Discussion: Conflict Of Heart And Honor

Conflict of the Gods: Thetis, Hera, and Zeus Book I: page 5 IV. 

Comic Conflict: Diomedes (Greek) and Glaukos (Trojan) Book IV: page 13 V. Hector and Andromache:

Conflict of Heart and Honor Book VI: page 14 VI. Hector and his Son Book VI: page 15 VII.

Achilleus’ Destiny: Conflict of Life and Death Book IX: page 20 Homer, Iliad 0 Homer, The Iliad, Reading 1 Book 1 Sing, goddess, the anger of Peleus’ son Achilleus and its devastation, which put pains thousandfold upon the Achaians, hurled in their multitudes to the house of Hades strong souls of heroes, but gave their bodies to be the delicate feasting of dogs, of all birds, and the will of Zeus was accomplished since that time when first there stood in division of conflict Atreus’ son the lord of men and brilliant Achilleus.

What God was it then to set them together in bitter collision? Zeus’ son and Leto’s, Apollo, who in anger at the king drove the foul pestilence along the host, and the people perished, since Atreus’ son had dishonored Chryses, priest of Apollo, when he came beside the fast ships of the Achaians to ransom back his daughter, carrying gifts beyond count and holding in his hands wound on a staff of gold the ribbons of Apollo who strikes from afar, and supplicated all the Achaians, but above all Atreus’ two sons, the marshals of the people:

‘Sons of Atreus and you other strong greaved Achaians, to you may the gods grant who have their homes on Olympos Priam’s city to be plundered and a fair homecoming thereafter, but may you give me back my own daughter and take the ransom, giving honor to Zeus’ son who strikes from afar, Apollo.’ Then all the rest of the Achaians cried out in favor that the priest be respected and the shining ransom be taken; yet this pleased not the heart of Atreus’ son Agamemnon, but harshly he drove him away with a strong order upon him: ‘Never let me find you again, old sir, near our hollow ships, neither lingering now nor coming again hereafter, for fear your staff and the god’s ribbons help you no longer.

The girl I will not give back; sooner will old age come upon her in my own house, in Argos, far from her own land, going up and down by the loom and being in my bed, is my companion. So go now, do not make me angry; so you will be safer.’ So he spoke, and the old man in terror obeyed him and went silently away beside the murmuring sea beach. 

Over and over the old man prayed as he walked in solitude to King Apollo, whom Leto of the lovely hair bore: ‘Hear me, lord of the silver bow who… are lord in strength over Tenedos, Smintheus, if ever it pleased your heart that I built your temple, if ever it pleased you that I burned all the rich thigh pieces of bulls, of goats, then bring to pass this wish I pray for: let your arrows make the Danaans pay for my tears shed.’ 

So he spoke in prayer, and Phoibos Apollo heard him, and strode down along the pinnacles of Olympus, angered in his heart, carrying across his shoulders the bow and the hooded quiver; and the shafts clashed on the shoulders of the god walking angrily.

He came as night came down and knelt then apart and opposite the ships and let go an arrow. Terrible was the clash that rose from the bow of silver. First he went after Homer, Iliad 1 mules and the circling hounds, then let go a tearing arrow against the men themselves and struck them.

The corpse fires burned everywhere and did not stop burning. Nine days up and down the host ranged the god’s arrows, but on the tenth Achilleus called the people to assembly; a thing put into his mind by the goddess of the white arms, Hera, who had pity upon the Danaans when she saw them dying. Now when they were all assembled in one place together, Achilleus of the swift feet stood up among them and spoke forth:

‘Son of Atreus, I believe now that straggling backwards we must make our way home if we can even escape death, if fighting now must crush the Achaians and the plague likewise. No, come, let us ask some holy man, some prophet, even an interpreter of dreams, since a dream also comes from Zeus, who can tell why Phoibos Apollo is so angry, if for the sake of some vow, some hecatomb he blames us, if given the fragrant smoke of lambs, of he goats, somehow he can be made willing to beat the bane aside from us.’ He spoke thus and sat down again, and among them stood up Kalchas,