New Scientist said:
War and unrest, and the collapse of many mighty empires, often followed changes in local climes. Is this more than a coincidence?
1200 BC. The most beautiful woman in the world, Helen, is abducted by Paris of Troy. A Greek fleet of more than a thousand ships sets off in pursuit. After a long war, heroes like Achilles lead the Greeks to victory over Troy.
At least, this is the story told by the poet Homer around four centuries later. Yet Homer was not only writing about events long before his time, he was also describing a long-lost civilisation. Achilles and his compatriots were part of the first great Greek civilisation, a warlike culture centred on the city of Mycenae that thrived from around 1600 BC.
By 1100 BC, not long after the Trojan war, many of its cities and settlements had been destroyed or abandoned. The survivors reverted to a simpler rural lifestyle. Trade ground to a halt, and skills such as writing were lost. The script the Mycenaeans had used, Linear B, was not read again until 1952.