The period in which the events in The Iliad took place were different
than the times of today. Back then, the most important aspect of life for a
person was to be a hero and to be remembered. One's pride would come
before everything else. In the present day, this concept would be thought
of as illogical or foolish. This is certainly true. But, that is how life
was in that time- peoples' beliefs were to be the death of them. Pride was
the downfall of all characters in Homer's epic poem, The Iliad.
Hectors fatal mistake was that he chose pride over his own well being
in the battle with Achilles. He could have taken safety within the walls of
Troy, or disappeared into a mass of his comrades, but Hector chose to stand
his ground and confront Achilles. "Ah for a young man all looks fine and
noble if he goes down in war...he lies there dead...but whatever death lays
bare, all wounds are marks of glory." If Hector had salvaged his pride
and retreated to safety, he would have lived to defend Troy. Therefore, the
possibility arises that he could have stopped the onslaught of the Acheans
altogether, and won the war for the Trojans. The result of Hectors pride
was his death and the betrayment of his fellow warriors and friends.
Another person within the Iliad whose pride was the downfall of his
character, was Patrocleus. Patrocleus was a great warrior, friend, and
asset to the Achiens. But, he made foolish choices on account of his pride.
For instance he chose to wear Achille's armor into battle when Achilles
refused to fight. This was only for his self-glorification. "...Once you have
beaten off the lethal fire, quick, come back to the ships-you must not
battle Hector!" After going into battle brandishing the armor, Patrocleus
becomes overzealous and places himself at the enemy's disposal. If
Patrocleus would have thought logically, and not...
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