In Homer’s The Iliad, epic hero Achilles serves as an example of how rage, when unchecked, leads to disastrous repercussions. Achilles, though nearly superhuman in his physical abilities, struggles repeatedly to contain his anger. Throughout The Iliad, as Achilles’ fury compounds, the consequences of his actions become catastrophic, eventually leading to the death of his best friend, Patroclus. Although Achilles ultimately chooses to avenge Patroclus’ death and achieve his own kleos, or honor, his rage-driven actions lead to the death of many Achaean soldiers, and change the course of his fate. Agamemnon’s taking of Briseis enrages Achilles and spurs him to remove himself from the war, leading to a massive death toll in the Achaean forces. In stealing Briseis from Achilles, he is not only robbing of him of a material prize, but also a symbol of honor, his geras, in Greek culture. In retaliation, Achilles removes himself from the war and prays to his mother, Thetis, that she will ask Zeus to damage the Achaean forces. Achilles’ only goal is that “even mighty Atrides can see how mad he was to disgrace Achilles” (1.488-490). Despite having no true grievance against the Achaean army as a whole, Achilles’ rage blinds him from the potential harm that may befall his troops. Achilles only wishes to get revenge on Agamemnon, no matter the consequences for his …show more content…
[This goes to show that you should not be silly and get angry over trivial things because the gods are not going to happy and bad things will happen. I’m going to edit in here, this is just a filler sentence.] The portrayal of even the most powerful epic hero as flawed, sometimes to the point of altering fate for the worse, serves as a warning and a cautionary tale of exactly how influential rage can
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Achilles anger increase with the death of patrocles by him wanting to kill all of the Trojans. Achilles started to throw their bodies in the river which displayed that he showed no remorse or compassion for them. Achilles treated Hector’s body as if he wasn’t a person. He dragged him and kept torturing him for twelve days even thought he was already dead. The burial of hector is a symbol of how Achilles anger is calming down.
Although the word “hero” has transcended time, the definition has not. When modern-day humans go into reading about Greek heroes, expecting them to resemble our current ones, they are unpleasantly surprised to find selfish people who sometimes indiscriminately murder in the name of honor. In comparison, we value the firefighter that puts their life on the line to save others, the person standing up to the bully with pacifism rather than fists, and those that learn to forgive and forget instead of spending their entire lives seeking revenge on those that have wronged them. Thus, Achilles would not be considered a modern-day hero like he was in ancient Greece, because whilst they valued glory, brutal strength, and revenge, today we value selflessness,
Achilles is seen to be full of wrath in the beginning of the book. This wrath is not caused only because Agamemnon takes his prize of war. He is angry at the system which allows Agamemnon to play around with other people’s honors and the system which allows him to decide who gets how much honor. In other words, Achilles does not like the idea that someone else can decide what happens to his honor, despite him deserving most of the honor in relation to how much he contributes in war. As the story proceeds, Achilles seems to contradict himself a lot, and the concept of honor helps us understand this better.
James Galetti Professor Russell Western Heritage 1 05 October 2016 Is Achilles’ rage justified? In the Iliad, the character of Achilles has numerous character flaws that cause him to have blinded judgement towards his actions as well as shutting out everyone around within the epic poem. Achilles’ rage keeps him from being the hero that we were supposed to see him as.
“Wolves and lambs don’t share a common heart—they always sense a mutual hatred for each other” (Homer, Iliad 22. 327-329), this epic simile shows, Achilles’ actions brought on by justice for Patroclus’ death scream for blood. Achilles’ actions after killing Hector hurt Priam and his family, leaving them emotionally distraught and furious furthering the raging battle into Troy for fair Helen. Mortals have been shown to fight a war of vengeance and justice but the Gods also had a part in this
Achilles is maddened and appeals to his goddess mother saying, “If I am to die soon, shouldn’t I have what I want?” Feeling only sorrow for her son, Thetis requests Zeus to cause to Greeks to lose until Achilles fights again. Slowly the Greeks are pushed back farther and Agamemnon pleads with Achilles, offering Briseis back. Achilles declines due to his pride and the Trojans come close to burn the Greek ships. Even when a ship was burning, Achilles refused to fight and instead sends out Patroclus.
The Iliad is a riveting tale of violence and rage amongst heartbreak and tragedy, where a range of emotions are evoked through various events and decisions made by the characters throughout. Some of these characters act on impulse, while others think over with others and themselves to find the best course of action and do what they feel would be the best, be it for their families or their people, or for themselves alone. Through such feelings, certain events play out that either work out to the favor of the characters, or the exact opposite. Characters like Achilles and Agamemnon act on their anger, often going beyond what would be deemed reasonable and even affecting the events following. Achilles’ anger was triggered by Agamemnon’s arrogance
Nicole Tschida ENG 210 Paper 1 2-26-18 The Iliad and The Consequences of War The plot of the Iliad takes place in the middle of the war between the Greeks and the Trojans that lasted for ten years. This conflict according to Homer and ancient Greek mythology occurred because the Trojan prince Paris abducted Helen, the wife of Menelaus, brother to king Agamemnon. In this paper, I will be examining the consequences of war, as outlined by Homer.
Achilles and Hector in The Iliad and Medea and Jason Medea all have characteristics that eventually led to their downfall. Achilles is a furious man, and it leads him to do unspeakable things. Hector is very prideful, and it clouds his judgement. In Medea, Medea is revengeful, and all she thinks about his getting revenge. Jason is insensitive, and it cost him his family.
If I stay here and fight before the city of Troy, there will be no home- coming for me but my fame shall never die; if I go home to my native land, there will be no great fame for me, but I shall live long and not die an early death.” (Homer 110) This shows that he is selfishness and fearful at the same time of losing and dying in the war. In the very beginning of the Iliad, King Agamemnon and Achilles have an argument for a couple of different reasons. After, the Achians won a battle against a city that was allied with the Trojans each of them received a prize consisted of a young woman from the war.
In the Iliad, Achilles is responding to Odysseus’s speech attempting to convince him to return to the war. Achilles’ main argument against returning is his incalculable rage against Agamemnon for “the prize of honor / The warlord Agamemnon gave me / And in his insulting arrogance took back” which is not only an insult to Achilles’ status, but also to his honor as a warrior (Il. 9.378-379). In addition to focusing on the main argument of Achilles’ speech, it is worth noting the contradictions present within his speech as well.
Homer’s The Iliad proves that Hector and Achilles have vast differences but, their few similarities are some of what we see a lot throughout the epic poem. Both Achilles and Hector have their certain strengths and weaknesses, which are noticeable countless times throughout the conflicts that come up in the Iliad. These two characters have distinct differences in their approaches to fitting the noble form to which they both attempt to achieve. Nevertheless, regardless of their differences and the fact that their armies are rivals and are brought to each other with execration in battle, they also have numerous identical traits which reasonably show the comparison between the two men, Hector and Achilles.
Homer underlines that this behavior is foul, for Achilles allows his soldiers to wound the body and then bounds Hector’s feet to his chariot in order to harm the body. Although Hector asked him to give his body to his family, Achilles ignores the last will of the dying Trojan hero because he is still obsessed with his revenge. One should remember that the Greeks believed it was the issue of primary importance to bury a person’s body in a decent way so that their spirit would find the sanctuary. In other words, Achilles takes revenge in the most horrible way