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Zeus consents, but in return, he will destroy cities of his own choosing and at his own leisure - Mycenae will be one of them. Meanwhile, the two armies clash and the plains run with rivers of blood. The fighting continues, and the mighty Greek Diomedes kills all before him. The hero even attacks Aphrodite and Ares , but he finds himself no match for Apollo, the 'far-shooter,' in a scene which reminds of the unbridgeable gulf between gods and men. The fighting on the plains continues and Diomedes meets Glaucus, but instead of fighting, these two champions have a chat and realise they are of mutual descent.

They exchange some gifts of armour and part as friends, a little oasis of humanity in the pitiless desert of war. Meanwhile, inside Troy, we meet Hector's wife Andromache to remind us that the Trojans are not dissimilar to the Greeks and their women are equally worried for the future. Hector, 'tamer of horses,' son of king Priam and greatest Trojan warrior, challenges any Greek to combat. Agamemnon persuades Menelaus not to accept, and instead, Ajax, having drawn lots for the honour, marches out to meet the prince. The pair clash but without a decisive blow, and Ajax proves the master.

Darkness then calls a halt to the fight and they part, once again loaded down with gifts.

The Iliad Summary

The next day a truce is called so that the dead can be gathered and cremated. Slightly fed up that the war has not ended by now, Zeus absolutely forbids the gods to intervene this day. Hector is magnificent and leads his army in a rousing charge which pens the Greeks back behind their fortified camp by the shore. Hector camps his army outside the city, such is his confidence in total victory the next day.

Book 9 — Achilles Refuses Agamemnon's Appeal. Things look so bad that Agamemnon considers throwing in the towel and sailing home, but he is persuaded to try and tempt Achilles to rejoin the fight by offering him a mass of treasure. Odysseus wily king of Ithaca and especially smooth talker leads Phoenix and Ajax who all tell Achilles to think of the men, their suffering, and the glory he can win.

Achilles refuses and now loses the moral high ground. His pride will cost many lives. A sort of intermission where both sides hold a meeting and decide to send spies into the enemy camp to check out their positions and weaknesses. The Greeks come out of their camp fighting as never before and drive the Trojans back to Troy, but then the tide swings and the Greeks are forced to retreat with many wounded, including Agamemnon and Odysseus.

The Trojans, with Hector and Sarpedon leading the way, break down the walls and smash the gate of the Greek camp. The Greeks panic and flee for their ships. To keep the momentum with the Greeks, Hera, with the help of Aphrodite, distracts and seduces Zeus on Mt. Hector, meanwhile, is injured by a rock thrown by the now less-than-friendly Ajax. Zeus awakens to see the Trojans in peril and forbids any more intervention from Poseidon. Apollo joins the fighting, and with his help, the Trojans once more drive the Greeks back into their camp.

Geneticists Estimate Publication Date Of The 'Iliad'

Hector, enjoying his best day of the war, leads his men to the ships and calls for fire to set them all ablaze. A key book. Patroclus, best friend of Achilles, remembers the advice of Nestor and begs the great warrior to join the fighting and, if not, then allow him to lead the fearsome Myrmidons wearing Achilles' armour. Achilles consents and the fate of his friend and his own is now sealed.

The Myrmidons manage to put out the fire amongst the ships, and Patroclus even kills Sarpedon but then rashly charges the Trojans back to Troy. Apollo intervenes and strikes the hero's armour from his body, and he is killed by the spear of Hector. Now Achilles will be really angry. Troy's fate is also sealed this day. The two sides fight for the body of Patroclus, but the Trojans win and strip his body. Hector dons the armour of Achilles, but the Greeks renew their efforts and finally manage to take the naked corpse back to their camp for proper burial.

Achilles is told of the death of his friend and is predictably livid. He swears revenge on Hector. To fight, though, he needs armour, and this is promised him by his mother Thetis who enlists the master craftsman god Hephaistos. There follows a lengthy description of Achilles' new shield which is decorated with a myriad of fantastic scenes. Agamemnon and Achilles are reconciled and everyone has a big feast before the big battle of the 'morrow.

Achilles knows now that he will die, and it will be at the hands of Paris and Apollo, but revenge drives him on undeterred. Zeus calls for the gods to take their places in the coming battle. Battle commences on the plains. Achilles sweeps all before him, but Hector is saved from a confrontation by Apollo who whisks him away in a cloud.

Achilles is still chopping away at the Trojans and bags himself 12 captives to slaughter later at the funeral of Patroclus. He drives so many of the enemy into the river Xanthos that the river god rises in indignation and chases Achilles back to the Greek camp. The younger brother readily accepted the challenge of a replay of the previous final to settle the mad confusion of pride. In a series of events rife with verbal intimidation and disagreements they reached up to the last ball of the final over where the younger brother had to take up a run to win the game.

The bowler weighed his options and decided to propel the final ball to the weak-spot of the batsman, a well-known weakness although taking the risk of the batsman correctly anticipating it. The ball was bowled out of the reach of the batsman with its first bounce onto the floor which would in its further movement move inwards leaving the batsman with no option other than to send the ball into the hallway and in order to completely execute the shot the batsman had to shift to his weaker leg leaving him in an awkward position which made it a difficult shot to play.

As feared by the bowler, the ball was anticipated correctly and was successfully sent into the hallway and the batsmen hurtled towards the opposite end to get the single run and win the game. Little did he realize the ball dragged across the complete diagonal of the hall and reached for the showcase containing the statue of the famed discus thrower. The statue was bought from Italy by a young man with the same smile the boy had when he reached the crease and made the winning run. He launched a frenzied run towards the showcase.

It had held him in a peculiar state of rapture every time he glanced at the statue. That is the exact point of commencement of a passion the younger brother still pursues to this date. The passion sill goes strong. Have you ever been deeply conscious of a passion you pursue so as to precisely depict the impingement of an ongoing rush of adrenaline hitting you every time you think of it? The tragedy, the unending conquest of humans as well as the Gods to extend their hands and rapaciously grab onto something higher than self ultimately leading to their downfall.

The realization of hubris and the rationale behind it and yet repeating our mistakes seem to be a common theme yet the circumstances and the reasoning behind it always make the stories worth the read. This conspicuous theme with a backdrop of bloody violence and unfair dealings to the mortals leaves with the same expression and the same learnings which could be possibly abstracted from other pieces of Greek literature but it still connects me to the human side of events guided by force.

Interesting thing about force is the way a human being would perceive it. It might just be the different emotions depicted as Gods. Or simply an ephemeral piece of conscious driving motives in the characters. I apologize for the disjointed review though and would gladly agree that my bias towards Greek mythology drove me to give this book a 5 star rating. But you already know the complete story.

View all 11 comments. Dec 05, BAM The Bibliomaniac rated it really liked it Shelves: e-book , own , nezah , classic-literature , myths , catching-up-on-classics , wc-theocratic. Listening to the Iliad I realized just how much I vacillate. If I lived then would I have been a Greek or a Trojan?

I can see both sides: obviously Helen was abducted, but Menalaeus saw her as a prize, not as a wife, and, therefore, was probably not his only one. Greece was known to invade and vanquish territories surrounding them. This just gave them an excuse. Troy defended themselves valiantly. Their army was not the same size as Greece, but they had a mighty walk that could not be breeched w Listening to the Iliad I realized just how much I vacillate.

Their army was not the same size as Greece, but they had a mighty walk that could not be breeched without trickery. This debate then leads me to think about who was the mightiest warrior. Obviously the choices narrow to Achilles and Hector, but what made Achilles so powerful was his mother's intervention, his staff from Chiron, his five-layered god blessed armor.

Hector was mighty because he was a true determined hero. It was a constant taking of territory and turning the people to a new way of life, destroying whatever is in the way or defies control. Lessons can still be learned from the Iliad. View all 3 comments. What can I possibly say? Truly one of the greatest works of art our species has produced, remaining profoundly moving, thrilling, philosophically rich and emotionally complex well over year later. I have read other translations in the past but this new version from Caroline Alexander knocked my damn socks off.

What this version lacked in What can I possibly say? What this version lacked in poetry it made up for in immediacy, clarity and from what I can tell from research fidelity. Nothing felt forced, nothing too modernised and nothing too artificially antique. I would unhesitatingly recommend this translation as the new gold standard.

If you have read the Iliad long ago, or only know it by reputation, or mistakenly believe it just to be lots of macho killing, or do not expect to find subtle, believable female characters inside And, yes, that does matter a go. The text is fixed in writing in the sixth century BCE. It refers to even older periods but very confusingly however, from the point of view of its historical understanding. It was composed from the ninth century. It is a text known to all Greeks, many of whom could recite very large sections. One learned to read with, one learned to recite it and to seek edifying meaning, one was entertained with and one also learned the metric and more generally the poetics.

If one day you are in Greece, enjoy the pleasure of listening to an "iliadic" reading, preferably in an enchanting setting such as the theater of Eleusis or Cape Sounion, in Attica, against the background of the temple of Poseidon, located on the site of this rocky cape and beaten by the winds. I say that because it's beautiful, the language is musical, very rich in vowels. There is a real poetic use of the tonic accent antepenultimate syllable , to bring meaning, and it is not a simple matter of rhythm or rhyme or euphony that presides over the composition.

The meaning of the text is constructed and supported by and with the sounds.

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At recitation we easily perceive the fundamental importance of the ends of sentences, with always a special attention to be given to qualifying adjectives and epithets, whose scope musicality and meaning add up, whereas they are deposited in cumulative strata and that the effect becomes stubborn. I say this to insist on the fundamental orality of this text which is basically composed to be heard more than to be read, The Iliad is therefore divided into songs and not into chapters. The poem is very coherent, its language is Ionian, aeolian too, a rather archaic language that is the reflection of dialects among those of the oldest Greek inhabitants of the country.

The Iliad in the form we know is a reflection of the social and moral structures of the dark Hellenic ages and it is not necessarily those of the classical period that is the most emblematic of Greece in the contemporary collective consciousness. You'll find bronze weapons, tanks, penteconters, heroic duels, kings It would be wrong to think that the Iliad is a simple poem or an elegant distraction. The Iliad is almost a sacred text, not in the sense that this text would be holy.

But it is conceived as an edifying teaching totalizing, where one is likely to discover and understand the meaning of life. It is a text on which one debated, where one questioned, finally one nourished it. The gods act constantly in various ways, the heroes do not always behave as such, and kings and gods either. We are in a distant past in which the Hellenic identity is already formed and or finally the Greek of later epochs, is recognized in his heroic ancestors, while they are the games of destiny, arbitrary chance and gods, all like him.

The listener of the Iliad will see in turn symbols, Hellenic history, different dialectal varieties and through language, he will find identity and a personal definition. He will find there the sum of all the things that make him himself. He will savor the poetics of sounds and meaning, he will analyze the actions and attributes of deities and their existential symbolisms. In short, he will find arguments to understand his everyday life, to sublimate it. This work on his being will be done according to processes that go from the simple "romantic" identification, to the quasi sacred exegesis or on the basis of mysticism or simply of the example.

This is what makes the Iliad a very difficult text to read, there is very often the impression that something escapes us. One wonders what is the meaning of such a passage, and often when one finds a useless passage, it is because the Hellenic meaning escapes us. However most of the text is accessible, we are in a narrative frame or most often there is an obvious meaning, immediate meaning that is trivial, intelligible and simple, a kind of first level of reading almost "novel", or historical property, where it is easy to perceive teachings and where one is likely to gather historical knowledge and to join on this occasion great men in intimacy.

The profusion of details, the names and the words which imply to understand their senses and their range, to understand the sense or meanings of many passages, complicates the reading. A difficult text that remains pleasant enough to read, because of an imaginary vocabulary and a very scenic approach with intensity usually, and this, whether cunning, destiny, human or divine feelings, of events, gestures, humour Reading the Iliad, accepting the idea during reading that it is a text intended to teach us and nourish us philosophically, it is ultimately to the impregnation by the Hellenic soul that confines reading.

It is a true encounter with the Greek soul and with the Hellenic vision of the world as well as with the rules that govern it. It would be wrong as a contemporary reader to pretentiously believe that it is a naive or childish text because it is a text of life, almost mystical, if we refer to the heady nature of the phrasing of the text and if we refers to its composition where the feelings are validated and thickened by cumulative layers of successive deposits.

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Shaina wrote: "Beautifully done! I have been there and your review took me back. Sep 20, PM. The human soul, in this poem, is shown always in its relation to force: swept away, blinded by the force it thinks it can direct, bent under the pressure of the force to which it is subjected.

Battle Lines

Those who had dreamed that force, thanks to progress, now belonged to the past, have seen the poem as a historic document; those who can see that force, today as in the past, is at the center of all human history, find in the Iliad its most beautiful, its purest mirror. It sings of the ten-year siege between the Achaeans and the Trojans, a war of which we see only the last hour. I was surprised by how graphic the text was. Unlike modern literature, where one of the goals of the text is to make the reader care for characters' fates otherwise why read on?

However, it is not the violence of the warriors' acts that makes them so captivating: it is the realism of war that, despite having changed I personally haven't met anyone speared through the guts recently remains a cruel reminder of the thin line between living or dying. Of Gods and Men The other thing I loved about this text is the question on the free will of men.

Do the heroes of the Iliad truly deserve recognition, or are they simply puppets controlled by the gods for their own petty squabbles? This is a world where gods fight amongst men in the battlefield. This is a world where every man-at-arms has some lineage or another they can call to, and throw on the face of the adversary as a ten-minute speech instead of fighting. The whole of the Trojan War, this pit where thousands upon thousands came to die, was caused, ruled over and ended by the Olympian gods.

In a world where a man's every action is scrutinised, judged and possibly altered by the gods of the Olympus, should we treat them as soldiers with a personality and a purpose? Or should we see them as pieces in a chess game the gods refuse to play because they are too busy throwing fistfuls of those pieces at each other? Athena was the one guiding his spear, Athena the one who gave him the strength and breathed courage into him. Did Hector kill Patroclus? Apollo was the one who first attacked him, Apollo was the one who drove Hector to Patroclus.

Does Agamemnon's pathetic excuse for his childish behaviour towards Achilles hold? Did the gods and the Furies really make him rage against Peleus' son, or is he simply denying responsibility for his actions, because he truly believes he has no free will of his own? It is a tricky question, one that I thought was very well explored, and with a great tension-relief in the gods' foolishly fighting each other in Book XXII.

There is something about Aphrodite being punched in the breasts by Athena and Hera boxing Artemis straight in the face with her own bow that makes these immortal gods less of 'glorious masterminds' and more as 'jealous prickly idiots'. Achilles Achilles is one of the main characters of the Iliad , well known to this day for his place in this epic and his tendon issues. Son of the lesser goddess Thetis and Peleus, King of Phthia, he is one of the leaders of the Achaean army. The book deals with his falling out with the marshall of the army, Agamemnon King of Mycenae, over a slave girl that is taken by the leader of the army from Achilles.

Much like the falling outs of the gods and war generals in the history to follow, a personal feud escalates with disastrous consequences for the common soldier when Achilles begs his mother to make Zeus support the opposing army so that the Achaeans will have to come begging on their knees for mighty Achilles' pardon and support. Achilles is an interesting character in that he has an intrinsic duality to him in everything he does. He has a mortal side and an otherworldly side, being a goddess' issue. As such, cheated of immortality by his father's mortality, he is no more than a man, and in truth a subject to Agamemnon.

But as the progeny of a king and a goddess he has a glorified sense of self, holding his honour above all others. If I hold out here and I lay siege to Troy, my journey home is gone, but my glory never dies. If I voyage back to the fatherland I love, my pride, my glory dies. For Peleus' son at the beginning of the epic, honour is all that's left to him, his death being inevitable.

Agamemnon strips him of that same honour by stealing his "prize", and Achilles can never forgive it. Curiously, when 'losing his honour', he does not recede to his 'long life in fatherland' option. He stays, because he still wants to die in glory, except he needs to die waddling in more glory now. So like a spoilt child, in his own self-absorbed wailing, he gets thousands of his countrymen killed, simply because it shames his bully and because it will enlarge his own eventual victory. This is Achilles for most of the book.

A horrid, spoilt child, who time after time refuses to try to reverse the massacre he created or even to help those going through it. In his egocentrism, he truly has become equal to the gods. By the time he does something, thousands have perished by Zeus' promise to Thetis and her son.

Achilles finally sends to the war his best friend, Patroclus it seemed a bromance to me more than a love relationship, but I know there's some controversy over whether they were lovers or not. Patroclus is the only human relationship Achilles seems to hold dear, having not even heeded the pleas of his tutor Phoenix. Their friendship seems to be, as is proven later, the only thing Achilles values above himself and his honour. Patroclus dies fighting Hector and Apollo, and there goes Achilles' awful rage against Agamemnon.

Hector is now the target, Agamemnon suddenly forgiven, and the duel promised since the beginning of the book is staged under the battlements of Troy: Hector breaker of Horses, Prince of Troy, versus brilliant Achilles, grief-ridden friend. I love that Achilles' redemption arc is not driven by the death of Hector. He doesn't feel guilty for killing Hector: war is war. He savages his corpse, which the gods protect. Achilles does not kill Hector for glory, as he so many times wishes he had; he does it because Hector took away his friend, the reflection of his own humanity.

And yet it is not in murder, in avenging his friend, that Achilles finds his peace with his imminent doom. It is in empathy, the most basic of human emotions, the one that the gods could not have given to men for the simple fact that they have none. It is in seeing Priam, King of Troy, a supplicant before his knees, begging for his son's corpse, that he sees himself as he cried over Patroclus.

It is in Priam he sees Peleus, his father, when the news reach him of his son's death. It is in this old, kind man that he sees so many others who, like him, loved and lost someone. It is in the empathy he feels, and in his generosity towards Priam, that he truly embraces his fate and realises there are more important things than dying in glory, more important things than being the greatest of the Achaeans, and living forever, if only in name.

The true strength of man is not in their arms but in their unwillingness to become monsters in the face of the atrocities the world throws at them. Their true strength is in embracing their humanity.

THE ILIAD by Homer (Part 1 of 2) - FULL AudioBook - Greatest Audio Books

This Achilles is not the one in Book I. Book XXIV Achilles will not be remembered as the whiny brat that had his brethren killed; he will be remembered as a hero, a man who found immortality in glory. Because in embracing his humanity, he has finally become worthy of being truly immortal, living forever in Homer's great words. This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers.

To view it, click here. If you want to read a bunch of reviews by people who loved this book, go to Amazon and read the reviews there. The fans of this book will say that this is the ultimate book of war and this is the best translation ever, that this story shows the courage and manliness and heroics of the soldiers on both sides of the Trojan war even as they are being manipulated by the gods who are having their own arguments amongst themselves. Perhaps I have simply read the wrong translation as there seems to be the opinion that the translation by Rouse while less poetic is more prosaic and a better read as much of the repetitious poem is edited out.

The Iliad takes place in the 10th year of the Trojan War and its location is between the Argive Greek ships on the beach, the city of Troy, the battlegrounds between the beach and the city, and a tiny bit of story among the Olympiad gods. Actually there is very little of the action that isn't a bloody fight to the death on the battlegrounds. The story takes place in only about 40 days of the 10th year of the war and leaves out all of the most interesting action: the abduction of the princess Helen by Paris the Prince of Troy which starts the war, and the final days of the war in which the city is sacked and Achilles and many of the heroes are killed.

What you are left with is an argument at the beginning of the story between Achilles and King Agamemnon, followed by nearly nonstop bloody fighting leading up to the death of Hector the hero of Troy. The story begins by saying that so many thousands of soldiers were killed in the war that it would be impossible to name them all. Then in the next paragraph, the attempt to name all of them begins as you have almost pages of characters who are strangers with no part other than to be introduced and led off the stage as they have been killed by one or another of the heroes.

I read the Iliad because I wanted to read the Odyssey and so decided to read both of the epics together and in order. For anyone else I can now recommend skipping the Iliad altogether, and just go on to the Odyssey. The Iliad was a struggle for me, a very experienced reader, to make it all the way through. More than once I wondered if I should just stop or was it worth reading to the end. Well, now I can say with no problem that I should have skipped it entirely.

It was a total waste of my time. I can't imagine being forced to read this as a book assignment in school.

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It might have turned me off of reading forever. If you're a teacher, please, have mercy on your students, just assign the 10 or 20 good pages. If you're thinking of reading the Iliad for pleasure, go to the bookstore and pick it up and read a few pages and then flip it forward and read another page. Try that a few times and you'll probably decide against it like I should have. The Odyssey on the other hand is a wonderful book that is thoroughly enjoyable, and full of the adventure, mystery and mythology that I had wrongly expected out of the Iliad.

View all 18 comments. Jan 31, Terry rated it really liked it Shelves: poetry , this-may-take-awhile. Does another drop in the ocean matter? I had always known bits and pieces about the poem and its heroes from various sources and the culture in general, but I had never read the poem itself. Well, I did it! My biggest surprise was probably the way in which the heroes, all seemingly spawned by gods, are not all that unlike superheroes in a comic book: forces of raw destruction whose primary wish is for glory and the mad rush of violence and battle. It was these images and analogies, inadequate as they may seem, that kept springing to mind for me as I read of the epic battle between the Achaeans and the Trojans.

It was, in that sense at least, a surprisingly modern text for me. The poem is chock-full, on both sides of the conflict, of men who are larger than life. Of course the great exemplars of each side, Achilles and Hector, stand heads and shoulders above the rest, but both armies are lousy with seeming giants whose every action in battle is a superhuman carnage fest; the roll call of the Achaeans alone is impressive: wily Odysseus, prideful Agamemnon, wise Nestor, courageous Diomedes, and both the Greater and the Lesser Ajax.

Indeed fighting is all about the individual fighter's glory and his desire for booty Ego is all. This is a frightening vision of what a world of superheroes might look like with the lowly peons at the whim of their violence and glory-seeking. The boast and the taunt are also on full display. Each hero seeks to undermine his opponent with a war of words before the spear has even left his hand. Lineages are vaunted, or disparaged; deeds are proclaimed, or ridiculed; most of all threats are made and reciprocated.

Old Spidey of the glib tongue has nothing on these guys. The battle scenes are also truly cinematic, both in their colourful gore and in the superhuman skill displayed by the combatants, as foe after foe is handily dispatched in an almost balletic whirl of pure violence. Achilles is perhaps the most conspicuous in this, no more so than when he at last enters the fray near the end of the poem, maddened at the death of his friend Patroclus, and fells Trojans left and right: Achilles now like inhuman fire raging on through the mountain gorges splinter-dry, setting ablaze big stands of timber, the wind swirling the huge fireball left and right — chaos of fire — Achilles storming on with brandished spear like a frenzied god of battle trampling all he killed and the earth ran black with blood.

The seemingly excessive violence of his comrades and their enemies prior to his entering the fray is made to seem a pale, simpering thing in comparison. Achilles is a whirl of bloodlust, hatred and retribution whose only aim is the eradication of the Trojans and their great prince Hector as payment for the death of his old friend. The gods seem at first content to mostly sit on the sidelines, restricting themselves to aiding and abetting their favourite hero with a nudge here and a push there until, with the advent of Achilles and his killing rage, even Zeus fears that the outcome of the battle may change and the decrees of fate may be unbalanced by a mere mortal.

He then lets the gods loose and they fight for their chosen sides in a free-for-all that is impressive in its violence and imagery where one telling things comes immediately to the fore: the gods are much less interested in maintaining the balance of fate for the betterment of the cosmos than they are at using this excuse to fight their own grudge matches against perceived and real slights from their divine rivals.

In many ways the gods are perhaps even more prevalent in the battle for Troy than are the human participants. This is fitting given the fact that a contest amongst the major goddesses, and the perceived slight of its result by the losers, were the direct antecedents to the war that would destroy a civilization. One could also point to the love of Priam for his dead son, and the need to redeem his mutilated corpse at any cost even unto walking into the enemy camp with only a servant and a cart full of booty , as another example of the love of others overcoming the love of self.

In the end this was a greatly entertaining read that surprised me in many ways. I was constantly surprised at little touches made by Homer: Zeus being wooed by Hera so she could distract him from aiding the Trojans in the course of which he enumerates the allures of his former lovers as part of his seduction strategy…what a charmer! Whether Homer was one man or many, whether he composed it primarily from an amalgam of the existing tradition of epic poetic devices or it came primarily from the mind of a genius it is a work that does stand the test of time and is well worth the time of any reader or listener ancient or modern.

Shelves: adult-fiction , classics , reviewed , 4stars , library-loan , read So how do you fairly critique something that originates circa BC?!?!? I mean it's kinda crappy to give this any less than four stars But you know me Admittedly I found this a little hard to read at times. I think partly my own fault because I kept mixing up who was who, Greek or Trojan etc and also because I'm not entirely sold on this particular translation I read.

The Project Gutenberg version of the Iliad is in a very recognisable poem format and I had expected this to be similar but So how do you fairly critique something that originates circa BC?!?!? The Project Gutenberg version of the Iliad is in a very recognisable poem format and I had expected this to be similar but with helpful "extras". I need those annotations!!! But instead this was in a novel format and that jarred with me for a number of the initial books aka chapters. So I did dip into the other, more poetic translation from time to time.

The story itself is the very definition of an epic. Gods, heroes, villains, victims That's the one thing I really take from reading the Iliad. The main characters are so flawed and human. I wasn't expecting that. And it's funny!!! Kind of a sarky wit which I really liked! It's a little bit violent But above all it is beautiful in its exploration of the tragedies of human existence. It begs the question as to the value of a life; is living more important than honour, than loyalty.

What is fate? And do we accept it without a second thought to the other possibilities of the future? This is definitely a book I would recommend to everyone to read. It's not perfect; at times it's rather repetitive and it does suffer from momentary dullness But then there are these sparks of life in the pages! These jewels of wit and of natural storytelling And it's soooo worth it!

View all 7 comments. I would love to write like a blast of a sudden squall whose strong five-beat rhythm can with light and thunder, churning the dark page into a fury, and countless words surge and toss on its pages, high-arched and white-capped, and crash down onto the Internets in endless ranks: just so did the translators charge in their ranks, each simile packed close together.

View 2 comments. Dec 27, Praiz Sophyronja rated it really liked it Shelves: fucked-up , memorable , books-i-have , old-time-kings-assassins , fighting , mythology. Thinking about it now, I can't remember what it was that made me finally pick up my giant copy that has been taking up considerable space on my bookshelf. Ah, the end of that sentence kinda just answered its own question, so that is one of the reasons.

It is a classic and I think almost everyone knows at least the abridged version of The Illiad, but hey ho, it doesn't compare to original translated by this Fagles dude text. But, I can't imagine anyone wanting to read my take on it anyways since, y'know Everyone pretty much knows all the stuff that went down right? All everyone needs to know is Achillies is one angry motherfucker with some really deep rooted mommy issues It's pretty damn long and they have super-long-super-badass monologues before they fight, or duel or rampage..

Full of rage These Trojans and Achaens are total badasses.

Death and War

The other half is full of sweet things said by various characters, like "What a disaster you create! Uncontrollable Hera -- you and your treachery -- bla bla bla, something something " My queen'" I'll whip you stroke on stroke" heheh.. Homer made Zues out to be all kinky too. Peace out. Readers also enjoyed. Videos About This Book. More videos About Homer. These epics lie at the beginning of the Western canon of literature, and have had an enormous influence on the history of literature. When he lived is unknown. The Aztecs.

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