Characteristics Of Achilles In The Iliad

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Homer’s epic story The Iliad is one of the greatest stories told of the times during Greek civilization. Today, many of us have heard the story of the heroes from the Greek army, and the Trojan army, that fought bravely and perished during the war. Heroes come in all different ways based upon their own unique characteristics, their actions, and how they respond to the consequences of the world around them. However, most heroes fall into the category of either being a tragic hero, or an epic hero. After analyzing the characteristics that make up a tragic hero, the Greek warrior Achilles can be described as a hero that fits into this category. The path to death can almost be symbolized as a stairway when it comes to the story of Achilles. With …show more content…
It’s even interesting to see how even a good trait, like being noble, can feed directly into a bad ones with the right actions and consequences. At the beginning of the story, Agamemnon has refused to give back the daughter of a priest, who in turn, prays to the god Apollo to strike the army with a plague. Noble Achilles, who learns of the source of the plague, approaches the king with the issue, resulting in a dramatic confrontation between the two. The result of the confrontation leads Agamemnon to release the priest’s daughter, but takes the woman that was given to Achilles as a spoil of war. The dishonor that is shown to Achilles by the king has cause Achilles, and his myrmidons, to stand down from the rest of the …show more content…
As described earlier, it’s interesting to see how the good feeds into the bad, resulting in consequences that lead Achilles that much closer to death. Achilles flaw is his excessive pride, or hubris, that has now been fed by the conflicts between him and the king. Agamemnon’s sends Odysseus “to make substantial amends,” but fails in his attempts to get Achilles back into the war (259). Achilles tells Odysseus that he can’t “Imagine Agamemnon, or any other Greek, persuading me, not after the thanks I got for fighting the war” (263). The refusal of Achilles to return to the battle only adds fuel to the fire, as tempers and discontent begin to flair within the ranks. The pride of Achilles would soon be the downfall of Patroclus, his dearest and closest friend. Achilles, at a point in the story, allows Patroclus to wear his armor and lead the myrmidons into battle. The one order that he gave to Patroclus was to stay near the ships, which he eventually ignored later in the battle. The result of his defiance was his death by the Trojan hero Hector, who striped Patroclus of Achilles armor after he had killed

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