Relationship Between Achilles And Iliad

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What does it take to consider someone a hero? During Greek and Roman antiquity a hero could be defined as a strong, virtuous man who can bravely lead others. In this time period, earning honor for yourself, your family, and your city-state was the most important for a man to achieve. Achilles of Homer’s epic poem Iliad and Aeneas of Virgil’s Aeneid are depicted to be great heroes, although they can only achieve their goals with the assistance of divine intervention. Looking at the relationship between “heroes” and the gods, Achilles and Aeneas could not have succeeded without help from the gods, leading them toward the inevitable fate the gods wanted for them. Homer describes Achilles to be the fiercest trooper in battle due to his…show more content…
According to the ancient Greek definition of heroism, turning your back on your city-state when they are in dire need of your help is the exact opposite. In turn, he dishonors his name by knowingly not participating in the war, and wasting the gift of swift feet from his mother and the gods. Overall, Achilles proves himself to be the opposite of a hero throughout the epic. Interference from the gods and the works of fate also play a role in Achilles claim to fame. Homer acknowledges the gods’ superior power of “Incalculable pain, pitched countless souls of heroes into Hades’ dark, and left their bodies to rot as feasts for dogs and birds, as Zeus’ will was done” (Homer 1) to begin the epic. In this quote Homer depicts Zeus in control of which soldiers die and sending them off to Hades. Homer confirms that the fate of the warriors is out of their hands, and it ultimately decided by the gods. Although the citizens have control over their actions, the gods use their power to sway the actions of them, and keep them on course with what they want to happen. The gods and goddesses even go as far as to wage and trade the lives of their beloved people in order to keep their desired fate in motion. Virgil portrays Aeneas as the

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