Conversations with Students IV: The Embassy to Achilleus and Death of Dolon
This seminar focused on two particular episodes and in its own way two particular characters: the embassy to Achilleus as it is known, from Book IX, and the Doloneia, the potentially interpolated episode of the traitorous Dolon, and his unfortunate run-in with Diomedes and Odysseus. Even though this seminar only covers Books IX and X of Homer’s Iliad, they are packed full of information, complexity, and interesting questions. Let us first examine the structure of the two books.
After the Trojans route and defeat the Achaians during Book VIII, mighty Hektor decides to camp on the Trojan Plain, outside the walls of Ilion, for the first time in the nine years that the war has been ongoing. This, understandably, freaks Agamemnon, leader of the Achaians out, and in a true testament to his meddle as a commander, his first instinct is to instruct all the men to flee…
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