Homer, Iliad VI 503-529

οὐδὲ Πάρις δήθυνεν ἐν ὑψηλοῖσι δόμοισιν,

ἀλλ᾽ ὅ γ᾽, ἐπεὶ κατέδυ κλυτὰ τεύχεα ποικίλα χαλκῷ,

σεύατ᾽ ἔπειτ᾽ ἀνὰ ἄστυ ποσὶ κραιπνοῖσι πεποιθώς.505

ὡς δ᾽ ὅτε τις στατὸς ἵππος ἀκοστήσας ἐπὶ φάτνῃ

δεσμὸν ἀπορρήξας θείῃ πεδίοιο κροαίνων

εἰωθὼς λούεσθαι ἐϋρρεῖος ποταμοῖο

κυδιόων: ὑψοῦ δὲ κάρη ἔχει, ἀμφὶ δὲ χαῖται

ὤμοις ἀΐσσονται: ὃ δ᾽ ἀγλαΐηφι πεποιθὼς510

ῥίμφά ἑ γοῦνα φέρει μετά τ᾽ ἤθεα καὶ νομὸν ἵππων:

ὣς υἱὸς Πριάμοιο Πάρις κατὰ Περγάμου ἄκρης

τεύχεσι παμφαίνων ὥς τ᾽ ἠλέκτωρ ἐβεβήκει

καγχαλόων, ταχέες δὲ πόδες φέρον: αἶψα δ᾽ ἔπειτα

Ἕκτορα δῖον ἔτετμεν ἀδελφεὸν εὖτ᾽ ἄρ᾽ ἔμελλε515

στρέψεσθ᾽ ἐκ χώρης ὅθι ᾗ ὀάριζε γυναικί.

τὸν πρότερος προσέειπεν Ἀλέξανδρος θεοειδής:

ἠθεῖ᾽ ἦ μάλα δή σε καὶ ἐσσύμενον κατερύκω

δηθύνων, οὐδ᾽ ἦλθον ἐναίσιμον ὡς ἐκέλευες;

520

τὸν δ᾽ ἀπαμειβόμενος προσέφη κορυθαίολος Ἕκτωρ:

δαιμόνι᾽ οὐκ ἄν τίς τοι ἀνὴρ ὃς ἐναίσιμος εἴη

ἔργον ἀτιμήσειε μάχης, ἐπεὶ ἄλκιμός ἐσσι:

ἀλλὰ ἑκὼν μεθιεῖς τε καὶ οὐκ ἐθέλεις: τὸ δ᾽ ἐμὸν κῆρ

ἄχνυται ἐν θυμῷ, ὅθ᾽ ὑπὲρ σέθεν αἴσχε᾽ ἀκούω

πρὸς Τρώων, οἳ ἔχουσι πολὺν πόνον εἵνεκα σεῖο.525

ἀλλ᾽ ἴομεν: τὰ δ᾽ ὄπισθεν ἀρεσσόμεθ᾽, αἴ κέ ποθι Ζεὺς

δώῃ ἐπουρανίοισι θεοῖς αἰειγενέτῃσι

κρητῆρα στήσασθαι ἐλεύθερον ἐν μεγάροισιν

ἐκ Τροίης ἐλάσαντας ἐϋκνήμιδας Ἀχαιούς.

Paris overtakes Hector by the Skaian gate, and the two return to the battlefield.

The somber mood shifts briefly as we now see Paris heading out to meet Hector. Homer captures the moment in a memorable simile. [read full essay]

504: ὅ γ᾽: “this one,” i.e. Paris.

505: σεύατο: "rushed, ran" asigmatic α-aor. mid., see LSJ s.v. σεύω ΙΙ.1ποσὶ: dat. pl. > πούς. πεποιθώς: “being confident in,” “trusting in” + dat., pf. describes the state (having entered and now enduring), nom. sg. pf. ptc. > πείθω.

506: ὡς δ᾽ ὅτε: “just as when,” introducing a simile. στατὸς: “stalled,” “stabled.”

507: ἀπορρήξας: nom. sg. aor. ptc. θείῃ: 3rd sg. pres. subj. > θέω, lengthened for meter. A simile in Homer is often in the subj. (see 22.93) (Monro 289.2.a). πεδίοιο: “over the plain,” gen. of place within which (see also 6.38).

508: εἰωθὼς: “used to” + inf., nom. sg. pf. ptc. > ἔθω. ἐϋρρεῖος ποταμοῖο: gen. of place within which.

509: ἔχει: “holds.” κάρη is the neut. acc. direct obj. ἀμφὶ δὲ: “on both sides … around the shoulders,” adv., specified more closely in the following verse by ὤμοις (dat. place where) (Stoevesandt).

510: ἀγλαΐηφι: equivalent to a dat singular, here the obj. of the ptc. The suffix -φι often is instrumental or locative in force, but may substitute as a general dative. πεποιθώς: see line 505. ὁ δέ: the construction is changed, and this is left without a verb (anacolouthon). Compare Proverbs 30:17, “The eye that mocketh at his father, and despiseth to obey his mother, the ravens of the valley shall pick it out, and the young eagles shall eat it.” (Seymour)

511: : “him,” = αὐτόν, acc. sg. 3rd pers. pronoun (Monro 97). γοῦνα: nom. neut. pl. > γόνυ, agreeing with 3rd sg. verb. μετὰ: “into (the middle of),” “to” + acc. (Stoevesandt).

512: ὣς: “so,” closing off the simile from line 506. κατὰ: “down from,” gen. of place from which (Monro 213.1).

513: τεύχεσι: dat. pl. of means. ὣς τ᾽: “just as” epic τε (cf. ὤστε) (Monro 332.b). ἐβεβήκει: “turned his step,” “approached,” unaugmented 3rd sg. plpf. act. > βαίνω.

514: φέρον: supply Paris as obj.

515: τέτμεν: “came across,” reduplicated root aorist from unknown present.

516: στρέψεσθαι: μέλλω governs a future inf., in this case fut. mid. inf. > στρέφω.: “his own,” = ἑῇ, fem. dat. sg. possessive pronoun > ἑός.

517: τὸν: Hector. πρότερος: “first,” comparative degree.

518 f.: Ironical. Paris plumes himself on overtaking Hector, as he had said that he would do in 314.

518: ἠθεῖ': “dear/trusted one,” = ἠθεῖ(ε), vocative direct address, see essay. ἦ μάλα δὴ: “now quite truly,” introducing a yes/no question. καὶ ἐσσύμενον: “even (though) being in haste,” pf. mid. ptc. > σεύω, καί is an adv. that makes the ptc. concessive in sense (Goodell 583). κατερύκω: “am I hindering,” 1st sg. pres. progressive.

519: ἐναίσιμον: ἐν αἴσῃ, “at the right time.” ὡς: “just as.”

521: τοι: “you know,” “to be sure,” particle (Monro 346). τίς: “any,” τις gains accent from enclitic. ἐναίσιμος: “in his right mind,” with reference to the same word in 519, though in a different sense (Seymour). εἴη: “was,” the verb in the relative clause (3rd sg. opt > εἰμί) is optative in agreement with the potential optative in the main clause (Monro 304.1.c).

522: ἄνἀτιμήσειε: “would dishonor,” potential aor. opt. ἔργον μάχης: “your work in war,” Hector draws attention to Paris’s fighting skills.

523: μεθιεῖς: 2nd sg. pres. > μεθ-ίημι. οὐκ ἐθέλεις: i.e. you do not have the will.

524: ἄχνυται: 3rd sg. pres. pass. > ἄχομαι/ἄχνυμαι. ὅθ᾽… ἀκούω: “whenever I hear,” ὅτε with 1st sg. subj. in a general temporal clause (without ἄν) (Monro 289). ὑπὲρ σέθεν: = ὑπὲρ σοῦ. The suffix -θεν indicates gen. place from which and at times, as here, a genitive in general. αἴσχεα: “reproaches,” acc. direct object.

525: πρὸς Τρώων: “at the hands of,” “from the side of,” gen. place from which (Monro 208).

526: ἴομεν: “let us go,” 1st pl. hortatory subj. > εἶμι, with short thematic vowel (Monro 80). τά δ᾽: “these things,” the trouble between the brothers, neut. pl. acc. τά ... ἀρεσσόμεθα: "we will make these things right," fut. mid. > ἀρέσκω.

526–7: αἴ κέδώῃ: “if ever Zeus grants,” 3rd sg. aor. subj. > δίδωμι.  “If the gods will grant that we may drive out the Achaeans, and in gratitude offer (set up) a bowl in celebration of freedom.” (Seymour)

527: θεοῖς: “for the gods,” dat. pl. of interest governed by the aor. inf. στήσασθαι.

528: στήσασθαι: “to set up,” aor. inf., supply ἡμᾶς as the subject. ἐλεύθερον: explained by the following verse.

529: ἐλάσαντας: aor. ptc. > ἐλαύνω, modifies the missing acc. subject of στήσασθαι, i.e. ἡμᾶς.

δηθύνω: to tarry, delay

ὑψηλός -ή -όν: high, lofty, high-raised

δόμος -ου ὁ: a house, home

καταδύω, aor. κατεδύσετο or κατέδυ, aor. partic. καταδύντα: to go down, set, enter, put on

κλυτός -ή -όν: famed, glorious, magnificent

τεῦχος -εος τό: (pl.) arms, armour

ποικίλος -η -ον: many-coloured, variegated, artistically wrought

χαλκός -οῦ ὁ: bronze

σεύω, aor. ἔσσευα, σεῦε, or σεύατο, perf. ἔσσυμαι, ἐσσύμενον, plpf. as aor. ἔσσυτο: to drive, pursue, start; (pass.) hasten, hurry, rush 

505

ἄστυ ἄστεος τό: a city, town

κραιπνός: swift

στατός: stalled, stabled

ἀκοστάω: to be well fed

φάτνη: a manger

δεσμός: bond, halter

ἀπορρήγνυμι: to break off, break

θέω θεύσομαι: to run

πεδίον -ου τό: a plain

κροαίνω: to gallop

ἔθω, perf. as pres. εἴωθε: to be accustomed

λούω, aor. λοῦσεν or λόεσεν, perf. mid. λελουμένος: to wash, bathe; (mid.) bathe

ἐϋρρεής and ἐϋρρείτης: strong-flowing, fair-flowing

κυδιάω: to glory, boast

ὑψοῦ: aloft, on high

κάρᾱ or κάρη, gen. κάρητος τό: head, of men or animals (poet. for κεφαλή) 

χαίτη: (pl.) hair, mane

ὦμος ὤμου ὁ: shoulder (with the upper arm)510

ἀίσσω [ᾄσσω], aor. ἠίξα, ἀίξας, aor. pass. as mid. ἠίχθη: to rush, hasten. καθ᾿ ἵππων ἀίξαντε: leaping down from the chariot. χαῖται ἀίσσονται: the (hair) mane floats.

ἀγλαΐη: splendor, beauty

ῥίμφα: swiftly

οἱ (enclitic, dat. 3rd pers. pron.): (to) him, (to) her 

γόνυ, gen. γόνατος or γούνατος: knee 

ἦθος -εος τό: home, haunt

νομός -οῦ ὁ: place of pasture; district 

Πρίαμος: Priam, son of Laomedon. King of Troy.

Πέργαμος: Pergamus, the acropolis of Troy

ἄκρος -α -ον: uttermost, topmost, highest, at the top, end, edge, or surface of; πόλις ἄκρη, ἄκρη πόλις, 'upper city' (=ἀκρόπολις)

παμφαίνω: to shine bright, be shining

ἠλέκτωρ -ορος ὁ: the beaming sun; fire as an element

καγχαλάω: to laugh aloud (in exultation, in self-satisfaction, or in derision)

αἶψα: quickly, at once

Ἕκτωρ ‑ορος ὁ: Hector 

515

δῖος -α -ον: divine, noble, illustrious; marvelous, magnificent 

τέτμεν: came across (aor. from an unknown present) 

εὖτε: when, at the time when

ἄρα, ῥά (enclit.), ἄρ, ῥ᾿: so, then, as you know, you know, it seems. Very often it marks an action as natural, or reminds of something recently said. It also marks transitions.

στρέφω, fut. στρέψεσθε, aor. partic. στρεφθέντι: to turn; mid. and pass. to turn myself, turn around

ὅθι: where, there; poet. for οὗ

ἑός ἑή ἑόν: his, her own

ὀαρίζω: to converse

Ἀλέξανδρος -ου ὁ: Paris, son of Priam, husband of Helen, and thus the author of the Trojan War.

θεοειδής -ές: god-like

ἠθεῖος: honored, dear

κατερύκω: to hold back, detain

ἐναίσιμος: due, fitting, proper; bringing omens, charged with fate

ἀπαμείβομαι: to reply, answer520

πρόσφημι, impf. προσέφη, aor. προσεῖπον or προσέειπον: speak to, address

κορυθαίολος: crest-waving, gleaming-crested

δαιμόνιος: supernatural, marvelous, extraordinary; excellent, admirable; striken by (adverse) fate, miserable, unfortunate 

ἀτιμάω or ἀτιμάζω, aor. ἠτίμασεν or ἠτίμησεν: to hold in low esteem, slight

ἄλκιμος: brave, courageous, mighty

ἑκών -οῦσα -όν: willing, of free will, readily

μεθίημι, aor. subj. μεθείω, aor. inf. μεθέμεν : to let go, give up, surrender; intrans. draw back, give way

κῆρ κῆρος τό: the heart

ἀχεύω or ἀχέω: to grieve, be in sorrow, be troubled

αἶσχος -εος τό: shame, disgrace, reproach, insult

Τρῶες: Trojans525

ὄπισθε: from behind, behind, afterward, hereafter

ἀρέσκω, fut. ἀρεσσόμεθα: to atone for, satisfy, make right

ποθι: enclitic. at some time, ever

Ζεύς Διός ὁ: Zeus, son of Cronus, the husband and brother of Hera and the wisest and mightiest of the gods.

ἐπουράνιος: in heaven, heavenly

ἀειγενέτης: everlasting, immortal

κρατήρ -ῆρος ὁ: a mixing vessel in which the wine was mixed with water before it was served

μέγαρον -ου τό: large room, main hall (in the center) of the house; (pl.) dwelling, house, palace.

Τροία: Troy

ἐυκνήμις ‑ιδος ἡ: having lovely greaves

Ἀχαιός: Achaian

article nav

Suggested Citation

Thomas Van Nortwick and Geoffrey Steadman, Homer: Iliad 6 and 22. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2018. ISBN: 978-1-947822-11-5.http://dcc.dickinson.edu/homer-iliad/homer-iliad-vi-503-529