Essay On The Epic Hero In The Iliad

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The Epic Hero of Homer’s The Iliad
What is a hero? Is it someone with supernatural powers or overwhelming charm? Or is it someone who is selfless and protects the innocent above all else? To most, the latter seems to be the best option out of the two. A technical definition of a hero is someone who has brave and noble qualities and has accomplished many great things. Any one person could have a different view of what a hero is specifically, but in the case of Homer’s “The Iliad”, there are many possible candidates to discuss. Personally, I believe that in this great tale the true hero is Hector.
When trying to decide who the true hero of this story is, it may be very hard to discern between the three main characters and their abilities. For instance, Achilles possesses powers such as mighty strength and has a very close relationship with many of the Gods. These impressive qualities may deceive most people into believing that he should be considered the hero in this epic, but there are other, less attractive, qualities lurking beneath the surface of his handsome façade. His true motives and flaws are far less attractive and charming than he is. In an article titled “Hector, the Real Hero of the Iliad?”, Clint Perry states, “Although Hector is one whose native element is found not in war but peace and not in his own personal glory, but that of his people, Achilles identity is fundamentally found in his warrior mentality and his deep desire for himself to be glorified through victory in war.” This statement shows Achilles’s true motives for fighting. For example, in the story “The Iliad” Achilles ends up abandoning his fellow soldiers and even prays that they will die just because he was wronged by Agamemnon. Achilles’s pride and r...

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...le. Hector may be impulsive and sometimes cruel, but he stands up for what he believes in which is his land and his family.
In conclusion, I feel that the true hero of “The Iliad” by Homer is definitely Hector. Although he may not be portrayed as the most powerful character, I feel that his love for his family and pride in his home are what really matters. He only fights to protect his own home and the innocent civilians that live in Troy. He shows many flaws in the tale, but he also shows great forgiveness and maturity. All of these noble qualities are what I believe to be the true definition of a hero. Not huge muscles or a great charming smile, but standing up for the ones you love and standing your ground. That is the true heroic feat here. Although Hector is eventually defeated towards the end of the epic, I still believe him to be the true hero of this story.
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