Documentary on ancient Troy premieres in Istanbul

A Turkish documentary on the riches from the fabled ancient city of Troy premiered in Istanbul on Friday, near the conclusion of 2018, the Year of Troy in Turkey.

Directed by Nihal Agirbas, “Treasures of Troy: A Century Old Longing” focuses on treasures of Troy found in Turkey by German amateur archeologist Heinrich Schliemann and later smuggled to Germany via Greece. Today the treasures are exhibited in a Russian museum, as they were taken from Germany during World War II.

Agirbas told Anadolu Agency that Schliemann’s memoirs, excavation notes, and books, as well as Turkish and German advisors, were used to write the screenplay.

“Ottoman archives were also consulted,” she added.

Attending the premiere in Istanbul, Turkish Culture and Tourism Minister Mehmet Nuri Ersoy said that the release of the drama-documentary successfully capped off the Year of Troy.

Ersoy said that Turkey continues working to repatriate the treasures to the land they belong.

The Culture and Tourism Ministry declared 2018 the Year of Troy to celebrate 20 years of Troy’s addition to the UNESCO World Heritage List.

Troy, located on the mounds of Hisarlik overlooking the Turkish Aegean coastal plain, is one of the most famous archeological sites in the world, with its 4,000 years of history.

The city was long thought to be purely mythical until the groundbreaking work of Schliemann, who began uncovering the site in the 1870s.

Troy was immortalized by the ancient Greek poet Homer in his epic The Iliad, telling the story of the last year of the decade-long Trojan War.

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