The Iliad, Homer


Change of genre from what’s usual: epic!

The Iliad recounts the siege of Troy. It is the story of Achilles killing Hector for killing Patroclus, Achilles’ best friend.

The Gods of the Olympus are intervening in the fight, some favouring Troy, others favouring the Achaeans which means that the battles are not always fair. It happens that some soldiers, important for the story, on the verge of dying, are transported quite suddenly to their bed in safety by some god or goddess who doesn’t want him to die.

Homer doesn’t spare any details of the war, displaying gruesome battles. He condemns the coward and lauds the heroes. He doesn’t take side for either of the clans.

The Trojan War began when Paris stolen Helen who was the wife of King Menelas of Sparta and who was the most beautiful woman in Greece. When the Iliad starts, the war has been going on for 9 years.

The edition I read was made for school and so it doesn’t contain all the verses of the story but the selected passages are relevant for the themes of heroism, valour, gods and honour. It gave me ideas for some school lessons I might plan for my students 🙂

I rated this book 3*/5

Cheers, -A.



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