Thursday, May 2, 2013

TFBT: Random Notes on "Iliad's Homer" and the First Four Scrolls

“This deep intimacy with the Poet is his revelation to us; before our eyes we must behold his world rise up from the deep- and take on form.” D. J. Snider 

Iliad 1:525  See, I incline my head that you believe me. This is the most solemn act that I can give to any god. I never retract my word, or deceive, or fail to do what I say, when I have nodded my head.” As he spoke the son of Kronos bowed his dark brows, and the ambrosial locks swayed…”  Ain’t this a great phrase! 

Iliad 2:674 “Nireus, who was the handsomest man that came up under Ilion of all the Danaans after the perfect son of Peleus”  Nireus, the son of King Charopus and Aglaea, was king of the island Syme  and one of the Achaean leaders in the Trojan War. Nireus was among the suitors of Helen and commanded three ships. In the military conflict with the Mysian king Telephus, which occurred on the way to Troy, Nireus killed Telephus' wife Hiera, Nireus did not excel in physical strength  and was eventually killed by either Eurypylus, son of Telephus, or Aeneas. ( 

Iliad 4:285 “No need,” he cried, “to give orders to such leaders of the bronze-armored Argives as you are, for of your own selves you spur your men on to fight with might and main. Would, by father Zeus, Athena, and Apollo that all were so minded as you are,”  How ironic! Praying to Apollo.  Sadder when the Trojan women were taking gifts to the temple of the Ilium hating Athena.

the broad waters of the river Axios,(Iliad 2:850) the fairest that flow upon the earth.  It appears to drain the major portion of Macedonia.  One critic called “brown-colored”, but most of the current photos of the Axios (Vardar) show a deep meandering river flowing through broad green plains beneath green hills.   

Men call it Batieia (Thorn Hill), but the gods know that it is the tomb [sēma] of lithe dancing Myrrhine. Iliad 2:815  The scholiast and the commentary of Eustatius on the passage tell that this Myrina was an Amazon, the daughter of Teucer and the wife of Dardanus, and that from her the city Myrina in Aeolis was said to have been named.   

4: 255 Agamemnon was glad when he saw him, and spoke to him fairly. “Idomeneus,” said he, “I treat you with greater distinction than I do any others of the Achaeans, whether in war or in other things, or at table. When the princes[260] are mixing my choicest wines in the mixing-bowls, they have each of them a fixed allowance, but your cup is kept always full like my own, that you may drink whenever you are minded.  I never noticed before they were such good pals.  Of course, Agamemnon’s mother Aerope was a cousin to Idomeneus and his buddy Sthenelus.  And the funeral for Aeropes’ father was the reason for Menealus departure to Crete when Prince Paris was visiting, all the rest is history.


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