Song of Ilium, a Story of War and Forbidden Love
The Iliad is sometimes referred to as the Song of Ilium. It’s an ancient Greek epic poem in dactylic hexameter. The story is set during the Trojan War, a decade long war for the city of Troy or Ilium in ancient Greek. Lead by King Agamemnon, a coalition of Greek states laid siege of the city of Troy.
Characters in the Iliad
The Wrath of Achilles is my Theme
Sing, O goddess, the anger of Achilles son of Peleus,
that brought countless ills upon the Achaeans.
Many a brave soul did it send hurrying down to Hades,
and many a hero did it yield a prey to dogs and vultures,
for so were the counsels of Jove fulfilled from the day on which the son of Atreus,
king of men, and great Achilles, first fell out with one another.
Homer, The Iliad, Book I
Most everyone knows what caused the Trojan War. Paris, the prince of Trojans, was rewarded with Helen because he judged Aphrodite, the Greek goddess of love, to be the winner of the first-ever beauty contest. Paris abducted Helen from King Menelaus of Mycenae and brought Helen back to his home in Troy.
The abduction of beautiful Helen obviously upset the Greeks and her husband Menelaus was the brother of Agamemnon, the king of Mycenae. Greek troops crossed the Aegean Sea and besieged Troy for ten years. In the end, the city fell, mainly due to the cunning of Odysseus, who came up with the idea of constructing a wooden horse. The bravest Greek warriors hid in this giant structure, and the remaining troops pretended to withdraw. Jubilant with victory, the Trojans took the horse inside the city and began to celebrate the end of a devastating war. Then, under the cover of night, Odysseus and the other greek heroes opened the gates of the city, letting the Greek army in. The slaughter began, followed by complete collapse and burning of Troy.