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The Main Theme in the Ilyad: Anger Essay

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The main idea of the Iliad is written in the first line, as Homer asks the Muse to sing of the "wrath of Achilles." The main theme in the Ilyad is anger – the vice which is not included into Homer's ideal, which leads to impulsive decisions and alienation from the society, but its abscence brings good consequences.

Homer is trying to teach his people that anger can lead to rush and impulsive decisions. It is well presented when Paris stole Helen from Agamemnon, which action provoked his wrath and start of the Trojan war. Thousands of Greeks died during that war which was triggered by Agamemnon’s anger. In the Iliad Homer gives a good example of a bad king. Of a king who impulsively started the most murderous ancient war because of his anger and wrath. Homer wants to teach his people by pointing out this impulsive decision that Agamemnon had made. The Achilles’ rejection of participating in the Trojan war is also can be used as an example of a rush and unthinking action. He almost deprived himself of honor and glory. Also he jeopardized the lives of the Greeks because they could not fight effectively enough without him. So, anger is a vice, which could lead to the rush, impulsive and unthinking decisions.

The second thing that Homer is trying to say in the Iliad is that anger can lead to the alienation from the society. The wrath of Achilles is provoked by Achilles' sense of honor as a result of discord, which leads to the warrior's alienation from the Greeks and eventually from human society. In the Iliad, the origin of Achillies' anger is a direct result of the action that he perceives as an attack on his personal honor. Agamemnon takes Briseis from Achilles. In response, Achilles renounced from the war, making a bif...


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...revenge. Achilles’ reconciliation makes him not only a hero, but also a good honorable person. In this examples Homer wants to say that the absence of anger can lead to good actions and help to make right decisions.

Anger or wrath is the vice that is definitely not included into Homer’s ideal. It can lead to rush, impulsive and unthinking decisions. Like it happened with Agamemnon and Achilles. Also, wrath can lead to the alienation from the society. Like in case of Achilles who alienated from his warriors and Greeks in general. But the absence of anger brings good consequences, makes people do good actions and make right decisions. It happened when Achilles got back to battle and returned the dead body of Hector. He got back to the society. He fixed his old mistakes. In the Iliad Homer tries to teach his people the basics of morality and it is one of his lessons.



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