A Cartoonist’s Adventures in Troy: AGE OF BRONZE’s Eric Shanower blogs his trip to the ruins of the ancient city.

What I’d not received from my research in books, magazines, video, and the internet was the impression of how large the citadel really is. It’s bigger than I expected. So many books have mentioned how the Troy VI citadel is so puny in contrast to the descriptions of the glorious city in Homer’s Iliad. So I’d expected it to seem small. Site plans make it look as though you could walk around the Troy VI citadel in less than five minutes. But I don’t think you could unless you ran pretty fast. In contrast, when later I explored the area where the Late Bronze Age Lower Town of Troy used to be, it seemed much smaller than I’d expected.

That first day I wasn’t satisfied with only seeing the citadel; I wanted to see everything I could. So I struck off on paths leading away from the citadel to see what I could find. Many people take the time to go down to the spring cave, and I did, too, making a sketch of the entrance, but most don’t venture across the steep northern face of the citadel mound. There on the other side of the fence begin the fields of the local Turkish farmers. On the road that skirts the fence I saw the first of many herds of goats, guided along by their goatherd. I kept circling around the hill, looking up in search of the famed northeast bastion of Troy VI, but I couldn’t locate it through the trees covering the north face of the hill.