Reading Questions: Iliad 2:1-493, 3, 6 N.B. Atrytone [ah-tree-TOE-nay]: an epithet for Athena that means ?indefatigable.? The ?Aiantes? (2.406 and elsewhere) are the two important Greek warriors who both have the name ?Ajax? (one, a monster of a man and the second best warrior next to Achilles, is the son of Telamon; the other is the son of Oileus). Nestor is often called ?the Gerenian horseman? from the name of a city in the region he ruled (Messenia in the SW Peloponessus). Alexandros is another name for Paris. 1. What kind of deception does Zeus create to further his purpose at the beginning of book 2? What is Agamemnon?s response? Is it quite what you would have expected? What is the nature of the elaborate ruse that Agamemnon devises for the Greeks, and why does he do this? 2. Note the role of similes particularly in book 2 to describe the army and which are a typical Homeric phenomenon. What kind of imagery tends to predominate in them? Why do you think this is? Do you yourself find the similes particularly effective? 3. What does the debate between Thersites and Odysseus tell us about this society? Do you find Thersites? assertions persuasive? Why is he treated so harshly by Odysseus, and is this justified? 4. What kind of relationship does Paris seem to have with his brother Hektor? How does the duel between Menelaus and Paris play out, and what might this tell us about the poet?s audience?s expectations? What role does Aphrodite play, and what kind of relationship does she have with Helen? What do the oaths taken by both sides in book 3 tell us about religious practice? How does the goddess? intervention affect the oaths? 5. How does Adrestos almost escape death at the hands of Menelaus at the beginning of book 6? Is his offer of treasure in exchange for his life reasonable? Why does Menelaus ultimately kill him? Why are warriors so preoccupied with stripping corpses in the midst of battle? What does their concern with spoils tell us about their value system? 6. Book 6 gives us a glimpse of life inside of Troy. How does this form a contrast to what has come before? What kind of life do the Trojan women seem to have? What kind of relationship does Hektor have with his wife and son? How does this contrast with the previous scene between Paris and Helen?
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