Under discussion: Achilles and Apollo

apollo achilles3

~ A guest post by Myrmidon ~

Apollo and Achilles are ritual antagonists. So how do we explain the strategic alliance Achilles forms with the god early in Iliad Scroll 1? The hero does this through Kalkhas, the seer who received his prophetic powers from Apollo.

Achilles further aligns himself with the god when he “swears by Apollo” to protect the seer from Agamemnon.

Clearly, in these two events Achilles does not display hostility toward Apollo.

But the events do bring to mind the common objective shared by Achilles and Apollo…to resolve the mēnis of Apollo by persuading Agamemnon to return Khryseis to her father.

Therefore, to convince the proud, prize-loving king to give up his cherished prize, an alliance with Apollo makes sense for Achilles. Tilting the balance of power like this is what strategists often do.

Follow this link to read the full argument.

What do you think…do I have a credible case for a strategic alliance between Achilles and Apollo? If I do, what does it say about the antagonistic relationship between the two? See how the conversation is developing and join in this continuing discussion.

Myrmidon is an Iliad addict, a big fan of Hour 25, and is currently working as the barista at Friday Cafe.