The Epic Of The Iliad Essay

1225 Words Nov 22nd, 2014 null Page
Hector and Achilles are demonstrations of how destructive war is on a personal level, and neither is an adequate hero of The Iliad. Although both figures have their moments acting as protagonist and antagonist of this epic poem, neither Hector nor Achilles finish their story with a satisfactory conclusion, leaving the audience questioning the legitimacy of their character. From the beginning of The Iliad, Achilles is seen only as a man with a grudge who refuses to help his fellow men, even when their lives depend on his actions. In fact, he only agrees to help when he himself is endangered, and only actually acts when his best friend is murdered in combat—due to Achilles’ inaction. Other than these few negative depictions, the Iliad does not include much of Achilles, instead focusing a good portion of the writing on his greatest foe: Hector. Unfortunately, Hector is only minimally better, if at all.
As Troy’s greatest fighter and the only potential savior of the doomed city, Hector enters the story as a character the audience can almost hope in, despite his inevitable doom. Although he is on the enemy side, from Homer’s perspective, Hector is portrayed as one of the book’s most sympathetic characters, and Homer even provides a glimpse into his private life as he introduces Hector’s wife and son to the story. Unfortunately, Hector transforms into an ugly, bullheaded man with no regard for his comrades. This flaw is, in fact, what condemns his home, his soldiers, and his…

Related Documents