War In The Iliad Essays

War In The Iliad Essays-84
Hectors fatal mistake was that he chose pride over his own well being in the battle with Achilles.He could have taken safety within the walls of Troy, or disappeared into a mass of his comrades, but Hector chose to stand his ground and confront Achilles.It is this idea that Homer seeks to expound in his epic poem, "The Iliad." Throughout his poem, Homer depicts the degree to which honor plays a role in the lives of the Greeks, and the manner in During the course of the battle, Hektor returns home in order to visit his wife.

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This is the society in which Homer's protagonist, Achilleus, is born, raised and lives.

It is therefore no wonder that he to is guided by the light of the heroic ethic, believing that his mission in life is to attain honor and remembrance.

Achilles exemplifies this trait with his decision to stay in the Trojan War instead of going home to his father.

Hector shows this characteristic by not listening to his wife, Andromache, and his parents, Priam and Hecuba.

Hektor's wife, knowing that a return to battle is the equivalent of death, entreats her husband to remain at home, "..have no pity..me..soon must be your widow..for me it would be far better to sink into the earth when I have lost you..." (VI 406-8) Hektor claims that despite his worry about abandoning his wife and son, he is unable to stay at home as "...

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I would feel deep shame before the Trojans..like a coward I were to shrink aside from the fighting; and the spirit will not let me, since I have learned to be valiant...winning for my own self great glory and for my father." (VI 441-45) The need to attain human immortality is so imbedded in Hektor's psyche, that even the knowledge that his actions will leave his son an orphan and his wife a widow, is unable to convince him to relinquish his quest for everlasting honor and glory.A person's character is dictated by their actions.In The Iliad, Homer forces the characters to choose between being with their family and achieving glory from fighting in the war.By leaving Achilles and going into battle, Patroclus demonstrates this trait.The non-heroic characters choose family life over military glory and are viciously criticized for it.Patrocleus was a great warrior, friend, and asset to the Achiens.But, he made foolish choices on account of his pride. Once you have beaten off the lethal fire, quick, come back to the ships-you must not battle Hector!The Pursuit of Honor in Homer’s Iliad Throughout history, people have pondered the question of human mortality.In examining the issue, the Ancient Greeks, came to the conclusion that there are two spheres of immortality: that which is reserved for the Gods and that which can be attained by mere mortals.Back then, the most important aspect of life for a person was to be a hero and to be remembered. In the present day, this concept would be thought of as illogical or foolish. But, that is how life was in that time- peoples' beliefs were to be the death of them.Pride was the downfall of all characters in Homer's epic poem, The Iliad.


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