Homer, Iliad XXII 405-436

ὣς τοῦ μὲν κεκόνιτο κάρη ἅπαν: ἣ δέ νυ μήτηρ405

τίλλε κόμην, ἀπὸ δὲ λιπαρὴν ἔρριψε καλύπτρην

τηλόσε, κώκυσεν δὲ μάλα μέγα παῖδ᾽ ἐσιδοῦσα:

ᾤμωξεν δ᾽ ἐλεεινὰ πατὴρ φίλος, ἀμφὶ δὲ λαοὶ

κωκυτῷ τ᾽ εἴχοντο καὶ οἰμωγῇ κατὰ ἄστυ.

τῷ δὲ μάλιστ᾽ ἄρ᾽ ἔην ἐναλίγκιον ὡς εἰ ἅπασα410

Ἴλιος ὀφρυόεσσα πυρὶ σμύχοιτο κατ᾽ ἄκρης.

λαοὶ μέν ῥα γέροντα μόγις ἔχον ἀσχαλόωντα

ἐξελθεῖν μεμαῶτα πυλάων Δαρδανιάων.

πάντας δ᾽ ἐλλιτάνευε κυλινδόμενος κατὰ κόπρον,

ἐξονομακλήδην ὀνομάζων ἄνδρα ἕκαστον:415

σχέσθε φίλοι, καί μ᾽ οἶον ἐάσατε κηδόμενοί περ

ἐξελθόντα πόληος ἱκέσθ᾽ ἐπὶ νῆας Ἀχαιῶν.

λίσσωμ᾽ ἀνέρα τοῦτον ἀτάσθαλον ὀβριμοεργόν,

ἤν πως ἡλικίην αἰδέσσεται ἠδ᾽ ἐλεήσῃ

γῆρας: καὶ δέ νυ τῷ γε πατὴρ τοιόσδε τέτυκται420

Πηλεύς, ὅς μιν ἔτικτε καὶ ἔτρεφε πῆμα γενέσθαι

Τρωσί: μάλιστα δ᾽ ἐμοὶ περὶ πάντων ἄλγε᾽ ἔθηκε.

τόσσους γάρ μοι παῖδας ἀπέκτανε τηλεθάοντας:

τῶν πάντων οὐ τόσσον ὀδύρομαι ἀχνύμενός περ

ὡς ἑνός, οὗ μ᾽ ἄχος ὀξὺ κατοίσεται Ἄϊδος εἴσω,425

Ἕκτορος: ὡς ὄφελεν θανέειν ἐν χερσὶν ἐμῇσι:

τώ κε κορεσσάμεθα κλαίοντέ τε μυρομένω τε

μήτηρ θ᾽, ἥ μιν ἔτικτε δυσάμμορος, ἠδ᾽ ἐγὼ αὐτός.

ὣς ἔφατο κλαίων, ἐπὶ δὲ στενάχοντο πολῖται:

Τρῳῇσιν δ᾽ Ἑκάβη ἁδινοῦ ἐξῆρχε γόοιο:430

τέκνον ἐγὼ δειλή: τί νυ βείομαι αἰνὰ παθοῦσα

σεῦ ἀποτεθνηῶτος; ὅ μοι νύκτάς τε καὶ ἦμαρ

εὐχωλὴ κατὰ ἄστυ πελέσκεο, πᾶσί τ᾽ ὄνειαρ

Τρωσί τε καὶ Τρῳῇσι κατὰ πτόλιν, οἵ σε θεὸν ὣς

δειδέχατ᾽: ἦ γὰρ καί σφι μάλα μέγα κῦδος ἔησθα435

ζωὸς ἐών: νῦν αὖ θάνατος καὶ μοῖρα κιχάνει.

Hecabe, Priam, and the people of Troy lament the death of Hector as if the city itself were burning. Priam rolls in the dirt and begs to be allowed to go to Achilles to ask for the body.

The change of scene in mid-verse (405), from the battlefield to the city walls, from Hector’s head being torn to Hecabe tearing at hers, is unusually abrupt. Hector’s death spreads quickly like a contagion, from his corpse, to his mother, to his father, and finally through the whole city. [read full essay]

405: τοῦ: Hector’s. κεκόνιτο: "was covered in dust," plpf. pass.

406: ἀπὸἔρριψε: “threw off from (herself),” aor. > ἀπορρίπτω in so-called tmesis.

407 – 408: κώκυσενᾤμωξεν: both verbs mean “cry out,” but they are gender-specific terms for the immediate and instinctive expression of grief (de Jong).

407: μάλα μέγα: “very loudly,” adverbial acc. adj. intensified by adverb μάλα. παῖδ᾽: = παῖδα, acc. sg. ἐσιδοῦσα: aor. ptc. > εἰσ-εῖδον, which supplies the aorist of ὁράω (Goodell 391).

408: ᾤμωξεν: aor. > οἰμώζω, a verbalization of the exclamation οἴμοι. ἐλεεινὰ: neuter pl. internal acc., translated adverbially (“piteously”). φίλος: “his.” ἀμφὶ δὲ: “and around them.”

409: κωκυτῷ of women, οἰμωγῇ of men; cp. the use of κώκυσεν and ᾤμωξεν in lines  407 and 408 (Monro). εἴχοντο: “were gripped by” + dat. The periphrasis with ἔχομαι indicates prolonged crying (de Jong). κατὰ: “throughout,” “over,” extensive use (Monro 212.1).

410: τῷἐναλίγκιον, ὡς εἰ: “it most resembled this, as if….” ἔην: “(the mourning) was…,” impf. > εἰμί, Attic ἦν (Monro 12). τῷ is neuter: “and it was quite like to this, as if” etc. The sense is: such cries of grief were heard as would be raised if all beetling Troy were blazing in fire from the citadel down (Benner).

411: πυρὶ: dat. of means. σμύχοιτο: “were smoldering,” pres. opt. expresses supposition for the purpose of comparison, after past-tense ἔην (Monro 311). κατ᾽ ἄκρης: “down from the acropolis,” supply πόλεως, gen. from which (Monro 213.1).

412: ἔχον: “hold back,” impf. > ἔχω. ἀσχαλόωντα: “chafing,” cp. 2.293 (Monro).

413: ἐξελθεῖν μεμαῶτα: “eager to go out,” acc. sg. ptc. > μέμονα, reduplicated perf. with pres. sense (Monro 36.5). πυλάων: gen. place from which, governed by ἐξ- of ἐξελθεῖν.

414: ἐλλιτάνευε: “kept begging,” iterative impf., which suggests the speech to come was one among many. Cp. the repetitive “naming each man by name” in line 415. κατὰ: “through,” “in” (Monro 212.1).

416: σχέσθε: “put restraint on yourselves,” i.e. “stop,” aor. mid. imper. > ἔχω. μ’ οἶον: “me alone.” ἐάσατε: aor. pl. imperative > ἐάω. περ: “although,” makes ptc. concessive (Goodell 593.b).

417: ἐξελθόντα: acc. aor. ptc. > ἐξ-έρχομαι. πόληος: gen. > πόλις, Att. πόλεως. ἱκέσθ’: “arrive as a suppliant (ἱκέτης),” = ἱκέσθαι, aor. dep. mid. inf. > ἱκνέομαι.

418: λίσσωμ’: “let me entreat,” = λίσσωμαι, 1st sg. hortatory subj. ἀνέρα: acc. sg. > ἀνήρ, Att. ἄνδρα, Achilles is identified by a circumlocution, which comes close to scolding (de Jong).

419: ἤν πουαἰδέσσεται: “(to see) if perhaps.” ἤν = ἐάν. Conditional clauses in Homer with ἄν + subj. often express a purpose (Monro 293). αἰδέσσεται ἠδ’ ἐλεήσῃ: aorist subjunctives > αἰδέομαι and ἐλεέω; αἰδέσσεται has a short thematic vowel (Monro 80).

420: τῷ: possessive dat. pronoun (“this man’s father, Peleus”), γε provides emphasis. τοιόσδε: “of such a sort (as I am),” i.e. “as old as I am,” pred. nom with τέτυκται. τέτυκται: “is made,” “is,” pf. pass. > τεύχω (Monro 28).

421: γενέσθαι: “(so as) to become (a bane to the Trojans),” a blended infinitive of purpose/result (Goodell 565). πῆμα is an acc. predicate.

422: περὶ πάντων: “beyond all others.”

423: ἀπέκτανε: aor. > ἀποκτείνω. μοι: “my,” possessive dat. personal pronoun.

424: τῶν πάντων: “for all these,” demonstrative pronoun with antecedent τόσσους παῖδας, gen. with verb of grieving (Monro 151.c). Genitive of cause (Benner).

424–425: τόσσονὡς: “so much… as,” adverbial acc. correlated with ὡς. ἀχνύμενός περ: “though grieved,” pres. pass. ptc. > ἀχεύω, with περ: indicating that the ptc. is concessive (Goodell 593.b). See LSJ s.v. ἀχεύω II.2.

425: ἑνός: “for (this) one,” gen. sg. > εἷς, genitive with understood ὀδύρομαι, a verb of grieving (Monro 151.c). οὗ: “for whom,” relative pronoun, objective gen. after ἄχος (Goodell 506). κατοίσεται: fut. dep. mid. > κατα-φέρω. Ἄϊδος εἴσω: “into the house of Hades,” = εἰς Ἄϊδος, (anastrophe), εἰς + gen. = “into the house of” (Goodell 507.a).

426: Ἕκτορος: in apposition to ἑνός. ὥς ὄφελεν θανέειν: “would that he had died,” impossible past wish with aor. = “how he ought to have died!”

427: τώ: “therefore,” “in that case,” the anaphoric pronoun here has an old instrumental ending (de Jong). κε κορεσσάμεθα: “we two would have had our fill (+ ptc.).” κε/ἄν + aor. indic. expresses past contrary-to-fact construction (Goodell 467.c). κλαίοντε … μυρομένω: dual nom. pres. supplementary participles, modifying the missing 1st pers. dual subj., “we two.”

428: μήτηρἐγὼ: subjects of κορεσσάμεθα. : “who…,” relative. μιν: = αὐτόν,  Hector δυσάμμορος: the two-termination adjective modifies fem. nom. sg. ἥ.

429: ἐπὶ δὲ: “and in response to,” adverbial. The repetition at line 515 is suggestive of the ritual nature of laments (de Jong).

430: Τρῳῇσιν: “for the Trojan women,” or “among the Trojan women.”

431: τέκνον: vocative direct address. δειλή: predicate, supply linking εἰμί. τίβείομαι: “what (life) will I live?” i.e. “why am I to go on living?” βείομαι is either a future indicative or aorist subjunctive with short thematic vowel (Goodell 471.a). αἰνὰ: “terrible things,” neut. acc. pl. substantive adjective. παθοῦσα: nom. sg. aor. ptc. > πάσχω.

432: σεῦ ἀποτεθνηῶτος: “with you dead,” gen. absolute. : “(you) who…,” demonstrative pronoun functioning as a 2nd person relative. μοι: “for me,” dat. of interest (Goodell 523). νύκτάςἦμαρ: acc. duration of time.

433: κατὰ ἄστυ: “in the city”. πελέσκεο: “used to be,” “was,” the iterative impf. with -σκ- is used here simply to fit the meter. πᾶσι: “to everyone,” dat. of interest (Goodell 523), the datives that follow are in apposition.

434: ΤρωσίΤρῳῇσι: both male and female Trojans. οἵ: relative. θεὸν ὣς: “just as a god” (see 22.394).

435: δειδέχατ᾽: “saluted,” paid court to (Monro). > δέχομαι,  “welcome” a person, see LSJ s.v. δέχομαι II.1. 3rd pl. plpf. mid. = δειδέχατο. ἦ γὰρ καί: for indeed, καί is adverbial. σφι: “to them,” dat. parallel to μοι. ἔησθα: 2nd sg. impf. > εἰμί, Att. ἦσθα.

436: ἐών: “while,” ptc. is circumstantial in force.

κονίω, plpf. pass. κεκόνιτο: to cover with dust405

κάρη κρατός τό: head

τίλλω: to pluck, tear out

κόμη: the hair, hair of the head

λιπαρός: shining with oil, sleek, rich, shining

ῥίπτω aor. ἔρριψε and ῥῖψε: to throw, cast, hurl

καλύπτρη: a woman's veil

τηλόσε: to a distance, far away

κωκύω, impf. ἐκώκυε, aor. κώκυσεν, aor. partic. κωκύσασα: to shriek, cry, wail

εἰσοράω, 2nd aor. εἴσιδε, aor. inf. εἰσιδέειν: to look into, look upon, view, behold

οἰμώζω, aor. ᾤμωζεν, aor. partic. οἰμώξας: to wail aloud, lament

ἐλεεινός, comp. ἐλεεινότερος: pitiable, to be pitied; ἐλεεινά: neut. as adv., pitifully, piteously

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

λαός –οῦ ὁ: the people

κωκυτός: a moaning, wailing

οἰμωγή: lamentation

ἄστυ ἄστεος τό: a city, town

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.410

ἐναλίγκιος: like, resembling

Ἴλιος: Ilian, Trojan

ὀφρυόεις: on the brow of a rock, beetling

σμύχω: to smoulder, burn

ἄκρα: a headland, foreland, cape

γέρων –οντος ὁ: an old man

μόγις: adv. barely, scarcely

ἀσχαλάω: to be vexed, be distressed

ἐξέρχομαι ἐξελεύσομαι ἐξῆλθον ἐξελήλυθα ––– –––: to go out, come out

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

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

Δαρδάνιος: Dardanian

λιτανεύω, impf. (ἐλ)λιτάνευε: to beg, beseech

κυλίνδω: to roll

κόπρος: dung; dirt, dust

ἐξονομακλήδην: adv. by name, calling by name415

κήδω: to trouble, distress, vex; (mid.) grieve, care for (+gen.)

ἱκνέομαι and ἵκω, fut. ἵξομαι, aor. ἵκετο and ἷξε(ν), aor. subj. ἵκωμαι and ἵκηαι: to come, arrive at, reach

Ἀχαιός: Achaian

λίσσομαι: to beg, pray, entreat, beseech

ἀτάσθαλος: contemptuous, haughty

ὀβριμοεργός: of violent deeds

ἡλικίη: time of life, age

αἰδέομαι and αἴδομαι, aor. pass. partic. αἰδεσθείς: to feel honorable shame or self-respect, revere, be abashed before

ἠδέ: and

ἐλεέω, aor. ἐλέησε: to pity, take pity

γῆρας –αως τό: old age420

τεύχω τεύξω ἔτευξα τέτευχα τέτυγμαι ἐτύχθην: to make ready, make, build, work

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

μιν: him, her, it

πῆμα –ατος τό: suffering, disaster, bane

Τρῶες: Trojans

ἄλγος –εος τό: pain

τόσ(σ)ος: so great, so vast, so much, so long. adv. τόσ(σ)ον

ἀποκτείνω ἀποκτενῶ ἀπέκτεινα ἀπέκτονα: to kill, slay

τηλεθάω: to flourish, bloom

ὀδύρομαι: to lament, bewail, mourn for, grieve

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

ἄχος –εος τό: grief, sadness425

καταφέρω, fut. mid. κατοίσεται: to bring down

ᾍδης, gen. Ἀίδεω and Ἄϊδος, dat. Ἄϊδι, Ἀϊδωνῆι: Hades, god of the unseen lower world. His realm is the home of the dead, and in the Iliad it is beneath the earth, while in the Odyssey Odysseus sails to it, across Oceanus, and finds in it a faint, ghostly imitation of life on earth.

εἴσω (ἔσω): to within, into

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

ὀφείλω, aor. ὄφελ(λ)ον or ὤφελ(λ)ον: should have, ought to have. With αἴθε and ὡς it is used to express a wish which cannot be realized: αἴθ᾿ ὄφελες ἄγαμος ἀπολέσθαι: if only you had died unmarried.

κορέννυμι, aor. opt. κορέσειεν, aor. mid. κορεσσάμεθα, aor. mid. subj. κορέσωνται, perf. κεκόρησθε: to sate, satiate, satisfy; mid. to have one's fill

κλαίω, opt. κλαίοισθα, impf. κλαῖε, fut. κλαύσομαι, κλαύονται: to weep, lament, wail

μύρω: to weep

δυσάμμορος: most miserable

στενάχω, impf. mid. στενάχοντο: to sigh, groan

πολίτης –ου ὁ: townsman

Τρώϊος: Trojan430

Ἑκάβη: Hecabe, wife of King Priam of Troy

ἁδινός: restless; thick

ἐξάρχω, impf. ἐξῆρκε: to take the lead in, begin

γόος -ου, ὁ: groaning, lamentation

δειλός –ή –όν: cowardly, fearful; wretched

βέομαι: shall live

αἰνός –ή –όν: dread, dire, grim

ἦμαρ –ατος τό: day

εὐχωλή: a prayer, vow, glory

πέλω and πέλομαι, aor. as pres. ἔπλεο, ἔπλετο: to be

ὄνειαρ –ατος τό: help, support, profit

σφεῖς, σφείων gen., σφίσι(ν) or σφί(ν) dat., σφέας acc.: (pl. 3rd pers. pron.) them435

κῦδος -εος τό: glory, renown

ζωός or ζώς: alive, living

μοῖρα –ας ἡ: portion, fate, lot

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

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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-405-436