Achilles and Patroclus
Was the relationship between Achilles and Patroclus presented by Homer in the ' Iliad' pederastic, or was it merely friendship or military comradeship?. The relationship between Achilles and Patroclus is a key element of the myths associated with the Trojan War. Its exact nature has been a subject of dispute in. From the fifth century B.C., the nature of the relationship between Achilles and. Patroclus as presented by Homer was a matter for discussion among writers.
As Achilles refused to fight, his men the Myrmidons also refused. Thus, Patroclus, taking up his dear Achilles' armor, led the Myrmidons into battle pretending to be Achilles.
Achilles and Patroclus - Wikipedia
He was swiftly slain by Hector, prince of Troy. Needless to say, Achilles immediately sought revenge.
The varying views of the relationship between Achilles and Patroclus exist in so many forms for just as many reasons.
Early archaeology took place in an era when homosexuality was frowned upon as sin, and the men following this lifestyle were insulted as women as this was also an age when women were still considered "weak".
It also took many long years of intensive study into ancient Greek culture, religion, literature, language, and art for scholars to understand that the ancient Greek mindset worked differently from our own and thus could not be fathomed or imagined as an accurate interpretation of these materials.
In this case, the long-misunderstood practice was pederasty, in which two men are, in fact, lovers.
Achilles and Patroclus: Brothers from Other Mothers or Passionate Paramours? | Ancient Origins
Pederasty is a relationship between an older man and a younger man or teen. This relationship usually lasts a good many years, but it is not necessarily considered a relationship in the modern sense of the word. After defeating Hector, Achilles drags his corpse by the heels behind his chariot. Achilles' strongest interpersonal bond is with Patroclus, whom he loves dearly. As Gregory Nagy points out, For Achilles In ancient texts, philos denoted a general type of love, used for love between family, between friends, a desire or enjoyment of an activity, as well as between lovers.
Achilles is the most dominant, and among the warriors in the Trojan War he has the most fame. Patroclus performs duties such as cooking, feeding and grooming the horses, yet is older than Achilles.
Achilles and Patroclus: Brothers from Other Mothers or Passionate Paramours?
Both characters also sleep with women; see Iliad, IX. Achilles' attachment to Patroclus is an archetypal male bond that occurs elsewhere in Greek culture: Alexander the Great and Hephaestion who made symbolic public references to Achilles and Patroclus, Damon and PythiasOrestes and PyladesHarmodius and Aristogeiton are pairs of comrades who gladly face danger and death for and beside each other.
Halperin writes, Homer, to be sure, does not portray Achilles and Patroclus as lovers although some Classical Athenians thought he implied as much Aeschylus fragmentsRadt; Plato Symposium e—b; Aeschines Against Timarchus—50but he also did little to rule out such an interpretation. In Athens, the relationship was often viewed as being loving and pederastic,  although these roles were anachronistic for the Iliad.
The Greek custom of paiderasteia between members of the same-sex, typically men, was a political, intellectual, and sometimes sexual relationship.
The age difference between partners and their respective roles either active or passive was considered to be a key feature. Phaedrus argues that Aeschylus erred in claiming Achilles was the erastes because Achilles was more beautiful and youthful than Patroclus characteristics of the eromenos as well as more noble and skilled in battle characteristics of the erastes. Further evidence of this debate is found in a speech by an Athenian politician, Aeschines, at his trial in BC.
Aeschines, in placing an emphasis on the importance of paiderasteia to the Greeks, argues that though Homer does not state it explicitly, educated people should be able to read between the lines: According to William A.
Achilles and Patroclus
Percy IIIthere are some scholars, such as Bernard Sergentwho believe that in Homer's Ionian culture there existed a homosexuality that had not taken on the form it later would in pederasty. Sergent asserts that ritualized man-boy relations were widely diffused through Europe from prehistoric times.
Aristarchus believed that Homer did not intend the two to be lovers.
- Why the tale of Achilles and his lover still has the power to move us
However, he did agree that the "we-two alone" passage did imply a love relation and argued it was a later interpolation. The joint tomb and Alexander's action demonstrates the perceived significance of the Achilles-Patroclus relationship at that time around BC.
As a rule, the post- classical tradition shows Achilles as heterosexual and having an exemplary asexual friendship with Patroclus.
Medieval Christian writers deliberately suppressed the homoerotic nuances of the figure.