All posts tagged Alexander

Words Crush Wednesday – The Homeric Version

Published March 18, 2015 by Iphis of Scyros

Here’s hoping I can type this.  I cut the tip of my finger on a sliver of glass (I shoulda known that shadow box was on clearance for a reason!) and it hurts like heck, especially whenever I apply pressure…and it’s hard not to do that when you’re typing, y’know?  (At least it seems to be done bleeding!  I was afraid I was going to get light-headed, it bled so much.)

Okay, so, it’s Words Crush Wednesday again, and we’re finally starting the duel between Menelaos and Alexander!  Even if I hadn’t hurt my finger, I don’t think I could have finished the duel this week, though.  ‘Tis a lengthy fight, mainly because Menelaos can’t do anything without giving a speech first.  (Neither can most of the other Greeks.)  Anyway, we’re still in Book III of the Iliad, W.H.D. Rouse translation.  In the stuff I skipped over, it was agreed that they’d draw lots to see who would throw his spear first, and the first throw went to Paris.

Now the two strode out into the middle, with grim looks that struck awe into all beholders.  They came to a stand in the measured space, shaking their spears at each other in defiance.  Alexandros first cast his spear; Menelaos caught it neatly upon the shield.  The spear did not break through the metal, but the point was bent.

And that’s just the beginning.  Really, despite what I said above, I ought to give the whole fight now–it’s only about a page long, and has no good stopping points–but my finger won’t let me.  I’ll do the rest of the fight next week.  I promise.

Oh, but just as a point of interest, the bit about the tip of Alexander’s spear?  In most of these duels in the Iliad, the tip of the spear penetrates the shield–Hector penetrated seven of the eight layers of the massive tower shield carried by Aias!–meaning that only by skill can the defender escape injury.  The fact that Menelaos’ shield was stronger than Alexander’s throw proves what a weakling he is compared to, well, pretty much every other warrior in the entire epic.


Words Crush Wednesday – Homeric Version

Published February 11, 2015 by Iphis of Scyros

This week’s Words Crush Wednesday picks up where the last one left off, as Menelaos had just spotted Paris across the battlefield.  Again, Book III of the Iliad, W.H.D. Rouse translation.

But as soon as Alexandros saw him come out in front, his heart sank and he slunk back into the ranks to save himself.  He might have been some one walking through the woods who suddenly sees a snake, and jumps back all of a tremble pale with fear.  So Alexandros jumped back, and he slunk into safety.

Okay, that was a bit brief, but it was the end of the paragraph, and I’m doing a double post today because I have something else to post about that can’t wait until Friday. 😛


Words Crush Wednesday – Homeric Version

Published February 4, 2015 by Iphis of Scyros

In trying to decide what quote to use for this week’s Words Crush Wednesday, I found myself realizing that I actually wanted to quote about three or four pages of the opening of Book III.  Sooo…this week’s quote is actually before last week’s, and it’s going to connect together with next week’s, and the week after that’s, and however many weeks it takes before I feel I’ve quoted the heck out of this duel.  Because it’s really one of the greatest moments, like, ever.  So here it is, this week’s quote from the Iliad, Book III, W.H.D. Rouse translation.  (Again, using the translator’s name transliterations.  Though in this case the only difference is that I usually Anglicize Alexandros into Alexander.)

No sooner had the two armies come near than a champion stept out of the Trojan ranks, the noble Prince Alexandros.  A leopard-skin hung over his shoulders with bow and sword; he shook his two sharp spears, and challenged all comers to fight him man to man.  So he strode out with long steps.  Menelaos saw him with joy, as a lion spies a victim, when he is hungry and finds a horned stag or a wild goat:  greedily he devours his prey, even if dogs and lusty lads set upon him.  So Menelaos was glad when he set eyes on Alexandros, for he thought he was sure to punish the traitor; at once he leapt down from his chariot in his armor.

Hee hee…I can’t wait for next week, when I get to quote Paris’ reaction to Menelaos!  I laugh just thinking about it!

(In case you’re wondering about this week’s quote being from a different translation than last week’s, I own three different translations in hard copy, though one of them I have primarily because it’s got the Greek on the facing page.  (Some day, I hope to re-learn ancient Greek to the point where I can translate it myself to quote it.)  I also have a massive Kindle thing that has like five public domain translations.  But only one of those uses the Greek names for the gods, so most of them don’t count.)


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