Essay on Comparison Between Achilles And Hector

1079 Words Feb 9th, 2016 5 Pages
In order to be a hero one must be honored. Honor is a major theme in the Iliad, and it is gained through engaging in battle where one’s life is at risk. One must be courageous and willing to sacrifice his life in order to be deemed honorable or heroic. Throughout the Iliad there is an obvious conflict between Achilles and Hector for honor. A true hero is one who engages in life-and-death situations, fulfills his duties, and shows patriotism. Although both Achilles and Hector can be seen as heroes for fighting in battle, Hector is the true hero. Hector fights for more than just the pursuit of kleos and glory. Achilles fights out of rage and revenge to achieve battlefield glory. On the other hand, Hector fights because he feels fighting is his fate and he must do it. He is a dual character and while he is the Trojan’s greatest warrior he is also a passionate family man. A true hero is one who bravely goes into battle knowing he may not return but is willing to sacrifice his life. This characteristic is seen in Hector when he tells Achilles he is done running from him and says “If Zeus gives me the victory over you, I will not dishonor your corpse, only strip the armor and give the body back to the Greeks. Promise you’ll do the same” (22. 282-285). Hector knows he may die but still enters the battle and is willing to make a deal with Achilles regardless of who comes out victorious. If Hector had won the battle he would have allowed the Greeks to honor and mourn Achilles and…

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