Analysis of a Quote from the Iliad

Good Essays
Murat Genç

HUM 111-2

Daren Hodson

Analysis Paper 4

Analysis of a Quote from The Iliad

Theme:

Fate

Quote:

“One more thing-take it to heart, I urge you

You too, you won’t live long yourself, I swear.

Already I see them looming beside you-death

and the strong force of fate, to bring you down

at the hands of Aeacus’ great royal son…

Achilles!” (p. 440, Book 16)

Homer, Robert Fagles, and Bernard MacGregor Walker. Knox. The Iliad. New York: Penguin, 1991. Print.

Context:

This quote is taken from the end of Book 16, where Patroclus tells his final words to Hector after Hector killed him with his spear. Hector kills Patroclus easily after Patroclus is wounded by Apollo. In his final speech, Patroclus claims that Hector would not be able to kill him without Apollo’s help. The most significant part of the quote is where Patroclus foretells Hector’s death, at the hands of Achilles.

Analysis:

In the quote, Patroclus begins his words by praising Hector, and Hector’s victory over him. Yet, Patroclus humiliates Hector by granting his success to Zeus and Apollo in the following sentences of his speech. Patroclus claims that the Gods have changed his own fate since they standed by Hector instead of him.

Gods do not only change Patroclus’ fate, but also change Hector’s and Achilles’. Achilles learns about his fate in the first book, and it influences Achilles’ decision of refusing to fight with the Achaeans. He prefers to live a long life instead of living a short, glorious life. After Patroclus is killed, Achilles reviews his decision and decides to take his beloved friend’s revenge.

On the other hand, Hector does not change his decision of fighting in the war after he learns about his fate. Patroclus tells him that he is going to be killed by Achilles, but Hector still chooses to fight against the Achaeans knowing he’ll die at the end.

If the Gods hadn’t helped Hector, Achilles would not

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Good Essays

    Through all of these relationships Homer continues to show loyalty. Readers are able to visualize a tortuous murder of Hector by Achilles. In this battle of cat and mouse, Homer continuously expresses Achilles hate towards Hector because Hector, son of Priam and prince of Troy, killed Achilles best friend Patroclus. In loyalty and revenge of his friends death Achilles finds it necessary to kill Hector In the most painful way possible. “ Achilles now exulted: “ Hector, had you thought that you could kill Patroclus and be safe?...The dogs and kites will rip your body. His (Patroclus) will lie in honor.”(Iliad 22:390-399) Although this might not be the best way to show loyalty and more like revenge, in Achilles mind set he is doing this to stay true to his friend. Priam, a father of 12 sons, tried to stay in respect of his son Hector.He wanted to him to have a proper burial , but Achilles seizes the body to feed to the wild dogs. Hector promises lord Achilles anything he wanted for the body, however Achilles stayed ruthless. Hector Furiously states, ‘Peace be with you even in the dark where death commands, Patroklos. Everything has been finished as I promised…Hector should not be eaten by wild dogs. (Iliad 206-210) This shows the high morals and loyalty Praim had towards his son. he is showing that he would do anything in return for his…

    • 622 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Better Essays

    "My doom has come upon me; let me not then die ingloriously and without a struggle, but let me first do some great thing that shall be told among men hereafter." This is a quote from Hector from the Iliad. This quote shows how brave and thoughtful Hector was; however, we need to question ourselves, was he really a great hero? If so did he die heroically? Many say he is the true hero of the Iliad and that he did die heroically with his dignity intact. On the other hand, some say his death was ironic and that he did not die heroically at all, but somewhat humiliating. After reading the Iliad I somewhat concede with the latter: Hector was, in fact, not the greatest hero of Iliad and that he died in a humiliating manner.…

    • 1238 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    The theme of life and death is brought to the reader’s attention when Patroclus is killed. As a result, Hector is also killed because of Patroclus’s death. Achilles isn’t perfect, along with other characters such as Hector and King Agmemmon. These faults make this story more realistic and believable, while also adding truth to the story. Bad decisions are made, such as Achilles allowing his good friend, Patroclus, to enter battle and be killed. “My greatest friend is gone: Patroclus, comrade in my arms, whom I held dear above all others- dear as myself – now gone, lost; Hector cut him down, despoiled him of my own arms, massive and fine, a wonder in all man’s eyes.” (Line 13-18 Homer) In this quote is an example of life and death and how it made Achilles wants revenge on Hector. This also gives Achilles a type of “power” to choose whether to take Hector’s life.…

    • 687 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Patroclus, his close friend, volunteers to wear his armor and go into battle. During the battle, Patroclus is killed by Hector, the head of the Trojan armies. Achilles, in anger, goes to war, and kills Hector. To bring even more dishonor to his death, Achilles does not bury the body, and instead lets the birds of the air attack the flesh. Finally, he gives in to King Priam pleas to return the body to Troy, out of sympathy. This epic poem demonstrates much of what was idealized by the ancient Greeks. For example, in one passage, they visually praise themselves, by calling themselves “the bronze-armed Achaeans”. This indicates that they not only thought that it was good thing be strong, but they also took pride in their strength. As well, when King Priam begs Achilles, he is moved as the “…words stirred within Achilles a deep desire to grieve for his own father.” While the ancient Greeks did believe in the natural order of justice, they did find a place for compassion and empathy, making them very humanistic. As for other indications for what they admired, they admired the will in humans to act for justice no matter what. For example, Achilles tells his mother that he is going to war to avenge the death of Patroclus, and that it is pointless to hold him back. Indeed, the Iliad brings to light some of the more important values held in respect by ancient Greek…

    • 741 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Achilles Background

    • 552 Words
    • 3 Pages

    In the tenth year of the Trojan fight, Achilles got in an argument with Agamemnon and he refused to fight even when Hector, son of the Trojan king attacked where they were camping. Patroclus asked Achilles to borrow his armor, thinking that if the Trojans will see Achilles armor, they would retreat. ‘However, to his great horror and sorrow, Patroclus was killed in combat by Hector’. Achillies was furious, he got his armor, got ready and went looking for Hector, he wanted to confront him face to face and kill him just as he killed his best friend. Hector knew he was going to die, and said goodbye to his wife. Achilles killed him and took him to his camping place, so Hector wouldn’t be buried the right way. ‘The Trojan king comes to beg Achilles to let him have back the body…

    • 552 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Hector: a Homeric Hero

    • 466 Words
    • 2 Pages

    In Book 22, King Priam and Queen Hecuba try to dissuade their son Hector from fighting against Achilles. In Homer’s words, “So they wept, the two of them crying out to their dear son, both pleading time and again but they could not shake the fixed resolve of Hector” (22. 1-3). I think this is courageous on Hector’s part. He is so set on saving his city that he is willing to die a brutal death by battling Achilles. Later in the book, Hector holds a mental argument with himself. He contemplates taking refuge behind the impenetrable walls of Troy. However, he quickly distinguishes the cowardice of the action and decides to attempt to “talk-it-out” with Achilles. That doesn’t go over so well and Hector becomes terrified when he sees the awesomeness of Achilles. He ends up being chased around the…

    • 466 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Good Essays

    Iliad Theme

    • 311 Words
    • 2 Pages

    Homer begins his poem in the first line, “Sing, goddess, of the wrath of Peleus’ son, Achilles.” My opinion is that the main idea of the Iliad is anger or rage which allows the author to develop all that follows through the consequences that follow. This is seen through the dissonance, estrangement, and eventual reconciliation between Agamemnon and Achilles.…

    • 311 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Aeneid and Hector

    • 2672 Words
    • 11 Pages

    Cited: * Homer. The Iliad of Homer, translated by Richmond Lattimore. Chicago: University of Chicago, 1951. Print.…

    • 2672 Words
    • 11 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    From the quarrel between Apollo and Achilles, it shows the difference of fate between the god…

    • 1087 Words
    • 5 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Write a critical analysis in no more than 500 words on the following passage from Homer’s Odyssey:…

    • 545 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    The Iliad was one of Greek literature greatest works written by the poet Homer. The Iliad is unlike other oral literature from different times. The Iliad illustrates how people are faced with death every day, but find it difficult to determine the meanings of death are why death occurred.…

    • 386 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    As the rest of his army is retreating to the walls of Troy, Hector remains outside waiting to face Achilles in combat. He tells himself “So now, far better for me to stand up to Achilles, kill him, come home alive or die at his hands in glory out before the walls”(22.129-31), and with this Hector is able to partially redeem himself. Had Hector gone on and immediately fought Achilles, he would have finally corrected the dissonance between his values and his action, and achieved a total redemption. And yet Hector cannot follow through. Once again when confronted in a ‘real’ way with his mortality, Hector fails to live up to his standards and die for his glory. Hector again runs, this time from Achilles, scared for his life. Though Hector seems eventually commit to achieving glory even in the face of death “Let me die- but not without struggle, not without glory”(22.359,60), it is but a façade. At that point, Hector already knew he was fated to die, that he had “No way to escape it (death) now”(22.355). Once Hector accepts this truth, it is not difficult, or in his case, redeeming, to decide to charge at Achilles, it is more an act of deceit to the world than an act of ‘heroic…

    • 2497 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Iliad and Evil Qualities

    • 647 Words
    • 2 Pages

    How do you value your love? How do you value your friendship? And how do you value your honor for the sake of something and someone. Lots of things might occur if we fight for what we value the most, and as a result, we created wars; war between and against someone.…

    • 647 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    From Nature and Culture in the Iliad: The Tragedy of Hector. Copyright 1975 by The University of Chicago. The University of Chicago Press.…

    • 593 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Iliad

    • 2078 Words
    • 6 Pages

    The Iliad (sometimes referred to as the Song of Ilion or Song of Ilium) is an epic poem in dactylic hexameters, traditionally attributed to Homer. Set 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 during the weeks of a quarrel between King Agamemnon and the warrior Achilles.…

    • 2078 Words
    • 6 Pages
    Powerful Essays