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fair breast-straps, and bits within their jaws, and stretched the reins
behind to the firm-built chariot. Then Automedon took the bright lash,
fitted to his hand, and sprang up behind the horses, and after him
mounted Achilles armed, effulgent in his armour like bright Hyperion.
And terribly he called upon the horses of his sire: "Xanthos and Balios,
famed children of Podarge, in other sort take heed to bring your
charioteer safe back to the Danaan host, when we have done with battle,
and leave him not as ye left Patroklos to lie there dead."

Then the horse Xanthos of glancing feet made answer unto him from
beneath the yoke; - and he bowed with his head, and all his mane fell
from the yoke-cushion beside the yoke and touched the ground; - for the
white-armed goddess Hera gave him speech: "Yea verily for this hour,
dread Achilles, we will still bear thee safe, yet is thy death day nigh
at hand, neither shall we be cause thereof, but a mighty god, and
forceful Fate. For not through sloth or heedlessness of ours did the men
of Troy from Patrokios' shoulders strip his arms, but the best of the
gods, whom bright-haired Leto bore, slew him in the forefront of the
battle, and to Hector gave renown. We even with the wind of Zephyr,
swiftest, they say, of all winds, well might run; nathless to thee
thyself it is appointed to be slain in fight by a god and by a man."

Now when he had thus spoken the Erinyes stayed his voice. And sore
troubled did fleet-footed Achilles answer him: "Xanthos, why prophesiest
thou my death? no wise behoveth it thee. Well know I of myself that it
is appointed me to perish here, far from my father dear and mother;
howbeit anywise I will not refrain till I give the Trojans surfeit of

He said, and with a cry among the foremost held on his whole-hooved


How Achilles made havoc among the men of Troy.

So by the beaked ships around thee, son of Peleus, hungry for war, the
Achaians armed; and over against them the men of Troy, upon the high
ground of the plain.

But Zeus bade Themis call the gods to council from many-folded Olympus'
brow; and she ranged all about and bade them to the house of Zeus. There
was no River came not up, save only Ocean, nor any nymph, of all that
haunt fair thickets and springs of rivers and grassy water-meadows. And
they came to the house of Zeus who gathereth the clouds, and sat them
down in the polished colonnades which Hephaistos in the cunning of his
heart had wrought for father Zeus.

Thus gathered they within the doors of Zeus; nor was the Earthshaker
heedless of the goddess' call, but from the salt sea came up after the
rest, and set him in the midst, and inquired concerning the purpose of
Zeus: "Wherefore, O Lord of the bright lightning, hast thou called the
gods again to council? Say, ponderest thou somewhat concerning the
Trojans and Achaians? for lo, the war and the fighting of them are
kindled very nigh."

And Zeus, who gathered the clouds, answered him, saying: "Thou knowest,
O Earthshaker, the purpose within my breast, wherefor I gathered you
hither; even in their perishing have I regard unto them. But for me I
will abide here, sitting within a fold of Olympus, where I will gladden
my heart with gazing; but go all ye forth that ye come among the Trojans
and Achaians and succour these or those, howsoever each of you hath a
mind. For if Achilles alone shall fight against the Trojans, not even a
little while shall they hold back the son of Peleus, the fleet of foot.
Nay, but even aforetime they trembled when they looked upon him; now
therefore that his wrath for his friend is waxen terrible I fear me lest
he overleap the bound of fate, and storm the wall."

Thus spake the son of Kronos, and roused unabating war. For on this side
and on that the gods went forth to war: to the company of the ships went
Hera, and Pallas Athene, and Poseidon, Earth-enfolder, and the Helper
Hermes, pro-eminent in subtle thoughts; and with these went Hephaistos
in the greatness of his strength, halting, but his shrunk legs moved
nimbly under him: but to the Trojans went Ares of the glancing helm, and
with him Phoebus of the unshorn hair, and archer Artemis, and Leto and
Xanthos and laughter-loving Aphrodite.

Now for so long as gods were afar from mortal men, so long waxed the
Achaians glorious, for that Achilles was come forth among them, and his
long ceasing from grim battle was at an end. And the Trojans were
smitten with sore trembling in the limbs of every one of them, in terror
when they beheld the son of Peleus, fleet of foot, blazing in his arms,
peer of man-slaying Ares. But when among the mellay of men the Olympians
were come down, then leapt up in her might Strife, rouser of hosts, then
sent forth Athene a cry, now standing by the hollowed trench without the
wall, and now on the echoing shores she shouted aloud. And a shout
uttered Ares against her, terrible as the blackness of the storm, now
from the height of the city to the Trojans calling clear, or again along
Simois shore over Kallikolon he sped.

So urged the blessed gods both hosts to battle, then themselves burst
into fierce war. And terribly thundered the father of gods and men from
heaven above; and from beneath Poseidon made the vast earth shake and
the steep mountain tops. Then trembled all the spurs of many-fountained
Ida, and all her crests, and the city of the Trojans, and the ships of
the Achaians. And the Lord of the Underworld, Aiedoneus, had terror in
hell, and leapt from his throne in that terror and cried aloud, lest the
world be cloven above him by Poseidon, Shaker of earth, and his
dwelling-place be laid bare to mortals and immortals - grim halls, and
vast, and lothly to the gods. So loud the roar rose of that battle of
gods. For against King Poseidon stood Phoebus Apollo with his winged
arrows, and against Enyalios stood Athene, bright-eyed goddess, and
against Hera she of the golden shafts and echoing chase, even archer
Artemis, sister of the Far-darter; and against Leto the strong Helper
Hermes, and against Hephaistos the great deep-eddying River, whom gods
call Xanthos and men Skamandros.

Thus gods with gods were matched. Meanwhile Achilles yearned above all
to meet Hector, son of Priam, in the fray; for with that blood
chiefliest his spirit bade him sate Ares, stubborn lord of war. But
straightway Apollo, rouser of hosts, moved Aineias to go to meet the son
of Peleus, and filled him with brave spirit: and he made his own voice
like the voice of Lykaon the son of Priam; in his semblance spake
Apollo, son of Zeus: "Aineias, counsellor of Trojans, where now are thy
threats wherewith thou didst boast to the Trojan lords over thy wine,
saying thou wouldest stand up in battle against Achilles, Peleus' son?"

And to him Aineias answered and said: "Son of Priam, why biddest thou me
thus face the fierce son of Peleus in battle, though I be not fain
thereto? Not for the first time now shall I match me with Achilles,
fleet of foot; once before drave he me with his spear from Ida, when he
harried our kine and wasted Lyrnessos and Pedasos; but Zeus delivered me
out of his hand and put strength into my knees that they were swift.
Else had I fallen beneath the hands of Achilles, and of Athene who went
before and gave him light, and urged him to slay Leleges and Trojans
with his spear of bronze. Therefore it is impossible for man to face
Achilles in fight, for that ever some god is at his side to ward off
death. Ay, and at any time his spear flieth straight, neither ceaseth
till it have pierced through flesh of man. But if God once give us fair
field of battle, not lightly shall he overcome me, not though he boast
him made of bronze throughout."

And to him in answer spake Apollo son of Zeus: "Yea, hero, pray thou too
to the everliving gods; for thou too, men say, wast born of Aphrodite
daughter of Zeus, and Achilles' mother is of less degree among the gods.
For thy mother is child of Zeus, his but of the Ancient One of the Sea.
Come, bear up thy unwearying spear against him, let him no wise turn
thee back with revilings and bitter words."

He said, and breathed high spirit into the shepherd of the host, and he
went onward through the forefront of the fighting, harnessed in flashing
bronze. But white-armed Hera failed not to discern Anchises' son as he
went through the press of men to meet the son of Peleus, and gathering
the gods about her she spake among them thus: "Consider ye twain,
Poseidon and Athene, within your hearts, what shall come of these things
that are done. Here is Aineias gone forth harnessed in flashing bronze,
to meet the son of Peleus, and it is Phoebus Apollo that hath sent him.
Come then, be it ours to turn him back straightway; or else let some one
of us stand likewise beside Achilles and give him mighty power, so that
he fail not in his spirit, but know that they who love him are the best
of the Immortals, and that they who from of old ward war and fighting
from the Trojans are vain as wind. All we from Olympus are come down to
mingle in this fight that he take no hurt among the Trojans on this
day - afterward he shall suffer whatsoever things Fate span for him with
her thread, at his beginning, when his mother bare him. If Achilles
learn not this from voice divine, then shall he be afraid when some god
shall come against him in the battle; for gods revealed are hard to look

Then to her made answer Poseidon, Shaker of the earth: "Hera, be not
fierce beyond wisdom; it behoveth thee not. Not fain am I at least to
match gods with gods in strife. Let us go now into some high place apart
and seat us there to watch, and battle shall be left to men. Only if
Ares or Phoebus Apollo fall to fighting, or put constraint upon Achilles
and hinder him from fight, then straightway among us too shall go up the
battle-cry of strife; right soon, methinks, shall they hie them from the
issue of the fray back to Olympus to the company of the gods, overcome
by the force of our hands."

Thus spake the blue-haired god, and led the way to the mounded wall of
heaven-sprung Herakles, that lofty wall built him by the Trojans and
Pallas Athene, that he might escape the monster and be safe from him,
what time he should make his onset from the beach to the plain. There
sate them down Poseidon and the other gods, and clothed their shoulders
with impenetrable cloud. And they of the other part sat down on the
brows of Kallikolon around thee, Archer Phoebus, and Ares waster of
cities. Thus they on either side sat devising counsels, but shrank all
from falling to grievous war, and Zeus from his high seat commanded

Meanwhile the whole plain was filled with men and horses and ablaze with
bronze; and the earth rang with the feet of them as they rushed together
in the fray. Two men far better than the rest were meeting in the midst
between the hosts, eager for battle, Aineias, Anchises' son, and noble
Achilles. First came on Aineias threateningly, tossing his strong helm;
his rapid shield he held before his breast, and brandished his bronze
spear. And on the other side the son of Peleus rushed to meet him like a
lion, a ravaging lion whom men desire to slay, a whole tribe assembled:
and first he goeth his way unheeding, but when some warrior youth hath
smitten him with a spear, the he gathereth himself open-mouthed, and
foam cometh forth about his teeth, and his stout spirit groaneth in his
heart, and with his tail he scourgeth either side his ribs and flanks
and goadeth himself on to fight, and glaring is borne straight on them
by his passion, to try whether he shall slay some man of them, or
whether himself shall perish in the forefront of the throng: thus was
Achilles driven of his passion and valiant spirit to go forth to meet
Aineias great of heart. And when they were come near against each other,
then first to Aineias spake fleet-footed noble Achilles: "Aineias,
wherefore hast thou so far come forward from the crowd to stand against
me: doth thy heart bid thee fight with me in hope of holding Priam's
honour and lordship among the horse-taming Trojans? Nay, though thou
slay me, not for that will Priam lay his kingdom in thy hands, for he
hath sons, and is sound and of unshaken mind. Or have the Trojans
allotted thee some lot of ground more choice than all the rest, fair
land of tilth and orchard, that thou mayest dwell therein, if thou slay
me? But methinks thou wilt find the slaying hard; for once before, I
ween, have I made thee flee before my spear. Host thou forgotten the day
when thou wert alone with the kine, and I made thee run swift-footed
down Ida's steeps in haste? - then didst thou not look behind thee in thy
flight. Thence fleddest thou to Lernessos, but I wasted it, having
fought against it with the help of Athene and of father Zeus, and
carried away women captive, bereaving them of their day of freedom: only
thee Zeus shielded, and other gods. But not this time, methinks, shall
they shield thee, as thou imaginest in thy heart: therefore I bid thee
go back into the throng and come not forth against me, while as yet thou
art unhurt - after the event even a fool is wise."

Then to him in answer again Aineias spake: "Son of Peleus, think not
with words to affright me as a child, since I too well know myself how
to speak taunts and unjust speech. We know each other's race and lineage
in that we have heard the fame proclaimed by mortal men, but never hast
thou set eyes on my parents, or I on thine. Thou, they say, art son of
nobie Peleus, and of Thetis of the fair tresses, the daughter of the
sea: the sire I boast is Anchises great of heart, and my mother is
Aphrodite. Of these shall one pair or the other mourn their dear son
today; for verily not with idle words shall we two satisfy our strife
and depart out of the battle. But, if thou wilt, learn also this, that
thou mayest well know our lineage, known to full many men: First Zeus
the cloud-gatherer begat Dardanos, and he stablished Dardania, for not
yet was holy Ilios built upon the plain to be a city of mortal men, but
still they dwelt on slopes of many-fountained Ida. Then Dardanos begat a
son, king Erichthonios, who became richest of mortal men. Three thousand
mares had he that pastured along the marsh meadow, rejoicing in their
tender foals. Of them was Boreas enamoured as they grazed, and in
semblance of a dark-maned horse he covered them: then they having
conceived bare twelve fillies. These when they bounded over Earth the
grain-giver would run upon the topmost ripened ears of corn and break
them not; and when they bounded over the broad backs of the sea they
would run upon the crests of the breakers of the hoary brine. Then
Erichthonios begat Tros to be load over the Trojans, and to Tros three
noble sons were born, Ilos and Assarakos and godlike Ganymedes, who
became the most beautiful of mortal men. Him the gods caught up to be
cupbearer to Zeus, for sake of his beauty, that he might dwell among
immortals. Then Ilos again begat a son, noble Laomedon, and Laomedon
begat Tithonos and Priam and Lamppos and Klytios and Hiketaon, of the
stock of Ares. And Assarakos begat Kapys, and Kapys Anchises, and
Anchises me; but Priam begat the goodly Hector.

"Lo then of this blood and lineage declare I myself unto thee. But for
valour, Zeus increaseth it in men or minisheth it according as he will,
for he is lord of all. But come, let us talk thus together no longer
like children, standing in mid onset of war. For there are revilings in
plenty for both of us to utter - a hundred-thwarted ship would not
suffice for the load of them. Glib is the tongue of man, and many words
are therein of every kind, and wide is the range of his speech hither
and thither. Whatsoever word thou speak, such wilt thou hear in answer.
But what need that we should bandy strife and wrangling each against
each. Not by speech shalt thou turn me from the battle that I desire,
until we have fought together, point to point: come then, and
straightway we will each try the other with bronze-headed spears."

He said, and against that other's dread and mighty shield hurled his
great spear, and the shield rang loud beneath the spear-point. And the
son of Peleus held away the shield from him with his stout hand, in
fear, for he thought that the far-shadowing spear of Aineias great of
heart would lightly pierce it through - fond man, and knew not in his
mind and heart that not lightly do the glorious gifts of gods yield to
force of mortal men. So did not the great spear of wise Aineias pierce
that shield, for the gold resisted it, even the gift of the god. Yet
through two folds he drave it, but three remained, for five folds had
the lame god welded, two bronze, and two inside of tin, and one of gold;
therein was stayed the ashen spear.

Then Achilles in his turn hurled his far-shadowing spear, and smote upon
the circle of the shield of Aineias, beneath the edge of the rim, where
the bronze ran thinnest round, and the bull-hide was thinnest thereon;
and right through sped the Pelian ashen spear, and the shield cracked
under it. And Aineias crouched and held up the shield away from him in
dread; and the spear flew over his back and fixed itself in the earth,
having divided asunder the two circles of the sheltering shield. And
having escaped the long spear he stood still, and a vast anguish drowned
his eyes, affrighted that the spear was planted by him so nigh. But
Achilles drew his sharp sword and furiously made at him, crying his
terrible cry: then Aineias grasped in his hand a stone (a mighty deed)
such as two men, as men now are, would not avail to lift, but he with
ease wielded it all alone. Then would Aineias have smitten him with the
stone as he charged, either on helm or shield, which had warded from him
bitter death, and then would the son of Peleus have closed and slain him
with his sword, had not Poseidon, Shaker of earth, marked it with speed,
and straightway spoken among the immortal gods: "Alas, woe is me for
Aineias great of heart, who quickly will go down to Hades slain by the
son of Peleus, for that he will obey the words of Apollo the far-darter,
fond man, but nowise shall the god help him from grievous death. But
wherefore now is he to suffer ill in his innocence, causelessly for
others' wickedness, yet welcome ever are his offerings to the gods who
inhabit the spacious heaven? Come, let us guide him out of death's way,
lest the son of Kronos be wroth, if Achilles slay him; for it is
appointed to him to escape, that the race of Dardanos perish not without
seed or sign, even Dardanos whom the son of Kronos loved above all the
children born to him from the daughters of men. For the race of Priam
hath Zeus already hated. But thus shall the might of Aineias reign among
the Trojans, and his children's children, who shall be born in the

And him then answered Hera the ox-eyed queen: "Shaker of earth, thyself
with thine own mind take counsel, whether thou wilt save Aineias, or
leave him [to be slain, brave though he be, by Achilles, Peleus' son].
For by many oaths among all the Immortals have we two sworn, even Pallas
Athene and I, never to help the Trojans from their evil day, not even
when all Troy shall burn in the burning of fierce fire, and they that
burn her shall be the warlike sons of the Achaians."

Now when Poseidon Shaker of earth heard that, he went up amid the battle
and the clash of spears, and came where Aineias and renowned Achilles
were. Then presently he shed mist over the eyes of Achilles, Peleus'
son, and drew the bronze-headed ashen spear from the shield of Aineias
great of heart, and set it before Achilles' feet, and lifted Aineias
and swung him high from off the earth. Over many ranks of warriors, of
horses many, sprang Aineias soaring in the hand of the god, and lighted
at the farthest verge of the battle of many onsets, where the Kaukones
were arraying them for the fight. Then hard beside him came Poseidon,
Shaker of earth, and spake aloud to him winged words: "Aineias, what god
is it that biddeth thee fight infatuate against Peleus' vehement son,
who is both a better man than thou and dearer to Immortals? Rather
withdraw thee whensoever thou fallest in with him, lest even contrary to
thy fate thou enter the house of Hades. But when Achilles shall have met
his death and doom, then be thou of good courage to fight among the
foremost, for there shall none other of the Achaians slay thee."

He spoke, and left him there, when he had shown him all these things.
Then quickly from Achilles' eyes he purged the magic mist; and he stared
with wide eyes, and in trouble spake unto his proud soul: "Ha! verily a
great marvel behold I here with mine eyes. My spear lieth here upon the
ground, nor can I anywise see the man at whom I hurled it with intent to
slay him. Truly then is Aineias likewise dear to the immortal gods,
howbeit I deemed that his boosting thereof was altogether vanity. Away
with him! not again will he find heart to make trial of me, now that
once more he has escaped death to his joy. But come, I will call on the
warlike Danaans and go forth to make trial of some other Trojan face to

He said, and leapt along the lines, and called upon each man: "No longer
stand afar from the men of Troy, noble Achaians, but come let man match
man and throw his soul into the fight. Hard is it for me, though I be
strong, to assail so vast a folk and fight them all: not even Ares,
though an immortal god, nor Athene, could plunge into the jaws of such a
fray and toil therein. But to my utmost power with hands and feet and
strength no whit, I say, will I be slack, nay, never so little, but
right through their line will I go forward, nor deem I that any Trojan
shall be glad who shall come nigh my spear."

Thus spake he urging them. But to the Trojans glorious Hector called
aloud, and proclaimed that he would go forth against Achilles:
"High-hearted Trojans, fear not Peleus' son. I too in words could fight
even Immortals, but with the spear it were hard, for they are stronger
far. Neither shall Achilles accomplish all his talk, but part thereof he
is to accomplish, and part to break asunder in the midst. And against
him will I go forth, though the hands of him be even as fire, yea though
his hands be as fire and his fierceness as the flaming steel."

Thus spake he urging them, and the Trojans raised their spears for
battle; and their fierceness was mingled confusedly, and the battle-cry
arose. Then Phoebus Apollo stood by Hector and spake to him: "Hector, no
longer challenge Achilles at all before the lines, but in the throng
await him and from amid the roar of the battle, lest haply he spear thee
or come near and smite thee with his sword."

Thus spake he, and Hector again fell back into the crowd of men, for he
was amazed when he heard the sound of a god's voice.

But Achilles sprang in among the Trojans, his heart clothed with
strength, crying his terrible cry, and first he took Iphition,
Otrynteus' valiant son, a leader of much people, born of a Naiad nymph
to Otrynteus waster of cities, beneath snowy Tmolos, in Hyde's rich
domain. Him as he came right on did goodly Achilles smite with his
hurled spear, down through the midst of his head, and it was rent
asunder utterly. And he fell with a crash, and goodly Achilles exulted
over him; "here is thy death, thy birth was on the Gygaian lake, where is
thy sire's demesne, by Hyllos rich in fish and eddying Hermos."

Thus spake he exultant, but darkness fell upon the eyes of Iphition: him
the chariots of the Achaians clave with their tires asunder in the
forefront of the battle, and over him Achilles pierced in the temples,
through his bronze-cheeked helmet, Demoleon, brave stemmer of battle,
Antenor's son. No stop made the bronze helmet, but therethrough sped the
spear-head and clave the bone, and the brain within was all scattered:
that stroke made ending of his zeal. Then Hippodamas, as he leapt from
his chariot and fled before him, Achilles wounded in the back with his
spear: and he breathed forth his spirit with a roar, as when a dragged
bull roareth that the young men drag to the altar of the Lord of Helike;
for in such hath the Earthshaker his delight: thus roared Hippodamas as
from his bones fled forth his haughty spirit. But Achilles with his
spear went on after godlike Polydoros, Priam's son. Him would his sire
continually forbid to fight, for that among his children he was youngest
born and best beloved, and overcame all in fleetness of foot. Just then
in boyish folly, displaying the swiftness of his feet, he was rushing

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