Iliad

Comparing Achilles and Job College

Throughout human history, people have been infatuated with the role of the “hero”. The concept that someone would be willing to risk life and limb for someone else never ceases to amaze. Just take a trip to Washington, D.C. The monuments and memorials to Lincoln, Roosevelt, and Washington himself have levitated these individuals to demigod status in this country. This idea of the hero spreads to the realm of sports, with statues of great players and coaches outside the gates of stadiums, beckoning all to gaze upon their glory. The heroic concept is not a new one, rather it has been around since the beginning of recorded history. Obvious heroes such as Achilles, with unsurpassed rage and fighting ability, often overshadow “lesser” ones, such as submissive, steadfast Job. The idea behind the hero is one that dominates the way we view the world.

Achilles was a man wrapped in legendary fable. He was the child of a god, and immortal except in his heel. He is described as “strong, swift, and godlike” (Book I, line 129). His skill in battle was unmatchable by anything except his fury. The first few lines in Homer’s Iliad are about Achilles’ famed temper and are as follows: “Rage: Sing; Goddess, Achilles’ rage, black and murderous,...

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