Thursday, September 22, 2016


Achilles wrath goes away, he was full of rage towards Agamemnon, Hector, and himself
Priam reminds him of his own father and Achilles doesn't kill him (grief leads him to have compassion)
(450) "Think of your own father, who is the same age as I, and has nothing but old age and misery ahead of him" 
Priam tells Achilles to think of what his father would feel if he discovered Achilles had died
(450) "[…] thinking of his own father […] brought him to the verge of tears" 
Apollo is pissed off because Achilles is desecrating Hector's body (the gods have wrath too), but Achilles begins to recognize that his actions are wrong "he is suffering"(437)
"He had better beware of our wrath" (438) [the gods are projections, they are flawed like us, they have wrath because we have wrath]
Achilles wrath goes away because he sees that Priam is suffering, and he is reminded of his own suffering: "Achilles wept for his father and then again for Patrocolus" (451)
Achilles helps Priam up "in compassion" (451) and gives him Hector's body back
Achilles tells Priam, "we men are wretched things" (451) [CIVILIZATION IS COMPASSION, WE ARE DUALISTIC AS HUMANS, SAVAGERY VS. COMPASSION, Achilles is angry as a lion, and is compassionate as a man]
We are imperfect, the gods are imperfect because we are imperfect, we learn from our mistakes (compassion comes from suffering)
Achilles offers a feast to Priam, Priam asks for the body back immediately, Achilles tells Priam not to "drive him too hard"
WHAT CHANGES: Achilles loses his wrath
WHAT MAKES IT CHANGE: He suffers, and recognizes Priam's suffering, thereby showing compassion
IN WHAT WAY DOES IT CHANGE: Momentarily; after Priam asks for the body back, Achilles snaps back into wrath 
WHY DOES THE AUTHOR HAVE IT CHANGE THAT WAY: Humans are dualistic, we aren't just civilized Achilles, we are also the lion, we have to choose to be civilized

  • Athene is "itching" to kill Hector (402)
  • Zeus is not seriously considering saving Hector
  • "Apollo deserted [Hector]" (402) not so compassionate

Hector fights Achilles, he has free will
Hector fights out of a sense of duty to Troy and a sense of guilt
  • Refuses to withdraw the army, realizes that he "certainly ought to have" withdrawn the army as Polydamas suggested
Hector fights because he has the Homeric Pattern like all of us imperfect humans
  1. Arete: "win glory for my father" (129) [Hector wants to win glory, decides to stick "to his post" (399)]
  2. Hubris: "How could I face the Trojan ladies in their trailing gowns?" [Hector's pride would be wounded if he didn't fight Achilles]
  3. Ate: Hector "stuck to his post" and decides to fight Achilles (399), exceeding the bounds meant for him buy the universe
  4. Nemesis: Hector is killed
Hector also fails to have compassion
  • He wants to behead Patrocolus and throw his body to the dogs

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Iliad Essay Advice


1. An introduction including...

  • A hook to grab Watson's attention and to introduce the topic (examples: start with a question [which you must answer by the end of your essay] a quotation, a statistic, an anecdote, etc)
  • Introduce the name of the author, the work's title, the genre (example: Cormac McCarthy's novel No Country for Old Men), and overview the ideas you will discuss in your essay to support your thesis opinion
  • State your thesis opinion (in this case who is responsible for Hector's death and the epic's theme)
2. Three body paragraphs unified by an analysis of Hector's death
  • Your reasons must support the thesis and must include…
  • Details, observations, and examples including quotations and explanations which support your reasons (NO PLOP QUOTATIONS)
  • Appropriate topic sentences, featuring transitional words and phrases between ideas
3. A conclusion paragraph which assesses the epic's theme
4. Sentence fluency
5. Good use of conventions
6. Third person point of view, present tense verbs (only break this rule intentionally

  • You don't have to write a five paragraph essay, but you must analyze the theme of the work and go as deep as you can go into the epic's theme
  • This will be graded by impressing Watson with your knowledge of the epic and your analysis of Homer's stance on some theme

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Iliad Notes 9/20/16

Achilles had a premonition of what had happened [i.e. he knew] (337)
Finds out that Patrocolus is dead, loses it
Achilles calls out to Thetis, tells her that he doesn't want to live unless he kills Hector, to which she responds that Achilles will certainly die after killing him
Achilles responds that he deserves to die because he "failed to save his friend from death (338) [Achilles kills two birds with one stone by killing Hector: Hector for revenge, himself out of guilt]
Hector wants to drag Patrocolus off to behead him, will not let go of the body, clings to it like a "famished lion" (341)
Achilles lets out a battle cry, Polydamas tells the Trojans to go back to the city, Hector says no (343)
Thetis has Hephaestus make Achilles a suit of armor and a shield (which is a symbol of…?)
Agamemnon and Achilles squash their beef, Agamemnon still blames his stupid ass decision making on Zeus and the gods (356)
Achilles stops eating and sleeping, Athene gives him the nectar of the gods [Achilles is surpassing what it means to be human] (363)

Achilles knew (consciously or unconsciously? We can infer that it was unconsciously) that Patrocolus would die, chose to let him go to force his own decision to kill Hector
Lion Pages: 343, 345, 352, 370, 404, 438, 452
The shield is split between depictions of civilized society, and depictions of animals (LIONS ONCE AGAIN)

Monday, September 19, 2016

Iliad Notes 9/19/16

BOOK 16 
Patrocolus wants revenge on Agamemnon, wants to be spared from "vindictive feelings" (293)
His pride has been wounded, he's angry
He indulges his anger, calls himself a "monster" (297) is driven by hubris
Patrocolus asks Achilles if he knows of any prophesies, Achilles says if he does, it does "not affect his conduct" (293) [that's a lie, he hasn't killed Hector for nine and a half years because of a prophecy]
Achilles agrees to lend Patrocolus his armor, tells him not to seize glory and go farther than the wall (planting the seed for Patrocolus to chase them back to the wall, Achilles knows he's sending him to his death [consciously or unconsciously?], Patrocolus' death will force Achilles to make the decision)
Hector sets fire to the Achaen ships
Achilles prays to Zeus, "grant me another wish […] bless (Patrocolus) with victory [..], so that Hector […] may find out whether my squire can fight on his own […], let him come back to me" (298)
He wants glory of killing Hector and Patrocolus' life, Zeus grants half of his prayer
Patrocolus pushes the Trojans back, could have obeyed Achilles, but "the thoughts of Zeus outstrip the thoughts of men" (310) [but gods are anthropomorphic projections, so Patrocolus chooses himself] and he decides to continue to the walls of Troy
Apollo helps Hector kill Patrocolus
Greeks and Trojans fight over Patrocolus' body, Hector wants the body in order to behead Patrocolus and feed his body to the dogs (318-319) [wants to scare the Greeks off, is Hector really so civilized?]

Predestination vs. Free Will
The Fates decreed Patrocolus' death, but he still chose to go too far and storm the gates
"He was a fool and made a fatal error" (310)

Euro Lit Homework 9/19/16

Read Book 18 and Book 19 by Wednesday
Keep an eye on Achilles
Who is responsible for Hector's death?