01/12/2022

Trojan Period 1 – Zerah to Thor

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The Trojans

[GGF80]

GGF80 – Zerah (or Zarah or Zehrah or Zare) ibn Judah (1,751 – 1,676 BCE)

Zerah [or Zarah] was born at Padan-Aram (today’s Palestine) to Judah ibn Jacob and his daughter-in-law, Tamar of the Midianites.

Judah’s son, Er, the husband of Tamar, was so wicked that God put him to death. Judah’s second son, Onan, was to have a child with Tamar on his elder brother’s behalf, but he was also unrighteous, and God put him to death. Judah asked Tamar to wait as a widow until his next son was old enough to provide an heir, but Judah never intended to fulfill that promise. So, after Judah’s wife died, Tamar posed as a prostitute along the road Judah was traveling. Judah hired her, not knowing who she was. From that union came twins, Perez and Zerah (Genesis 38:27–30). Judah acknowledged he was the father and proclaimed Tamar innocent of all wrongdoing

Zerah was a twin, his twin brother was Pharez [or Perez], They were born in Thrace in 1,751 BCE. [Judah was the son of Jacob ben Isaac, the Semite), King of Goshen (1,892-1,745 BCE) and Leah bint Laban.]

In Hebrew the name Zerah means shining, dawning, rising… But Genesis (38:27–30) says that this individual was called Zerah because of a special circumstance during his birth. Zerah had stuck his hand out of the womb before being born, the woman attending Tamar tied a bright scarlet thread around his wrist to indicate this was the first born, and his name commemorated the colour of the bright thread. However, his hand was withdrawn and the birth proceeded, it was Pharez who emerged first, but the cord led to some confusion about which child was first-born and therefore due the privileges of this status. [Note: This is not the only struggle in the womb between twins, Jacob and Esau were also reported as struggling in Rebekah’s womb].

Pharez had two children Hezron and Hamul. The Book of Ruth states that there are nine generations between Pharex and King David, the gospel of Matthew confirms this, though the gospel of Luke has ten generations. the Book of Ruth and Matthew’s gospel indicate that a direct descendant of Pharez is Jesus Christ.

Two genealogical sketches for the twins, Zerah and Pharez
Imaginative Judah to Queen Elizabeth II

Ephemerism strikes again! Zerah married Electra Roma, reportedly one of the Pleiades (The Seven Sister nymphs), the daughter of Atlas Epher Kittim (the Titan) and Pleione (aka Aethra, an Oceanid nymph). Pleione lived in a southern region of Greece called Arcadia, on a mountain named Mount Kyllini. She married Atlas and gave birth to the Hyades, Hyas and the Pleiades.

Zerah joined the group that accompanied Jacob’s family to Egypt.

Zerah became patriarch of the Zerahite clan of Israelites (Num 26:20, Joshua 7:16–18).

Years later, the Zerahites were among the Israelites who returned to Jerusalem from their seventy years in Babylonian captivity. The returning tribe of Judah, including the children of Zerah, that by then numbered 690 members (1 Chronicles 9:3–6).

Zerah’s sons were Zimri, Ethan, Heman, Calcol and Darda (1 Chron 2:6). Cheated of their birthright (by Pharez becoming the first born) Zerah’s soon left the Israelites soon after the Exodus, some went to Greece, others (including Darda or Dardanus) went to Troy.

Some sources suggest that, after Troy’s fall (after 900 BCE) to the Geeeks, a group of Zerahites under the leadership of Brurtus migrated via Malta and on to Britain, where they founded New Troy, which the Romans later renamed as Londinium- London of course. Other Zerahites travlled via Spain, founding Zaragoza, and from there to Ireland so that, by the time of King David, Zerahites had become the royal family of Ireland (King Heremon).

Zerah’s great-grandson Achan disobeyed God and took some of the spoil from Jericho in direct violation of hisc ommand (Joshua 7:20–21).

Zerah died in 1,676 BCE at Ramases, Goshen, Egypt.

[GGF79]

GGF79 – Dardanus Acadia ben Zerah, King of Dardania (1,460 – 1,414 BCE)

Dardanus

So how to proceed with myth and reality so intermingled? Dardanus was reputedly the son of Zeus and Electra, but Electra was married to Zerah, so Dardanus is at least a step-son? Dardanus was also grandson to Atlas the Titan, who amonghis other roles was King of Arcadia.

Statue of Atlas the Titam

Dardanus would marry Chryse, the daughter of Pallas (another Titan), and grand-daughter of King Lycaon, the King of Acadia. Dardanus would later become King of Arcadia, when a Great Flood was threatened (the Greek version of the deluge).

But there is also the mortal Dardanus who was born in 1,460 BCE and died in 1,414 BCE, both occuring at Ramases, Goshen, Egypt. He married Chryse, the daughter of Pallas, they had two sons Idaeus and Deimas. Both Dardanus and his brother Iasion succeeded Atlas as Kings of Arcadia.

City of Ramases, Goshen, Egypt [aka Tel el-Dab’a]

Ramases was one of two storage cities that were built for the Pharaoh by the Hebrews in the Egyptian delta.

Nearby Goshen [Heroonpolis, Tell el-Maskhuta] was where the Hebrews lived for 430 years, some three million Hebrews lived here at the time of Moses. It was from where they departed for the Exodus to the Promised Land (Genesis 47:11), there were six hundred thousand men on foot, aside from children (Exodus 12:37; Numbers 33:3).

The city of Ramases is where Jacob, Joseph and his brothers lived and were buried. Excavations have discovered a series of tombs and the ‘Joseph statue’ though it had been smashed into pieces.

Hatshepsut statue in the Met

At the time of the Exodus it was the site of the Egyptian palace beside the Nile where Moses was placed in a basket among the bullrushes and found by Hatshepsut (she reigned from 1,478-1,458 BCE). She is only the second pharaoh attested as female – 5th Pharaoh of the Eighteenth Dynasty).

Hatshepsut’s temple at Al Minya

Dardanus and his brother Idaeus set sail in a boat filled with their followers.One group split off from the rest and settled, appointing Deimos as their King. The main group, first came to rest at the island of Samothrace in the northern Aegean Sea, according to Pausanias the island was for a time thereafter known as Dardania. But the land proved to be of poor quality, and it was here they lost their brother Iasion, slain by Zeus for ‘lying with’ Demeter..

They set off again and arrived in Asia Minor near to the city of Abydos (Egypt). The newcomers were welcomed to the land by King Teucer, the son of Scamander a river-god and Idaeae, a nymph. Teucer was so enamoured by Dardanus that he gave his daughter Batea to him in marriage. They had two sons Ilus and Ericthonius.

Teucer also gave Dardanus land from his kingdom. At the foot of the Idaean Mountains (Mount Ida) in the Troad, Anatolia. The nearby Dardanelles are of course named after him. Dardanus built a new settlement which prospered. Dardanus set about expanding his territory waging war against his neighbours, and creating a wider area known as Dardania.

Dardanus and Batea had a number of children; a son Ilus, who died young, a daughter Idaea, who would marry Phineus, a son Zacynthus, the first to settle the island of Zacynthos, and the son who was heir to Dardanus, Erichthonius.

[GGF78]

GGF78 – Erichthonius (or Erictanus) Illium, King of Dardania (1,412-1,366 BCE)

There were two kings called Erichthonius, this one should not be confused with the King of Athens.

This Erichthonius succeeded his father Dardanus as king of the Dardanians. He was the richest of men, as he inherited both the kingdom of his father, and that of his maternal grandfather.

Erichthonius was said to have enjoyed a peaceful and prosperous reign. He reigned for forty six or, according to others, sixty five years. Tzetzes states that his wife, Astyoche (1430-1328 CE), was the naiad daughter of the river-god Simoeis. She became queen of Acacia, Dardania and Troy.

Homer’s Iliad described it thus, ‘In the beginning Dardanos was the son of Zeus, and founded Dardania, for Ilion was not yet established on the plain for men to dwell in, and her people still abode on the spurs of many-fountained Ida. Dardanos had a son, king Erichthonios, who was wealthiest of all men living; he had three thousand mares that fed by the water-meadows, they and their foals with them.’

‘Boreas (personification of the northwind) was enamored of them as they were feeding, and covered them in the semblance [form] of a dark-maned stallion. Twelve filly foals did they conceive and bear him, and these, as they sped over the fertile plain, would go bounding on over the ripe ears of wheat and not break them; or again when they would disport themselves on the broad back of Ocean they could gallop on the crest of a breaker. Erichthonios begat Tros, king of the Trojans’.

He was succeeded by his son Tros.

[GGF77]

GGF77 – Tros (or Troeg or Trois), King of Dardania (1,375 – 1,328 BCE)

It was Tros who ultimately gave his name to his people, Trojans.

Map of Dardania/Troad

He would marry Callirrhoe, the Naiad nymph daughter of the river-god Scamander.

He became king of Dardania.

Homer’s Iliad stated, ‘Tros had three noble sons, Ilus, Assarakos, and Ganymede who was comeliest of mortal men; wherefore the gods carried him off to be Zeus’ cupbearer, for his beauty’s sake, that he might dwell among the immortals.’

Unaware of the fate the had befallen his son, Tros grieved as if he were dead. Zeus looked down upon the king from Mount Olympus and took pity upon him. Hermes was dispatched to inform Tros of the wonderful fate that had befallen his son, for Tros was told that Ganymede had been made immortal and never aging by the gods. 

Horses were closely associated with the House of Troy, and part of the compensation given by the god came in the form of two horses so swift that they could run across water. Additionally, Tros was also given a golden vine. 

[GGF76]

GGF76 – Ilus (or Ilos or Ilyus), founder and 1st King of Troy (1,345 – 1,279 BCE)

Ilus was probably named for Ilus, the son of Dardanus who had died young.

Ilus would excel at hunting and athletics, and recognition for the skill of Ilus came at games held by one of the kings of Phrygia. Ilus won the wrestling event, and was awarded the prize of fifty youths and fifty maidens.

The king of Phyrgia had also been advised by an Oracle to give Ilus an additional prize of a cow; and the king told Ilus that he should build a new city where the cow came to rest. [This mirrored the tale of Cadmus and his founding of Thebes]. 

Ilus did as the king suggested, he and his entourage followed the cow until it came to rest at the foothills of the Ate. Ilus then sought assurances from the gods that this was indeed the place where he was expected to build a new city. In response to his prayers, Zeus threw the Palladium from Mount Olympus (a wooden statue crafted by Athena). It landed in front of the tent of Ilus. When Ilus looked at it he was blinded for mortals were not meant to look at it. Ilus successfully prayed to Athena for the restoration of his sight, and then set about building a temple in which the Palladium could be housed, and a new city quickly took shape, initially called Ilium/Ilion in recognition of the man who founded it.

When his father died Ilus made his brother Assaracus the king of Dardania, and he retained personal control of Ilium. Later the city’s name was changed to Troy in honour of his father Tros, with the Trojan people and the Troad subsequently being derived from this.

Ilus married Eurydice, the daughter of King Adrastus of Argos. By Eurydice, Ilus would become father to the future king of Troy, Laomedon, and grandfather to another king of the city Priam. Ilus also had two daughters Themiste and Telecleia.

[GGF75]

GGF75 – Laomedon, King of Troy (1,315 – 1,237 BCE)

King Laomedon had many children by different women. Among his wives were Strymo and Rhoeo, both of whom were Naiad nymphs, daughters of the river-god Scamander. Other wives included Placia, Thoosa and Leucippe [or Zeuxippe].

Laomedon had a number of sons, including Tithonus (the eldest), Lampus, Clytius, Hicetaon, Bucalion and Podarces[aka Priam]. His daughters included Hesione, Cilla, Aethilla, Astyoche, Antigone, Medesicaste, Clytadora and Procleia.

Apollo and Poseidon were punished by Zeus for rebellious intentions, exiled from Mount Olympus for a year. They came to Troy seeking employment, and Apollo was put in charge of King Laomedon’s livestock, while Poseidon was tasked with building up the walls of Troy.

Apollo’s presence around the livestock meant twins were born to each pregnant animal. Poseidon built impenetrable walls but he was assisted by Aeacus, the mortal king of Aegina. The sections constructed by Aeacus would subsequently prove to be much less secure.

Laomedon Refusing Payment to Poseidon and Apollo
Joachim von Sandrart (1606-1665)

After their work was complete, Apollo and Poseidon presented themselves to obtain their pay for work undertaken. King Laomedon decided not to pay and instead banished the pair from his realm. In retribution for the arrogance of Laomedon, Apollo sent down Pestilence upon Troy, whilst Poseidon sent forth a sea-monster, the Trojan Cetus, to ravage the land around Troy. To placate the sea-monster and curtail the pestilence, the people of Troy would periodically have to sacrifice one of the maidens of the city; the sacrificial maiden being chosen by lots. 

The Trojan Cetos depicted on a pot

The first such sacrifice was Hesione, Laomedon’s daughter, though she was saved by Heracles. Heracles told King Laomedonthat he could save Hesione, and rid Troy of the sea monster, in return he asked that his reward be the immortal horses that had been presented to King Tros by Zeus as compensation when Tros’ son Ganymede had been abducted. Laomedon readily agreed to the terms, but when the successful Heracles claimed his reward, Laomedon refused to pay the demi-god.

Heracles slaying the Cetos

Heracles had pressing duties and left, but returned with a force that was able to exploit the weak points of Troy’s walls. He killed the king and most of his sons, not Podarces (see below) and not Tithonus, who was away from Troy. Heracles put Priam on the throne of Troy.

Heracles about to kill Laomedon, on a terra sigillata flask from Southern Gaul, late 1st c–early 2nd c CE

It was said that the tomb of Laomedon was located beside the Scaean Gate of Troy. It was said that the city of Troy could not fall whilst the tomb was intact. However, the tomb was damaged when the gateway was enlarged by the Trojans to admit the Wooden Horse into the city, and as a result Troy fell to the Achaean/Greek forces.

[GGU74]

GGU74 – Priam (Podarces), King of Troy (during Trojan Wars) (1,320-1,240 BCE)

Priam was the son of King Laomedon of Troy, probably born to Laomedon’s wife Leucippe. Priam was originally named Podarces, and his change of name has to do with the actions of the Greek hero Heracles. 

The chronicler Malalas in his Chronography described Priam as ‘tall for the age, big, good, ruddy-colored, light-eyed, long-nosed, eyebrows meeting, keen-eyed, gray, restrained’. Whereas, the account of Dares the Phrygian, says he ‘. . .had a handsome face and a pleasant voice. He was large and swarthy’.

Hesione intervened when Heracles was going to kill Podarces, she provided a ransom (a golden veil) and the son was saved. He was renamed as Priam meaning ‘for money, or ransomed’ and made King of Troy.

Troy would prosper under the leadership of Priam, the city’s walls were rebuilt, and the military strength of Troy would grow. Priam was even said to have led the forces of Troy when allied with the Phrygians in a war against the Amazons. Trade and money flowed into Troy, and Priam built himself a magnificent palace from brilliant white marble and comprising many hundreds of different rooms. In part this proved necessary because Priam is said to have fathered firsty sons and fifty daughters.

He married twice to Arisbe of Merops and Hecuba [or Hecabe]. Among his sons were Hector and Paris, Aesacus, and Helenus, and one of his daughters was Cassandra. With hius wives and concubines he fathered fifty sons and as many daughters.

Paris would of course cause the downfall of Troy by his abduction of Helen of Sparta. This act would bring a thousand ships full of fighting men to the very gates of Troy.


The Trojan Horse
Odysseus is reported to have come up with the plan for this hollow horse, horses being sacred to the Trojans. The Achaeans (Greeks) built the horse and, feigning giving upon their siege, left it beside the walls inscribed with ‘The Greeks dedicate this thank-offering to Athena for their return home‘.

Both Cassandra and Laocoön warned against keeping the horse. But, Cassandra was cursed by Apollo never to be believed, and serpents came out of the sea and devoured Laocoön and his sons. The Trojans took the horse into the city, at night soldiers led by Odysseus emerged from the horse, while the Trojans were rejoicing and partying, the soldiers opened the gates to the returned Achaeans – and Troy was sacked
Priam killed by Neoptolemus,
detail of an Attic black-figure amphora, c.520–510 BCE

Priam was killed by Achilles son, Neoptolemus during the Sack of Troy.


Priam’s Treasure
The image shows part of a cache of gold and other artefacts discovered by classical archaeologists Frank Calvert and Heinrich Schliemann at Hissarlik, on the northwestern coast of modern Turkey.
The majority of the artifacts are currently in the Pushkin Museum in Moscow.

[GGF74]

GGF74 – Tithonus, Prince of Troy (1,270 – 1,230 BCE)

Tithonus was extremely handsome and, as a result, was abducted by Eos to become the goddess’ lover. Eos took him to Aetheopia where they lived as lovers. They had two children Emathion, an Aethiopian King who waskilled by Heracles, and Memnon, a Trojan defender killed by Achilles.

Eos pursues the reluctant Tithonus,
who holds a lyre,
on an Attic oinochoe (wine jug)
of the Achilles Painter
circa 470–460 BC (Louvre)

Tithonus though was mortal, and so in order to be with him forever, Eos asked Zeus to make him immortal. Eos’ wish was granted by the supreme god, but Eos had forgotten to ask for eternal youth at the same time. Tithonus could not die, he could age, and as the years passed, so Tithonus grew older and older, and more and more infirm.

Some say that Tithonus was then abandoned in a room, but others tell of Eos transformed him into a cicada, whose endless chatter and incoherent babble is still heard today. 

[GGF73]

GGF73 – Memnon (or Múnón or Mennón), King of Aethiopia (1,345 – 1,279 BCE)

Memnon was a demi-god and the king of Aethiopia and came to Troy as an ally of Priam’s to defend the city. Memnon means ‘resolute’, he was the son of Tithonus and Eos, though apparently he was raised by the Hepserides (the nymphs of evening and sunsets).

The departure of Memnon for Troy.
Greek, circa 550-525 BC. Black-figure vase. Royal Museums of Art and History, Brussels

Besides his African roots, Herodotus suggested that Memnon founded the city of Susa, in the Zagros mountains 250 km east of the Tigris river.

Memnon’s brother, Emathlion, preceded him as king of Aethiopia but was killed by Heracles when he sailed up the Nile.

Priam called for Memnon’s help, his forces gave Troy renewed hope and vigour. Dictys Cretensis wrote that ‘Memnon, the son of Tithonus and Aurora, arrived with a large army of Indians and Aethiopians, a truly remarkable army which consisted of thousands and thousands of men with various kinds of arms, and surpassed the hopes and prayers even of Priam.’

Memnon and Achilles would meet in a lengthy man-on-man combat, neither able to tire thanks to Zeus. Achilles eventually prevailed. The myths suggest that the morning dew is Eos crying each morning for Memnon.

There are statues of Amenhotep III in the Theban Necropolis in Egypt that were known to the Romans as the Colossi of Memnon. According to Pliny the Elder and others, one statue made a sound at morning time.

[GGF72]

GGF72 – Thor (or Trór or Enos), King of Thrace (1,189 – ? BCE)

Trór or Thor is the red-haired and bearded god of thunder in Germanic mythology and Germanic paganism, and its nearby influenced mythologies.

Thor owns a short-handled hammer, Mjolnir, which, when thrown at a target, returns magically to the owner. His Mjolnir also has the power to throw lightning bolts. To wield Mjolnir, Thor wears the belt Megingjord, which boosts the wearer’s strength and a pair of special iron gloves, Jarn Griepr, to lift the hammer. Mjolnir is also his main weapon when fighting giants. The uniquely shaped symbol subsequently became a very popular ornament during the Viking Age and has since become an iconic symbol of Germanic paganism. Thor travels in a chariot drawn by the goats Tanngrisnir and Tanngnjóstr and with his servant and messenger Þjálfi and with Þjálfi’s sister Röskva

Trór or Thor was the son of Memnon and Tróána Ilium, a daughter of Priam.

Sketch of Sybil / Sif

Thor married the prophetess Sybil [or Sif] and was the father of Vingener. Snorri Sturluson seems to explain his euhemeristic writing by stating that Trór was the equivalent of Thor, and Sibyl was the equivalent of Sif – did he mean to suggest the former names represent real people and the latter their mythical personas.

The Upsala Codex, a parchment document is one of the most important manuscripts of the Prose Edda, or so-called ‘Younger Edda’, which was written by Snorri Sturluson around 1220 CE.

It says that Memnon ‘married a daughter of the chief king Priam who was called Tróáin, and they had a son named Trór – we call him Thór. He was brought up in Thrace by a duke called Loricus… …At twelve years old he had come to his full strength and then he lifted ten bear pelts from the ground at once and killed his foster father Loricus with his wife Lóri or Glóri, and took possession of the realm of Thrace.’

‘After that he travelled far and wide exploring all the regions of the world and by himself overcoming all the berserks and giants and an enormous dragon and many wild beasts. In the northern part of the world he met with and married a prophetess called Sibyl whom we call Sif… …she was a most beautiful woman with hair like gold.’

Odin, and also his wife, had the gift of prophecy, and by means of this magic art he discovered that his name would be famous in the northern part of the world and honored above that of all kings. For this reason he decided to set out on a journey from Turkey. He was accompanied by a great host of old and young, men and women, and they had with them many valuables.

Through whatever lands they went such glorious exploits were related of them that they were looked on as gods rather than men. They did not halt on their journey until they came to the north of the country now called Germany.

There Ódin lived for a long time taking possession of much of the land and appointing three of his sons to defend it: Vegdeg ruled over East Germany, Beldeg ruled Westphalia , Sigi ruled over France. Then Odin set off on his journey north and coming to the land called Reidgotaland took possession of everything he wanted in that country. He appointed his son Skjöld to govern as Skjöldungar, kings of Denmark.

Thereafter Odin went north to what is now called Sweden. There was a king there called Gylfi and, when he heard of the expedition of the men of Asia, as the Æsir were called, he went to meet them and offered Odin as much authority over his kingdom as he himself desired. Their travels were attended by such prosperity that, wherever they stayed in a country, that region enjoyed good harvests and peace, and everyone believed that they caused this, since the native inhabitants had never seen any other people like them for good looks and intelligence.

The plains and natural resources of life in Sweden struck Odin as being favorable and he chose there for himself a townsite now called Sigtuna. There he appointed chieftains after the pattern of Troy, establishing twelve rulers to administer the laws of the land, and he drew up a code of law like that which had held in Troy and to which the Trojans had been accustomed.

After that, he travelled north until he reached the sea, which they believed encircled the whole world, and placed his son, Saeming, over the kingdom now called Norway.

Odin kept by him the son called Yngvi, who was king of Sweden after him, and from him have come the families known as Ynglingar. The Æsir and some of their sons married with the women of the lands they settled, and their families became so numerous in Germany and thence over the north that their language, that of the men of Asia, became the language proper to all these countries.

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