“Rage – Goddess, sing the rage of Peleus’ son Achilles,
Murderous, doomed, that cost the Achaeans countless losses,
Hurling down to the House of Death so many sturdy souls,
Great fighters’ souls, but made their bodies carrion,
Feasts for the dogs and birds,
And the will of Zeus was moving toward its end.
Begin, Muse, when the two first broke and clashed,
Agamemnon, lord of men, and brilliant Achilles.”
Homer, Iliad, trans. by Robert Fagles, (London and NY: Penguin, 1990), p. 77.
—an unusual theme to Romantic poetry, especially in the first line.
(repeated phrase used by storyteller to summarize a character) –– Achilles is always described as
someone (son of Peleus, brilliant, etc). Epithet is one of the distinctive traits of epic poetry.”
is the motif, one of key themes. A strong sense of mortality.