LONDON – For more than 3,000 years, the story of Troy and its captivating characters has fascinated generations.
Works such as Homer’s Iliad and Virgil’s Aeneid were inspired by the legend of Troy and have remained popular throughout the last millennium.
London’s British Museum will explore the history behind the story with an exhibition bringing together more than 300 objects and works of art.
In addition to combining ancient Roman, Greek and Etruscan objects dating back five millennia, the exhibition explores the archaeological aspect behind mythology as well as the way history has been narrated until the 21st Century.
Ceramics, weapons and other interesting findings from an excavation undertaken by German archaeologist Heinrich Schliemann in Turkey around 1870 will be on display.
The archaeological finds changed the former perception of Troy, helping convince the world the city really existed.
Schliemann’s discoveries between 1870-1890 made him famous throughout the world and many of the objects found have been loaned by German museums to the United Kingdom for the first time in almost 150 years.
Hartwig Fischer, director of the British Museum, said: “Ever since the poems of Homer were composed some 3,000 years ago, the story of Helen, the Trojan war and the fall of the great city has enthralled audiences across the world.
“Troy is perhaps the ultimate universal tale of human complexity, it features compelling characters and timeless themes of heroism and violence, love and loss, hope and despair, freedom of choice and fate imposed by the gods.”
Many artists over the years have been inspired by Trojan characters and the stories that surround them, he added.
Among the works of art and objects, which represent some of the most striking moments in the history of Troy, is an imposing marble sculpture by Filippo Albacini.
It shows the Greek mythology hero Achilles lying on the ground, dying, with an arrow stuck in his heel.
Curator Alexandra Villing, an expert in Greek collections, said: “The story of Troy has been told for the past 3,000 years from early Greek and Roman poets such as Homer and Virgil to Shakespeare and Margaret Atwood, the epic tale of love and death, passion and violence and the fall of a great city has inspired poets the world over.”
Artefacts have been provided by 28 museums, art galleries and private collections.
Troy: myth and reality will open to the public on Nov. 21 until March 8, 2020.