Macquarie Asian Historical Research Society Seminar


  • 04/12/2012 – 6-7PM


  • Presentation by Prof. Samuel Lieu – “Between Europe and Asia – the Dardanelles in myth, history and archaeology”


This lecture will examine the history and archaeology of one of the most contested and important waterways in the world, controlling the access to the Black Sea and separating Europe from Asia. Beginning with the archaeological history of the region in the Archaic (i.e. post-Homeric) period, we will move on to examine the attempt by the Persians to control Eurasia. This lecture will look at the bridging of the Dardanelles (Hellespont) by Xerxes in 480 BCE, the ancient technology employed in the building of these bridges, as well as their exact location in relation to Abydos. We will then look at attempts by warring Greek states to assert their control over this vital waterway from the era of Athenian domination to the crossing by Alexander the Great. Later attempts to control it by Byzantines, Venetians and Catalans will also be surveyed, culminating by helping to set the famous Gallipoli campaign of 1915 in its world-historical context.


Room: W6A 107



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