An analysis of the epic the iliad by homer

Agamemnon, king of the Achaians, wants the maid, Briseis, for his own, but she is possessed by Achilles, a mortal son of Zeus, king of the gods.

An analysis of the epic the iliad by homer

Once set, gods and men abide it, neither truly able nor willing to contest it.

An analysis of the epic the iliad by homer

How fate is set is unknown, but it is told by the Fates and by Zeus through sending omens to seers such as Calchas. Men and their gods continually speak of heroic acceptance and cowardly avoidance of one's slated fate.

And put away in your heart this other thing that I tell you. You yourself are not one who shall live long, but now already death and powerful destiny are standing beside you, to go down under the hands of Aiakos' great son, Achilleus. Each accepts the outcome of his life, yet, no-one knows if the gods can alter fate.

The first instance of this doubt occurs in Book XVI. Seeing Patroclus about to kill Sarpedonhis mortal son, Zeus says: Ah me, that it is destined that the dearest of men, Sarpedon, must go down under the hands of Menoitios' son Patroclus.

Majesty, son of Kronos, what sort of thing have you spoken? Do you wish to bring back a man who is mortal, one long since doomed by his destiny, from ill-sounding death and release him? Do it, then; but not all the rest of us gods shall approve you.

This motif recurs when he considers sparing Hector, whom he loves and respects. This time, it is Athene who challenges him: Father of the shining bolt, dark misted, what is this you said?

But come, let us ourselves get him away from death, for fear the son of Kronos may be angered if now Achilleus kills this man. It is destined that he shall be the survivor, that the generation of Dardanos shall not die Whether or not the gods can alter fate, they do abide it, despite its countering their human allegiances; thus, the mysterious origin of fate is a power beyond the gods.

Fate implies the primeval, tripartite division of the world that Zeus, Poseidon, and Hades effected in deposing their father, Cronusfor its dominion. Zeus took the Air and the Sky, Poseidon the Waters, and Hades the Underworldthe land of the dead—yet they share dominion of the Earth.

Despite the earthly powers of the Olympic gods, only the Three Fates set the destiny of Man.

The Iliad - Homer - Ancient Greece - Classical Literature

Yet, Achilles must choose only one of the two rewards, either nostos or kleos. Either, if I stay here and fight beside the city of the Trojans, my return home is gone, but my glory shall be everlasting; but if I return home to the beloved land of my fathers, the excellence of my glory is gone, but there will be a long life left for me, and my end in death will not come to me quickly.

Agamemnon's sceptre, the wheel of Hebe 's chariot, the house of Poseidon, the throne of Zeus, the house of Hephaestus. Translator Lattimore renders kleos aphthiton as forever immortal and as forever imperishable—connoting Achilles's mortality by underscoring his greater reward in returning to battle Troy.

Kleos is often given visible representation by the prizes won in battle. When Agamemnon takes Briseis from Achilles, he takes away a portion of the kleos he had earned. Achilles' shield, crafted by Hephaestus and given to him by his mother Thetis, bears an image of stars in the centre.

The stars conjure profound images of the place of a single man, no matter how heroic, in the perspective of the entire cosmos. Thus, nostos is impossible without sacking Troy—King Agamemnon's motive for winning, at any cost.

Pride[ edit ] Pride drives the plot of the Iliad. The Greeks gather on the plain of Troy to wrest Helen from the Trojans. Though the majority of the Trojans would gladly return Helen to the Greeks, they defer to the pride of their prince, Alexandros, also known as Paris. Due to this slight, Achilles refuses to fight and asks his mother, Thetis, to make sure that Zeus causes the Greeks to suffer on the battlefield until Agamemnon comes to realize the harm he has done to Achilles.

When in Book 9 his friends urge him to return, offering him loot and his girl, Briseis, he refuses, stuck in his vengeful pride. From epic start to epic finish, pride drives the plot.“The Iliad” (Gr: “Iliás”) is an epic poem by the ancient Greek poet Homer, which recounts some of the significant events of the final weeks of the Trojan War and the Greek siege of the city of Troy (which was also known as Ilion, Ilios or Ilium in ancient times).

“The Iliad” (Gr: “Iliás”) is an epic poem by the ancient Greek poet Homer, which recounts some of the significant events of the final weeks of the Trojan War and the Greek siege of the city of Troy (which was also known as Ilion, Ilios or Ilium in ancient times).

Dec 13,  · Course Hero's video study guide provides in-depth summary and analysis of Homer's epic poem The Iliad. Download the free study guide and infographic for .

At a Glance

This one-page guide includes a plot summary and brief analysis of The Iliad by Homer. The Iliad is a classic ancient Greek poem usually attributed to Homer.

It is set during the ten-year siege of Troy (Ilium) by a coalition of Greek states during the great Trojan War. The Iliad (/ ˈ ɪ l i ə d /; Ancient Greek: Ἰλιάς Iliás, pronounced in Classical Attic; sometimes referred to as the Song of Ilion or Song of Ilium) is an ancient Greek epic poem in dactylic hexameter, traditionally attributed to attheheels.com during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy (Ilium) by a coalition of Greek states, it tells of the battles and events Adaptations: Troy.

The Iliad is an epic poem and part of the ancient Greek oral tradition. Homer’s audience was an illiterate culture, and Homer himself was most likely illiterate. Many critics believe that the.

The Iliad - Homer - Ancient Greece - Classical Literature