The Iliad Compassion and Forgiveness Quotes
How we cite our quotes: Citations follow this format: (Book.Line). We used Richmond Lattimore's translation.
So he spoke, and stirred in the other a passion of grieving
for his own father. He took the old man's hand and pushed him
gently away, and the two remembered, as Priam sat huddled
at the feet of Achilleus and wept close for manslaughtering Hektor
and Achilleus wept now for his own father, now again
for Patroklos. The sound of their mourning moved in the house. Then
when great Achilleus had taken full satisfaction in sorrow
and the passion for it had gone from his mind and body, thereafter
he rose from his chair, and took the old man by the hand, and set him
on his feet again, in pity for the grey head and the grey beard,
and spoke to him and addressed him in winged words: "Ah, unlucky,
surely you have had much evil to endure in your spirit." (24.508-518)
The climax of the Iliad is this moment of shared feeling between two enemies. What do you make of the way in which this scene progresses – from each thinking of his own lost loved-ones, to Achilles thinking about the suffering of Priam?