Women In The Iliad Essay

1630 words - 7 pages

The famous epic poem the Iliad, written by Homer, is based on the Trojan War and mythology. The gods in this novel are very significant. They control what happens to the mortals and the results of conflicts. Achilles, the main character, is thought to be the greatest fighter of all, and as quick as a lion on an antelope. He is the great one who eradicates Hector out of shear vengeance. Throughout the tale, many battles are fought and many characters die tragically, but they die with honor and pride. The Iliad finishes on a gloomy note with Hector's body sadly being carried back to Troy, his home town, in the chariot. All the women see him lying there, and the reader sympathizes toward Hector as the last chapter ends. Even though the Illiad is centered on men most of the time, women, too, affect the war The immortal women in the Illiad have power over many people and things, but the mortal woman hardly have any power and are treated as prizes to the men for their great victories and accomplishments. Mortal woman are only possessions; whereas, immortal woman hold a greater power. Athena and Hera control some aspects as goddesses throughout the famous piece, whereas Helen, and Briseis contribute to the cause of few significant battles that take place in the Iliad.Mortal Woman are treated as war Prizes instead of real human beings. For example, in the following script Achilles speaks unkind words to his former partner Agamemnon about seizes his wife from him.You thick skinned-headed, shameless, greedy fool! Can any Achaean care for you, or obey you, after this on marches or in battle? As for myself, when I came here to fight, I had no quarrel with Troy or Trojan Spearmen: they never stole my cattle or my horses, never in the black farmland of Phthia ravaged my crops. How many miles there are of shadowy mountains, foaming seas, between! No, no, we joined for you, you insolent boor, to please you, fighting for your brothers sake and yours, to get revenge upon the Trojans. You overlook this, dogface, or don't care, and now in the end you threaten to take my girl, a prize I sweated for, and soldiers gave me! (Book 1, lines 175-189) In this scene, Achilles is looking at Agamemnon in anger and states that he was fighting for Agamemnon and his for brother's sake to please him. Achilles becomes angry and starts calling Agamemnon absurd names because he threatened to take Achilles prize and possession away from him. Achilles loved his wife, Briseis, with all his heart and would do anything to protect her. Agamemnon's pride causes him to think that he can take the lovely Briseis away from the great warrior, Achilles, and be remembered for it.The immortal women have some power, but when it comes down to disobeying the great god of thunder, there can be crucial consequences that women just have no power over. For instance, Zeus speaks in resentment to Iris about Hera and Athena disobeying his rules and trying to help the mortals in the war.Zeus, looking out from...

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