troy II era (ca. 2500 B.C.) was characterized by major cultural and technological changes: a stratified society as witnessed by these buildings with the forerunner to the Greek temple ("megaron", porch and main room), the mixture of copper and tin to make bronze as well as the invention of the potter's wheel. So impressed was Schliemann by the astonishing finds, he believed that he had found the "Treasure of Priam" but he was wrong by at least 1000 years.
Information Point 7
Information Point 7Schliemann's trenchThe great north-south trench which Schliemann drove across the site passes between the first and second groups of Troy II houses and it is possible to see house walls and parts of ancient settlements, made from stones bound together with earth mortar. The restored supporting wall on the east side which is made from air-dried clay bricks marks the limit of the long, spacious buildings. A wooden bridge crossing the three ring walls of Troy II leads past the base of the ramp to Information Point 8.
Information Point 8
Information Point 8Prehistoric settlementFrom the corner of House M6 A a stone ramp to the Gate FM can be seen at a lower level. It leads from a lower settlement area (discovered in 1992) up to the inner citadel hill. The pre-historic citadel of Troy II which was destroyed by fire was at first thought by Schliemann to be the citadel of Priam. It had a circumference of some 300m/330yds and is now almost completely exposed. The layers of rubble range from a thickness of 1m/40in to 2m/80in.RampThe citadel's ring of walls stretches out on both sides of the ramp. It consists of a substructure 1m/3ft to 4m/13ft high made from roughly hewn limestone and earth mortar and has recently been restored (1992). It now resembles the condition it was in before the first excavations about 100 years earlier.Treasure of PriamSome 6m/20ft northwest of the ramp Schliemann found the so-called "Treasure of Priam" built into a cavity in the brick superstructure of the ring wall. It later found its way into the Museum of Prehistory in Berlin but disappeared at the end of the Second World War. It was recently discovered in the Pushkin Museum in Moscow. Similar finds of jewelry, vessels, weapons and tools made of gold, silver, electron (an alloy of gold and silver) and bronze have been made elsewhere in the Troy II level ("Burnt Town") and also in the layer of fire debris in Troy III.The remains of Troy III, IV, V are of little to interest the ordinary visitor. The citadel's principal monuments from Troy VI have been preserved and of Troy VII some wall remains survive, chiefly those between the citadel wall of Troy VI and the first terrace walls. The two walls belong to quite different periods. First the walls and houses of Troy VI were repaired by simple country- dwellers who still used "Mycenaean" pottery. They built their own smaller houses (similar in plan to Troy VI) against the inside of the citadel walls.Facing the northern corner of VI A, the remains of similar but larger houses (VI B) have been found. It is at this point that the "Mycenaean" wall which at one time had encircled the whole citadel (about 540m/590yds in length) ceases, although about two- thirds of the full length still remains. At a much lower level the huge foundations of the western corner of the citadel are visible, but its north side and a part of the west wall have disappeared.
Information Point 9
Information Point 9Kitchen building Palace VI MThe preserved remains of Troy VII's wall are visible on the way to Information Point 9 above the fortifications for Troy VI. Inside the ring wall stands the impressive 27m/30yd long supporting wall for House VI M which certainly formed a part of Troy VI's citadel.This large building of the Mycenaean period on a 4m/13ft high terrace is known as the Kitchen Building on the basis of the large pithois (storage vessels) and other objects found in one of the rooms. A flight of steps inside led to a second floor.
Information Point 10
Information Point 10ShrineThe shrine altars in the southwest show that soon after the Greek settlement and continuing well into the Roman phase, cult rituals took place outside the wall of "Sacred Ilios". The latest excavations reveal that the marble altar higher up dates from the time of Augustus, when the whole site of Ilios was renovated. A tribune and more shrines are situated beyond. The large supporting wall and the older altars lower down all originated in Hellenistic times (Troy VII).
Information Point 11
Information Point 11Odeion and bouleuterionAt the edge of the former agora stood the odeion a small theater for Musical performances and a little further east the bouleuterion, the Roman town hall. The odeion consists of a semi-circular orchestra which is separated from the skene or the stage building. The rows of seating are divided into wedge-shaped blocks. Some of the fragments belonging to the odeion are gathered together nearby.The bouleuterion about 70m/75yds away was built above Troy VI's fortified wall. The interior was surrounded by a wall on all sides, enabling the city fathers to conduct their business uninterrupted.
Information Point 12
Information Point 12South GateThe South Gate was probably the main entrance to the town, but only the paved roadway to the right of the tower (1.30m/50ins wide) remains. A covered water channel can be seen in the middle. To the left behind the South Tower, a pillar marks the location of the "Pillar House", which with a surface area of 27x12.5m/29x13yds was one of the largest houses of Troy VI. Set in front of the tower are two vertical stones, no doubt serving some cult purpose.