Aegeus Society For Aegean Prehistory


1 May 2018

The anatomy of a complex astronomical phenomenon described in the Odyssey

S. P. Papamarinopoulos, P. Preka-Papadema, P. Antonopoulos, H. Mitropetrou, A. Tsironi & P. Mitropetros Mediterranean Archaeology and Archaeometry 13.3 (2013): 69-82

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An intense meteor shower is described as dove’s feathers falling down during the Telemachus’ arrival in Ithaca mentioned by the Homeric epic. Additionally, in the next days, there are some other descriptions which are regarded from us as meteor activity (bolides, a meteorite, many erupted meteors in the atmosphere, and a glimmering in the sky due to intense dust). In accordance with the proposed by us new astronomical dating of Odysseus’ return to Ithaca (25 October 1207 B.C.), this meteor shower occurred in the last days of October 1207 B.C. The radiant point was near to Pleiades nebula of Taurus constellation. Consequently, two astronomical phenomena (a solar eclipse and a meteor shower) were hidden in the two Theoclymenus’ prophecies, marking clearly, the Odysseus’s return to Ithaca.


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