Homer, Iliad XXII 224-259

ὣς φάτ᾽ Ἀθηναίη, ὃ δ᾽ ἐπείθετο, χαῖρε δὲ θυμῷ,

στῆ δ᾽ ἄρ᾽ ἐπὶ μελίης χαλκογλώχινος ἐρεισθείς.225

ἣ δ᾽ ἄρα τὸν μὲν ἔλειπε, κιχήσατο δ᾽ Ἕκτορα δῖον

Δηϊφόβῳ ἐϊκυῖα δέμας καὶ ἀτειρέα φωνήν:

ἀγχοῦ δ᾽ ἱσταμένη ἔπεα πτερόεντα προσηύδα:

ἠθεῖ᾽ ἦ μάλα δή σε βιάζεται ὠκὺς Ἀχιλλεὺς

ἄστυ πέρι Πριάμοιο ποσὶν ταχέεσσι διώκων:230

ἀλλ᾽ ἄγε δὴ στέωμεν καὶ ἀλεξώμεσθα μένοντες.

τὴν δ᾽ αὖτε προσέειπε μέγας κορυθαίολος Ἕκτωρ:

Δηΐφοβ᾽ ἦ μέν μοι τὸ πάρος πολὺ φίλτατος ἦσθα

γνωτῶν οὓς Ἑκάβη ἠδὲ Πρίαμος τέκε παῖδας:

νῦν δ᾽ ἔτι καὶ μᾶλλον νοέω φρεσὶ τιμήσασθαι,235

ὃς ἔτλης ἐμεῦ εἵνεκ᾽, ἐπεὶ ἴδες ὀφθαλμοῖσι,

τείχεος ἐξελθεῖν, ἄλλοι δ᾽ ἔντοσθε μένουσι.

τὸν δ᾽ αὖτε προσέειπε θεὰ γλαυκῶπις Ἀθήνη:

ἠθεῖ᾽ ἦ μὲν πολλὰ πατὴρ καὶ πότνια μήτηρ

λίσσονθ᾽ ἑξείης γουνούμενοι, ἀμφὶ δ᾽ ἑταῖροι,240

αὖθι μένειν: τοῖον γὰρ ὑποτρομέουσιν ἅπαντες:

ἀλλ᾽ ἐμὸς ἔνδοθι θυμὸς ἐτείρετο πένθεϊ λυγρῷ.

νῦν δ᾽ ἰθὺς μεμαῶτε μαχώμεθα, μὴ δέ τι δούρων

ἔστω φειδωλή, ἵνα εἴδομεν εἴ κεν Ἀχιλλεὺς

νῶϊ κατακτείνας ἔναρα βροτόεντα φέρηται245

νῆας ἔπι γλαφυράς, ἦ κεν σῷ δουρὶ δαμήῃ.

ὣς φαμένη καὶ κερδοσύνῃ ἡγήσατ᾽ Ἀθήνη:

οἳ δ᾽ ὅτε δὴ σχεδὸν ἦσαν ἐπ᾽ ἀλλήλοισιν ἰόντες,

τὸν πρότερος προσέειπε μέγας κορυθαίολος Ἕκτωρ:

οὔ σ᾽ ἔτι Πηλέος υἱὲ φοβήσομαι, ὡς τὸ πάρος περ250

τρὶς περὶ ἄστυ μέγα Πριάμου δίον, οὐδέ ποτ᾽ ἔτλην

μεῖναι ἐπερχόμενον: νῦν αὖτέ με θυμὸς ἀνῆκε

στήμεναι ἀντία σεῖο: ἕλοιμί κεν ἤ κεν ἁλοίην.

ἀλλ᾽ ἄγε δεῦρο θεοὺς ἐπιδώμεθα: τοὶ γὰρ ἄριστοι

μάρτυροι ἔσσονται καὶ ἐπίσκοποι ἁρμονιάων:255

οὐ γὰρ ἐγώ σ᾽ ἔκπαγλον ἀεικιῶ, αἴ κεν ἐμοὶ Ζεὺς

δώῃ καμμονίην, σὴν δὲ ψυχὴν ἀφέλωμαι:

ἀλλ᾽ ἐπεὶ ἄρ κέ σε συλήσω κλυτὰ τεύχε᾽ Ἀχιλλεῦ

νεκρὸν Ἀχαιοῖσιν δώσω πάλιν: ὣς δὲ σὺ ῥέζειν.

Athena appears to Hector disguised as his brother Deiophobus and offers to help him fight. Hector asks Achilles to swear an oath that the winner will refrain from mistreating the corpse of the loser, and will simply strip the armor and return the body.

It would be painful enough to witness the death of such an honorable figure without the divine machinery engaged here. As it is, what Homer shows us is a frightening world where honor and decency are not only ineffective, but irrelevant. [read full essay]

224: ὃ δ᾽: “and this one,” Achilles. χαῖρε θυμῷ: “delighted in his heart.” Joy, next to awe, is a regular reaction to divine manifestation.

225: στῆ: 3rd sg. unaugmented root aor. > ἵστημι. ἐρεισθείς: “leaning,” aor. pass. ptc. > ἐρείδω.

226: κιχήσατο: aor. mid. > κιχάνω, with active sense.

227: δέμαςφωνήν: acc. of respect (Goodell 537). προσηύδα: “began to address,” see 22.7.

229: ἠθεῖ’: “dear/trusted one,” = ἠθεῖ(ε), vocative direct address. ἦ μάλα δή: “quite truly now.”

230: ἄστυ πέρι: = περὶ ἄστυ.

231: ἄγε δὴ: “come on now.” στέωμενἀλεξώμεσθα: “let us … let us…,” hortatory aor. subj > ἵστημι (στέωμεν = στήομεν, Αtt. στήωμεν).

232: τὴν δ᾽: “this one,” Athena, who, although now disguised as a man, is still referred to with the feminine pronoun.

233: Δηΐφοβ’: = Δηΐφοβε, vocative direct address. πολὺ: “by far.” ἦσθα: 2nd sg. impf. > εἰμί.

234: γνωτῶν: “of my relatives,” here more specifically “of my brothers,” partitive gen. (Monro 147.2). οὕςπαῖδας: “whom (Hecabe and Priam begot) as their children,” relative pronoun with predicate in apposition. τέκε: 3rd sg. aor. > τίκτω, in agreement with the last of the two subjects.

235: καὶ μᾶλλον: “even more,” adverbial καὶ. νοέω φρεσὶ: “I have in mind to” + inf. φρεσὶ > φρήν. τιμήσασθαι: aor. mid. inf. with no difference in meaning from the active. Supply acc. obj. σέ.

236: ὃς: “(you) who,” relative pronoun, whose antecedent is σέ understood in 235. ἔτλης: "you endured," "had toughness to,"  + infin., 2nd sg. root aor. > τλάω. ἴδες: aor. > εἶδον. ὀφθαλμοῖσι: dat. pl. of means.

237: τείχεος: “from the wall,” gen. of separation governed by ἐξ- of ἐξελθεῖν (Goodell 509.a). ἐξελθεῖν: aor. inf. > ἐξ-έρχομαι.

238: τὸν δ᾽: “this one,” Hector.

239: ἠθεῖ’: see 229. πολλὰ: “many times,” “often,” adverbial acc.

240: λίσσονθ᾽: = λίσσοντο, 3rd pl. dep. mid. impf. ἀμφὶ δ᾽ ἑταῖροι: “and my friends around (me) (begged me).” ἀμφὶ is adverbial.

241: τοῖον: “to such a degree” (Monro)

242: ἐτείρετο: impf. pass. > τείρω, “wear down, distress, trouble.”

243: ἰθὺς: “straightaway,” adverb. μεμαῶτε: "eagerly," dual nom. ptc. > μέμονα, reduplicated perf. with pres. sense (Monro 36.5). μαχώμεθα: “let us,” hortatory subj. μὴἔστω: “let there not be at all sparing use of spears,” neg. 3rd pers. sg. imper. > εἰμί. δούρων: obj. gen. with φειδωλή.

244: ἵνα εἴδομεν: “so that…,” purpose clause with 3rd pl. subj. > οἶδα, Attic εἰδῶμεν, here with the short thematic vowel (Monro 80).

244–246: εἴ: “whether he will carry away … or he will be conquered,” alternative indirect questions with prospective subjunctives (φέρηται, pres. mid. subj. > φέρω, and δαμήῃ, uncontracted 3rd sg. aor. pass subj. > δαμνάω/δαμάζω) that describe an imminent future action.

245: νῶϊ: “the two of us,” acc. 1st pl. pers. pronoun. κατακτείνας: nom. sg. aor. ptc.

247: ὣς: “so…,” closing the speech. φαμένη: pres. mid. ptc. > φημί, with no difference in meaning from the active, and often with the sense of completion (“having spoken”). καὶ: “in fact,” adverbial. κερδοσύνῃ: “with cunning,” dat. of manner, “cunningly” (Goodell 526.b).

248: οἳ δὴ: “these (two),” pl. rather than dual. ὅτε δὴ: “just when.” δὴ implies exactness. ἦσαν: 3rd pl. impf. > εἰμί. ἐπ᾽ ἀλλήλοισιν: “against one another.” ἰόντες: ptc. > εἶμι.

249: τὸν: Achilles. πρότερος: “first,” “earlier,” nom. adj. as adverb. Ἕκτωρ: a pendant nominative, developed from the pl. οἳ of 248.  

250: οὔἔτι: “no longer.” φοβήσομαι: see 22.137. This is a rare transitive use (“I will flee you”). ὡςπερ: “just as,” “in the very manner as,” equivalent to ὡς, (a precursor of Att. ὥσπερ). τὸ πάρος: “previously,” adv.

251: δίον: “fled,” aor. 2 > δείδω (Monro, see LSJ s.v. δείδω 7).

252: μεῖναι ἐπερχόμενον: “to wait for (you) attacking,” aor. inf. > μένω, which governs the acc. obj. ἐπερχόμενον (pres. ptc. > ἐπ-έρχομαι), with an understood σε. ἀνῆκε: “urged, sent forth,” aor. > ἀν-ίημι.

253: στήμεναι: aor. inf. > ἵστημι (Monro 85.2). ἕλοιμί κενἤ κεν ἁλοίην: “I might take (you) or I might be taken,” i.e. “I might kill (you) or be killed,” potential aor. opt. ἕλοιμι > αἱρέω, ἁλοίην > ἁλίσκομαι (the defective passive of αἱρέω).

254: ἄγε δεῦρο: “come now,” see 22.174. δεῦρο (lit. “hither”) simply strengthens ἄγε. θεοὺς ἐπιδώμεθα: “let us give (to one another) our gods,” i.e. “let us swear,” hortatory aor. mid. subjunctive > ἐπιδίδωμι. τοὶ: “these” gods.

256: ἔκπαγλον: adverbial acc., “outrageously,” “in a violent fashion,” “terribly”

256–257: ἀεικιῶ, αἴ κενδώῃἀφέλωμαι: future-more-vivid condition. ἀεικιῶ: fut. > ἀεικίζω. δώῃ: 3rd sg. aor. subj. > δίδωμι. ἀφέλωμαι: 1st sg. aor. mid. > ἀφ-αιρέω.

257: καμμονίην: “withstanding,” “holding one’s ground,” a euphemism for victory (Monro).

258: ἐπεὶκέσυλήσω, δώσω: “when(ever) I strip … I will give.” A general temporal clause, kindred with a future-more-vivid condition (Monro 296). συλήσω: governs a double acc., “strip x (acc.) from y (acc.)” (Goodell 534).

259: ὣς δὲ: “and in this way,” in the same way. ῥέζειν: infinitive used as an imperative.

Ἀθήνη and Ἀθηναίη: Athena

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.225

μελία: the ash

χαλκογλώχιν: bronze-pointed

ἐρείδω: to lean, prop, support

κιχάνω, fut. κιχήσεσθαι, aor. κιχήσατο, aor. subj. κιχείω [κιχῶ], aor. partic. κιχήμενον: to find, come to, overtake

Ἕκτωρ: Hector, the most distinguished warrior of the Trojans, son of Priam and Hecabe, and husband of Andromache.

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

Δηίφοβος: Deïphobus, son of Priam and Hecabe, and brother of Hector

δέμας –αος τό: build, form

ἀτειρής: unyielding, weariless

ἀγχοῦ: near, nigh

πτερόεις πτερόεσσα πτερόεν: feathered, winged

προσαυδάω: to speak to, address

ἠθεῖος: honored, dear

βιάω βιήσω ἐβίασα βεβίηκα βεβίημαι ἐβιήθην: to constrain

ὠκύς ὠκεῖα ὠκύ: quick, swift, fleet

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.

ἄστυ ἄστεος τό: a city, town230

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

ἄγε: come! come on! well!

ἀλέξω, fut. partic. ἀλεξήσοντα: to ward off, defend

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

κορυθαίολος: crest-waving, gleaming-crested

πάρος: before, formerly

φίλτατος –η –ον: dearest

γνωτός: known; subst. masc. brother

Ἑκάβη: Hecabe, wife of King Priam of Troy

ἠδέ: and

νοέω, aor. ἐνόησε: to perceive, observe, look, devise, plan235

φρήν φρενός ἡ: heart, mind

τλάω: to take upon oneself, to bear, suffer, undergo

ἐξέρχομαι ἐξελεύσομαι ἐξῆλθον ἐξελήλυθα: to go out, come out

ἔντοσθε: within (+gen.)

θεά –ᾶς ἡ: a goddess

γλαυκῶπις -ιδος: gleaming eyed, epithet of Athena

πότνια: mistress, honored

λίσσομαι: to beg, pray, entreat, beseech240

ἑξῆς: one after another, in order, in a row

γουνόομαι: to clasp by the knees: implore

ἑταῖρος –ου ὁ: a comrade, companion, mate

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

τοῖος –α –ον: such, like this

ὑποτρομέω: to tremble under

ἔνδοθι: within, at home

τείρω: to oppress, press hard, weigh heavily upon, distress

πένθος –εος τό: grief, sadness, sorrow

λυγρός -ά -όν: sore, baneful, mournful

ἰθύς: straight, direct

μέμαα, perf.: to be eager, rush on impetuously. μεμαότες: eager

δόρυ, gen. δόρατος or δουρός: timber, beam, spear

φειδωλός: sparing, thrifty

κατακτείνω: to kill, slay, murder245

ἔναρα -ων τά: spoils, armor taken from a slain foe

βροτόεις –εντος: gory, bloody

γλᾰφῠρός -ά, -όν: hollow, hollowed

δαμάζω: to overpower, tame, conquer, subdue

κερδοσύνη: cunning, craft

σχεδόν: close, near

Πηλεύς gen. –ῆος and έος : Peleus, king of the Myrmidons. He was the son of Aeacus, husband of Thetis, and father of Achilles.250

τρίς: thrice, three times

ἐπέρχομαι ἔπειμι ἐπῆλθον ἐπελήλυθα: to come near; come upon; attack

ἀνίημι, 2nd. pers. ind. ἀνιεῖς, fem. partic. ἀνιεῖσα, fut. ἀνήσει, aor. ἀνῆκε or ἀνέηκεν, aor. subj. ἀνήῃ, aor. partic. ἀνέντες: to let go, free, urge on

ἀντίος -α or -ιη -ον: opposite, against

δεῦρο: here, this way, over here

ἐπιδίδωμι, aor. ἐπέδωκε, 2nd. aor. mid. ἐπιδώμεθα: to give besides, give along with; mid. to give oneself as a witness

ἐπίσκοπος: one who watches over, an overseer, guardian255

ἁρμονίη: bond, compact

ἔκπαγλος: terrible, redoubtable

ἀεικίζω, fut. ἀεικιῶ, aor. subj. ἀεικίσσωσι, aor. mid. inf. ἀεικίσσασθαι: to treat unseemly, insult, disfigure

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

καμμονίη: endurance, victory

συλάω: to strip off

κλυτός –ή –όν: famed, glorious, magnificent

τεῦχος –εος τό: (pl.) arms, armour

νεκρός –οῦ ὁ: a dead body, corpse

Ἀχαιός: Achaian

ῥέζω: to do, perform, offer

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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-224-259