Give a detailed summary of book 1 of Homer's Iliad, translated by E. V. Rieu.

Book 1 of Homer's Iliad concerns the argument between Achilles and Agamemnon over the girls that they keep as war prizes. When Achilles is forced to give up his girl to Agamemnon, the young warrior calls on his mother to request that Zeus punish the Achaians over this insult.

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Book 1 of the Iliad begins with the poet's invocation of the Muse. This is a common storytelling device from Homeric times. Basically, Homer is asking the Muse to speak through him and tell the story of Achilles's anger. He asks her to begin with the quarrel between Achilles and Agamemnon.

The story begins as Chryses, a priest of the god Apollo, comes to the Achaian camp. His daughter Chryseis has been taken by the Greeks as a war prize and is held by Agamemnon. Chryses requests that she be released. The Achaian king refuses and sends the priest away. Chryses prays to Apollo to punish the Achaians, and the god complies. Apollo showers the Achaians with disease-causing arrows.

After ten days of plague, Achilles calls a council meeting. He suggests that the Achaians should give up and sail home....

(The entire section contains 418 words.)

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