In the tenth year of the Trojan war, Agamemnon provokes Achilles into withdrawing from the fighting and asking his mother to get Zeus to give the Trojans an advantage until Agamemnon comes to his senses. As things look their bleakest for the Achaean forces, Achilles sends his friend Patroclus out with his army to keep the Trojans from completely overrunning the Achaean camp. Hector kills Patroclus, which causes Achilles to reconcile with Agamemnon and rejoin the fighting in order to revenge his friend’s death by killing Hector.
Anger and Hatred
As the first words of the Greek original suggests, anger—rage—is a very important theme in the Iliad. That specific term is only used in reference to three people: Achilles (five times), Apollo (three times), and Zeus (three times), and twice of the gods in general. Yet the emotion is widespread: the Trojans, for example, are angry with the Achaeans for making war on them; the Achaeans, in turn, are angry with the Trojans for harboring Paris and refusing to give Helen back to her rightful husband. Hera and Athena are angry at (or even hate) the Trojans generally, and Paris specifically, because he chose Aphrodite over them as the most beautiful even before the war began.
Related to the themes of anger and hatred in the Iliad is the issue of betrayal. Achilles feels betrayed when Agamemnon belittles him in front of the whole army....
(The entire section is 2699 words.)
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