BMCR 2002.02.15

Response: Latacz on Kullmann (Gnomon 73 [2001] 657-663)

Response to 2001.09.01

Response by

In BMCR 01.09.1 (3 September 2001), Johannes Haubold wrote a review of the new Basel commentary on the Iliad. 1 His extraordinary competence, thorough grounding and care make it stand out among reviews and considerably promote the work it discusses.

Among the points particularly singled out by Haubold for praise (“Longstanding problems of interpretation, such as the nature of Homeric society, psychology, and the gods, are treated sensibly and even-handedly”) are the issues addressed in the most recent Troia2 research (n. 21: “p. 33 to 19 [the city]”). The reviewer considers several points particularly enlightening: the recent findings in ancient Anatolian studies (the likely Luwian origin of the name ‘Priam’ in the light of the seal with Luwian hieroglyphs found in Troia in 1995); the virtually certain equation of the place-name for both the city and the region ‘[W]Ilios’ with Hittite ‘Wilus(s)a, Wilusiya’; and the discussion regarding the age of the Greek hexametric epic poetry (e.g. that the Iliad was sung in epic tradition by the 11th century at the latest).

When dealing in more detail with these issues, the commentary refers several times to my book Troia und Homer (at the time the commentary went into print the book was going to press), which was conceived as accompanying it. This book was published in March 2001 (and will be referred to in the following as L. or TuH).3 It is primarily addressed to a broader public but will also be useful to specialists in the field.4 The book has been acclaimed widely by the general public and by German-speaking scholars in my field, especially since it summarizes the state of the most recent interdisciplinary research at Troia under the supervision of Manfred Korfmann. In terms of the research at Troia, it is viewed as cogently and coherently setting forth the arguments put forward there and, consequently, advancing research to come in that field.5

The book has not been translated into English. It is, therefore, regrettable that anglophone specialists in the field have been presented with a review by Wolfgang Kullmann (hereafter K.) which recently appeared in Gnomon (73, 2001, 657-663). In it can be found a partly misleading impression of the line of reasoning adopted in the book and, indeed, of the most recent research at Troia. I would therefore like to correct the misleading arguments advanced by the reviewer as quickly as possible and to attempt to refute his objections.6

K. begins by attesting that the book is “brilliantly written and exciting to read” (K. 657). Further, he predicts that it will “have a wide circulation” (ibid.).7 He then proceeds to justify the necessity of a “scholarly presentation” of the book by contending that “not only are accepted research findings popularised but also highly problematic hypotheses with far-reaching implications for scholarship are advanced in it and presented as certain knowledge.” In addition, the reader was referred in volumes 1 and 3 of the new Basel Iliad commentary to this book “for issues related to the historical background of the Iliad” (ibid.).

K.’s own book Die Quellen der Ilias (Wiesbaden 1960) did, of course, represent a stimulating impulse in the field of Homeric philology. Recently, a voice well qualified to do so described it — correctly, in my view — as “the greatest contribution of W. Kullmann to Homeric studies”.8 But even scholars whose work is based on the formulation and weighing of hypotheses9 must understand that one of the basic tasks of scholarship is to formulate new hypotheses continually on the basis of fresh knowledge.

Before addressing the criticism of my book, I would like to provide a rought outline of its contents. The book is divided into two main sections: ‘I. Troia’ and ‘II. Homer’. In Part I, beginning with an ‘Introduction’ (L. 15-27) briefly outlining the history of Trojan scholarship from Schliemann and Dörpfeld to Blegen and Korfmann and stating the four main questions addressed by Trojan scholarship,10 I ask the fundamental question: ‘Was Hisarlik once actually Troia/Ilios?’ (33-35). All experts in the archaeology of Troia, from Heinrich Schliemann in 1874 to Donald F. Easton in 1992, have made it clear that this question regarding the relationship between the monument — the ruins at Hisarlik — and the text — Homer’s Iliad — must be settled. The primary importance of this question of identification for Troia and Homeric scholarship has been overlooked by the reviewer (and quite a few others) when he states: “Now it is clear that place-names and proper nouns designating peoples are transmitted in oral tradition to posterity so that nearly all scholars have assumed that the Homeric names Ilios and Troia are real geographical names for the city or, rather, the ruins of the city excavated in Asia Minor by Schliemann, Blegen and Korfmann” (K., 658). The reviewer believes that at places where continuity of settlement can be verified by written records, from a time X to a time Y “place-names and proper nouns designating peoples have been transmitted in oral tradition”. But this does not mean that just such an oral tradiiton has been handed down “to posterity” on the Mound of Hisarlik, where, due to lack of written records, we have not been able to verify continuity of settlement between the late Bronze Age and the date at which the Iliad is presumed to have been composed.11 just such an oral tradition has been handed down “to posterity”. It is only logical that none of the excavators at Hisarlik, including Korfmann, could ever be entirely certain whether Hisarlik really was identical with Homeric Ilios/Troia, should this place really be historical; nor could anyone be certain whether the Homeric place-name Ilios/Troia was or was not simply an imaginary name made up by Homer or the pre-Homeric oral tradition, so that ‘Ilios/Troia’ could lay no claim at all to being historical. To put the second possibility in simpler terms: If there had never been an Ilios/Troia in reality, then any discussion of a ‘Trojan War’ would be superfluous. Since this syllogism and all that it implies are evidently not easy to grasp, it seems best to repeat here the question, quoted in the book (L. 34), as it was put in classic terms thirty-seven years ago by the prehistorian Rolf Hachmann:

When no basis for supposing that Troia must be identical with the Mound of Hisarlik can be found in the epic itself or in other sources, then there are no possibilities at all for proving this since archaeology itself provides no indications that this was so. Moreover, if the historical existence of the city of Troia and the Trojan War cannot be confirmed by means of the epic itself or on the basis of other evidence, the question of whether the city and the war existed in historical fact is fallacious for it is certainly not possible to furnish proof of this on the basis of archaeological findings.12 (the italics are mine: J.L.)

Therefore, only ‘other sources/evidence’ apart from the Iliad of Homer have been worth considering for a very long time. On the question of where such sources of evidence should be sought, Justus Cobet, an ancient historian in Essen, is quoted at the end of the chapter in my book. In 1983, following Kurt Bittel and Hans Gustav Güterbock, he pointed out the direction to go in seeking such evidence: ” Hittite texts might at some time furnish …”13 (the italics are mine: J.L.).

This supposition, for which there was already substantial evidence by the 1980’s, is presented in the following chapter, ‘Stages of the search: what was Hisarlik called in the Bronze Age?’ (36-128). First there is a description of the renewed archaeological exploration of Hisarlik, beginning in 1988, by the Korfmann team. They have discovered the following: (1) a Late Bronze Age fortification system, familiar from Anatolia, encircling an extensive Lower City; (2) the Citadel has characteristic Anatolian Bronze Age architectural features; (3) the Anatolian character of the Bronze Age pottery in the settlement; (4) Anatolian burial practices and cult observances and (5) the Anatolian gate stone cult — the Anatolian link of the Late Bronze Age settlement (by convention known as Troia VI/VIIa) on the Mound (36-67). Finally, a bronze seal bearing Luwian hieroglyph script was found inside the Citadel in 1995. This discovery called for study by specialists in ancient Anatolian studies and especially Hittitologists (67-95). By the time the seal was found, Hittite state documents had long been known, and Hittitological study of the seal in connection with these documents did a great deal to support a suspicion expressed as early as 1924 by Paul Kretschmer. Now newly discovered written evidence and their decipherment since 1996 have confirmed that the ‘Land of Wilusa’ mentioned in the Hittite documents is identical with the Homeric ‘(W)Ilios’; and ‘Taruwisa/Tru[w]isa’, also mentioned in the documents, is probably identical with the Homeric ‘Troia’ (95-128). Finally, as shown by Bronze Age Hittite documents on ‘Ahhiyawa’ and Bronze Age Egyptian documents on the ‘Danaya’ (with, among other findings, ‘Mukanai’ and ‘Thegwais’ = the Thebaid), the conclusion must be that the Homeric names for the attackers of (W)Ilios, the ‘Achai(w)oi’ and ‘Danaoi’ are real historical ethnonyms (150- 168). When one combines the archaeological, Hittitological, and Greek philological parts of the puzzle, the result is clear: ‘the setting in which the action described in Homer takes place was historical’ (169-172).

Part II (175-378) is about the ‘story of Troia’, which can be reconstructed from the Iliad and the Odyssey and, here and there, from supplementary Greek writings. Here we can be brief since this section of the book is addressed to a broader public; that is, it reports on facts that have been clarified by Homeric scholarship and are well known to specialists. These are the deciphering of Linear B and research into oral poetry. The results from both show a basic linguistic continuity between the Late Bronze Age and the 8th century, and a pre-Homeric oral tradition in Greece that goes back several generations at least. Furthermore, they have shown that the story of Troia (with its core component ‘a war waged by the Achaioi against [W]Ilios’) was known to the Iliad only as the setting, and known in outline to the public to which the Iliad was primarily addressed. From the correspondence of the Bronze Age and the Homeric names (Wilusa ~ [W]Ilios, Achiyawa ~ Achai[w]oi, Danaya ~ Danaoi), the conclusion is drawn that the story of Troia must have been devised within the ‘Mycenean’ central palace cultures and that Homer’s Iliad has retained some fragments of it. The question arising from this, of how these remaining fragments were transmitted from the 12th to the 8th century, since this was a period without writing, is answered from the production side, specifically by considering the linguistic research since about 1980 into the history of the hexameter, which has been advanced by a small circle of specialists. They have determined that the origins of Greek poetry in hexameters can be traced back as early as the 16th/15th centuries BC. The discovery is complemented by the archaeological evidence from the past twenty years or so of the existence of rather small ‘post- Mycenaean’ aristocratic centres in Greece that represented ‘the public’ for the poets and singers who sang of past glories. The book ends with a consideration of the wider framework of the Troia story in Homer on the one hand and of the Hittite imperial documents from the 13th century BC on the other. The two components interlock. They make it seem not only possible but even highly probable that, as leading Hittitologists and specialists in Bronze Age archaeology and history have posited, there was some sort of war between the peoples of Wilusa and Achiyawa in the latter half of the 13th century, although what type of war it may have been and how long it lasted cannot be ascertained.

Against the background of the content outlined above, let us now turn to several14 points picked out by the reviewer.

The problem of identification/equation

Like other doubters, K. feels constrained to reject the above mentioned equations (Hittite) Wilusa ~ (Homeric) Wilios, (Hittite) Ahhiyava ~ (Homeric) Achai(w)oi, (Egyptian) Danaya ~ (Homeric) Danaoi. Here the question of competence arises. G.S. Kirk formulated the only appropriate standpoint for a Greek and Homeric scholar in 1990, at which time the same question was being discussed then: “I do not propose to enter into this whole question here, for two perfectly good reasons: first, that only expert Hittitologists can pronounce on these matters; second, that there is still deep dis[a]greement between such experts, and therefore no firm Hittite evidence that can be used to elucidate Homeric problems.” Despite this sensible reservation, Kirk was far-sighted enough to finish his remarks with the following concluding statement: “That said, the day will come when this rich archive is more fully understood, and then our conclusions may have to be revised” (Kirk 1990, 43). This day has in fact come. It had come only six years after Kirk’s observations, in 1996. It was in fact my reason for writing the book. It means that K. is disregarding the significance of the breakthrough of 1996 and the subsequent growth in Hittitological knowledge with all that implies when he says (K. 658): “If, therefore, the Hittites really called the city of Troia VI [he means: Troia VI/VIIa], whose remains were still visible in the time of Homer, ‘Wilusa’ in the early 13th century (thus the Hittitologist Starke et al. and now L.), this would not contradict Homeric scholarship hitherto and would not be a question of central importance to it”. But the term ‘Homeric scholarship’ should not be regarded as an interpretation of the poetry based solely on a close reading of the text without reference to its actual context. Any scholar who has worked on Homer with the intent of researching the genesis of the Homeric epics — and K. has belonged to this very group of researchers since receiving his doctorate — is, in fact, nullifying all Homeric scholarship with that one sentence. It is, after all, more than obvious that verifying the equation of the Homeric Ilios with Hittite Wilusa is, for all variants of analytical (and, therefore, also for neo-analytical)15 Homeric scholarship, not only of prime but indeed of overriding importance. This is so because ‘analysis’ of the epic texts that we have, and the consideration of these texts as the final result of a very long production process, is ultimately justified by verifying this equation. It is just as obvious that verifying this equation would contradict the Homeric scholarship that has hitherto been practiced by Professor Kullmann. His scholarship essentially precludes the possibility that the Homeric Troia might be traceable back to Mycenaean times. In his summary of the neo-analytical school of research (Kullmann 1992, 131; cf. 101, 134, etc.), K. was disinclined as late as 1992 to go beyond the “narrative phase immediately preceding the Homeric epics” and “to infer earlier points of departure or Ur-versions” (131). That may have been an acceptable standpoint up to 1996. Before that point it would have been sensible to insist, as K. does, that “the possibilities of verifying one of the ‘Ur-Version’ hypotheses are lacking” (132), and that attempts to infer an “earliest core of the Troia story” (131) only had “heuristic value” (133). Now, however, the horizons have widened and reached back in time, thus making verification possible; to continue to maintain this standpoint would mean rejecting an unprecedented opportunity to shed light on the origins of the Iliad and the Odyssey. Efforts to do so have, after all, occurred since Friedrich August Wolf broke the ground in 1795. This represents just as great an opportunity for Neo-Analysis, although K. does not seem to realize this.

Let us take the following example. Kullmann did not know how to explain the “duality of the name Troia/Ilion” [meaning: Ilios] by 1993, and he wrote: “Ilion is the name of the city, settled by Greeks, at the time of the poet [of the Iliad ]; Troia is the earlier name” (Kullmann 1993, 146). He then took advantage of this “duality” as the argument “for a close link [between the resettlement of Troia VIII and the conception of the Iliad and the Trojan saga]” (ibid.). Furthermore, he accepted Hertel’s dating of Troia VIII, which meant dating the “Trojan saga” (meaning the story of Troia) at the earliest to the 10th century.

One might expect that he would now welcome the discovery made by leading Hittitologists that this duality of nomenclature is in fact extremely ancient, dating from the Bronze Age, and one might expect that he would adjust his previous view of Homer accordingly. Has not, in fact, the equation of Wilios with Wilusa been “a prime issue” for Homeric scholarship up to now? The discovery aims directly at Homeric scholarship, especially Homeric scholarship of the analytic school — and therefore Kullmann’s brand of scholarship. But — and K. does not seem to realize this — it does not make a negative impact on it at all. On the contrary, the verification of this equation represents the long-sought confirmation of the original idea informing analytical research.

All attempts to dispute the correctness of this equation would therefore seem to be superfluous, especially from the standpoint of the analytical school. I would furthermore like to highlight K.’s reference to the advocates of this equation as “the Hittitologist Starke et al. and now L.” (K. 658). The ‘et al.’ indicates that the Hittitologist Starke is not the only one to have furnished proof of the legitimacy of the equation (and L., mindful of Kirk’s admonition, had nothing to do with it). As is shown in detail in the book, the distinguished British Hittitologist David Hawkins came to the same conclusion as Starke one year later (in 1997) by using additional material (specifically the first reading of a Great King inscription near Izmir, which had remained undeciphered since 1839). Furthermore, W.-D. Niemeier, the Bronze Age archaeologist who has excavated at Miletus and is the first director of the German Archaeological Institute in Athens, and the ancient historian and Bronze Age specialist at Göttingen, G.A. Lehmann, now concur in the conclusions reached by Starke and Hawkins.16 It seems unwise to me to counterbalance such distinguished specialists with D. Hertel, a classical archaeologist, or P.W. Haider, an ancient historian with leanings towards Egyptology, as Kullmann does (K., 658 n. 8).17 Günter Neumann, a well-known specialist in linguistics, has also been convinced by my explanation of the phonological difference between Wilusa and Wilios (letter dated 21 April 2001). Instead of disputing findings on which Hittitologists agree, it seems to me more appropriate to work through the extensive body of proof furnished by Starke in 1997 (40 pages), Hawkins in 1998 (31 pages), and Niemeier in 1998 and 1999 (48 + 15 pages).

The same holds for “equating the Homeric Achaioi with the inhabitants of Achiyawa” (K. 658). K. finds my conclusion that “… today the equation is hardly doubted by anyone” (L. 152) “incomprehensible” (K. 658). First of all, taking quotations out of context in this way is inappropriate, and I quote the passage in its entirety below:

His (meaning Ferdinand Sommer’s) book, which disputes the equation, became the starting point for a long-standing academic controversy. 175 Fortunately, there is no longer any need to outline it here since it can be regarded as finished now: today the equation is doubted by hardly anyone. 176 In Hittitology 177 and archaeology 178 it is considered verified. Mycenologists concur, 179 and Greek philology is well on the way to doing so. 180

In n. 177 the following evidence is quoted as corroborative: “Starke 1997; Hawkins 1998; Bryce 1998, 659-663. 321-324. 342-344”; in n. 178 “Mountjoy 1998; Niemeier 1999”; in n. 179 “Parker 1999, especially 497: ‘ communis opinio‘”; in n. 180 “Bennet 1997, 519; Latacz 2000 (Commentary on Iliad 1.2, p. 16)”.

In addition, readers can also learn from n. 181 of my book that, in Hawkins’ opinion, only “some notable figures continue to swim against it [that is, ‘against the scholarly tide in favour of recognizing in Ahhiyawa reference to some Mycenaean centre of power’], among whom is G. Steiner.” Moreover, in n. 181, I point out that, in the view of a leading expert in the field, there are still some isolated objections raised within the discipline (the “hardly” in my sentence).

K.’s. notion of what is incomprehensible is also highly idiosyncratic, as indicated by the following: “What is relevant here, if anything [?], is discovering with which area in Greece Ahhiyawa can be identified, not the blanket equation of the Homeric Achaeans with the inhabitants of Ahhiyawa” (K. 658). I am not able to follow his logic here. The Hittites in Asia Minor in the 13th century use ‘Achiyawa’ to refer to a land west of Asia Minor with which they are constantly having difficulties. On the other hand, Homer, a Greek, calls the attackers from across the sea and destroyers of a fortified city in Asia Minor ‘Achaioi’. Would the equation of the two names be “comprehensible” only if we knew in “which area in Greece” the Hittites placed Achiyawa? Surely the crux of the matter is that, to the Hittites, Achiyawa lay in the Mediterranean region we call Greece. Wouldn’t the question of the ‘area’ therefore be a secondary step? Granted, it needs to be addressed and clarified, but it does not, after all, affect the equation. And by what rules of logic would the solution to the question of total or partial identity serve as the foundation for this equation? People regularly call neighbouring people by the name of that part of the neighbour’s territory that is geographically closest. They take the other people’s own name for themselves without worrying how far into the interior this name might be used by the foreign people in question. The question of how far the use of the name extended represents, therefore, a tertiary step.

I would now like to discuss the whole equation complex. K. reproaches me for “equating” Ahhiyawa with “Thebes” and “with an … Ahhiyawa which had its centre of power in the Mycenean islands”. First, I have deferred to the specialists in this area. Second, I did not “equate” Achiyawa with “Thebes”. On the contrary, what I have done (158) is to speak of recent discoveries that “suggest the possibility that Thebes … might have been a centre of the kingdom”18 (I referred the reader on p. 290 of my book to the line of reasoning advanced in Niemeier 1999, 144.) Third, the two different quotations cited by K. are from different places in a ten-page (151-160) report on the question of where Achiyawa was located. In 1991 G.A. Lehmann, had, as I explain there, still sought to place the centre of power of Achiyawa in the “Mycenean island” area. However, by 1996 the evidence had been sufficiently expanded for him to place Achiyawa “primarily in central Greece (southern Thessaly and Locris) and in the southern/south-eastern Aegean: on Rhodes, the Dodecanesus, on Cyprus and on Crete”. By 1999 the evidence had not changed in principle since the Linear B tablets were found in Thebes in 1993. However, it now allowed for greater precision with respect to the main capital of Achiyawa. By now Niemeier was, for the first time, able to take Thebes into consideration as the long-sought capital of Achiyawa.19 Research is a continual and living process. One should not infer from the progress made by scholars regarding the location of Achiyawa that equating the inhabitants of Achiyawa with the Homeric Achaioi is erroneous.

K. then objects to the equation of (Egyptian) Danaya ~ (Homeric) Danaoi. On this issue K. believes it necessary to refer his readers to G.A. Lehmann’s essay on this equation in a volume I compiled in 1991, entitled ‘Zweihundert Jahre Homer-Forschung’ (K. 658 n. 9). This unfortunately narrows the scope of the problem. On pages 160-168 of my book I provide a discussion of the Lehmann essay as well as the entire ‘Danaja ~ Danaoi’ equation, beginning in 1966 (when the Egyptian Danaya inscription was first published by Elmar Edel), and continuing to 1996 (renewed arguing for equation by G.A. Lehmann). Considering K.’s narrow focus on this issue, it becomes easier to understand his conclusion:

Incomprehensibly, L. advances the thesis that the Homeric collective nouns Achaeans and Danaans in the 8th century BC could not possibly have still been in use as the collective name for people who spoke Greek (TuH 170). But there is no evidence for collective names for the Greeks prior to Homer. From the area in which Greek was spoken, and among the neighbouring peoples, we only find names for individual territories. It is not until the 8th century that, among the Greeks themselves, a collective Greek perspective can be discerned, especially in the founding of the Olympic Games, traditionally dated to 776 BC. That was several generations before Homer. Latacz’ dating the Iliad to the 8th century (TuH 170.184) is based purely on convention and cannot be correct. As W. Burkert has shown, … [there follows a reference to the well known essays published by Burkert in 1976 and West in 1995 which date the Iliad later, to the 7th century]. The epic collective names may have emerged in the 8th century (K. 658f.).

The core point of this line of reasoning is evidently the dating of the Iliad. If the Iliad was not written down until the 7th century, it could theoretically have taken the collective names for the Greeks, which “may have emerged” from the “collective Greek perspective” in connection with the Olympic Games. Why the Iliad could not also have done this, if it had emerged by the 8th century, remains difficult for me to understand, and I would now like to treat this theme in detail.

(1) The dating of the Iliad to the 8th century is not “Latacz’ dating” of it. Instead it represents the communis opinio held currently by Homeric scholarship. All that is needed to confirm this is a glance at the ‘New Companion to Homer’ published in 1997. Let me quote three voices from this standard work, with which any Homeric specialist will be familiar:

The Iliad and the Odyssey appear to date to the 8th century B.C. … pushing Homer down into the 7th or 6th centuries B.C. … generates recalcitrant problems of its own. No object or social practice in either poem, which contain rich descriptions of everyday life, can be securely placed later than 700 B.C. (see K. Raaflaub in this volume). (Powell 1997, 3).

In this chapter I follow the conventional view that the extant epics were produced, whether or not by the same poet, roughly in the second half of the eighth century, the Iliad about a generation before the Odyssey… (Raaflaub 1997, 625).

“… the Homeric corpus, dating originally perhaps from the mid/late 8th century.”
“… the emergence of the Iliad (more or less as we have it) by c. 750 B.C.” (Horrocks 1997, 193f., 217).

My following overview of the state of research in 1998 is based on this:

Later dating, especially to the 7th century [Burkert 1976, West 1995], arguing from individual passages in the works and from particular objects has hitherto not found general acceptance [Powell 1997].” (J. Latacz, article ‘Homeros’, in Der Neue Pauly V, 1998, col. 687).

The later dates rest on Burkert’s interpretation20 of the Thebes passage in Iliad 9.381-384 (‘Thebes’ in the joint formula ‘Orchomenos and Thebes’ is here understood by “a rhapsode” to mean Thebes in Egypt, which fell about 663. According to the theory, this rhapsode would therefore be the author of the entire Iliad as we now have it). This theory cannot, of course, be discussed here in any detail. All that can be said is that both leading Hellenists and Egyptologists have regarded 9.382-384 (the reference to Egyptian Thebes) as a post-Homeric interpolation (Ameis-Hentze-Cauer ad loc.; Leaf 2 ad loc.; Kirk 1960, 191f. [rather confusing]; Hainsworth 1993 ad loc. [rather confusing]; Helck 1979, 232; Haider 1988, 211f.). Dating the entire Iliad on the basis of this one passage is an excessively bold venture.

(2) If “there is no evidence at all for collective names for the Greeks”, it follows that the first collective names known to us are the Homeric ones. Homer’s collective term for the men from Greece who attacked the fortified city of Wilios in Asia Minor is, alternately, Ἀχαιοί, Δαναοί, and Ἀργεῖοι (the three names have different metric values). We do not need to deal with Ἀργεῖοι here (on this see p. 165/166 of my book). Instead let us concentrate on Ἀχαιοί and Δαναοί. These “epic collective names may have emerged in the 8th century” (K. 659). Very true: they may have “emerged”. They cannot have been handed down from Mycenaean times because there is an 80-year memory limit on oral tradition (K.’s “oralist” view, see below under ‘The question of “data transmission”‘). Should we imagine that some 8th- century Greek — perhaps a singer — was influenced by the new “collective Greek perspective” and tried to coin a collective name for the Greeks? Did he, in so doing, start playing around with combinations of letters and come up with Ἀχαιοί and Δαναοί ? And, with these inventions, did he, by pure coincidence, hit exactly on the names used in official Egyptian and Hittite documents of the 14th and the 13th century, respectively, for the inhabitants of Greece who were their closest neighbours? I have already given the explanation that still seems to me to be the most plausible one on pages 165-168 of my book: the three names entered hexameter poetry at different times during the historical Greek Bronze Age. They were retained as they entered the poetry because their differing metric values made them useful in the versification process. This would mean that they stem from the ‘Mycenaean’21 period of Greek history, whence they were handed down in poetry performed by the singers until they reached Homer. They have no bearing on the reality of the post-Mycenaean period of the Greeks. They were a poetic heritage. Consequently, they played no role in the new era ushered in by the Greek renaissance in the 8th century. New developments led to the collective name that the Greeks still use for themselves: Ἕλληνες.

The Catalogue of Ships (CS)

The catalogue listing the places of origin of the ship crews assembled in Aulis takes up 267 lines and includes 178 place-names in the second book of the Iliad. The publications that have appeared on this since the 19th century fill shelf after shelf. Nevertheless, the issues raised by the text have remained unresolved. The author of the most recent comprehensive monograph on the CS starts off by saying:

… with respect to the problems of contents and genesis of the geographical details in the CS, the theses advanced by scholars (remain) unlinked but juxtaposed. As a rule, one can be clear only about the logical problems of the views that are rejected. Yet no view can claim to explain all difficulties without contradiction. This becomes apparent as soon as one examines closely the consequences of each view (Visser 1997, 10).

Visser then proceeds to divide the theories on the CS into five groups (10-15):

(1) emergence in the Mycenaean or sub-Mycenaean period;
(2) a Mycenaean core with changes and additions in the post-Mycenaean era;
(3) improvised while sung in the 8th century;
(4) written down and revised in the 8th century;
(5) revised in writing after the 8th century and interpolated later into the Iliad.

On theory no. 1, which has been advocated by such scholars as T. W. Allen (1921), V. Burr (1944, 1958), D. Page (1959), and R. Hope Simpson/J.F. Lazenby (1970) et al., Visser has this to say: “… even though by now criticism of this theory grows ever more vociferous, it has nonetheless not been refuted, and some philologists and archaeologists even regard it as the communis opinio” (1997, 39).

Instead of briefly mentioning the controversy over this issue, which has been the subject of dispute for over a century, K. essentially gives the impression that the theory of the Mycenaean origin of the CS stems from me. K. devotes almost three pages (K. 659-662) to my discussion that the CS is likely to go back to a Mycenaean compilation (L. 261-296). His arguments are well known, and it is unnecessary to go into them in detail here. My chapter was not intended as a special treatment of the Catalogue of Ships; it is merely one of the arguments I put forward in an attempt to prove a “Mycenaean origin of the Troia story” (L. 262). I tried to show the unlikelihood of a compilation of material providing geographical information in any period of Greek history other than the Mycenaean. K. and I are both aware that there are many questions related to this issue.22 Visser’s Habilitationsschrift, Homers Katalog der Schiffe (1997), which is nearly 800 pages long, was written at my suggestion. In fact, I wish that K. had included Visser’s essay on the subject (1998), which ends with the following statement:

That the Homeric myth of the Mycenaean siege [of Troia] is based on a historical core in any case is conceivable; the Catalogue of Ships argues for rather than against this (Visser 1998, 44).

K. defends his rather antiquated theory that the CS was taken over verbatim by the poet of the Iliad from “poetry similar to the Cypria“.23 The Cypria in turn was supposed to have been based on a “source written down in prose”. This prose compilation as posited was “chronologically not far from the poet of the Iliad” (the prose compilation, the poetry similar to the Cypria, and the Iliad must, therefore, have formed a rather rapid chain of events). For the form of this prose compilation K. is thinking of a “bureaucratic registration of the Greek world as we know it later from the Pythian Games held at Delphi (cf. A. Giovannini […] 1969, 51f.)”. This registration “was made necessary by the development of the Olympic Games”. Further: “Mythological reminiscences of the singers may have been added” (K., 659).

I referred back to Giovannini’s theory of how the CS came about on p. 359 n. 65. Giovannini, K., and others advocate a ‘Local Lists from the 8th/7th century BC’ model, 24 but the main reason why this is unacceptable is the fact that “nearly a quarter of the places named in the Catalogue [that means about 45] could not have been located geographically by Greeks of the historical era” (L. 275 with a reference to Kirk 1985, 238; cf. Visser 1997, 13; I have deliberately not said — as K. 659 paraphrases me as saying — “could no longer have been located” because so doing would mean a petitio principii). Following Page 1959, I have then explained on pp. 283f. that one must consider Homer’s influence on the development of Greek culture, and the example of Il. 2.558 shows what enormous importance the Greeks attached to having their poleis named in Homer’s Catalogue of Ships. If the places named in the Catalogue of Ships were indeed not written down until the 8th century, it seems unlikely that even one of them would have been so entirely forgotten that it could not have been located. This line of reasoning does not become, as K. insists, “unsustainable” by dint of the circumstance that “the geographical division of the territories reflected in the Catalogue in essentials [!] (is) that of the 7th century” (K., 659) since we — as I have explicitly pointed out on p. 275 — do not precisely know “the areas settled in the two ages” [i.e., the Mycenaean and the Early Greek]: we do not have a map of Greece dating from either of them. The assurance with which K. (and others) assign the geographical situation reflected in the CS to the 7th century is, therefore, illusory. In 1993 K. was still aware that this was so: “It [the truth] need not be withheld that only a hypothetical conclusion can be reached” (Kullmann 1993, 145). Why he has changed his mind is not clear. Visser, at any rate (following others), assessed the geographical reference of the CS in 1998 in terms that represent the opposite viewpoint:

… this area [in the CS] can be made to tally fairly well with the area over which Mycenaean culture had spread in the Phases III A and B [i.e., the time between 1400 and 1200] (Visser 1998, 35; I have quoted this and commented on it on p. 275, although K. seems to have missed it).

If, accordingly, both periods of Greek history can be considered possible sources of the geographical data in the CS (I have shown that the Dark Ages can be excluded from this, following Visser 1998, 41f., on pp. 277f.25), we must determine the criteria for deciding which is most plausible. The most convincing criterion has always26 been that the CS consistently leaves out the Greek cities of the colonial territory in Asia Minor. Here, too, K. has misrepresented my text (K., 660), and made it look as if I have asserted that Homer “mentions neither in the Catalogue of Ships nor ‘in the entire corpus of the 15,693 lines in the Iliad‘ the Aeolian Greek settlements on the coast of Asia Minor ‘and none of these regions, rivers [or] mountains'”. The wording in my book actually runs as follows: “In the Iliad [as we have it] and, in fact, not only in the Catalogue of Ships, but also in the entire corpus of 15,693 lines of the Iliad, this area not only does not belong to Greece but — with a few exceptions that we cannot go into here, but which are, however, easy to explain 78 — it is not in existence at all” (L., 279). Instead of consulting my n. 78 and being referred there27 to n. 127, K. fills 18 lines listing the “exceptions” for the reader’s benefit. In n. 127 to p. 363 the reader can find (and K., therefore, could also have found) the following:

After the catastrophe the Troia story passed through generations of singers, especially those from the western coastal areas of Asia Minor, which had by then been settled by Greeks. During this period, individual geographic places in western Asia Minor were brought into the story (such as the river Kaystrios, which flows into the Aegean at Ephesus: 2.461); furthermore, now and then they associated peoples of their own time with the open spaces in Asia Minor mentioned in the Troia story. This is the usual practice of singers with regard to the features and habits included in a saga (such as weapons, household implements, textiles and architectural forms, as well as customs, linguistic modes of expression, etc.). What is of paramount importance, however, is that the singers continued to hand down, without change, the basic geographic framework as well: of the innumerable cities and smaller settlements newly founded on the western coast of Asia Minor after 1100, not a single one occurs in the entire Iliad (for the special case of Miletus see p. 339) — not because all these settlements would have been deliberately left out (a damnatio memoriae so devoid of gaps is unthinkable against the background of the free, unfettered practice of the aoidoi) but because (naturally) there was no talk of them in the story of Troia as handed down.

K. then repeats his (and others’) well known theory that these cities were left out with archaizing intention because “being from Asia Minor, the poet of the Iliad shared the conviction of all colonial Greeks that they had not immigrated to Asia Minor until after the Trojan War.”28 He chastises me with: “The publications on this [meaning on the ‘post-Mycenaean founder legends’] are not evaluated in L.” (K., 660). I have dealt with the ‘archaizing theory’ on pp. 280-282 of my book, pointedly taking Kullmann’s most recent work on the subject into account (Kullmann 1993, 1999a; see pp. 360f. nn. 77, 83, 84: extensive quotation from the original). I limited myself to outlining the basic arguments against the theory (L., 281f.), which I consider quite mistaken.

On this issue, too, a few points should be selected for discussion:

(1) I should not have “assigned” the place-name Αἶπυ,29 which appears in the CS in the Pylian contingent (2.592), to the “lost Mycenaean names”, since this name is mentioned in Mimnermus fr. 9 W. as an original place of the inhabitants of Colophon. “The correct reading by M. West reconstructs the names Αἰπύ, which also [!] occurs in the Catalogue of Ships II 592” and “for Mimnermus … the name … denotes a real place” (K., 660). A glance into Gentili/Pratos Poetae Elegiaci and West’s Iambi et Elegi Graeci ad loc. shows that West’s interpretation within the Strabo manuscripts of the poorly transmitted word αἰπυ (variously, αἰπύτε, αἰ πύτε, ἐπεί τε) as a place-name Αἰπύ is a witty conjecture that should be interpreted differently than K. thinks: this is the same Strabo, who, in 14.1.4, hands down this Mimnermus fragment, and explicitly states in 8.3.24 on Iliad 2.592 that Homer’s Αἶπυ is unknown in Pylos. Despite an intensive search for post-Homeric evidence for CS places, Strabo (and probably his sources before him) saw no possibility of following the same re-interpretation as West in the Mimnermus text available to him (them), because he or his sources did not know of a place of that name in Pylos. West’s conjecture (based on Il. 2.592, first published in 1978), however, is given support by Linear B: It’s true, the A-pu 2, which the decipherers at first equated with the Αἶπυ in Homer’s CS (Documents 1956, 143), should, for reasons connected with this system of writing, probably be read differently (see Chadwick 1976, 45f.). However, in PY Fn 79 there is a a 3 -pu-ke-ne-ya, which has been interpreted as Aipugeneiai (dat. fem.) (L. Baumbach, Glotta 49, 1971, 156). This means that there is, after all, evidence for a Mycenaean place-name Αἶπυ or Αἰπύ in Pylos (and West’s conjecture is justified). Should West’s conjecture really apply to the original in Mimnermus, the Mimnermus passage would say exactly the opposite of what K. feels he has to read into it: Mimnermus, who is speaking here of the first wave of colonisation in Ionia by his forebears, would, of course, not mean that a place dating from the 8th (or 9th) century was the place from which the inhabitants of Colophon originally came, but rather a Mycenaean place (mythical to him, Mycenaean to us).

(2) K. feels that I should not have “affirmed” that Homer “spoke Ionic and, for instance, did not know the digamma” for, according to the Vita Herodotea, Homer’s mother was an Aeolian from Cyme (K., 661). Neither in the passage given (TuH 260), nor anywhere else in the book, have I “affirmed” that Homer did not “know” the digamma. Instead, I expressly stated: “Homer in any case neither speaks nor writes the F, yet he evidently knows it as an integral part of the language of poetry he has taken over … (etc.)” (L., 198). 30 One should consider the intensive linguistic work that has been done on the dialect of the Homeric epics in roughly the past two decades. Simply reading Janko 1992, Horrocks 1997, and Wachter 2000 would have been sufficiently enlightening on this point.

(3) According to K., Lesbos in 24.543-6 does “not”, in contradiction to the way I see it (L. 325), belong “to the area ruled over by Priam (cf. Richardson […] 1993, 333)” (K., 661). As early as 1997 I referred to Leaf ad loc. and Dickie 1995 in this matter. Both of them agree with my interpretation (Latacz 1997, 32 n. 36). In the book (L., 366 n. 170) I have repeated this and added a reference to the most recent comprehensive treatment of the history of Lesbos by Nigel Spencer (1995, 275 n. 29: “Since Achilles speaks of the island as the furthest outpost of Priam’s kingdom, Hom. Il. XXIV.544-6 …”). K. seems to have missed this. I could have added the article Λέσβος in LfgrE, which K. obviously esteems: “Belonging to mainland Asia Minor — Troia — clearly … ; this — archaeological — discovery tallies with the date in Homer: Lesbos belongs to the kingdom of Priam, Ω 544 …; therefore, it is conquered and ravaged at the beginning of the war … by Ach., Ι 129 ~ 271…” (etc.). Richardson’s interpretation represents a special case in opposition to the communis opinio.

(4) ” Pace L., the fact that [Lesbos was Greek] did not constitute a moral impediment to Achilles with regard to sleeping with a woman captured there, although she was an Aeolian Greek; in the same way, Achilles took a woman by force from Scyros, which had been settled by Greeks since time immemorial ( Ι 664f., 666f.). All four of them lie there next to each other, with the two men in the middle. That has been overlooked by L.” I actually did overlook “that [putatively] all four of them lie there next to each other, with the two men in the middle”, because the position of the couples did not seem to me particularly relevant to the question of whether the poet classed the island of Lesbos as belonging to the Trojans or the Greeks. K.’s racy new interpretation of the sleeping constellation of the two young couples has shown me what I was missing — blinded as I was by the usual decent interpretation of ἑτέρωθεν (“on the other side [of the tent]”; see LfgrE s.v.). What I didn’t miss, however — and this is probably what K. was trying to say — was that it is said in 9.666-8 that Achilles “handed over” the girl named Iphis to Patroclus ( πόρε; there is no mention of “by force”) after he “had taken steep Scyros, the city of Enyeus”. I cannot accept that the poet meant that Achilles only happened to sail on a whim across to the island of Scyros and back again from Troia (a distance of ca. 400 km) just to procure a girl for Patroclus when he had the most beautiful girls (9.270-2) right on his doorstep on Lesbos. Since K. once thought of this as “more than unlikely” (Kullmann 1960, 197 n. 1), he built up an extremely complicated hypothesis, according to which this passage was taken from the Cypria, where Achilles’ Scyros adventure was supposed to have been linked with the Teuthranian Expedition (Kullmann 1960, 196f.). Hölscher in his day protested this construct: the Iliad doesn’t mention the Scyros adventure, which is related by Proclus, for it does not know of an Achilles married to Deidamia. “Would Achilles, if he were already married, speak of whom he would like to marry some day? Iliad Ι 397!” (Hölscher 1966, 120).31 Ancient commentators assumed (evidently reasoning in the same way) that a Scyros in the Troad was being spoken of here. Be that as it may, this particular passage cannot be used as proof that Achilles captured Greek girls as concubines in the Iliad, and that Lesbos must consequently have been regarded as Greek by the poet of the Iliad.

(5) What is particularly peculiar are the arguments K. advances against my evaluation of the four place-names in the Thebaid which have surfaced on the new Thebes tablets. These place-names also appear in the CS as places in the Thebaid: Eleon, Hyle, Peteon (2.500) as well as Eutreus ~ Eutresis (2.502). First one reads in reference to 2.500 οἵ τ’ Ἐλεῶν’ εἶχον ἠδ’ Ὕλην καὶ Πετεῶνα : “This line is linguistically, of course, post-Mycenaean, because of the καὶ alone” (K., 661). K. apparently thinks I regard the line of verse as Mycenaean, but there is no mention of this in my book. On the contrary, I state explicitly on p. 272: “The poet of the Achilles story as we have it knew a Catalogue of Ships as an element of the Troia story (this Catalogue need not, of course, have been identical to and as comprehensive as the one we now read in this poet)”. 32 Then, on pp. 276-8 I explain that I regard (not the wording but) the “information” and its “compilation” as Mycenaean, and I explain why I do so. K. follows this with the astonishing sentence: “All three place-names are, by contrast with [what is claimed in] L. TuH 291f., also documented in post-Homeric texts …” He apparently thinks that I claimed they were not documented in post-Homeric texts, which I have never said. Since the Catalogue (like the Homer text as a whole) has been repeatedly discussed in the course of Homer reception — especially by geographers — the place-names must, of course, be “documented in post-Homeric texts”.33 What I did say is, on the contrary (p. 291): “The three … places named represent classic instances of the phenomenon discussed above, that the post-Homeric Greek geographers had nothing or virtually nothing at all to say about some places named in the Catalogue of Ships, because they could not equate them with a precise location”. Against the background of this statement, it is pointless for K. to cite passages such as Herodotus 5.43, where, in fact, no localisation of the Homeric Eleon at Il. 2.500 occurs but instead only the statement that an Eleonian man ( ἀνὴρ Ἐλεώνιος) called Antichares advised Dorieus of Sparta “in the Peloponnesus” to found Heracleia in Sicily. Then there is Pausanias 1.29.6, where Pausanias, casually and without any intention of equating a name with a place, mentions a stele for two men who fell in a skirmish on the border between an “Eleonian area” and the area of Tanagra. The question of an explicit localisation is, logically, the only thing that is involved here. On this I quote on p. 291 with n. 117 the relevant studies conducted by Visser 1997, who has combed through all of Greek literature in search for such equations. I have quoted his findings in part (p. 291f.); they are negative.

As far as the three places are concerned, only the passages in Strabo are worth discussing, since Strabo’s writing represents the last comparably reliable attempt at equation within the ‘Catalogue of Ships discourse’ of Greek interpretation of Homer.34 It is not possible in this context to discuss each of these passages individually. To give at least some idea of how extraordinarily complicated this entire geography problem is, however, I shall present the case of Eleon. Nowhere does Strabo pinpoint the location of Homeric ‘Eleon’ from 2.500. Instead he records a village of ‘Heleon’ on the east coast of Boeotia in the area of Tanagra in his time (that is, about 800 years after Homer). The difference made by initial aspiration or lack of it (cf. e.g., ‘Essen’ : ‘Hessen’ [= Hesse] in German) should not be neglected35 for three reasons. First, Strabo derives the place-name explicitly from ἕλη’marshland’ (9.2.12).36 Second, in none of the three passages in which Strabo mentions the place (9.2.12, 14; 9.5.18) is it accompanied by the additional remark that surfaces regularly in his writing “thus also Homer” (e.g., καθάπερ καὶ ὁ ποιητὴς εἴρηκεν); this usually occurs with a quotation from the passage in the Catalogue, tallying with his main source, Apollodorus’ commentary on the Catalogue of Ships. Therefore, he sees no link with the Homeric ‘Eleon’ in 2.500. Third, Strabo explicitly rejects the equation of his ‘Heleon’ with Homeric ‘Eleon’ at 9.5.18. On the other hand, the lack of aspiration is assured in Ἐλεῶνα in Homer at 2.500 since it is preceded in almost all mss. by τ’. 37 Strabo only knows a post-Homeric ‘Eleon’ from a discussion between Crates and Demetrios on Iliad 10.266. Crates, according to Strabo, located this‘Eleon’ in Phocis on Parnassus. Demetrios, for his part, was not able to find a place of that name there (etc.). Strabo is certainly right in breaking off at this point with a groan: καὶ ἄλλα δ’ ἐστίν, ἃ λέγοι τις ἄν, ἀλλ’ οὐκ ὀκνῶ διατρίβειν ἐπὶ πλέον. We, too, would be well advised to take this to heart.38

K.’s assertion that “the places, therefore, not only did exist in Homer’s time; they also existed 1200 years later” cannot in any case be derived from the geographical paradosis of the Greeks. The same holds for Eutresis. K. feels I have erred in my interpretation of it for two reasons: first, because this place, whose name was known before 1200 and after 600 “perhaps … (was) settled in some way after all, even though there is not yet archaeological proof of this (etc.)”;39 and second, because the name “(can)not have been taken from Homer even on resettlement since more detailed geographical data was not given in Homer”. The lack of more detailed geographical data in Homer has not prevented modern archaeology from equating Mycenaean ruins with places in the CS. For Greek new settlers, this way of doing things would have seemed even more sensible because the CS was so famous (and this is still practised today, in fact in the case of Eleon itself, see Kirk ad loc.).

There is a possible explanation for the disagreement between K. and me with regard to the Thebes tablets. I may not have sufficiently clarified (despite p. 261f. in my book) the function of the four Mycenaean place-names on the nine Thebes tablets. I would like to give it another try. The core of the Troia story within the Iliad, as we know it, is based on real, historical conditions associated with the Mycenaean period of Greek history. An attempt at stating this more precisely or comprehensively would require enormous quantities of data from all possible fields (e.g., social, political, economic, military, technical, cultural, linguistic, religious). It is not possible to carry out an undertaking of such encyclopaedic scope in a general, publicly accessible outline of the complex issues related to ‘Troia : Homer’. It is therefore necessary to limit it to a paradigm. The Catalogue of Ships’ complex of facts, which is a closed one and relatively easy to grasp, is suitable for this purpose. Analysis of it has shown that its core (and with it, the Troia story, to which a Catalogue of Ships belonged as an integral constituent of the subject matter) must have been invented as early as the Mycenaean period (p. 285). It is, however, difficult to judge just how large this core would have been. Assessments tend towards ‘rather small’.40 We could not be certain how many of the places named in the CS had a Mycenaean origin, because we could not verify the rather late and imprecise ancient equations related to this issue. The new Thebes tablets have now irrefutably shown that three places, which hitherto had fallen under this very heading,41 were already flourishing in Mycenaean times. This can and should serve as a warning to us: we are not reliant solely on the resources of archaeology;42 the proportion of Mycenaean places within the total number named in the CS grows as a result of new written evidence. The larger the share of Mycenaean places verified by documents, the more likely it is that there was a Mycenaean origin of the Troia story.43

K. claims that “there is no basis even in the new finds from Thebes for [positing] a Mycenaean origin of the Catalogue of Ships” (K., 662). He backs this up with “Visser’s thesis that a Mycenaean settlement is not the decisive criterion for dating the Catalogue of Ships” (Visser 1997, 269 n. 79). But K. (like so many others, including even, on occasion, Kirk44) repeatedly confuses the Catalogue of Ships in the text of the Iliad that has come down to us with a Mycenaean compilation of places. That is a fundamental error. The CS, that is, the compilation of places in the form in which we have it in the Iliad as handed down to us (= Visser’s “Catalogue of Ships”), might — which is what Visser would like to demonstrate with the versification technique — of course, have been brought forth only in the 8th century. The original compilation of places, i.e., those that derive from the innumerable Catalogues of Ships within the Troia story as handed down orally by the aoidoi (and from which, therefore, the CS in the Iliad as we know it also derives) had, however, emerged, for whatever purpose, by the Mycenaean period of Greek history ( typological antecedents are, after all, available for reference, such as the Linear B lists of place-names from Pylos). Perhaps one really should (in all humility) first remind readers of Plato’s Theory of Forms in order to make the concatenation of interdependence understandable.

The question of ‘data transmission’

Like many others, K. (662), too, believes that he must contest the possibility of oral transmission of knowledge for a period longer than 80 years. He does so because “as oralists see it, purely orally transmitted poetry is governed by the ‘Principle of Homoeostasis’ and the ‘floating gap'”. First of all, it should be emphasized that this ‘principle’ does not, on the basis of the research behind it, apply at all to oral poetry. On the contrary, it applies primarily to oral tradition in unbound form ( oral poetry : oral history). Let us leave aside the menacing number 80, which would seem to suggest a universal law. If we do so, then it could certainly still be conceded that in oral poetry, whose lifespan we can examine for a particular period (which is only rarely the case), the faint glimmerings of original dates can be made out. I go into this on pp. 297-9, taking Vansina’s ‘Oral Tradition as History’ (1985). (One who has made this entire school of research known in Germany through a volume of Wege der Forschung would hardly have to flaunt his knowledge of the relevant publications45). In anticipation, I have already pointed out the categorical difference between the rest of the oral poetries of the world known to us and the Greek oral poetry which would have to be reconstructed from the Iliad and the Odyssey : “In the case of the Greeks, however, other laws evidently obtain” (L., 298) and “The ‘gap’ between the first and second phase of the Greeks’ being able to write can … only with difficulty be equated with what Vansina calls the ‘floating gap’. It is, instead, more of a ‘period of disuse’, the interruption of a linear transmission which, as such, was evidently never forgotten by the Greeks themselves” (L. 299).

Recent developments in oral poetry scholarship have abandoned the very generalised survey of the various oral bardic traditions worldwide in favour of a highly differentiated way of viewing the subject. Foley’s treatment of the subject in 1997 (“Oral tradition and Its Implications”) in the New Companion to Homer can be considered ground-breaking in this respect: “That is, we must be willing to stipulate differences among individual traditions (according to language and history) …” (160). That is the lesson that should be learned from the innumerable comparative studies. Their conclusions had repeatedly been stated as follows: Greek oral improvised poetry ranked incomparably higher than all other known poetry of this type. The basis for this superiority was the language and the metre. As early as 1952 Bowra confirmed this in Heroic Poetry :

If we compare Homer’s use of language with that of any of the peoples whose improvised poetry we have examined, we see that, though it resembles them in having its origin in improvisation and serves similar ends, it differs in more than one respect. We cannot say that his language is older than any of theirs, since we know nothing of its beginning except that they must lie in a distant past. But it has certainly been organised for poetry to a degree which is not to be found elsewhere. This may partly be due to its metre. The heroic hexameter, based on the quantity of syllables and formed on a ‘falling’ rhythm of six dactyls, of which the last is truncated, is a much stricter and more exacting metre than those of the Russians, Jugoslavs, or Asiatic Tatars (Bowra 1952, 236).

Forty years later (in 1993) Brian Hainsworth still saw things this way in ‘The Iliad as heroic poetry’ in the Cambridge Iliad commentary:

The strict alternation of quantities in the hexameter, as always stricter in the last feet than in the first, must be responsible for the creation and preservation of the special language in Greek and for the accumulation of formulas. Formulas including runs of verses, dialect mixture, and linguistic archaism including the retention of glosses are widespread …, but the Greek Kunstsprache appears to stand at an extreme of complexity (Hainsworth 1993, 35).

This very rigidity and conservatism of the language of Greek hexameter is unique, which made the transmission of data possible over the centuries (L., 300-8). If we today can say with certainty “over centuries” — something which M. Parry could only suspect in his day — we are indebted for this knowledge to the research conducted by a small band of Greek scholars schooled in diachronic linguistics and Indo-European philology. Since about 1975/80 they have worked out in meticulously detailed analysis the conclusion that Greek epic hexameter existed as early as the 16th/15th centuries BC, in what in principle is the same form and in principle the same ‘heroic’ content as 800 years later in Homer. I have gone into this extensively on pp. 309-27, and with examples of a type that a broader public can still be expected to follow. For details I refer readers to my article on this subject ‘Epos II. Klassische Antike’ in the fourth volume of Der Neue Pauly (1998) (L., 364 n. 144, where the theory of the ‘Aeolic’ origin of the hexameter is also discussed). Many Greek scholars have either an ambivalent relation or none at all to diachronic linguistics because they possess little or no competence in this field (and even go so far as to boast of this). But anyone who closes his/her mind to this specialist discourse will have serious difficult in following my line of reasoning. To do so, one must have done some intensive spadework before being able to reject it.

I have discussed the question of the meaning and significance of Catalogues, on the other hand, and what is worthwhile in the retention of individual catalogued bits of data worthwhile on pp. 263/64.46 Consequently, I see no reason to repeat here what was presented so extensively there, step by step, and accompanied by explanatory footnotes. We cannot yet say today precisely in what way catalogues of names, as we encounter them in Homer and Hesiod, were diachronically transmitted in the traditional oral poetry of the Greeks. This is most likely to have been made possible by the formation of individual ‘memory chambers’ in which names belonging together were ‘stored’ and, when necessary, fitted together to make something new, sometimes in blocks, sometimes singly by means of the general prosodic rules available. When one considers the vast number of proper names in the various myth cycles, every singer in principle was confronted with the same problem of composition. That is, however, a question of memorising technique — within which the condensed catalogue of names represents only one extreme.47 To reject the possibility as such, with the question of “what sense would it have made for the singers to have transmitted a comprehensive list of largely incomprehensible place-names for 500 years …?” (K., 662), means underestimating the human motivational impulses that lead to retaining the past in the form of history.48 It also causes one to misjudge the essential core of heroic poetry. Friedrich Focke clearly recognised this 50 years ago, when he spoke of the “almost voluptuous delight in names” in Greek epic poetry and summarised it as follows: “In its names beats the heart of heroic poetry. The deeds of heroes which live in song are not done anonymously. Instead they are linked … with famous people [we add: and to places] which become renowned through them.”49

As I have tried to show, K.’s discussion contains a significant number of fundamental misunderstandings and erroneous interpretations. In fact, it is not surprising that K.’s final apodeictic verdicts (K., 663) are worlds apart from the reality of the book. A sentence such as “[The book] cannot bridge the gap between the world of the Hittites and Anatolians before 1200 BC and Homer’s Iliad in the 7th century BC” is difficult to understand in view of the interdisciplinary compilation of knowledge provided there by specialists in prehistoric archaeology, ancient Anatolian studies, Hittitologists, diachronic linguists, and Hellenists, among others; their sole purpose is to bridge this gap. Wilhelm Süss once said: “The real difficulty in philology is making the texts agree with our views”.50 K. evidently has not succeeded in overcoming this difficulty while reading my book. Regrettably, one must inevitably turn to the last sentence of his text “[Latacz’s] book does not adequately reflect the current state of research”. I would like to appeal to Prof. Kullmann to incorporate in his next work the extensive evidence relating to this problem, which is far richer than he seems to realize.


Bennet 1997 = J. Bennet, Homer and the Bronze Age, in Companion 1997, 511-534.

Bryce 1998 = T. Bryce, The Kingdom of the Hittites, Oxford.

Bowra 1952 = C.M. Bowra, Heroic Poetry, London.

Burkert 1976 = W. Burkert, Das hunderttorige Theben und die Datierung der Ilias, WSt 89, 5-21.

Chadwick 1976 = J. Chadwick, The Mycenaean World, Cambridge.

Combellack 1962 = F.M. Combellack, Review of Kullmann 1960, AJPh 83, 193-198.

Companion 1997 = Morris, I./Powell, B. (eds.), A New Companion to Homer, Leiden.

Dickie 1995 = M. Dickie, The Geography of Homer’s World, in Ø. Andersen/M. Dickie (eds.), Homer’s World. Fiction, Tradition, Reality, Bergen, 29-56.

Focke 1950 = F. Focke, Katalogdichtung im B der Ilias, Gymnasium 57, 256-273.

Foley 1997 = J. M. Foley, Oral Tradition and its Implications, in Companion 1997, 146-173.

Foley 1999 = J. M. Foley, Homer’s Traditional Art, University Park, Pa.

Gaertner 2001 = J.F. Gaertner, The Homeric Catalogues and their Function in Epic Narrative, Hermes 129, 298-305.

Haider 1988 = P.W. Haider, Griechenland-Nordafrika. Ihre Beziehungen zwischen 1500 und 600 v. Chr., Darmstadt.

Hainsworth 1993 = B. Hainsworth, The Iliad as heroic poetry, in Kirk, Iliad. Vol. III: books 9-12, 31-53.

Hawkins 1998 = J.D. Hawkins, Tarkasnawa King of Mira. ‘Tarkondemos’, Bogazköy Sealings and Karabel, Anatolian Studies 48, 1-31.

Helck 1979 = W. Helck, Die Beziehungen Ägyptens und Vorderasiens zur Ägäis bis ins 7. Jh. v. Chr., Darmstadt 1979. 2 1995.

Hölscher 1966 = U. Hölscher, Review of Kullmann 1960, Gnomon 38, 113-127.

Horrocks 1997 = G. Horrocks, Homer’s Dialect, in Companion 1997, 193-217.

Janko 1992 = R. Janko, The origins and evolution of the epic diction, in Kirk, Iliad. Vol. IV: books 13-16, Cambridge, 8-19.

Kirk, Iliad G.S. Kirk (ed.), The Iliad. A Commentary. Cambridge 1985-1993.

Kirk 1985 = G.S. Kirk, in Kirk, Iliad. Vol. I: books 1-4.

Kirk 1990 = G.S. Kirk, in Kirk, Iliad. Vol. II: books 5-8.

Kullmann 1960 = W. Kullmann, Die Quellen der Ilias (Troischer Sagenkreis), Wiesbaden (= Hermes Einzelschr., Heft 14).

Kullmann 1992 = W. Kullmann, Homerische Motive, Stuttgart.

Kullmann 1993 = W. Kullmann, Festgehaltene Kenntnisse im Schiffskatalog und im Troerkatalog der Ilias, ScriptOralia 61, Tübingen, 129-147.

Kullmann 1999 = W. Kullmann, Homer and Historical Memory, in E. A. Mackay (ed.), Signs of Orality. The Oral Tradition and Its Influence in the Greek and Roman World, Leiden, 95- 113.

Latacz 1979 = J. Latacz, Homer. Tradition und Neuerung, Darmstadt (Wege der Forschung, Bd. 463).

Latacz 1991 = J. Latacz (ed.), Zweihundert Jahre Homer-Forschung. Rückblick und Ausblick (Colloquia Raurica, Bd. 2), Stuttgart/Leipzig.

Latacz 1997 = Troia und Homer, in D. Galter (ed.), Troia. Mythen und Archäologie. Grazer Morgenländische Studien, Bd. 4), Graz, 1-37.

Latacz 1998 = J. Latacz, Epos II. Klassische Antike, in Der Neue Pauly, Band 4, 12-22.

Latacz 2000 = J. Latacz, Formelhaftigkeit und Mündlichkeit, in J. Latacz (ed.), Homers Ilias. Ein Gesamtkommentar. Prolegomena, München/Leipzig, 39-59.

Latacz 2001 = J. Latacz, Troia und Homer. Der Weg zur Lösung eines alten Rätsels, München/Berlin 3 2001.

Latacz 2001 a = J. Latacz, Troia-Wilios-Wilusa. Drei Namen für ein Territorium, Basel.

Lehmann 1991 = G.A. Lehmann, Die ‘politisch-historischen’ Beziehungen der Ägäis- Welt des 15.-13. Jh.s v. Chr. zu Ägypten und Vorderasien: einige Hinweise, in Latacz 1991, 105-126.

Lehmann 1996 = G.A. Lehmann, Umbrüche und Zäsuren im östlichen ‘Seevölker’-Invasionen um und nach 1200 v. Chr. Neue Quellenzeugnisse und Befunde, Historische Zeitschrift 262, 1996, 262, 1-38.

Minchin 2001 = E. Minchin, Homer and the Resources of Memory. Some Applications of Cognitive Theory to the Iliad and the Odyssey, Oxford.

Mountjoy 1998 = P. Mountjoy, The East Aegean-West Anatolian Interface in the Late Bronze Age: Mycenaeans and the Kingdom of Ahhiyawa, Anatolian Studies 48, 33-67.

Niemeier 1998 = W.-D. Niemeier, The Mycenaeans in Western Anatolia and the Problem of the Origins of the Sea Peoples, in S. Gitin/A. Mazar/E. Stern (eds.), Mediterranean Peoples in Transition. Thirteenth to Early Tenth Centuries BCE. In Honor of Professor Trude Dothan, Jerusalem, 17- 65.

Niemeier 1999 = W.-D. Niemeier, Mycenaeans and Hittites in War in Western Asia Minor, in. Aegaeum 19, 141-155 (+ plate XV).

Oralità 1985 = Oralità. Cultura, Letteratura, Discorso. Atti del Convegno Internazionale Urbino 1980, a cura di B. Gentili e G.Paioni, Roma.

Page 1959 = D. Page, History and the Homeric Iliad, Berkeley.

Page 1961 = D. Page, The Sources of the Iliad (Review of Kullmann 1960), in CR 11, 205- 209.

Parker 1999 = V. Parker, Die Aktivitäten der Mykenäer in der Ost-Ägäis im Lichte der Linear B-Tafeln, in S. Deger-Jalkotzy/St. Hiller/O. Panagl (eds.), Floreant Studia Mycenaea II. Akten des X. Internationalen Mykenologischen Collo- quiums in Salzburg vom 1.-5. Mai 1995, Band 2, Wien 1999.

Powell 1997 = B. Powell, Homer and Writing, in Companion 1997, 3-32.

Raaflaub 1997 = K. Raaflaub, Homeric Society, in Companion 1997, 624-648.

Spencer 1995 = N. Spencer, Early Lesbos between East and West: A ‘Grey Area’ of Aegaean Archaeology, in The Annual of the British School at Athens 90, 269-306.

Starke 1997 = F. Starke, Troia im Kontext des historisch-politischen und sprachlichen Umfeldes Kleinasiens im 2. Jahrtausend, Studia Troica 7, 447-487.

Vansina 1985 = J. Vansina, Oral Tradition as History, London.

Visser 1997 = E. Visser, Homers Katalog der Schiffe, Stuttgart/Leipzig.

Visser 1998 = E. Visser, Formale Typologien im Schiffskatalog der Ilias: Befunde und Konsequenzen, in H.L.C. Tristram (ed.), New Methods in the Research of Epic, Tübingen, 25-44.

Wachter 2000 = R. Wachter, Grammatik der homerischen Sprache, in Latacz 2000, 61-108.

West 1995 = M.L. West, The Date of the Iliad, MH 52, 203- 219.


1. J. Latacz (ed.), Homers Ilias. Gesamtkommentar. Vol. 1: Fasc. 1 + Fasc. 2, Munich/Leipzig : Saur 2000.

2. In compliance with an agreement reached at the 1st International Hisarlik Conference in 1988, the various different spellings, depending on which language is being used (‘Troy’, ‘Troja’, ‘Troye[s]’, etc.), are henceforth to be written uniformly as ‘Troia’.

3. J. Latacz, Troia und Homer. Der Weg zur Lösung eines alten Rätsels, Munich/Berlin: Koehler & Amelang (Deutsche Verlags-Anstalt) 2001, 378 [not 348] p. 4 0 (in the following, quotations are from the 3rd ed. July 2001).

4. “It is conceived as addressing a broad public — which does not exclude the possibility that specialists in the numerous related fields of classics, pupils, teachers and students can profit from reading it” (L.16).

5. In addition to (of course, not always specialist) reviews in the German press, radio and television, there have been numerous letters from colleagues. A specialist review besides the one discussed in the following has yet to be published.

6. Gnomon accepts no rebuttals of reviews; classical journals published in German have a waiting period of at least one year.

7. At least this prediction has been confirmed: in July 2001 the 3rd revised and improved edition appeared; the 4th is in progress. In November 2001 the book was judged by a 22-member jury one of the ten best German non-fiction books (see ‘Börsenblatt für den deutschen Buchhandel’ of 2 Nov. 2001; the members of the jury are named in the prestigious daily Süddeutsche Zeitung of 3 Nov. 2001).

8. M. Willcock, “Neoanalysis”, in Companion 1997, 184. That Willcock later (187) recommends abandoning Kullmann’s further development of what was originally a neoanalytical approach and returning to “Kakridis’s original perception” of 1944 does nothing to impair his generally positive epistemological evaluation of Kullmann’s book.

9. It is well known that the entire bias of Neoanalysis (or Motiv-Übertragung), whose present chief advocate is K., is entirely hypothetical in so far as it seeks to construct what is not there from what is there by drawing conclusions retroactively. This approach as such should not be criticised (cf. Hölscher 1966, 126: “A hypothesis developed with such distinguished scholarship will continue to weigh heavily in Homeric philology ….” This is so despite the immediately following refutation of the findings: “Since I myself regard its findings as erroneous, …”). Nor can a scholar’s conviction that he is proffering “virtually assured knowledge” furnish grounds for reproach (in so far I do not agree with the reviewer of Kullmann’s work at that time). Otherwise European philosophy and scholarship since Parmenides would have to be jettisoned.

10. (1) Is the mound at the Dardanelles, where excavation has gone on for 130 years, really identical with the ‘Troia’ which Homer posits in the epic known as the Iliad as the setting for the action? (2) If so, what did the historical Troia look like while it still flourished and had not yet gone up in flames? (3) How could knowledge of this historical Troia and of its fall reach the Greek poet Homer about 450 years later? (4) If that was possible and if the transmission of that knowledge can be reconstructed: up to what point can we then use Homer’s epic poem the Iliad as a source of information on the historical Troia?

11. The theory advanced by D. Hertel of an alleged continuity of settlement on the mound, which K. reluctantly accepted in 1993 (Kullmann 1993, 145f.), does not stand up to the archaeological findings (the evidence now in Latacz 2001a, 21 n. 71). Just to make sure I have nevertheless considered the possibility of a local transmission of the place- name (168f.) and, on pp. 259-261 of my book, I have extensively discussed this but shown it to be extremely unlikely. Moreover, on pp. 319-327 (‘[W]Ilios in the Greek oral poetry’), I have shown that the place-name Wilios was already firmly established before ca. 1050 in mainland Greek oral poetry — that is, at a time, when there was not yet any Greek settlement on Lesbos or even in the Troad. K. completely fails to mention both lines of reasoning and the issues related to them.

12. R. Hachmann, “Hisarlik und das Troja Homers”, in K. Bittel/E. Heinrich/B. Hrouda/W. Nagel (eds.), Vorderasiatische Archäologie. Studien und Aufsätze. Festschrift Anton Moortgat, Berlin [- West] 1964, 109f.

13. J. Cobet, “Gab es den Trojanischen Krieg?” in Antike Welt 4/83; reprinted in Antike Welt 25/1994, 12 with n. 73.

14. Here no attempt is made at an exhaustive discussion of K.’s objections since the basic constants of attempts at refutation become clear on examination of just a few examples. Merely accumulating material would only be repetitious.

15. Unmistakably on this Combellack 1962, 194.

16. Niemeier 1999, 143 with n. 22 (where, the following additional advocates of the equation are named: Kretschmer 1924, Garstang/Gurney 1959, Page 1959, Houwink ten Cate 1970, Jewell 1974, Bryce 1977, Singer 1983, Houwink ten Cate 1983/84, Güterbock 1986, Schachermeyr 1986, Yakar 1993, Hansen 1994, de Martino 1996); Niemeier 2002 (in progress), quoted in L. 363 n. 126. Lehmann in the daily DIE WELT of 27 Oct. 2001.

17. On Hertel’s book see the letter written by J.D. Hawkins dated 22 Aug.01 to the TIMES: “Another classical critic of Korfmann has recently published a book, which is particularly weak in this regard [sc. the rapidly expanding body of information currently becoming available from Anatolian archaeology and Hittite texts of the 2nd millennium B.C.], showing little grasp of the texts or knowledge of recent developments.” Against Haider’s objections see Niemeier 1999, 143 n. 22.

18. When I now and then use ‘Thebes’ to mean ‘the Kingdom of Thebes’ (central principality or something similar), readers can clearly recognize from the contexts that this is simply a convention of mine to keep things brief.

19. Niemeier 2002 (in progress), quoted in L. 290. It was preceded by Sigrid Deger-Jalkotzy.

20. Cf. Visser 1997, 12 n. 29: “The dating of the emergence of the Iliad to about the third quarter of the 8th century can be regarded as communis opinio even though at present the 7th century is again being considered (instigated by W. Burkert […] 1976…).”

21. With G. A. Lehmann (1991, 114) one should remember that this term is a “modern convention”. Further, if we wanted to be historically correct, taking into consideration what were presumably the shifts in power in Greece during the latter half of the 2nd millennium, we would probably have to use the term ‘Danaan’ for the 15th/14th cent. and ‘Achaean’ for the 14th/13th cent.

22. Working up “the many other questions raised by the Catalogue” will take place where this should be done, in the new Basel Iliad commentary; in the present connection all that could be touched on was the overarching issue.

23. In the ‘Quellen der Ilias’ it was still the Cypria itself which “probably also contained a Catalogue of Ships which described how the individual contingents assembled in Aulis” (Kullmann 1960, 139). In the meantime, since the thesis advanced then has become unsustainable, namely that the Cypria was available to the poet of the Iliad, the Cypria has been replaced by “poetry similar to the Cypria“. That he has corrected himself does not, however, change the validity of the statement made then: “Granted, it is difficult to bring compelling proof of the existence of such a Catalogue in the Cypria” (ibid. 139 n. 2). It is not “difficult”, it is impossible since Proclus, on whose writings the entire construct rests, “indeed (mentions) a Catalogue of Allies but not a Catalogue of Ships” (ibid. 171). In his review, Hölscher in turn referred to a detail within this entire fabric of hypotheses as a “verwegene Behauptung” (bold assertion) (Hölscher 1966, 121).

24. Cf. Kullmann 1993, 147.

25. See also Visser 1997, 14 n. 33, on the archaeological statistics of the incidence of places of settlement: 320 in the 13th century, 130 in the 12th century, 40 in the 11th century, 120 in the 10th century, 140 in the 9th century and, however, 260 in the 8th century: “Therefore the old incidence has been attained again but only after about 500 years.” Cf. maps 3, 4 and 5 in the ‘Gazetteer of Aegean Civilisation in the Bronze Age. Vol. I: The Mainland and Islands’ by R. Hope Simpson/O.T.P.K. Dickinson, Göteborg 1979.

26. K. 660 accuses me of wanting to make the impression in n. 77 to S. 360 that I had been the first to notice that these cities were missing. In n. 77 to p. 360, however, I am speaking about something entirely different, namely about the circumstance that these cities are missing is noted on a regular basis by scholars — also by K. himself (Kullmann 1993, 144) — for the Troad Catalogue instead of the Achaean Catalogue. On the circumstance that the cities are missing I say in general on p. 279 explicitly: “This ‘blank space’ in the Iliad as we know it has been noticed since modern Homeric scholarship began.

27. The typographical error ‘top’ for ‘bottom’ there is a kind of typographical error very frequently encountered — for the practised reader not a problem.

28. On this see my n. 79 to p. 360.

29. K. writes Αἰπύ following West’s edition of Homer; both the Homer Vulgata — which was also available to Strabo — and the scholia have Αἶπυ. According to Strabo 8.3.24, the Homeric scholars of antiquity did not agree on which of the two words ἐύκτιτον αἶπυ might be the place-name. They therefore did not know of an Αἶπυ or Αἰπύ in Pylos.

30. K. is apparently confusing Homer with the dialect used by Homer. Since the two must, it goes without saying, be clearly distinguished from one another (Sophocles was an Athenian so he spoke Attic but he used Doric for his choruses), I have expressed this as follows on p. 178: “The (East-)Ionic dialect, on the other hand, which Homer uses, does not have the F” and, on p. 260: “Since, however, there was no F in his [meaning Homer’s] dialect of Greek, the Ionic ….”

31. Cf. Page 1961, 208: “It really is most special pleading to argue … that IX. 666 ff. can be reconciled with the Teuthranian Expedition’s version of Achilles’ visit to Scyros.”

32. Cf. also p. 274: “Now it has been … shown, first, that the Troia story, as the story of an overseas expedition, must, to satisfy its own inner logic as such, have always contained a Catalogue of Ships; second, that this Catalogue of Ships is still tangibly present, however modified the version may be, in the Iliad as we have it.”

33. K. probably means ‘places’ rather than ‘place-names’.

34. On Strabo’s method see Visser 1997, 33f. with n. 38.

35. Kirk is right in not even bothering with Strabo on Eleon. I cannot concur in Visser’s equation (261 n. 51).

36. In 8.3.24 he also makes a point of mentioning the widespread place-name Ἕλος among his examples of “naming places after Nature”.

37. The sole exception: Pap. 690 West.

38. Strabo does not know of a place called ‘Hyle’ (thus Iliad 2.500) in Boeotia. All he knows is a village called ‘Hylai’ (κώμης, ἣν καλοῦσιν Ἠλας), which he boldly equates with the ‘Hyle’ in 2.500, maintaining that Homer is using the name in the singular (Ὅμηρος δ’ ἑνικῶς ἐκφέρει) and that he shortens or lengthens the initial /u/ arbitrarily as 2.500, 5.708 and 7.221 showed (9.2.20). Strabo does indeed equate ‘Peteon’ in 2.500 with a “village called ‘Peteon’ in the Thebaid near the road to Anthedon” (9.2.26). Of course we do not know whether this village was already in existence in the 8th century.

39. Thus also Kirk 1985, 239; all that is possible (“may have been”, “could”, etc.). For this very reason, however, the exact opposite is also possible.

40. See, for instance, what Kirk 1985 has to say on this: Kirk 1985, 237-240.

41. See Kirk 1985, 192: on Eleon he says that the Eleon mentioned incidentally by Pausanias is “usually” equated with the Mycenaean site near a modern village, which was “renamed” ‘Eleon’ after the site. On Hyle: “but nothing else [except for the localisation of Iliad 5. 708f.] is known” (here, too, Kirk is sensibly eschewing Strabo). On Peteon: “but nothing else [except for the localisation by Strabo] is known and there is no obviously suitable site.” This means: no Mycenaean existence was previously known for the places named in Iliad 2.500. Now — since the tablets have been found — it is known.

42. That is, we are not left to “looking round for Mycenaean sites (in which Greece was extraordinarily rich) to identify at almost all costs with otherwise speculative place-names in the catalogue”: Kirk 1985, 237f.

43. Should there at some time in the future be — purely hypothetically — verified evidence for all place- names in the CS in Linear B, and should at the same time the Greeks of the historical age be shown to have been unable to identify a quarter of the places thus designated, this would prove the Mycenaean origin of the names as material in the Homeric CS.

44. For instance Kirk 1985, 238 under quotation (3), when he calls into question the existence of a “Mycenaean catalogue in some form “for the reason that many or most of these [i.e., Mycenaean] names could have been retained in an oral tradition.” Something can only be “retained” if it was already there.

45. Latacz 1979 (with 46 pages of ‘Special Bibliography on the Theory of Oral Poetry in Homeric Scholarship’). K.’s. catalogue of relevant publications, a catalogue which is “missing” from my bibliography (K. 662), would benefit particularly from the addition of the Congress volume ‘Oralità’ (1985) and the works by J.M. Foley (most recently 1999). See my exposition of this in ‘Formelhaftigkeit und Mündlichkeit’ in the Prolegomena volume of the new Basel Iliad commentary (Latacz 2000, 39-59, especially sections 36-38).

46. On this see also the comprehensive discussion in Visser 1998 and Gaertner 2001.

47. On this see the chapters ‘The Catalogue of Ships: Organization and Retrieval’, ‘Performing the List-Song’, and ‘The List in the Context of Epic Song’ in Minchin 2001, 84-99; cf. Minchin 2001, 87 (with n. 37): “Since spatial memory is so powerful, so dependable and so enduring, the preservation of the Catalogue of Ships as an entity has been promoted by the very organization of list material for ready recall”; “… we recall spatial information in considerable detail and for long periods of time. This observation from another field may well provide support (but not, of course, confirmation) for those who argue that the Catalogue of Ships preserves accurate memories of a Mycenaean past. On the other hand it is clear, that Homer adapted the catalogue to his own narrative”.

48. It probably suffices to recall Herodotus’ proem.

49. Focke 1950, 269f. Cf. Visser’s exposition of the catalogue as a narrative form in general and related in particular to the real background of the Greek catalogue in the form of a pronounced addiction to ‘cataloguisation’ as practised in the records of Mycenaean central palaces (Visser 1998, 32-35). It is the same people that counts meticulously and re-counts heroic epics.

50. In Europa. Studien zur Geschichte und Epigraphik der frühen Ägäis (Festschrift Grumach), Berlin 1967, 304.