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Was there a Dorian Invasion?

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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Topic: Was there a Dorian Invasion?
    Posted: 16-Mar-2006 at 07:28

As for the Heraklidae, there is no mention in Homer's Illiad. "Heraklidae" simply means "Son of Heracles"

I must be missing something here, in this topic the use of mythology as an argument seems to have been commonly used and by being so, obviously accepted by all participating 'parties'.

Didn't you ask where he mentions them and did I not post exactly where ?
Besides, what were the Herakleides if not the sons of Herakles that believed their ancestor was deprived of his rights to the throne returned to obtain what was rightfully theirs?
Homer also mentions in Iliad 3.27 :

"for that the other sons and grandsons of mighty Heracles threatened him."
He clearly mentions "sons and gradsons" why are they not part of the Herakleides?


My theory. To be honest I don't have one but this is what I've come to believe on the various theories presented.


I'm sure that the Dorians were 100% Greek and the theory of their invasions has a couple of flaws. But there is an undoubtable alteration in the ruling class of Peloponessos. While we can find Dorian liguistic elements in the Linear B' tablets, the language does become alot more simplifed. But since this takes place 2-3 centuries later, it could be nothing more than simple evolution.

On the Sea People invasion, it is quite interesting that all the areas that were part of the SP. obviously had some kind of connection to Myceneans, either by trade or colonies. Drower for example tells us that while these people are theorized to be connected with Hittites (some have mentioned Canaanite, Nubians see A.Nibbi) these people wear a distinctive type of clothing in all  the depictions of them, their ships and armor is something totally unrelated to the above. The major flaw in this theory is, while they were powerfull enough, to raid and destroy the Myceneans (a look at Mycene and Tyrinth indicate the need of huge power) and allegedly destroy the Hittites, (dispite the total lack of any archeologic finds to indicate foreign presence either in Greece or as deep as the Hittite capital 'Hattushash') they stumbled on Ramsses III that defeated them with ease, even though we have no indication of Egypt bearing such power. Besides there are several Hittite and Amenhotep III records that indicate alliance with these people prior to any destruction.

If you want a theory, I'd look into internal revolts and continuous change of hands on the thrones.
Thucydides tells us that 1.12:

"Even after the Trojan war Hellas was still engaged in removing and settling, and thus could not attain to the quiet which must precede growth. The late return of the Hellenes from Ilium caused many revolutions, and factions ensued almost everywhere; and it was the citizens thus driven into exile who founded the cities."

We know of the 7 against Thebes, the Atheneans attacking Eleusis, the Dorian return and after all this, the Myceneans return from Troy to see someone else having claimed their throne. This may have lead to yet another war and even more problems.
Of course there is a slight problem in the timeline but it just could be possible.

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  Quote Maljkovic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Mar-2006 at 08:34
Hasn't anyone read my post in the Sea People thread? The Sea People were merely opotunistic pirates using weak moments of the great kingdoms to sack their capitols. After the sackings they took off running.
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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Mar-2006 at 16:37

Sorry hadn't read it before but now that I did, one or two questions.

How do you explain the lack of destructed 'sites' in Thessaly and Macedonia. They must have past through there or are you suggesting a different route ? But then again, the question that comes to mind is, why conquer an area destroy everything in site and abandon it?

There is also a total lack in archeologic finds that would indicate a 'foreign' origin, not to mention that according to anthropologic finds, there was never any kind of 'drastic' differentiation in anthropologic racial types that could indicate some foreign 'invaders' or settlers.

(if someone could tell me how to cut and upload a pic from a pdf file, I could put up a table from J. Lawrence Angel's "Social Biology of Greek Culture Growth")

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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16-Mar-2006 at 19:56
There is no evidence of any Dorian invasion.

All the evidence instead points to destruction in the LHIIIB period, while the Dorians appear in the LHIIIC period. Mythology does not trump archaeology. Moreover, a power vacuum was created, and the cities was destroyed, before the arrival of the Dorians, as I have shown. Therefore, the Dorians must have migrated in the LHIIIC period and become the ruling class. But they were NOT the destroyers of the palaces and cities.
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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 01:18
I'd like to review the evidence for a Dorian invasion:

  1. Myths regarding a militaristic arrival of the sons of Heracles, presumably the Dorians.
  2. The introduction of new cultural elements, including cremations, different swords, iron, and different styles of pottery, into Mycenaean civilization.
  3. The collapse of Mycenaean civilization due to warfare.
On #1:

Heracles was the epomynous Dorian hero, like Theseus was the Ionian hero.  His "saga" was used by the Dorians to show a natural "ascendancy" of their tribe. The myths were propoganda devices. The identification of the Dorians as the "sons of Heracles" returning to "overthrow usurpers" certainly struck a chord in the Greek world, and was probably a propoganda device for justifying the arrival of the Dorians. However, to take it literally as fact is ridiculous.

On #2:

All these elements are introduced after 1140 BC at the earliest. It is not unreasonable that there was a migration of Dorians around this time. However, to suggest that it was an invasion is a big leap, mainly because evidence of this nature is typical of a migration, and evidence of an invasion is not present.

On #3:

This destruction occurred mainly 1220-1190 BC, with a destruction of 1170 BC at the latest. As you see, the destruction occurred earlier than the arrival of the Dorians. If the arrival of the Dorians is marked by said cultural characteristics, then they would have been introduced to Greece when the Dorians arrived -and they are not present at the time the palaces and cities were destroyed. Logically, then, the Dorians could not have destroyed Mycenaean civilizaiton.

The evidence for a Dorian invasion is contradictory and weak. The evidence for a migration is much stronger. The long-held tenet that the Dorians destroyed the Mycenaeans is simply no longer an acceptable hypothesis in the face of this contradictory evidence.

References:

http://projectsx.dartmouth.edu/history/bronze_age/lessons/le s/28.html
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Dorian
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heracleidae
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Heracles
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mycenaean_civilization
http://www.historywiz.com/mycenaeanfall.htm

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  Quote Maljkovic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 05:11

Thessaly and Macedonia were not very rich at that time and probably were not involved in the Aegean wars, so their defence capabilities were free to deal with the Sea People. This made them a less desirable target. Seems I haven't been clear enough, there was no conquest of anyone by the Sea People, only sackings. Sea People never fought a land battle that would of been necesary for conquest of the Peloponesean cities.

The philosophy of the Sea People was not "we came, we defeated, we ruled" but "we came, we pillaged, we left home". 

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  Quote Guests Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 10:45


The introduction of new cultural elements, including cremations, different swords, iron, and different styles of pottery, into Mycenaean civilization.

Cremnation isn't something new, we know of cremnation either partial or whole cremnation being practiced as far back as the Late Neolithic period. As I quoted before from "The End of the Mycenean Age" by William H. Stiebing, Hooker has clearly noted the pre-existance of these 'techniques'  prior to the alleged arrival/invasion and instead of a drastic adoption all archeologic finds acutally indicate a gradual adoptation.
Besides, the majority of finds connected to the Dorians are all finds of the 10th and 9th centuries obviously leaving a 1-200 year gap and if these were brought by some Dorians or Sea Peoples.The above should have never been seen in Athens, since we know that the 'Dorians' never did manage to conquer nor in Boetia and Thessaly in which they never settled.


Thessaly and Macedonia were not very rich at that time and probably were not involved in the Aegean wars, so their defence capabilities were free to deal with the Sea People. This made them a less desirable target. Seems I haven't been clear enough, there was no conquest of anyone by the Sea People, only sackings. Sea People never fought a land battle that would of been necesary for conquest of the Peloponesean cities.

Larissa actually prospered during the Mycenean age with a large center, Magnesia had 3 with  Iolkos (connected to the myth of the Argonauts)  being the largest. Macedonia also had its share of prosperous centers (Molyvopyrgos and Agios Mamantos, Thessaloniki), while not as large as those of Peloponessos equally important for the area. During the Late Bronze instead of seeing these centers expanding we find that several smaller ones are formed.
So saying that these areas were not very rich is inaccurate.

Your statement of the SP never fighting a land battle brings up a major flaw in this theory. Mycenae, Pylos, Argos, Corinth etc are far from being considered next to the sea. The only citadel that can be placed in this category is Tyrinth. Besides, this would need an emense amount of power. If we take Thucydides account of the sack of Troy, he mentions some 85 people in each ship (the rowers would obviously be considered as fighting power). A simple comparison of the power needed to sack only 1 city during a timline of some 10 years (if we consider Homer's account accurate) indicates at least 10-20 times more power would be needed to sack all these cities, since they all fell almost simultaniously.

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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 19:18
Nor have I ever proposed that the Sea Peoples destroyed Aegean civilization. I will make my position on the Sea Peoples clearer:

"The Sea Peoples" as we know them were simply a confederacy. The "core" were three tribes from Italy, the Teresh, Shardana, and Shekelesh -these allied with desperate mercanaries and refugees from war in the Aegean and famine in Libya. Their "allies", the other tribes of the Sea Peoples, probably outnumbered the main core, but the point is that they were a power that sacked and pillaged the E. Med.

As for the Dorian "invasion", I would like to see an answer to it by someone who believes there was such an invasion, e.g. Maju.
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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 23:25
Originally posted by St. Francis of Assisi


"The Sea Peoples" as we know them were simply a confederacy. The "core" were three tribes from Italy, the Teresh, Shardana, and Shekelesh ...


Which was the situation in Sardinia, Sicily and Etruria in the time of the Sea Peoples? I mean in real archaeological terms, not in wild speculations...

I'll tell you about two of them: the Sardinians may have been in a defensive attitude, as the ill-understood nuraghi (towers) seem to show. One could guess that they meant to launch attacks from them but I'd rather think that they seem to be defending. They may have been conquered by the Shardana (who knows?) c. 1300, causing them to migrate to Balearic Is., where they creatd a new and very tardy phase of Megalithism.

About the Etruscans: they were in their infancy. They are not considered Etruscans in the full sense yet, but just the culture of proto-Vilanova. In my opinion they (the elites) arrived from Anatolia (and these could have been a Sea People or just refugees from Troy) c. 1100, bringing the language, most of the Aegean culture and maybe the self-attributed name: Rassena (not Tyrrehnoi, which is a Greek term) nor Tusci (which is a Latin term).

Do you, Saint, have more data on the archaeology of Italy in the last third of he 2nd milennium BCE (particularly on Sardinia) that can complement my acount?



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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 23:32
Yes I do. But note that this topic is about the Dorians, and you are simply throwing up a smoke-screen to avoid responding to the evidence regarding the Dorians.

There is no evidence that Sardinia was assailed by invaders c.1300 BC. There is no reason to believe the Shardana are not Sardinians. The ancient Sardinians were already making long-distance voyages, having trade contacts with the Mycenaeans and Egyptians, as shown by the artifacts found in Sardinia and also the "Giant's Tombs" which contain images of sea-going vessels. In fact, the Sardinian civilization was flourishing from 1600 to 1200, and there is no evidence of any destruction in 1300. It was only after 1200 that the culture declines, and is revived after 300 years. There is no reason for them to migrate to the Balearic Islands, no reason for them to be on the defensive. You are making baseless speculations.

When did I say that the Etruscans were the Sea Peoples? Tyrrhenian refers to all the cultures of the Tyrrhenian Sea, so it is possible that the Sardinians were the Teresh and Shardana.

There is no archaeology to complement your account, because your account is baseless speculation ignoring all archaeological evidence.

The average rate of nuraghes emerging per year remains at about ~75 until 1200 BC. There is no interruption. You somehow say that the Sardinians were conquered 1300 BC, and migrated to the Balearic Islands -but this does not explain why their civilization was uninterrupted during this time period, nor why megalithism in the Balearic Islands has more similarity with its Iberian than Sardinian counterpart. Your theory is flawed.
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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 23:41
This is not any war: I gave the info I have and I even bothered to make the reference to the one you were giving quite inconsistently and without mentioning the source.

You take it? Fine. You don't? Fine. I'm sure there are people in this forum more qualified than you or I to geive throught reasonings on why the Dorian invasion. For me is transparent and the more I read the more clear.

...

Tyrrhenian (as you should know) derivates directly from the name that Greeks gave to Etruscans. Thyrrenian Sea means Etruscan Sea and nothing else. There's no Thyrrenian Sea without Thyrrenians, that is: Etruscans, nor without Greeks to name them that way. The sea has had other names such as Roman Sea in the middle ages, btw.

...

Hey, hey! Cool it down. I don't have any theory that says that Sardinians migrated to Balearic Is. necessarily. It's just something I threw over there. So far I've read that they came from Corsica - but I don't have an opinion.

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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 17-Mar-2006 at 23:59
Tyrrhenian was applied to the Etruscans because of the sea, and not vice-versa. It was always called the "Tyrrhenian" sea. The tribes coming thence were called the Tyrrhenoi, even before the Etruscans.

How is it transparent for you when you persist in spite of all the evidence to think that a Dorian invasion occurred?

I am reposting this so you can answer it. If you cannot answer it, then you should logically compromise your beliefs.

I'd like to review the evidence for a Dorian invasion:

  1. Myths regarding a militaristic arrival of the sons of Heracles, presumably the Dorians.
  2. The introduction of new cultural elements, including cremations, different swords, iron, and different styles of pottery, into Mycenaean civilization.
  3. The collapse of Mycenaean civilization due to warfare.
On #1:

Heracles was the epomynous Dorian hero, like Theseus was the Ionian hero.  His "saga" was used by the Dorians to show a natural "ascendancy" of their tribe. The myths were propoganda devices. The identification of the Dorians as the "sons of Heracles" returning to "overthrow usurpers" certainly struck a chord in the Greek world, and was probably a propoganda device for justifying the arrival of the Dorians. However, to take it literally as fact is ridiculous.

On #2:

All these elements are introduced after 1140 BC at the earliest. It is not unreasonable that there was a migration of Dorians around this time. However, to suggest that it was an invasion is a big leap, mainly because evidence of this nature is typical of a migration, and evidence of an invasion is not present.

On #3:

This destruction occurred mainly 1220-1190 BC, with a destruction of 1170 BC at the latest. As you see, the destruction occurred earlier than the arrival of the Dorians. If the arrival of the Dorians is marked by said cultural characteristics, then they would have been introduced to Greece when the Dorians arrived -and they are not present at the time the palaces and cities were destroyed. Logically, then, the Dorians could not have destroyed Mycenaean civilizaiton.

The evidence for a Dorian invasion is contradictory and weak. The evidence for a migration is much stronger. The long-held tenet that the Dorians destroyed the Mycenaeans is simply no longer an acceptable hypothesis in the face of this contradictory evidence.



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  Quote Maljkovic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Mar-2006 at 10:19

I never said they sacked everything, I actually doubt they sacked more then one city in the Peloponese, if that much. What I am trying to say is they were never a really big military power, like some people are trying to suggest. They might have had a tribal organisation, but never statehood.

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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Mar-2006 at 10:26
If they never sacked anything, then they were not an invasion but a migration. If they were a migration, then they arrived c.1140 BC. That is what I have been trying to say all along.
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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Mar-2006 at 20:53
Originally posted by St. Francis of Assisi

Tyrrhenian was applied to the Etruscans because of the sea, and not vice-versa. It was always called the "Tyrrhenian" sea. The tribes coming thence were called the Tyrrhenoi, even before the Etruscans.


False. Where do you get that from? Who called the sea in any manner "even before the Etruscans"? I thought the Etrsucans were the first to write in all Italy...

Wikipedia: The name for this part of the Mediterranean Sea derives from the Greek name for the Etruscans, who were said to be emigrants from Lydia and led by the prince Tyrrhenus.


Edited by Maju

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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 18-Mar-2006 at 22:08
Before the historical Etruscans. The prince Tyrrhenus arrived during the Trojan War, so it shows that the name "Tyrrhenoi" was in use as early as 1180 BC.

But this thread is on the Dorians.

I would like you to answer all my points regarding the Dorians, or to declare that you are mistaken in your belief that they invaded Greece. Enough avoiding.
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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Mar-2006 at 01:35
We don't know for sure, but it's possible.

We just know that Greeks called Etruscans Tyrrhenoi or Tyrsenoi.

...


The dates of destruction or abandonment of altogether too many important sites are either unreliable or unknown, for a wide variety of different reasons. Although slow progress is being made, it will be a long time yet before the numerous local catastrophes of the two centuries between ca. 1250 and ca. 1050 B.C. can be placed with some degree of confidence into the order in which they occurred. The summary which follows is therefore a preliminary report at best - and a selective one at that! - on work still very much in progress.

(1) A major destruction level within the citadel walls at Mycenae defines the end of the LH IIIB2 [c.1190] ceramic phase. The entire area within the walls appears to have been destroyed by fire and the palace was never rebuilt.

(2) A major destruction by fire took place within the walls at Tiryns at the end of LH IIIB2 or just possibly in the very earliest stages of LH IIIC. [c.1190]



http://projectsx.dartmouth.edu/classics/history/bronze_age/l essons/les/28.html

This makes your "arrival of the Dorians" only 50 years after the destructions. You seem to date your "arrival of the Dorians" on some characteristic pottery but it could well have left no remains, as I have mentioned before:


Winter (1977)

Winter has made the important point, on the basis of analogies with the 3rd century B.C. Galatian invasion of Anatolia and the 6th century A.D. Slavic invasion of Greece, both of them undisputed historical events, that invaders on a lower cultural level than the inhabitants of the area which they invade often do not leave behind any sign of their presence other than destruction levels and evidence for drastic depopulation. Even when they remain in the invaded area, as both the Galatians and the Slavs did, they are often not archaeologically detectable or observable since they may wholeheartedly adopt the existing material culture of the population which they have conquered.



Same source.

Others (re-read the proposed theories) in that source that we both are using, suggest that the "coarse ware" is not indicative of any invasion as such but just a lower quality "creole" pottery, possibly made by slaves, because it's found always together with Mycenan pottery - even among the alleged "Mycenean refugees" of Cyprus.

So why don't you read my replies instead of making a war?

Take it easy. The Dorians could well have invaded and left no remains at all, as Galatians or Slavs did after them.

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  Quote Maljkovic Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Mar-2006 at 09:52

Why can't a war result in both sides being destroyed? Because destruction of one side is brought on by the other side. When one side is destroyed, it can no longer destroy the other side. The result of this reasoning is that Peloponese was conqured by some outside power or that it fell under the rulling of a single Peloponesean city, and that the remains of this city have not yet been discovered. This unknown city would then be the only one that was conqured by the Dorians. But I doubt that, I believe Francis is right about the Dorians being only a migration.

My proof of that is the myth of Cyclop Walls. Greeks from later period (Dorians) believed these walls to be built by giants, which they would of known wasn't true if they had fought with the people who actually did build them (Acheans). Therefore, Achean civilization was destroyed before the Dorian arrival. 

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  Quote St. Francis of Assisi Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Mar-2006 at 10:53
Excellent point Maljkovic.

So, Maju, you are saying that even though there is no evidence of a Dorian invasion, you are going to believe it anyway?

If the pottery, etc. was characteristic of the Dorians, and there were two Dorian arrivals, according to you, why do the remains of the Dorians only appear in the latter of the two, and not in the first? Illogical, no?

And if the Dorians did not leave remains either time, then why is it that the class structure changes only in their "second" arrival?
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  Quote Maju Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 19-Mar-2006 at 19:24
Originally posted by St. Francis of Assisi


So, Maju, you are saying that even though there is no evidence of a Dorian invasion, you are going to believe it anyway?


We do have an evidence of Dorian invasion: their presence. What we don't have is any evidence, not even an indication of any Sicilian or Etruscan or Trojan or Hittite invasion whatsoever.



If the pottery, etc. was characteristic of the Dorians, and there were two Dorian arrivals, according to you, why do the remains of the Dorians only appear in the latter of the two, and not in the first? Illogical, no?

And if the Dorians did not leave remains either time, then why is it that the class structure changes only in their "second" arrival?


I don't know. I haven't studied the phenomenon so much in depth.

How do you know that the class structure changes only in what you call "second arrival"?

How do you know that the pottery that you call "Dorian" was original of Dorians? Have you found it in the regions of origin of the Dorians, namely Northern Greece? Have you found a pattern of cultural movement from Northern to Southern Greece and find that this pottery is part of it?

I don't. But maybe you have more evidence that I ignore.

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