The Importance Of Dishonor In Homer's The Iliad

1038 Words 5 Pages
In Homers epic, the Iliad, we see that dishonor is something that is looked down upon. Honor is why the warriors go to battle and what gives them the motivation to push through the gruesome events that take place. The Iliad is full of characters that are stunted by fear. In Book 17 we see that Menelaus is too fearful to protect Patroclus’ body. Lastly, Achilles is mentioned in this section to show that the refusal of giving up Patroclus’ body could be the one thing to draw Achilles out of his depression of losing Brises. Dishonor, Menelaus, and Achilles are all significant to the god Athena’s speech in Book 17 to Menelaus because they emphasize and address the consequences that will come when Achilles finds out about Patroclus’ body.
Dishonor
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If Menelaus doesn’t not gain courage and take Patroclus’ body away for a proper burial, he will get the ultimate punishment from Achilles. Athena is urging Menelaus to hold his ground and later in the story she provides him strength and boldness. It was important for Athena to emphasize that Menelaus would earn shame and dishonor for not acting justly, because as previously discussed dishonor is not something any warrior wants to be. The fear of dishonor has led characters to act irrationally and in this case causes Menelaus to put aside his fear and protect Patroclus. He also retrieves Ajax to hold the Trojan forces off, since he is not the greatest …show more content…
His hatred for Agamemnon caused him to call upon his mother and Zeus to get revenge on him. His revengeful soul caused pain and suffering to his beloved Greeks. This resulted in a war that divided the mortals and the immortals which caused detrimental effects to both groups. Achilles is very stubborn and immature when it comes to issues, which causes him to act senselessly at times. However in spite of that he is one of the best Greek warriors and notorious for his fighting techniques and ruthless attitude. Achilles is passionate when it comes to things he loves and we see that all throughout the story of the Iliad. When he discovers that Patroclus is dead after he let him borrow his armor, Achilles begins to snap out of his depression and resort to rage. Achilles has blind rage and slaughters all Trojans in sight in hopes of avenging his cherished friends

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