Achilles As Hero

This essay has a total of 487 words and 2 pages.

Achilles As Hero


Despite the grand scope of Homer's epics--which present warfare, heroism, adventure and
divinity as forces that shape human destiny—The Iliad may be seen as an account of
the circumstances that irrevocably alter the life of one man: Achilles, greatest of
warriors. Through the course of the poem, Achilles goes through many ordeals, which
changes his character immensely.

One example of such a character change is when he is quarreling with Agamemnon. Achilles
and Agamemnon have an extreme amount of tension building between the both of them. Apollo
has been wiping out the Achaean army for nine days (years) because of a priest's daughter
who has been kidnapped. Through some questioning, it is derived that the only way Apollo
will stop killing the Achaean army is if Agamemnon returns Chryseis. In addition, the only
way Agamemnon will return Chryseis is if he can have Achilles' own mistress, Briseis. When
they finally came face to face, there was a large battle of words and threats. Achilles
and Agamemnon are on the threshold of killing each other. As Achilles begins to become
completely enraged, Athena was sent down by Hera to calm the raging Achilles and urge him
not to fight Agamemnon. Not able to act against the will of the gods, Achilles sheathed
his sword and only verbally badgered Agamemnon. After the verbal abuse continued for a
while, Agamemnon finally got fed up and ordered Briseis to be taken from Achilles.
Achilles lets the two messengers take Briseis away; although he mourns every step she
takes away from him, he reluctantly lets her go. Before Briseis was taken away, Achilles
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