Achilles Slaughtered The Greatest Trojan Hero Essay

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Achilles slaughtered the greatest Trojan hero, Hector and singlehandedly changed the tide of the battle. Achilles was a marvelous Greek hero, but his accomplishments were minor compared to his friend Odysseus. He also accrued glory and fame in the Trojan War but in addition went on to write history in an epic journey all across the Mediterranean to get home to his family. Odysseus acquired more kleos than any other Greek hero in Homer’s epics. In the Greek’s eyes, kleos was the measure of a man. Unlike modern western civilization, the Ancient Greeks didn’t believe in immortality through an afterlife, but naturally, they still sought something permanent, something to give them a purpose in life. They fulfilled this psychological need by creating a glorious legacy, and achieving kleos in the eyes of their peers in order to “…measure one’s value to others and to oneself,” (Charles Segal, 22). In fact, in the Greek’s tales, the amount of kleos they achieved “…was more important than life itself,” (Charles Segal, 22). Many heroes attain kleos in Homer’s literature, but none so much as Odysseus. His main competitors, the other prominent Homeric epic heroes, are Agamemnon, Menelaus, Diomedes, Hector, Aeneas and of course, Achilles. While all of these heroes were praised for their actions, a few stand above the rest. Menelaus, Diomedes, and Hector were incredibly skilled soldiers and heroes, but their claims to kleos are based solely on their battlefield accomplishments

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