Iliad - Homer (approx. 750 BC e)

Literature of antiquity and the Middle Ages - Summary - 2019

Homer (approx. 750 BC e)

The myths of most peoples are myths above all about gods. The myths of Ancient Greece are an exception: in the greater and best part they are told not about the gods, but about the heroes. Heroes are sons, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of gods from mortal women; they committed feats, cleared the earth from monsters, punished villains and trampled their power in internecine wars. When the Earth became hard on them, the gods did so that they themselves perished each other in the Great War - the Trojan: "... and at the walls of Ilion / The tribe of the heroes was lost - the Zeus's will was fulfilled."

"Ilion", "Troy" - two names of one and the same mighty city in Asia Minor, near the shores of the Dardanelles. According to the first of these names, the great Greek poem about the Trojan War is called "Iliad". Before her, the people only had short oral songs about the feats of heroes like elephants or ballads. The great poem of them was packed by the legendary blind singer Homer, and he composed himself very skilfully: he chose only one episode from a long war and deployed it so that it reflected the entire heroic age. This episode is "Anger of Achilles", the greatest of the last generation of Greek heroes.

The Trojan War lasted ten years. In the campaign on Troy, dozens of Greek kings and leaders gathered on hundreds of ships with thousands of warriors: a list of their names takes a few pages in the poem. The chief ruler was the strongest of the kings - the ruler of the city of Argos Agamemnon; with him was his brother Menelaus (for which the war began), the mighty Ajax, the fierce Diomedes, the cunning Odysseus, the old wise Nestor and others; but the youngest Achilles, the son of the sea Goddess of the fetish, accompanied by his friend Patroclus, was the most brave, strong and clever. The Trojans were ruled by the gray king of Priam, at the head of their troops there was the valiant son of Priam Hector, with him his brother Paris (due to which the war began) and many allies from all over Asia. The gods themselves participated in the war: the Trojans were assisted by the aphrodisiac Apollo, and the Greeks were the heavenly queen of Hera and the wise warrior of Athena. Supreme god

The war started so. The wedding of the hero Peleia and the sea goddess Fetida was the last marriage between the gods and the mortals. (This is the very marriage from which Achilles was born.) At the feast, the goddess of discord threw a golden apple designed for "the most beautiful". Because of the apple argued three: Hera, Athena and the goddess of love Aphrodite. Zeus ordered to dispute their dispute with the Trojan prince Paris. Each of the goddesses promised him his gifts: Hera promised to make him king over the whole world, Athena - a hero and sage, Aphrodite - the most beautiful woman of women. Paris gave the apple Aphrodite. After this Hera with Athena and become the eternal enemies of Troy. Aphrodite, however, helped Paris to deceive and take away the most beautiful woman in Troy - Elena, the daughter of Zeus, the wife of the king of Menelaus. Sometime the best warriors from all over Greece were marrying her and, in order not to rebound, they agreed: let her choose herself, whom she wants, and if anyone tries to beat her away from the elect, all the rest will go to war with him. (Every one hoped that he would be elected.) Then Elena chose Menelaus; Now she was beaten off by Menelaus Paris, and all her former fiancees went to war with him. Only one, the youngest, did not marry Elena, did not participate in general conspiracy, and went to war only in order to shine with valor, to show strength and to draw glory. It was Achilles. So that no one of the gods still intervened in the battle. The Trojans continue their onslaught, at their head - Hector and Sarpedon, son of Zeus, the last of the sons of Zeus on the earth. Achilles from his tent watches coldly how the Greeks run, how the Trojans approach their own camp: they will set fire to Greek ships. Hera from the top also sees the flight of the Greeks and desperately decides to deceive, to distract Zeus's harsh focus. She appears in front of him in the magic Aphrodite, stirring up love, Zeus flares with passion and connects with her on the top of Idah; the golden cloud envelops them, and the earth around them blossoms with saffron and hyacinths. For love, a dream comes, and while Zeus is asleep, the Greeks gather with spirit and suspend the Trojans. But the dream is not good; Zeus wakes up, Hera trembles in front of his anger, and he says to her, "We are able to tolerate: everything will be yours and the Greeks will win the Trojans, but no sooner than Achilles will put up with anger and go out into battle: so I promised Goddess Fetid."

But Achilles is not yet ready to "put up wrath", and to his help to the Greeks his Patroclus comes out in his place: it hurts to look at his comrades in trouble. Achilles gave him his warriors, his armor, which the Trojans used to fear, their chariot, drawn by the horses that could speak and prophysy. "The Trojans get out of the camp, save the ships," says Achilles, "but do not get carried away with harassment, do not be in danger! Oh, let all the Greeks and Trojans die, we would have taken Troja with you alone! "Indeed, when they saw the armor of Achilles, the Trojans trembled and turned round; and then Patroclus could not resist and rushed to pursue them. Sparedon, the son of Zeus, comes to meet him, and Zeus, looking from the high, fluctuates: "Do not save your son?" - and the bad thing Hera reminds me:

"No, let the fate be fulfilled!" Sarpedon collapses like a mountain pine; a boat rages around his body, and Patroclus burst further on the gates of Troy. "Off! - Apollo shouts to him, - Troy is not destined to take neither you nor even Achilles. " He does not hear; and then Apollo, wrapped around the cloud, hits him on his shoulders, Patroclus loses his strength, drops a shield, helmet and spear, Hector makes him the last blow, and Patroclus, dying, says: "But you yourself will fall from Achilles!"

Before Achilles the news comes: Patroclus is dead; in his, Achilles, Hector is adorned with armor, his friends with difficulty brought out the dead body of the hero from the battle, the triumphant Trojans chasing them on the heels. Achilles wants to rush into battle, but he is unarmed; he goes out of the tent and shouts, and this cry is so terrible that the Trojans, shuddering, retreat. Night falls, and all night Akhill mourns his friend and threatens the Trojans with terrible revenge; and in the meantime, at the request of his mother, Fetidi, the lame blacksmith Hephaestus, in his copper smithy, puts up for Akhil a new wonderful weapon. This is a shell, a helmet, a leg and a shield, and the shield depicts the whole world: the sun and stars, the earth and the sea, the peaceful city and the warring city, in a peaceful city a court and a wedding, an ambush and a battle in front of the warring city, and around - the country, the arable land , harvest, pasture, vineyard, village holiday and dancing round dance,

The next morning, Achilles clothed in divine armor and summoned the Greek army to a meeting. His anger did not fade, but now he turned not on Agamemnon, but on those who ruined his friend, on the Trojans and Hector. He offers reconciliation to Agamemnon, and he accepts with dignity: "Zeus and Fate blinded me, and I myself am innocent." Brishede is returned to Achilles, rich gifts are brought into his tent, but Achilles almost does not look at them: he tries to fight, he wants to take revenge.

The fourth battle is coming. Zeus removes prohibitions: let the gods themselves beat, for whom they want! Athena's rival joins in the battle with the fierce Ares, the state of Hera, with the archery of Artemis, the sea Poseidon must come to Apollon, but he stops him with sad words: "Do we fight with you because of the mortal human race? / The leaves of the short lived in the oak are like the sons of man: / Now they bloom, but tomorrow they are not breathless. / I do not want to go with you: let them themselves quarrel! ..

Ahill is terrible. He caught up with Aeneas, but the gods ripped Aeneas out of his hands: Aeneas is not a fate to fall from Achilles, he must endure both Achilles and Troy. Frightened by failure, Achilles loses Trojans without an account, their corpses clutter up the river; the river god Scammander attacks him, overwhelming the ramparts, but the fiery god Hephaestus reduces the river.

The surviving Trojans flee to the city by crowds; Hector one, in yesterday's Achilles armor, covers the retreat. Achilles flies over him, and Hector turns to flee, free and involuntary: he is afraid of himself, but wants to distract Achilles from others. Three times they run around the city, and the gods look at them from the heights. Again Zeus hesitates: "Do not save the hero?" But Athena reminds him: "Let fate be fulfilled." Again, Zeus raises the scales on which there are two lots - this time Hector and Achilles. The Achilles bowl has risen upward, the Hector's bowl leaned over to the underground kingdom. And Zeus gives a sign: Apollon - to leave Hector, Athena - to come to the aid of Achilles. Athena holds Hector, and he converges with Achilles face-to-face. "I promise, Achilles," says Hector, "if I kill you, then I'll take out armor with you, and do not hit the bodies; promise me the same and you ". "There is no place for promises: for Patroclus, I'll tear you and I'll drink your blood! "- Ahill cries. The Hector's spear strikes the Hephaestus shield, but vain; the spear of Achilles hits the throat of Hectorov, and the hero falls with the words: "Fear the revenge of the gods: and you will fall after me." "I know, but before, you are!" - answers Achilles. He attaches the body of the killed enemy to his chariot and drives horses around Troy, mocking the dead, and on the city wall the old Priam cries about Hector, the cry of the widow of Andromach and all the Trojans and Trojans.

Patroclus is revenged. Achilles arranged for a friend a magnificent burial, killing over twelve Trojan captives over his body, doing mourning. It would seem that his anger must quench, but he does not abandon. Three times a day, Achilles chases his chariot with Hector's tied body around the Patrkolva mound; The corpse would have broken for stones for a long time, but it was invisibly guarded by Apollo. At last, Zeus interferes - he announces to Achilles through the sea Fetid: "Do not be fierce with your heart! after all, you do not have to live for a long time. Be human: take a ransom and give Hector for burial. " And Achilles says, "I am obeyed."

At night, to the tent of Achilles, comes the impoverished king Priam; with him - a wagon full of redemption gifts. The gods themselves have let him pass through the Greek camp unnoticed. He falls to the knees of Achilles;

"Remember, Achilles, your father, O Pelle! He is just as old; maybe, and his enemies are squeezed; but it's easier for him because he knows you're alive and hopes you'll be back. I am alone: from all my sons, I was only Hector hoping - and now it's gone. Ahill, "I'm kissing your hand, from which my children fell, for the sake of my father's sake." "So to speak, he saddened his father about tears in him - / They both wept loudly, recalling their minds in their hearts:" The elder, stumbling at the feet of Achilles, "is about the brave Hector, / Achilles himself is a cute father, then second Patrocle ".

Equal grief brings together enemies: only now is the long anger in the Achilles heart calms down. He accepts gifts, gives Priam the body of Hector and promises not to disturb the Trojans until they betray their hero to the ground. Early in the dawn, Priam returns to Priam with the body of his son in Troy, and begins to mourn: the old mother cries over Hector, the cry of the widow of Andromache, cries Elena, from which the war once began. The burial fire burns, the remains are collected in a urn, the urn is dropped into a grave, a burial mound is poured over the grave, a memorial feast is performed on the hero. "So the troops of Hector Troy were buried" - this line ends with "Iliad".

Until the end of the Trojan War there were still plenty of events. The Trojans, having lost Hector, had no daring to go beyond the city walls. But to the aid of them came and fought with Hector other, more distant peoples: from Asia Minor, from the fairy land of the Amazons, from far Ethiopia. The most terrible was the leader of the Ethiopians, the black ghost Memnon, also the son of the goddess; he fought against Achilles, and Achilles overthrew him. Then Achilles rushed to attack Troy - then he died from the arrow of Paris, which directed Apollo. The Greeks, having lost Achilles, had no longer hoped to take Troy by force - they took it by cunning, forcing the Trojans to bring a wooden horse in the city where Greek knights were sitting. The Roman poet Vergil will tell about this later in his "Aeneid". Troy was obliterated from the face of the earth, and the surviving Greek heroes set off on the return journey.