Thursday, 12 December 2013

like a sea-gull that roams the waves.....(σαν γλάρος των κυμάτων δρομέας....)

      By Hettie Putman Cramer & Makis Metaxas
Odysseus as a "sea-gull" that roams the waves




















This following excerpt from 'Alexandra' of Lycophron (4th century BC) is 'puzzling' and highly prophetic. It is one of the 'darker' and yet most famous poems of Greek antiquity. It locates Odysseus' palace, where all

Tuesday, 19 November 2013

The Lost Kingdom of Homer's Doulichion

          By Hettie Putman Cramer & Makis Metaxas
Meges' Kingdom, Echinae the holy islands, Homeric Doulichion,
"Graecia Antiqua" Johannes Laurenmberg  Collection of Fotis Kremmydas.

It is well known that the epic poem of the ‘Odyssey’ and the special importance of the name Odysseus have triggered the search for the location of Homer’s Ithaca and for the palaces of the ‘anax’ (king) of the Kephallenes. This has always been an important issue at all levels of research. 
However, the identification of the position of Homeric Doulichion - the Mycenaean Kingdom at the border of the Kingdom of Odysseus from where as many as forty ships were sent to the Trojan War as well as the largest amount of suitors to claim the throne of Homer's Ithaca - was actually the biggest mystery of the Homeric topography since ancient times.
After reading carefully where and how Homer describes the location and geomorphology of Doulichion, it is very important to realize that from the 5th century B.C. the ancient Greek historians and geographers have

Monday, 11 November 2013

Odysseus Kingdom and the location of Homer's Ithaca

  By  Hettie Putnan Cramer & Makis Metaxas
Homer's Ithaca
Myceanaean  Greece 1250 B.C
The search for Homer’s Ithaca and the controversy over whether it could be definitely identified with the Ithaki of historical times appears to date back to very early in the historical era. Of the ancient writers, Strabo (C 454) is the one who tells us most about the doubt in the minds of the geographers and historians

Friday, 25 October 2013

Ithaca and Homer : Towards a Solution of an Old Mystery.

LH (Mycenaean) settlement at Tzannata /Poros Kephallenia (Kefalonia) :                          

A strong candidate for the seat of King Ulysses                            

(excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas)

 Photo from the central chamber of the monumental tholos tomb excavated  from 1992 to 1994 by Dr Lazaros Kolonas, who became later the  General Director of Antiquities of the Greek Ministry of Culture.
Recent excavations and archaeological research have shown that the Pronnoi (Πρόννοι) district, in the southeastern part of Kephallenia (Kefalonia), contains a great many prehistoric sites. The outstanding find in this area has been the monumental Mycenaean royal tholos tomb and part of a LH. (Mycenaean) 1600-1100 BC settlement near the village of Tzannata which attests to the existence of a major city of some

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

The "Hill of Hermes" and the springs in Homer's Ithaca

The great number of springs mentioned by Homer as one of the notable features of Homeric Ithaca, considered in conjunction with the innumerable springs existing in Kefalonia, -particularly in the Pronnoi district, - (in contrast to the aridity of Ithaki in historical times).


 (excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas)
                                                 Lake - spring Akoli (also called Avythos) at Ayios Nikolaos 

It is well known that Homer lays particular emphasis on the fact that Ithaka was noted for its numerous watering-places (Od. 13.247) and springs (Od. 17.207; 13.109, 147; 20.154). Homer's  text leaves no doubt about it that one of Ithaca's main characteristics were the  abundant water springs.This was one of the

Sunday, 13 October 2013

The Spring of Arethusa,the Raven’s Crag or Crow’s Crag, and the ‘the furthest point’ in Homeric Ithaca

 (excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas)
           The spring called  "potistis" (named from the verb ποτίζω, anc.Gk = ἀρέθω,[=Arethusa]
 meaning ‘irrigate’ or ‘water’), in the area Stou Lani ton Kambo of Gradou
 below of the  Raven’s Crag (Kορακόπετρα) at Anninata village.

The Homeric place-name Κόρακος πέτρη (Raven’s Crag or Crow’s Crag)[i], was  near the southernmost point of Homeric Ithaka. According to Homer,[ii] it was there that Eumaios the swineherd kept his pigs, which he watered at the Spring of Arethusa (so named from the verb ρέθω, meaning ‘irrigate’ or ‘water’).
These two above mentioned locations are described in Homer's tale as laying in the southernmost area of Ithaca. Odysseas hiked - following goddess Athena's instuctions- to this area when he left the Cave of the

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

The unique ‘harbour of Rheithron’ in Homeric Ithaca

    (excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas)


  The mouth of the Vohynas where it emerges from the Poros gorge. In the background is Mount Ainos   
                                                                        Aerial photograph of  Poros by George Avgoustiniatos

Homer locates the "harbour of Rheithron" in Homeric Ithaca in the area ‘below [or near] to the wooded Neïon’ (the ὑπονήιος area),  just outside the city (Άστυ).
Today most translators agree that the Neion was a mountain on Homeric Ithaca. It is our belief  that  ὑπονήιος  [hypo-neion] area (the area ἐπ, ὑπ (περ, παρτ νήιον), that is the area near the

Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Melissani :The famous Cave of the Nymphs in the Thirteenth Book of the Odyssey.

 (excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas)


The dramatic lake-cave of Melissani    (Karavomilos- Sami, Kefalonia)

The famous Cave of the Nymphs in the Thirteenth Book of the Odyssey together with Mount Neriton are mentioned by Homer as one of the main landmarks of Ithaca.
Athena, the goddess of wisdom and knowledge, was well aware of the importance of these  landmarks

Mount Neriton of Homer’s Ithaca

Points of identification between Mount Neriton of Homer’s Ithaca and Mount Ainos on Kephallenia, which lies within the purlieus of the Pronnoi distric.


         (excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas)
        Dedicated to  Dr. John T. Pierce,  Dean of  the Faculty of Environment at Simon Fraser University 
                                                                 Mount Ainos.                          Photo by Rose Mande

Taking Homer’s descriptions as cardinal points for study and analysis, we find that Mount Neriton is mentioned in every description of Homeric Ithaca, of which it is an integral part worthy of being mentioned and described whenever the opportunity arises. As we shall see, it is abundantly clear that Mount Neriton

Monday, 7 October 2013

South eastern Kephallenia and the Topography of Homeric Ithaca

(excerpt from the book: Homeric Ithaca, H. Putman Cramer / G. Metaxas


Recent excavations and archaeological research[i] have shown that the Pronnoi (Πρόννοι) district, in the South eastern part of Kephallenia (Kefalonia), contains a great many prehistoric sites. The outstanding find in this area has been the monumental Mycenaean royal tholos tomb[ii] outside the village of Tzannata, which attests to the existence of a major city of some importance beyond its own borders, ruled by a Mycenaean prince.[iii]

Aerial photograph of the Mycenaean royal tholos tomb at Arès near Tzannata, just outside the impressive Poros gorge, which was excavated from 1992 to 1994 by Dr. Lazaros Kolonas, who became later the  General Director of Antiquities in the Ministry of Culture.
(Photo: Lazaros Kolonas)


It is a fact that after more than a hundred years of excavations in the Ionian Islands – mostly on Ithaki,[iv] where finds attesting to Mycenaean habitation have been few and far between – it appears from the