So what's going on in this poem? Paris steals another man's wife, and the Greeks and Trojans go to war. We meet up with everyone when the war has been raging for ten whole years, and everyone is more than a little punch-drunk and acting badly. And we mean everyone—famous heroes like Achilles are insane with blood-lust. Agamemnon is throwing his weight around. Hector is ignoring omens a big no-no in mythology.
And the gods are drugging each other, seducing each other, moping about lackluster offerings from the mortals, and basically presiding over this bloody battle as if it were a game of foosball. First making its appearance in scroll-format around the 8th century B.
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How did this happen? The fact is that, even though the Iliad stands at the beginning of one tradition— the written tradition—it also comes at the end of an entirely different tradition. One way of thinking about Homer's Iliad is as a survivor of a form of purely oral poetry passed down from generation to generation without ever being written down.
The Iliad - Homer - Google книги
Except, of course, nobody knows anything about who Homer was —though, of course, there are plenty of theories. But no matter what your theory about the author is, one fact that everyone agrees on is the true genius and artistry of the Homeric poems. And everyone agrees that the whacked-out madness that is the Iliad is eloquent, disturbing, transcendent and completely bonkers.
Why should you care? Oh, you mean, besides the fact that the Iliad is pretty much the most famous work of fiction ever written? If that doesn't satisfy you, Shmoopers, maybe this will: the Iliad is the basis of—and the model for—every kind of war narrative, action movie, superhero comic, and adventure saga that has come after it. You want large scale clashing armies? Even matched duels or obviously unmatched duels? Check out the long one-on-one combat descriptions, or that crazy nonsense between Paris and Menelaus.
Spy thriller? Nail-biting special ops missions? The Trojan Horse ruse has your name written all over it. Swords-and-sorcerers magic adventure? Try anything with the gods busting in on the action, like, say, that whole Laocoon fiasco.
The many faces of Homer
Not only does the Iliad put the act into action, but it puts the philosophy in there, too. Bad Guys bit of disposable nothing. For instance, why fight at all? Begin with the clash between Agamemnon-- The Greek warlord--and godlike Achilles. Which of the immortals set these two At each other's throats? Apollo Zeus' son and Leto's, offended By the warlord.
Can Homer's Iliad speak across the centuries?
Agamemnon had dishonored Chryses, Apollo's priest, so the god Struck the Greek camp with plague, And the soldiers were dying of it. Used with permission of Hackett Publishing Co.
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The Iliad by Homer
American Poets Magazine. Poems Find and share the perfect poems. The Iliad, Book I, Lines The Iliad, Book I, Lines Anger be now your song, immortal one, Akhilleus' anger, doomed and ruinous, that caused the Akhaians loss on bitter loss and crowded brave souls into the undergloom, leaving so many dead men--carrion for dogs and birds; and the will of Zeus was done.
Among the gods, who brought this quarrel on?
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