The appearance of heroes is especially frequent throughout ancient Greek history, however they forms a part of nearly every society to have lived. (LoCicero, 2008:3) Therefore it is necessary to understand the importance of the characteristics of these heroes throughout time. (LoCicero, 2008:3)
The Hero Archetype:
Upon looking at ones typical Greek hero, it can be seen, in many battlefield incidents, that honour and glory are the most cherished of all ancient heroic characteristics (Finkelberg, 1995). These heroes assisted or enacted many of the functions of the gods and as such, were worshiped throughout society (Dimitrova, 2005:307). Nevertheless, most of the deeds performed by these heroes would not have succeeded without the supporting hand of at least one of the divinities. This is to be seen when for instance, …show more content…
However shortly after his birth a prophecy came to light, that he would live a magnificent yet swift life if he were to participate in the battle of Troy. (LoCicero, 2008:79). Thus, the decision between serving his motherland or living a long life, fell into his own hands. Him, being a true hero, chose not to let Patroclus’ (his brother-in-arms) death go unavenged and accordingly seals his fate (Finkelberg, 1995).
Nevertheless, Achilles lacks many of the idealised characteristics of a ‘perfect’ hero. For, in sudden problematic situations he would react more with the temperament of a menacing adolescent, rather than that of a mature and valiant hero. (LoCicero, 2008:81). A case in point would be the spontaneous behaviour and flux in temper prior to and after his conflicts with Agamemnon (Zanker, 1996:9). However these heroes were seen as practically equivalent to the gods, their supposed morality was of little importance (Dimitrova, 2005:307).
Difference to modern-day