What Makes An Epic Hero?

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References to epic hero stories are around us all the time, although we may not realize it. For example, why do we have trophies? What are they for? Well the answer to this lies in Beowulf; the trophies are put up to remember the deeds that we have done. Epic heroes have been around for a very long time, their stories born as the creation tale for the places of their origin. The people needed their epic heroes to outline the proper way to act and to tell the story of their creation. Some of the most famous epic heroes include: Achilles, Odysseus, Aeneus, Socrates, Gilgamesh, Beowulf, and Arthur. The question, however, is what makes them an epic hero? For each the story is different, yet alike. Homer’s The Iliad, and The Odyssey, Virgil’s Aeneid, Plato’s Apology, The Epic of Gilgamesh, Beowulf, The Story of King Arthur all present epic heroes that we still idolize today.
Achilles is called out of hiding by Agamemnon to fight in the Trojan War because he was such an outstanding warrior. Nothing could kill him because his mother had dipped him in the river Styx when he was a baby so he would be immortal. He was in hiding because he was told that he would die if he ever returned to battle; despite his efforts, however, he returned to battle with the Achaeans in the Great War at the walls of Troy. Achilles traveled to Troy to fight not because he was invested in the cause, but because it was his duty. However, once he got to the battle, Agamemnon and he got in a fight over some girls and Achilles withdrew from battle. Odysseus went to the tent of Achilles and tried to convince him to continue fighting. To these attempts Achilles responded, “But why must the Argives fight the Trojans? Why did Atreus' son assemble and bring us? Wasn't ...

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