What is the role of Patroclus in The Iliad? Why and when does Achilles return to battle?

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Patroclus is a very close friend to Achilles. Their relationship plays a critical role in shaping how The Iliad plays out.

In the beginning of this epic poem, Achilles falls into a dispute with Agamemnon, who commands the Greeks during the Trojan War. With his pride injured, Achilles responds by removing himself from the war entirely. Greek overtures to Achilles, attempting to bring him back into the fight, are met with refusal.

The situation changes when Patroclus, adorned in Achilles' armor, dies on the battlefield, slain by the Trojan hero Hector. After Achilles learns what has befallen his friend, he falls into a deep grief, and determines to pursue vengeance, accepting the death that has been fated to him. He reconciles with Agamemnon and rejoins the...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 398 words.)

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