At the Iliad’s end, Achilles reminds a defeated Priam the extent of his former prosperity …
you too, old man, we hear you prospered once:
as far as lesbos, Macar’s kingdom, bounds to seaward,
Phrygia east and upland, the Hellespont vast and north -
that entire realm, they say, you lorded over once,
you excelled all men, old king, in sons and wealth.
the first Geographer gets even more precise. In what later Greeks called
the catalog, Homer gives an inventory of
the Trojans and their allies as they gathered for battle. From the far northeast were
men who lived in Zelea under the foot of Ida, a wealthy clan who drank the Aesepus’ dark waters - Trojans all. From west of there, were men from all along the Hellespont, from
Percote and Practios, … Sestos, Abydos and gleaming Arisbe. From toward Mount Ida, came
the Dardanians - (led by) Aeneas.
as far as Lesbos?
Twelve cities of men I’ve stormed and sacked from shipboard, eleven I claim by land, on the fertile earth of Troy, Achilles claims before the final battle for Troy. These are southern cities,
at Lyrnessus, storming the heights and breached the walls of Thebes, the citadel of
gallant-hearted Eetion, Hector’s father-in-law and
Pedasus fort as well. And yes, he even
captured the Lesbos citadel himself.
So Priam’s Troad went from Zelea in the north west, west along the Propontis, round Sigeum, down past Tendos, round
Lectos headland on to Thebes and beyond, perhaps even including Lesbos. A line from Ida meandered back to Zelea again.
counsel, by wisdom, and by artifice, The city of Priam was destroyed. And all those
not a single one … left … Ares killed them all.