Achilles 'the Illiad'

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Iliad 21.70-135 (Lykaon supplicates Achilles, Achilles kills him)
Consider Achilles’ response to supplication in this passage. How does this compare to his attitude in the extracts from the Iliad in your lecture/tutorial readings?

The cruel rejection by Achilles to the supplication of Lykaon in Book 21 represents a fundamental transformation in the attitude of Achilles. Achilles has become full of anger and self-loathing following the death of Patroclus. Achilles answers Lykaon’s supplication by stating, “I reject this childish plea for mercy, and I will accept no ransom. Until Patroclus died, I often spared suppliants, and sold them abroad; but now all Trojans I catch will die, especially all sons of King Priam!” (Graves 1960
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Achilles has been tipped over the edge by the blame he feels for failing his responsibilities and completely loses his grip on reality. Achilles no longer adheres to the moral and social standards that were previously so important to him in his quest for personal glory. The old values Achilles held are no longer relevant and he has lost all sense of right versus wrong. Achilles atrocious acts are symbolic of the war raging inside his mind. In his vengeful slaying of the Trojans he is metaphorically trying to kill himself over and over again. At this point Achilles is completely obsessed on obtaining revenge by killing Hector and absolutely nothing will stop him achieving this aim. Achilles is now in a psychological traumatic state of mind.
Achilles wrath reaches its pinnacle when he kills Hector, as he declares, “at last I am avenged!” (Graves 1960 22:317). It would now be reasonable to expect that from this moment on Achilles anger would begin to subside with the relief of his revenge. We would rightfully expect to begin to see the return of the old Achilles as previously told, “but there is no gall in Achilleus’ heart, he is forgiving” (Lattimore 2011 2:240) however this is most certainly not the case. Instead Achilles anger is further and even more disturbingly demonstrated by his mutilation of Hectors body. Achilles has not found peace in his revenge whatsoever instead he becomes more deranged than ever. The death of
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