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1Ms. JonesEnglish 265May 1st , 2008A Hero’s FlawThe act of hubris can be a hero’s fatal flaw. Most heroes share the same characteristics. Most heroes are loyal, determined to accomplish their goal, and are leaders. Some heroes have the terrible quality of acting hubris. Hubris can be defined as arrogance or excessive pride. Throughout our readings this semester, several main characters or heroes showed this quality. Achilles and Hector from the Iliad, Agamemnon, Odysseus, and Sir Gawain to name a few. Most of the time, this flaw was very bad, and resulted in death. Most of these heroes could have walked away untouched, but the flaw led them back into battle which ultimately got them killed. Homer, author the two ancient Greek epics the Illiad and the Odyssey, showed this characteristic the most. He portrayed it in his main characters and even in the theme of the Iliad.The theme of the Iliad is the rage of Achilles. Achilles was basically a hired mercenary who was ruthless to the punch.In the Iliad, there were several examples of hubris. The story is based off the legend of the Trojan wars, and how the walls of Troy fell. It involves an epic war between the Greeks and the Trojans over the love of the Greek princess Helen and the Trojan prince Paris. Helen, who used to be married the Greek prince Menelaus, betrays all of Greece for her love for Paris. They could
2have stopped the war, but they were selfish enough to ultimately kill thousands of soldiers. Their decision ultimately led to the fall of the great kingdom of Troy. Achilles is a person who only thinks about himself and his legacy. He had the option of leaving the war and sailing back to his homeland to live and grow old, but after Hector killed his best friend Patroclus, Achilles choose to go fight and avenge the death of his best friend. Patroclus showed hubris as well because he disobeyed Achilles orders. Achilles told him not to go past the Trojan gates because it was way too dangerous for a warrior of his caliber, but he choose not to follow what Achilles said. Patroclus was also wearing Achilles’ armor as well. Hector thought that Patroclus was Achilles because Patroclus was wearing his armor and carrying his sword and shield. With the help of Apollo, Hector had the power to slay Patroclus and ultimately seal his fate because of his terrible decision. He was arrogant enough to take Achilles’ armor, sword, and shield which angered Achilles even more. It was like Hector was awakening a sleeping giant because Achilles held the