Verse 1 — Th. D. Seymour's commentary on Homer's Iliad3

Text based on: Seymour Th. D. The first six books of Homer's Iliad. With introduction, commentary, and vocabulary. Revised ed. Boston etc.: Ginn and Co. 1903.

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Verses 1-7. Prooemium: The wrath of Achilles, from its very beginning, and the destructive consequences which followed in accordance with the will of Zeus. This is the principal theme of the Iliad. 'These first verses are like the tones of a funeral march to a sky shrouded in gloomy clouds.' 'A series of verses which like heralds announce the whole poem. A gloomy cloud gathers over the Greeks. The field is covered by the corpses of fallen heroes. Dogs and vultures tear the bodies of the slain. The most powerful of men and the mightiest mortal descendant of Zeus quarrel. Zeus has determined the destruction of the people. — All this in a single sentence which closes with Ἀχιλλεύς.' Hermann Grimm.

The First Book serves as an introduction to the whole poem. It narrates the story of the strife between Achilles and Agamemnon, and the decree of Zeus, which is made on the intercession of Thetis. — The events narrated in A occupy 21 days. See §6 a. For situation at the opening of the war, see §5.

 
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μῆνιν: wrath, lasting anger, the memorem iram of Verg. Aen. i. 4; Cf. 81, 247, 488. This receives prominence as being most important for the subject of the poem. — The definite article is not needed in early Greek. The connection decides, as in Latin, whether the article should be used in translation. See § 42 k.

 
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θεά: i.e. the Muse. The Muses bestow the gift of song (8.64), and take it away (2.599 f.). — Homer does not assign special names and offices to different Muses. See on 2.484. Cf. ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε μοῦσα Od.1.1. — For the following caesural pause, see § 58 a, c, f.

 
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Πηληιάδεω [Πηληιάδου or Πηλείδου]: for the genitive-ending, see § 34 c. This adjective is called a 'patronymic,' and is often used as a proper name. See § 39. The last two vowels are pronounced as one. Cf. χρυσέῳ 15; see § 25.

 
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Ἀχιλῆος: [Ἀχιλλέως] for the ending, see § 23c. Homer often drops one of two doubled consonants. See § 59 d, e.

 

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1. Verse 1, Th. D. Seymour's commentary on Homer's Iliad 1

Boobin on Sun, November 21, 2010 - 7:08 pm# 1.00

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Boobin on Sun, November 21, 2010 - 7:08 pm# 1  

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first comment on seymour commentary on iliad 1, v1

Boobin on Fri, December 10, 2010 - 11:13 am# 2  

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Muentz on Thu, January 27, 2011 - 4:43 pm# 3  

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