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<   No. 1409   2006-12-05   >

Comic #1409

1 Monty: Legend says Troy could not fall while the Palladium lay within its walls. As the Greeks lay siege, Diomedes and Odysseus stole into Troy to spirit it away.
2 Minnesota Jones: It was taken to Athens, or Rome, but was never found again. It certainly wasn't in Troy when we excavated it.
2 Monty: You excavated Troy??
3 Minnesota Jones: I'm the Schliemannian Chair of Archaeology! I was Heinrich Schliemann's student when he found the site in 1870!
4 Ginny: When I said I needed your help, I meant your grandfather...
4 Monty: Oh good lord...

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So there you go. That's the gist of the story of the Palladium of Troy. We've now also learnt that Minnesota Jones is not merely the Schliemannian Chair of Archaeology at Oxford University, but was a student of Heinrich Schliemann himself, the guy who defied conventional wisdom of the time that the story of the Trojan War as recounted in the Iliad was complete fiction by actually finding Troy. So yep, Monty's grandad is an expert on Troy.

Schliemann actually excavated parts of Troy over two digging campaigns during the years 1871-1873 and 1878-1879. It's not quite clear from my research exactly when Schliemann "discovered" Troy, or rather became convinced that the bit of Turkey he'd been wandering over was Troy. Some sources say 1870, others 1871, yet others as early as 1868. I guess Minnesota Jones knows the truth, since he was there.


2016-07-12 Rerun commentary: This strip, by the way, pegs Minnesota Jones's age as being in the vicinity of the mid-80s or so, depending how old he was when he was Heinrich Schliemann's student, and exactly what year in the 1930s this story is currently set.

I hope I'm as active as he is when I'm in my 80s!

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