Aeneas - A Trojan hero and the son of the Trojan prince Anchises and the Greek goddess Aphrodite (the Roman Venus).
Aeneid - A Latin epic poem written by Virgil in the second half of the first century BCE. It tells the tale of the legendary Aeneas fleeing Troy and traveling to Italy.
Ahhiyawa - The Hittite rendering of Homer’s Achaeans (i.e. the Mycenaean Greeks).
Ahmose - Pharaoh and founder of the Eighteenth Dynasty of Egypt, the first dynasty of the New Kingdom of Egypt. He is best known for reclaiming the Northern delta region from the Hyksos.
Akkadian - An East Semitic language spoken by an early Mesopotamian civilization starting around 2500 BCE.
Akrotiri - The archaeological site and location of an ancient Minoan settlement located on the island of Thera.
Albion - An alternative and ancient name to Great Britain.
Alcinous - The mythological king of the Phaeacians.
Amarna Period - An era of Egyptian history which took place during the later half of the Eighteenth Dynasty and when the royal residence of the pharaoh and his queen was shifted to Akhetaten in what is now Amarna.
Amorites - An ancient Northwest Semitic-speaking people from the Levant who also occupied large parts of southern Mesopotamia.
Amulius - King of Alba Longa and brother to Numitor. The twin, Romulus and Remus were his grandnephews.
Amurru - The collective peoples and region (i.e. the Amurru lands or the land of Amor) of both Canaan and Syria.
Anatolia - The region that is Turkey today.
Antikythera Mechanism - Described as the world’s oldest analogue computer, the ancient Greek mechanical device was used to predict astronomical positions and eclipses.
Antiquarianism - The study of history through objects such as ancient artifacts and manuscripts.
Anu - A Sumero-Babylonian deity of the sky and ancestor to many deities in ancient Mesopotamian religion. Also considered to be the “King of the gods.”
Apollodorus - Technically, “pseudo-Apollodorus” (1st or 2nd century CE) who authored of the Bibliotheca.
Apollonius Rhodius - Also known as Apollonius of Rhodes, was a 3rd century BCE poet, best known for the Argonautica.
Apophis - Also known as Apepi, was a Hyksos ruler of Lower Egypt during the Fifteenth Dynasty at the end of the Second Intermediate Period.
Archaic Greece - A period in Greece starting at ca. 800 BCE and ending ca. 480 BCE.
Archimedes - (c. 287 – c. 212 BCE) From Syracuse in the island of Sicily, he was an ancient Greek mathematician, physicist, engineer, astronomer and inventor.
Argonautica - An epic poem about Jason and the Argonauts and their quest for the Golden Fleece.
Arthur - A legendary king to Britain and a central figure in medieval literary tradition.
Ashurbanipal - King of the Neo-Assyrian Empire who reigned from 669 BCE to his death in 631 BCE.
Assuwa - An ancient name for South-Western Anatolian. Also, an ancient form of the word Asia.
Atra-hasis - An Assyro-Babylonian flood hero. Equivalent to Ut-napishtim written about in the Epic of Gilgamesh and the Sumerian Ziusudra.
Atreus - A king of Mycenae in the Greek Peloponnese and father of both Agamemnon and Menelaus.
Augustus - The first Roman Emperor who reigned from 27 BCE to the time of his death in 14 CE.
Avaris - The capital of Lower Egypt during the Second Intermediate Period and under the rule of the Hyksos.
Babylonian Exile - Also referred to as the Babylonian Captivity, is the period in Jewish history when a large number of Judeans from the Southern ancient Kingdom of Judah were transported to and held captives in Babylon (597 - 539 BCE).
BCE - Before the Common Era, the equivalent of B.C.
Bolsena Mirror - An Etruscan mirror depicting the she-wolf and the twins surrounded by human and animal figures. Its interpretation is still debated among scholars.
Bronze Age - Defines a historic period dated to approximately between 3300 BCE and 1200 BC. It is characterized by the use of bronze, the presence of writing in some areas, and other early features of urban civilization.
Brutus of Troy - A legendary descendent of Aeneas, known in Medieval British literature and history. He is the eponymous founder and first king of Britain.
Bull of Heaven - A mythical beast fought by the hero Gilgamesh.
Calypso - A nymph and minor goddess who lived on the island of Ogygia.
Canaan - The region that is the Levant and what is Israel and Syria today.
Carthage - Originally a Phoenician colony, Carthage began as an important trading hub located in the Western Mediterranean and eventually rose as a great power, extending their empire into Europe (between the 7th and 3rd centuries BCE).
CE - The Common Era, the equivalent of A.D.
Circe - An enchantress and minor goddess who lived on the island of Aeaea.
Corfu - The Italian name of the Greek island of Kerkyra, named during the Byzantine period.
Crantor - A 4th - 3rd century BCE Greek philosopher.
Critias - A dialogue (book) written by Plato which contains a detailed description of both the people and island of Atlantis.
CTH - Catalogue of Hittite Texts.
Cuneiform - A wedge-shaped logo-syllabic script used to write several languages of the Ancient Middle East.
Cyclades - A collection of islands (which form a circle) located in the Aegean Sea and to the East of the Peloponnese.
Cyclopes (singular: Cyclops) - Large monstrous one-eyed mythical cannibals featured in the Odyssey and other mythical tales.
Dead Sea Scrolls - Discovered in the caves of Qumran, to the north of the Dead Sea and dating from the 3rd century BCE to the 1st century CE, the Dead Sea Scrolls are considered to be the oldest surviving manuscripts of entire books later included in the biblical canons.
Deuteronomist (D) - An author or source identified in the Documentary Hypothesis and dated to around the 8th or 7th century BCE.
Documentary Hypothesis - A model used by Biblical Scholars to explain the origins and composition of the Pentateuch.
Drepani - The location of the kingdom of the Phaeacians in the Argonautica.
Ea - Referred to as Enki in Sumerian, Ea was god of water, knowledge and crafts.
Elam - An ancient civilization located in western Iran. The Elamites emerged as early as the end of the 4th millennium BCE and continued to occupy the region until at last the middle of the 1st millennium BCE.
Elgin Marbles - The collection of Classical Greek marbles that once decorated the Parthenon built on the Acropolis of Athens during the 5th century BCE. They are currently housed in the British Museum.
Elohist (E) - An author or source identified in the Documentary Hypothesis and dated to around the 9th century BCE.
Enkidu - A wartime comrade and friend of Gilgamesh.
Epic Cycle - See the Trojan Cycle.
Etruria - A region once located in central Italy and what is Tuscany today.
Etruscans - An ancient civilization inhabiting ancient Etruria as early as 900 BCE. They were highly cultured and spoke a unique Etruscan language still largely undeciphered today. The Etruscans were competing with the Greeks and later Carthaginians for control over the Tyrrhenian region and until they were eventually absorbed into the Roman empire.
Faustulus - A shepherd who found Romulus and Remus abandoned along the River Tiber. He adopted the twins and raised them as his own.
Geoffrey of Monmouth - (ca. 1095 CE – ca. 1155 CE) A cleric and writer from Monmouth, Wales whose works focused primarily on the history of Britain with tales involving King Arthur and Brutus of Troy.
Gaston Maspero - (June 23, 1846 – June 30, 1916) A French Egyptologist.
George Smith - (26 March, 1840 – 19 August, 1876) An English Assyriologist who first discovered and translated the Epic of Gilgamesh.
Gilgamesh - An ancient Sumerian king and Mesopotamian hero. Many tales and an entire epic were written about him as early as the 3rd millennium BCE.
Gogmagog - A legendary giant in Welsh and English mythology who inhabited Albion.
Harran - Located in southeastern Turkey, the ancient city of Harran came under Assyrian rule by the end of the 14th century BCE.
Herculaneum - An ancient Roman town located in the Campania region of Italy. It was buried under volcanic ash and pumice during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 CE.
Herodotus - (c. 484 – c. 425 BCE) An ancient Greek historian and geographer.
Hesiod - An ancient Greek poet believed to have been active between 750 and 650 BCE.
Hittite - An ancient civilization and empire that controlled most of the Anatolian mainland.
Humbaba - A Mesopotamian giant or monster and guardian of the Cedar Forest.
Hyksos - The Hyksos was an ethnic identity for foreign rulers (likely of Semitic origin) who migrated into the Egyptian Delta region and ruled Lower Egypt for the century that defined the Second Intermediate Period (c. 1650 - 1550 BCE) and just before the New Kingdom Period.
Iron Age - Defines a historic period which started at approximately between 1200 BCE in the eastern Mediterranean. It is characterized by the use of iron and the appearance of new civilizations.
Ishtar - The Mesopotamian goddess of love, beauty, war, and fertility.
Kadesh - Sometimes spelled “Qadesh”, the ancient city is located in modern-day Syria and right next to the Orontes River.
Keftiu - The ancient Egyptian name referring to the Minoans.
Kerkyra - The ancient Greek name for the island of Corfu located in the Ionian see.
Knossos - An ancient Minoan site and palace center located on the island of Crete. It is believed that their control of the Aegean was centralized from this location.
Lares - Hero ancestors and guardian deities in ancient Roman religion. Not much are known about them.
Late Bronze Age - A historical period defining the end of the Bronze Age in the Eastern Mediterranean that began at c. 1500 BCE and ended c. 1200 BCE.
Lemnos - An island located in the Northern Aegean Sea.
Levant - The general geographical region of the Eastern Mediterranean and Western Asia, more centralized around modern-day Israel, Syria, Lebanon and Jordan.
Lidar - An acronym for “light detection and ranging”, Lidar is a method for determining variable distance by targeting an object or surface with a laser and measuring the time for the reflected light to return to the receiver.
Linear A - The written language of the ancient Minoan civilization. It is made up of hundreds of signs that represent syllabic, ideographic and semantic values.
Linear B - An adaptation from the Minoan Linear A, it is made up of hundreds of signs that represent syllabic, ideographic and semantic values that represent an ancient dialect of the Greek language.
Lugalbanda - Deified Sumerian king of Uruk and father of Gilgamesh.
Luwian - A group of Anatolian peoples that lived in the central, western and southern regions of Anatolia during the Bronze and Iron ages.
Lydia - An Iron Age kingdom of western Anatolia (1200–546 BCE).
Magna Graecia - Translating to “Greater Greece”, Magna Graecia was the name given to the southern Greek colonies on the Italian boot.
Mars - The Roman god of War (Greek Ares).
Merneptah - The fourth Egyptian Pharaoh of the 19th Dynasty. Reigned from approximately 1213 - 1203 BCE.
Mesopotamia - A region of Western Asia situated between the Tigris and Euphrates rivers in what is today Iraq.
Middle Bronze Age - A historical period defining the middle of the Bronze Age in the Eastern Mediterranean that began at c. 2050/2000 BCE and ended c. 1600/1550 BCE.
Minoan - An ancient civilization that inhabited (and dominated) the Aegean during the Bronze Age and just before the Mycenaean Greeks. Early archaeological evidence identifies the civilization as early as 3500 BCE.
Moses - The most important prophet in Judaism and one of the most important characters in the Old Testament. Moses was the leader of the Israelites and led them to freedom from the under bondage of Egyptian slavery and to the Promised Land.
Mycenaean - A phase or period of the Bronze Age Greece, spanning from approximately 1600-1100 BCE.
Neith - An ancient Egyptian creator deity who created the universe and all in it.
Nennius - A Welsh monk and writer of the 9th century CE.
Neo-Assyrian - An ancient Mesopotamian civilization (ca. 911 - 609 BCE) originating from northern Mesopotamia and extending their empire across the entire Near East.
Ne’arin - A Semitic term translating to “young men”, the Ne’arin in this context are documented to having served the Pharaoh, Ramesses II, and fought by his side at the Battle of Kadesh.
Neo-Babylonian - An ancient Mesopotamian civilization (ca. 626 - 539 BCE) originating from southern Mesopotamia and extending their empire across the entire Near East.
New Kingdom Period - The period in ancient Egyptian history between the 16th century and the 11th century BCE, covering the Eighteenth, Nineteenth, and Twentieth dynasties of Egypt.
New Troy - Not to be confused with the Ilium Novum (New Troy) of the Roman period, established on the historical site of Troy at Hisarlik in Turkey. According to tradition and after freeing the land of giants, Brutus establishes a new city called New Troy on the site which would later become London.
Nimrud - Former Neo-Assyrian capital and ancient city located in northern Iraq.
Nineveh - An ancient Assyrian city of Upper Mesopotamia, located in the modern-day city of Mosul in northern Iraq.
Nostoi - Also known as the Returns, is a fragmentary narrative making up part the Trojan Cycle recounting the events of the Greek heroes returning home from the Trojan War.
Numitor - Grandfather to the twins Romulus and Remus.
Old Babylonian Version (OBV) - A version of the Epic of Gilgamesh written at around 1700 BCE.
Peloponnese - A geographic region located and describing the southern parts of the Greek peninsular mainland.
Pentateuch - The first five books of the Old Testament which include the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Number and Deuteronomy.
Peshitta - A 2nd century CE translation of the Old Testament into the Syriac Aramaic script from the Biblical Hebrew.
Phaeacians - A mythical race of master sea-farers written about in both the Odyssey and the Argonautica.
Pillars of Heracles / Hercules - An ancient Greek phrase applied to the Strait of Gibraltar. Although, it is believed to have once been applied to the Gulf of Laconia in much older times.
Plato - (428/427 or 424/423 – 348/347 BCE) was an Athenian Greek philosopher and a student of Socrates.
Plutarch - (46 - 119 CE) A Greek philosopher, historian, biographer and priest at the Temple of Apollo in Delphi.
Po Valley - A major geographic region located in Northern Italy and running from the Western Alps to the Adriatic Sea.
Pompeii - An ancient Roman town located in the Campania region of Italy. It was buried under volcanic ash and pumice during the eruption of Mount Vesuvius in 79 CE.
Priestly (P) - An author or source identified in the Documentary Hypothesis and dated to around the 5th century BCE.
Ramesses II - Also known as Ramesses the Great, he was the third pharaoh of the Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt. He is often regarded as the greatest, most celebrated, and most powerful pharaoh of the New Kingdom.
Ramesses III - The second Egyptian Pharaoh of the 20th Dynasty. Reigned from approximately 1186 - 1155 BCE.
Redactor (R) - An editor identified in the Documentary Hypothesis.
Remus - The twin brother of Romulus.
River Tiber - The river flowing in central Italy and just North of Rome.
Romulus - The mythical hero and founder of both the city of Rome and the Roman people.
Rosetta Stone - The stone is granite stele inscribed with three separate versions of a decree during the Ptolemaic dynasty in the 2nd century BCE in Egypt. The decree is written in ancient Egyptian using booth hieroglyphic and Demotic scripts and also in ancient Greek. The Rosetta Stone served as a key to decipher both ancient Egyptian hieroglyphs and the ancient Egyptian language.
Sais - An ancient Egyptian city in the Western Nile Delta.
Samaritan Pentateuch - Is the text of the Torah written in the Samaritan script and used by the Samaritans. It dates to the Second Temple period and is believed to be no older than the mid-5th century BCE.
Santorini - Refer to Thera.
Saxons - A group of Germanic peoples living near the coast of Northern Germania who were in constant conflict with nearby nations during the Medieval Period.
Scheria - The location of the kingdom of the Phaeacians in the Odyssey.
Sea Peoples - A confederation of seafarers that migrated East toward Anatolia, the Levant and Egypt during the end of the Late Bronze Age, some of which pillaged and plundered whole cities along the way.
Second Intermediate Period - A period when ancient Egypt fell into disarray for a second time. It is placed between the end of the Middle Kingdom and the start of the New Kingdom.
Septuagint - Abbreviated as LXX and sometimes referred to as the Greek Old Testament is the first translation of the Jewish Bible into the Greek language from the original Hebrew. It was translated in Egypt and at the request of Ptolemy II (3rd century BCE) by 72 Jewish translators.
Seqenenre - Father of Ahmose, he ruled over the last of the local kingdoms of the Theban region of Egypt in the Seventeenth Dynasty during the Second Intermediate Period.
Seti I - The second pharaoh of the Nineteenth Dynasty of Egypt. He ruled c.1294 or 1290 BCE to 1279 BC. He was the father of Ramesses II.
Shardana - Also referred to as the Sherden, they were one of the several ethnic groups the Sea Peoples.
Shasu - Semitic nomads that wandered the region of the Southern Levant during the Late Bronze and Early Iron ages.
Sir Arthur Evans - (8 July 1851 – 11 July 1941) A British archaeologist credited with discovering the Minoan civilization which includes the Minoan site of Knossos.
Solon - (c. 630 – c. 560 BCE) An Athenian statesman, constitutional lawmaker and poet credited with laying down the foundation for Athenian democracy.
Spyridon Marinatos - (November 4, 1901 – October 1, 1974) The Greek archaeologist best known for discovering the site of Akrotiri on the island of Thera.
Standard Babylonian Version (SBV) - A version of the Epic of Gilgamesh written at around 1200 BCE and later.
Strabo - (64 or 63 BCE – c. 24 CE) A Greek geographer, philosopher and historian who lived in Anatolia.
Sumer - The earliest known civilization in the region of southern Mesopotamia (south-central Iraq).
Syracuse - Home of the infamous Archimedes, it is a coastal city located to the far East of the island of Sicily.
Telegony - An epic poem and part of the Trojan Cycle, featuring Telegonus, the youngest son of Circe and Odysseus.
Telemachy - The first four books of the Odyssey.
Thalassocracy - A maritime empire.
Thebes - An ancient Egyptian city located along the Nile in central Egypt. It was known to the ancient Egyptians as Waset.
Thera - The southern most island of the Cyclades located in the Aegean Sea.
Thrinacia - Translating to “with three headlands”, it is believed that this is to be identified with the island of Sicily.
Thucydides - (c. 460 – c. 400 BCE) An Athenian historian and general.
Timaeus - A dialogue (book) written by Plato c. 360 BCE. It contains the earliest mention of the fabled city of Atlantis.
Torah - Hebrew for Instruction or the Law, it consists of the first five books of the Old Testament which include the books of Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Number and Deuteronomy (e.g. the Pentateuch).
Trojan Cycle - A collection of Ancient Greek epic poems, composed in dactylic hexameter and related to the story of the Trojan War.
Tyrrhenian Sea - Part of the Mediterranean Sea and off the western coast of Italy.
Urartu - A first millennium BCE kingdom located in the Armenian highlands and to the North of Assyria. The Biblical Ararat.
Uruk - An ancient city of Sumer situated east of the present bed of the Euphrates River.
Ut-napishtim - An Assyro-Babylonian flood hero mentioned in the Epic of Gilgamesh.
Vesta - The Roman virgin goddess of the hearth, home and family.
Vesuvius - Also known as Mount Vesuvius. A volcano located in the Campania region of Italy. It is best known for the eruption that buried both the towns of Pompeii and Herculaneum at 79 CE.
Virgil - An ancient Roman poet (70 - 19 BCE) who is best known for his Latin works: the Eclogues (or Bucolics), the Georgics, and the epic Aeneid.
Vulgate - The Latin Vulgate or the Biblia Vulgata is the Latin translation of the Bible dated to approximately the 4th century CE.
Wanderings - The books five through twelve of the Odyssey.
Yahwist (J) - An author or source identified in the Documentary Hypothesis and dated to around the 10th century BCE.
Yehud - A province in the former territories of the Kingdom of Judah established under the Neo-Babylonian Empire circa 587 BCE and absorbed into the Persian Achaemenid Empire circa 539 BCE.
Zoroastrianism - An ancient Iranian religion based on the teachings of the prophet Zoroastor. Its roots trace back as early as the 2nd millennium BCE and its influence spread most during the height of the Persian Achaemenid era (550 - 330 BCE).