posted on Apr, 12 2013 @ 02:35 PM
I came across this interesting theory suggested by an Italian Felice Vinci and as I did not find anything on the matter, decided to share it:
The Baltic Origins of Homer's Epic Tales is an essay written by Felice Vinci, a nuclear engineer and nonprofessional historian, published for
the first time in 1995. The book, translated in several languages, submits a revolutionary idea about Iliad and Odyssey's geographical setting. Felice
Vinci started reading Greek classics and learnt about a passage from the De facie quae in orbe lunae apparet, by Plutarch, which points out the
location of Ogygia. This island became the point of departure of Vinci's theory.
According to his assumptions, the events told by Homer did not take place in the Mediterranean area, as the tradition asserts, but rather in the seas
of Northern Europe, Baltic Sea and Northern Atlantic. This theory has been widely taken into consideration (both in Italy, where the author has been
invited to state it in some universities and high schools, and in the rest of the world) and has caused heated debate among the academic community:
some of them agree with Vinci, others claim that his ideas don't have well-grounded linguistic and archeological bases.
"The real scene of the Iliad and the Odyssey can be identified not in the Mediterranean Sea, where it proves to be weakened by many
incongruities, but in the north of Europe. The sagas that gave rise to the two poems came from the Baltic regions, where the Bronze Age flourished in
the 2nd millennium B. C. and many Homeric places, such as Troy and Ithaca, can still be identified. The blond seafarers who founded the Mycenaean
civilization in the 16th century B. C. brought these tales from Scandinavia to Greece after the decline of the "climatic optimum". Then they rebuilt
their original world, where the Trojan War and many other mythological events had taken place, in the Mediterranean; through many generations the
memory of the heroic age and the feats performed by their ancestors in their lost homeland was preserved, and handed down to the following ages. This
key allows us to easily open many doors that have been shut tight until now, as well as to consider the age-old question of the Indo-European diaspora
and the origin of the Greek civilization from a new perspective."
The discrepancy of Homer’s epics with the Mediterranean geography has disturbed people since ancient times. In De facie quae in orbe Lunae
apparet Plutarch wrote that the island of Ogygia where Odysseus was kept prisoner by Calypso was at a five days sailing distance from Britain.
With this clue as a starting point, Felice Vinci took the map in one hand and Homer’s epics Iliad and Odyssey in the other and started tracing the
route of Odysseus’s adventures. He concluded that Ogygia could be one of the Faroe islands, and since Odysseus started eastward from the island so
does Vinci who step by step discovers a startling match between Homer’s description of the distances and topography of the places Odysseus visits
and the reality of northern Atlantic and the Baltic Sea.
On the Norwegian coast Vinci found the island of Scheria, land of the Phaecians, where his adventures lead him. It is his last stop before turning to
his own island Ithaca. In this northern milieu Ithaca is probably the island of Lyø whose topography and description fit remarkably well that of the
island in Homer’s epic.
On the journey between Ogygia (Faroe islands) and Scheria Odysseus encounters a strange phenomenon which Homer calls an Ocean River, which must have
been the Gulf Stream running along the Norwegian coast.
East of Lyø is the Homeric Peloponnese, where king Nestor reigned. Vinci’s theory proposes that this is an island now called Sjælland where the
Danish capital Copenhagen is located. Homer’s account of Peloponnese describes an island, which is a plane, void of mountains. The Greek Peloponnese
is mountainous, therefore not a flat land, furthermore it is not an island, but connected to the mainland.
Homer’s Ithaca is near a group of three islands: Same, Zacynthus and Dulichium, which means ‘the Long’, an island that has not been found in the
Mediterranean. Dulichium can be identified with Langeland whose name refers to ‘long’ in Danish.
The list of similar findings on which Vinci bases his theory is astounding, and they include the city of Troy in a small village named Toija in
southwestern Finland. Troy was the legendary city where prince Paris took Helen, wife of king Menelaus, after having abducted her. The war that ensued
was fought over a period of ten years and was finally concluded when the allied forces of Menelaus gained victory through Odysseus’s cunning plot to
use a wooden horse in which warriors were hidden.
But even if one accepts that Odysseus could have been sailing the Baltic Sea, how is it that the Greek corner of the Mediterranean today has many
places that actually have the names Homers records in his epics?
According to Vinci, and as other scholars have already earlier proposed, there was a notable cooling of the climate. This cooling caused a migration
from the Baltic Sea south to the Mediterranean. According to Vinci the people who thus migrated brought with them the names of their homeland. In the
new area they gave these names to their surroundings much like people have been doing for centuries.
Website of Troija: www.kiskoseura.fi...
Academic critic accepting the idea of Odyssey:www.paabo.ca...
Seems as a truly interesting theory, especially from the geographic profile. Linguistically there are many miconceptions in the theory, especially on
the part which refers to ancient Greek names affecting the names of nowadays. Many place have names simply by local meaning, especially in the Nordic
countries. Although as he is not a historian by profession I forgive him these. Yet many of his other arguments are very strong and convincing.
I would not find it very surprising though if Odyssey actually happened in that region. Also I had thought on the similarities between Nordic
mythology and Greek one. In some ways there are similar, although they have their differences.When I first read the book, I also found the climate and
profiles interesting, as Greece is overally very mountainous area and was not very cold, even historically. The articles overally are very convincing
and I thought it would be nice share here.
Many people here have much better knowledge on history, so I will let you decide what to think of it.
edit on 12-4-2013 by Cabin because: (no