Iliad Characters at a Glance

  • Achilles, son of a mortal man and a goddess, is the greatest of the Greek warriors. Told by his mother that he must choose between a long peaceful life at home and death with glory in Troy, he chooses the latter and fulfills his destiny.

  • Trojan prince Hector is the greatest of the Trojan warriors. He defends Troy out of love for his family and his people. He dies with honor after a great battle with Achilles.

  • Agamemnon, king of Mycenae and brother to Menelaus, leads the Greek forces in battle. Though clever and capable, he is also arrogant and blunders by offending Achilles.

  • Menelaus, Greek king of Sparta, recruits his brother to help him attack the Trojan citadel to retrieve his wife Helen, who was stolen by Trojan prince Paris.

  • Patroclus, friend and mentee of Achilles, dies a hero when he decides to take Achilles’ place in battle; his death at Hector’s hand causes Achilles to rejoin the fight.
Additional Content
  • Characters Discussed (Great Characters in Literature)
  • Character Analysis
  • Characters

(The entire section is 9355 words.)