What was the significance of the prayer that Hector makes for Astyanax?

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Ashley Kannan eNotes educator| Certified Educator

I think that the significance of the prayer scene is large.  It is this particular scene where Hector's life as a warrior for his city and his love as a father clash, creating an ultimate sense of agony.  The prayer is a merging of this public and private persona of Hector, revealing his own sense of pain and suffering at his own predicament.  The prayer of wishing his son to be as a great of a warrior as his father is a powerful element and significant on a couple of levels.  Hector's prayer is for his son to be a great warrior, something that will end up robbing the child of his father.  At the same time, the prayer is a hope to alleviate the divided consciousness in which Hector lives, something that ends up being unavoidable and something that the sack of Troy demonstrates.  The prayer is a moment where a mortal, recognizing his own pain and suffering, pleads at the feet of the divine to transcend the pain of being human.  It is significant because while it is a tender moment, it is one where this pain is unavoidable, something that cannot be escaped.  In this, the prayer is highly significant.