Discussion questions – The Iliad: What do you think of Agamemnon’s

  1. What do you think of Agamemnon’s apology (376-78)? Didn’t Achilles blame Zeus also (382)? Why do you think Achilles refuses to eat (380, 383)?
  2. Compare and contrast Achilles’ treatment of Lycaon and his speech on death (405-406) with his speech in the underworld in the Odyssey, Book 11 (265-266).
  3. Why do you think Homer included the episode of Achilles fighting the river? Compare / contrast with the idea of “exceeding” one’s fate (16.819; 20.30-33; 21.529-31).
  4. What do you think makes Hector decide finally to face and fight Achilles?
  5.  Is Achilles’ treatment of Hector’s body justified (in Greek terms)? Vase painting: Achilles dragging Hector’s body while Priam and Hecuba look on (Perseus).
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