Homer, Iliad XXII 131-176

ὣς ὅρμαινε μένων, ὃ δέ οἱ σχεδὸν ἦλθεν Ἀχιλλεὺς

ἶσος Ἐνυαλίῳ κορυθάϊκι πτολεμιστῇ

σείων Πηλιάδα μελίην κατὰ δεξιὸν ὦμον

δεινήν: ἀμφὶ δὲ χαλκὸς ἐλάμπετο εἴκελος αὐγῇ

ἢ πυρὸς αἰθομένου ἢ ἠελίου ἀνιόντος.135

Ἕκτορα δ᾽, ὡς ἐνόησεν, ἕλε τρόμος: οὐδ᾽ ἄρ᾽ ἔτ᾽ ἔτλη

αὖθι μένειν, ὀπίσω δὲ πύλας λίπε, βῆ δὲ φοβηθείς:

Πηλεΐδης δ᾽ ἐπόρουσε ποσὶ κραιπνοῖσι πεποιθώς.

ἠΰτε κίρκος ὄρεσφιν ἐλαφρότατος πετεηνῶν

ῥηϊδίως οἴμησε μετὰ τρήρωνα πέλειαν,140

ἣ δέ θ᾽ ὕπαιθα φοβεῖται, ὃ δ᾽ ἐγγύθεν ὀξὺ λεληκὼς

ταρφέ᾽ ἐπαΐσσει, ἑλέειν τέ ἑ θυμὸς ἀνώγει:

ὣς ἄρ᾽ ὅ γ᾽ ἐμμεμαὼς ἰθὺς πέτετο, τρέσε δ᾽ Ἕκτωρ

τεῖχος ὕπο Τρώων, λαιψηρὰ δὲ γούνατ᾽ ἐνώμα.

οἳ δὲ παρὰ σκοπιὴν καὶ ἐρινεὸν ἠνεμόεντα145

τείχεος αἰὲν ὑπ᾽ ἐκ κατ᾽ ἀμαξιτὸν ἐσσεύοντο,

κρουνὼ δ᾽ ἵκανον καλλιρρόω: ἔνθα δὲ πηγαὶ

δοιαὶ ἀναΐσσουσι Σκαμάνδρου δινήεντος.

ἣ μὲν γάρ θ᾽ ὕδατι λιαρῷ ῥέει, ἀμφὶ δὲ καπνὸς

γίγνεται ἐξ αὐτῆς ὡς εἰ πυρὸς αἰθομένοιο:150

ἣ δ᾽ ἑτέρη θέρεϊ προρέει ἐϊκυῖα χαλάζῃ,

ἢ χιόνι ψυχρῇ ἢ ἐξ ὕδατος κρυστάλλῳ.

ἔνθα δ᾽ ἐπ᾽ αὐτάων πλυνοὶ εὐρέες ἐγγὺς ἔασι

καλοὶ λαΐνεοι, ὅθι εἵματα σιγαλόεντα

πλύνεσκον Τρώων ἄλοχοι καλαί τε θύγατρες155

τὸ πρὶν ἐπ᾽ εἰρήνης πρὶν ἐλθεῖν υἷας Ἀχαιῶν.

τῇ ῥα παραδραμέτην φεύγων ὃ δ᾽ ὄπισθε διώκων:

πρόσθε μὲν ἐσθλὸς ἔφευγε, δίωκε δέ μιν μέγ᾽ ἀμείνων

καρπαλίμως, ἐπεὶ οὐχ ἱερήϊον οὐδὲ βοείην

ἀρνύσθην, ἅ τε ποσσὶν ἀέθλια γίγνεται ἀνδρῶν,160

ἀλλὰ περὶ ψυχῆς θέον Ἕκτορος ἱπποδάμοιο.

ὡς δ᾽ ὅτ᾽ ἀεθλοφόροι περὶ τέρματα μώνυχες ἵπποι

ῥίμφα μάλα τρωχῶσι: τὸ δὲ μέγα κεῖται ἄεθλον

ἢ τρίπος ἠὲ γυνὴ ἀνδρὸς κατατεθνηῶτος:

ὣς τὼ τρὶς Πριάμοιο πόλιν πέρι δινηθήτην165

καρπαλίμοισι πόδεσσι: θεοὶ δ᾽ ἐς πάντες ὁρῶντο:

τοῖσι δὲ μύθων ἦρχε πατὴρ ἀνδρῶν τε θεῶν τε:

ὢ πόποι ἦ φίλον ἄνδρα διωκόμενον περὶ τεῖχος

ὀφθαλμοῖσιν ὁρῶμαι: ἐμὸν δ᾽ ὀλοφύρεται ἦτορ

Ἕκτορος, ὅς μοι πολλὰ βοῶν ἐπὶ μηρί᾽ ἔκηεν170

Ἴδης ἐν κορυφῇσι πολυπτύχου, ἄλλοτε δ᾽ αὖτε

ἐν πόλει ἀκροτάτῃ: νῦν αὖτέ ἑ δῖος Ἀχιλλεὺς

ἄστυ πέρι Πριάμοιο ποσὶν ταχέεσσι διώκει.

ἀλλ᾽ ἄγετε φράζεσθε θεοὶ καὶ μητιάασθε

ἠέ μιν ἐκ θανάτοιο σαώσομεν, ἦέ μιν ἤδη175

Πηλεΐδῃ Ἀχιλῆϊ δαμάσσομεν ἐσθλὸν ἐόντα.

As Achilles approches, Hector runs away along a wagon track around the city. Achilles pursues, and they pass the site of a pair of hot and cold springs beneath the walls. As they complete a third circuit around the city Zeus expresses concern for Hector and asks the other gods to think about rescuing him.

Finally, Hector’s time has come. He is going to die soon. He knows it and we know it. Achilles has been looming on the edge of our vision while Hector pondered and now arrives as the elemental force that Priam first saw from the walls of Troy. [read full essay]

131: ὣς: “thus,” closing Hector’s interior monologue. ὃ δέ … Ἀχιλλεὺς: “but this one, Achilles.”  οἱ: “to him,” dat. obj. of σχεδόν (Monro 98).

133 Πηλιάδα: “of Mount Pelion.” Achilles’ spear is called “Pelian” because the centaur Chiron made it of wood from Mt. Pelion in Thessaly and gave it to Peleus at the occasion of his marriage to Thetis, just as the gods gave him armor (de Jong; see Iliad 16.140–144). κατὰ: “over” (Goodell 212.4).

134: ἀμφὶ δὲ: “around about,” adverbial. 

135:  … : “either … or.” πυρὸς … ἀνιόντος: gen. qualifying αὐγῇ. ἀνιόντος: pres. ptc. > ἄν-ειμι.

136: ὡς: “as,” “when.” ἕλε: unaugmented aor. > αἱρέω. οὐδ᾽… ἔτ᾽: “and no longer,” “not still.” ἔτλη: "endured," aor. > τλάω (Goodell 366).

137: βῆ φοβηθείς: “he set off in flight.” In Homer the verb φοβέω means “to put to flight” (act.), “flee” (middle/passive), with the connotation of fear. βῆ: unaugmented root aor. > βαίνω (Goodell 366). φοβηθείς: nom. sg. aor. pass. ptc. 

138: πεποιθώς: “trusting completely in,” intensive perfect > πείθω (Monro 61).

139: ὄρεσφιν: “in the mountains,” -φι, the dative suffix, is here locative in force (Goodell 157). Mountains are associated with danger in Homer: this is the place where wild animals live, fire rages, and herdsmen fight in a continuous battle against predators (de Jong).

140: οἴμησε: “pounces,” gnomic aor. (Smyth 1931), as often in similes (Monro 78.2). “Swoops down” (Monro). μετὰ: “after,” “behind,” (Monro 195.1).

141: ἣ δέ θ᾽: = ἣ δέ τε, “and that one…,” the dove. φοβεῖται: see 22.137. ὃ δ᾽: “and this one,” the hawk. ὀξὺ λεληκὼς: “with a shrill cry.” ὀξὺ: neut. sg. adverbial acc. λεληκὼς: intensive perfect participle > λάσκω (Monro 61).

142: ταρφέ᾽: = ταρφέα, neut. pl. ἑλέειν: uncontracted 2nd aor. inf. > αἱρέω (Monro 85.2). τέ: “and.”

143: ὣς: “so,” closing the simile from 22.139. ὅ γ᾽: “this one,” Achilles. πέτετο: “began to fly,” unaugmented inchoative impf. (Monro 70).

144: τεῖχος ὕπο: = ὑπὸ τεῖχος.

145: οἳ δὲ: “and these,” demonstrative pronoun (Monro 256). σκοπιήν: “the lookout place,” not that of 2.792 ff., which was some way from the city (Monro).

146: τείχεος … ὑπ᾽ ἐκ: “a little way out from the wall,” gen. place from which. The road was not close enough for arrows to strike Achilles (de Jong). ὑπ’ ἐκ: “away from under,” getting further out as he went on (Monro). ἀμαξιτόν: “the wagon-track” leading to the washing place. ἐσσεύοντο: impf. mid. > σεύω, with σ duplicated after the augment. They ran along the wagon-road along the city wall; yet the road seems to have been somewhat distant from the wall (Benner).

147: κρουνὼ … καλλιρρόω: dual acc., acc. of direction without preposition. ἵκανον: 3rd pl. impf. > ἱκάνω (= ἵκω, = ἱκνέομαι).

148: Σκαμάνδρου: with πηγαί, two springs of the Scamander, i.e., two of the sources from which it fed (Monro).

149: ἣ μὲν … ἣ δ᾽: “one (spring) … other (spring)”. ὕδατι λιαρῷ: “with warm water,” specifying dative (Goodell 527.b). ἀμφὶ δὲ: “and round about it,” adverbial.

150: ἐξ αὐτῆς: “from it,” the spring. ὡς εἰ: “as if.” πυρὸς: supply ἐξ, gen. place from which.

151: ἣ δ᾽ ἑτέρη: “the other (spring).” θέρεϊ: “in summer,” dat. of time when (Goodell 527.c).

152:  … : “or … or.”

153: ἔνθα δ᾽: “and there.” ἐπ᾽αὐτάων … ἐγγὺς: “near by them,” uncontracted gen. pl. > αὐτός. ἔασι: “there are,” 3rd pl. pres. epic > εἰμί, Att. εἰσίν. πλυνοί: “washing troughs,” cp. the description in the Odyssey7.85 ff. (Monro).

155: πλύνεσκον: “were accustomed to wash,” -σκ- indicates iterative impf. (Monro 48–9). τε: “and.”

156: τὸ πρὶν: “formerly,” adverb. ἐπ᾽εἰρήνης: “in peacetime,” gen. of time within which (Monro 200.4). υἷας: acc. pl. subject of infin.

157–166: παραδραμέτην … δινηθήτην: wedged in between two aorists, a series of imperfects (ἔφευγε, δίωκε, ἀρνύσθην, θέον) scenically paints the footrace.

157: τῇ: “in this (place),” “there,” dat. of place where with the fem. dat. sg. personal pronoun (Goodell 527.a). παραδραμέτην: dual 3rd pers. aor. > παρα-τρέχω. (ὃ μὲν) φεύγων, ὁ δ᾽: “(the one) fleeing, the other…”

158: μέγ᾽: = μέγα, “far,” “by far,” adverbial acc. adj. with ἀμείνων. μιν: “him,” Hector.

159: ἱερήιον: beast for sacrifice, “festal ox” (Monro).

160: ἀρνύσθην: “were trying to win,” dual 3rd pers. mid. conative impf. (Goodell 459.a). ἅ τε … ἀέθλια: “which are the prizes,” relative pronoun with an epic τε in generalizing statement (Monro 332.b). ποσσὶν ἀνδρῶν: “by the feet of men,” specifying dative (Goodell 527.b). ποσσὶν: “in the foot-race” (Benner); “for speed of foot” (Monro).

161: περὶ ψυχῆς: “for the life,” “about the life,” i.e., the prize for this race is Hector's life. θέον: unaugmented 3rd pl. impf. > θέω.

162: ὡς δ᾽ ὅτ᾽: “just as when,” begins the second of four similes in the context of the chase (de Jong). περὶ τέρματα: “round the turning posts,” likely boundary stones or landmarks such as trees (de Jong). μώνυχες ἵπποι: “one-nailed hourses,” i.e. “with unified hoof” (as opposed to cloven-hoofed animals) (de Jong).

163–164: τὸ δὲ μέγα κεῖται ἄεθλον / ἀνδρὸς κατατεθνηῶτος: “and it, a big prize, is set for (i.e. in honor of) a man who has died.” The allusion is to funeral games (Benner). κεῖται: “is set out,” supplies the perfect passive of τιθήμι (Goodell 387.c). 

164:  … ἠὲ: “either … or,” in apposition to ἄεθλον. κατατεθνηῶτος: gen. sg. pf. act. ptc. 

165: ὣς: “so,” closing the simile from 162. τὼ: “these (two),” dual nom. demonstrative pronoun. δινηθήτην: “whirled about,” “circled,” 3rd pers. dual aor. pass. epic > δίννημι (= δινεύω = δινέω). Τhe aorist ending -θητην is intransitive rather than passive.

166: πόδεσσι: dat. pl. > πούς (= ποσίν = ποσσὶν) (Goodell 526.a). δ᾽ ἐς … ὁρῶντοtmesis, “looked and at (them),” i.e. at the two men. ὁρῶντο: unaugmented 3rd pl. impf. mid. > ὁράω, the middle is used instead of the active, because the perception strongly affects the viewer (de Jong). 

167: τοῖσι δὲ: “and to these (gods),” dat. ind. object with verb of speaking. τε  τε: “both … and.” 

169: ὀφθαλμοῖσιν: dat. of means. ὁρῶμαι: = ὁράομαι, pres. indicative.

169–170: ὀλοφύρεται ... Ἕκτορος: “feel pity for” + gen. (Monro 151.c).

170: ὅς: “who…,” relative.  ἐπὶ … ἔκηεν: “burnt (on an altar),” aor. > ἐπικαίω, an abbreviated version of the full expression ἔκηε ἐπὶ βωμοῖς (de Jong). μοι: “for me,” dative of interest (Goodell 523). βοῶν: gen. pl. > βοῦς, partitive (Monro 147.2). μηρί᾽: = μηρία, neut. pl. 

171: for the altar of Zeus on Mt. Ida, see 8.48 (Monro).

173: ἄστυ πέρι: = περὶ ἄστυ. ποσὶν: dat. pl. of means (Goodell 526.a).

174: ἄγετε φράζεσθε: “but come consider,” ἄγετε, originally an imperative, is used as an exhoratory particle that lends weight to the two pres. mid. pl. imperatives that follow it (de Jong).

175: ἠέ … ἦέ: “whether…or,” alternative indirect questions (Goodell 655). σαώσομεν … δαμάσσομεν: “we are to save… we are to bring him low…,” deliberative aorist subjunctives > σαόω (= σῴζω), > δαμάζω (= δάμνημι).

176: Ἀχιλῆϊ: “by means of Achilles,” “via Achilles” dat. of means (Goodell 526.a). ἐόντα: “though,” concessive ptc. > εἰμί.

ὁρμαίνω, impf. ὥρμαινε: to ponder, consider

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

σχεδόν: close, near

Ἀχιλλεύς -έως or -ῆος ὁ: Achilles, son of Peleus and Thetis, leader of the Myrmidons and Hellenes in Thessaly, the mightiest warrior before Troy, and the principal hero of the Iliad.

Ἐνυάλιος: Enyalius, a name of Ares

κορυθάιξ: helmet-shaking

πολεμιστής: a warrior, fighter

σείω: to shake, brandish

Πηλιάς: of mount Pelion, Pelian

μελίη: ash, ashen spear

δεξιός –ά –όν: right

ὦμος ὤμου ὁ: shoulder (with the upper arm)

χαλκός –οῦ ὁ: bronze

λάμπω: to give light, shine, beam, be bright, brilliant, radiant

εἴκελος: like

αὐγή: bright light, radiance, beam

αἴθω: to light up, kindle; (mid., pass.) to blaze, be consumed, be inflamed135

ἄνειμι, pres. partic. ἀνιόντα: to come back, return

νοέω, aor. ἐνόησε: to perceive, observe, look, devise, plan

τρόμος: a trembling, quaking, quivering

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.

τλῆναι: to bear, endure, dare

αὖθι: on the spot, here, there, immediately, at once

ὀπίσω or ὀπίσσω: backwards, in the future

πύλη –ης ἡ: one wing of a pair of double gates; (pl.) gate

Πηλεΐδης: son of Peleus

ἐπορούω, aor. ἐπόρουσε: to rush against, leap toward, spring at

κραιπνός: swift

ἠύτε: as, like as

κίρκος: hawk

ὄρος ὄρεος τό: mountain, hill

ἐλαφρός: light, agile, quick

πετεηνός: winged

οἰμάω, aor. οἴμησε(ν): to swoop, rush on140

τρήρων: timid

πέλεια: wild-pigeon, dove

ὕπαιθα: adv. away from beneath; before

ἐγγύθεν: from near, nearby

λάσκω: to sound, crackle; perf. partic. λεληκώς (w. ὀξύ), with a shrill cry

ταρφέες: frequent; ταρφέα adv. often, again and again

ἐπαΐσσω, aor. partic. ἐπαΐξας, aor. iterat. ἐπαΐξασκε: to rush upon, rush after, dash

ἄνωγα (perf. as pres.), impf. ἄνωγον, plpf. as impf. ἠνώγει or ἀνώγειν: to command, order, bid

ἐμμεμαώς: in eager haste

ἰθύς: straight, direct

πέτομαι, 2nd aor. ἔπτατο, aor. partic. πταμένη: to fly, speed on

τρέω, aor. τρέσε, ἔτρεσαν: to flee

Τρῶες: Trojans

λαιψηρός: nimble, swift

γόνυ, gen. γόνατος or γούνατος: knee

νωμάω, impf. (ἐ)νώμα, aor. νώμησαν: to distribute; to direct this way and that, wield, move, ply

σκοπιή: look-out place, watch tower145

ἐρινεός: the wild fig-tree

ἠνεμόεις: windy, wind-swept

ἀμαξιτός: traversed by wagons; ἀμαξιτόν, wagon-road

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

κρουνός: a spring

ἱκάνω: to come, arrive

καλλίρροος: beautiful-flowing

πηγή: spring, source

δοιοί: two

ἀναΐσσω, aor. opt. ἀναΐξειεν, aor. partic. ἀναΐξας: to dart, spring, leap up

Σκάμανδρος: the Scamander

δινήεις: eddying

λιαρός: warm

ῥέω, impf. ἔρρεεν or ῥέεν: to flow

καπνός: smoke, steam

θέρος –εος τό: summer, summertime151

προρέω: to flow forth

χάλαζα: hail

χιών: snow

ψυχρός –ά –όν: cold

κρύσταλλος: ice

πλυνός: a trough, tank, washing pit

εὐρύς –εῖα –ύ: wide, broad

ἐγγύς: near, nigh, at hand

λάϊνος: of stone

ὅθι: where, there; poet. for οὗ

εἷμα –ατος τό: a garment, clothing

σιγαλόεις: gleaming

πλύνω, iterat. impf. πλύνεσκον: to wash, clean155

ἄλοχος -ου ἡ: wife

Ἀχαιός: Achaian

τῇ: there

παρατρέχω, 2nd aor. παραδραμέτην: to run past

ὄπισθε: from behind, behind, afterward, hereafter

πρόσθεν: before, in front

ἐσθλός –ή –όν: good, decent, honorable, noble, generous; capable, able; (of things) good, useful; (of words) wise, sensible

μιν: him, her, it

καρπάλιμος: swift, nimble

ἱερήιρον –ου τό: a victim for sacrifice

βοείη: an ox-hide

ἄρνυμαι, aor. opt. ἄροιο: to strive to win, gain160

ἄεθλον –ου τό: the prize of a contest

θέω θεύσομαι: to run

ἱππόδαμος -ον: tamer of horses, epithet of heroes

ἀθλοφόρος or ἀεθλοφόρος –ον: prize-winning

τέρμα –ατος τό: goal, around which horses turn in a race

μῶνυξ: solid-footed, epithet of horses

ῥίμφα: swiftly, fleetly

τρωχάω: to run, gallop

τρίπους or τρίπος τρίποδος ὁ: a tripod

καταθνῄσκω, 2nd aor. κάτθανε, perf. κατατεθνήκασιν: to die

τρίς: thrice, three times165

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

δινεύω, impf. ἐδίνευον: to whirl

μῦθος –ου ὁ: word, utterance, saying, proposition, plan, thought, injunction

πόποι: alas!

φίλος –η –ον: friend; loved, beloved, dear

ὀλοφύρομαι: to lament, pity (+gen)

ἦτορ -ορος τό: the heart

μηρία τά: thigh-pieces, pieces of flesh which, wrapped in fat, were burnt as a sacrifice to the gods170

καίω καύσω ἔκαυσα κέκαυκα κέκαυμαι ἐκαύθην: to light, kindle, burn

Ἴδη: Ida, a mountain range extending from Phrygia through Mysia into the Troad. One of its peaks is "topmost Gargarus."

κορυφή: crown, top, peak of a mountain

πολύπτυχος: with many folds; (mountains) with many valleys

ἄλλοτε: at another time, at other times

αὖτε: again, on the other hand, however, but

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

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

ἄστυ ἄστεος τό: a city, town

ἄγε: come! come on! well!

μητιάω: to meditate, deliberate, debate

Πηλεύς gen. –ῆος and έος : Peleus, king of the Myrmidons. He was the son of Aeacus, husband of Thetis, and father of Achilles.176

δαμάζω: to overpower, tame, conquer, subdue

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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-xxii-131-176