Iliad

Servitude | Part 1: Female servants in Homer

In Homeric poetry, apart from family members there are other members of the household [oikos] who are described by many different Greek words, and carry out differing roles. We were interested in understanding what those words would have meant and how servitude was portrayed, in the context of ancient Greek song culture of the Iliad and Odyssey. We start our exploration with female slaves/servants. Read more

Dogs for the ancient Greeks

Anger [mēnis], goddess, sing it, of Achilles, son of Peleus— disastrous [oulomenē] anger that made countless pains [algea] for the Achaeans, and many steadfast lives [psūkhai] it drove down to Hādēs, heroes’ lives, but their bodies it made prizes for dogs [kuōn, pl.] and for all birds, and the Will of Zeus was reaching its fulfillment [telos]. In this very familiar passage at the start of the Iliad we see… Read more

Homeric Questions with Leonard Muellner

Today there is no agreement about what the Homeric Question might be. Perhaps the most succinct of many possible formulations is this one: “The Homeric Question is primarily concerned with the composition, authorship, and date of the Iliad and the Odyssey.” Not that any one way of formulating the question in the past was ever really sufficient. Who was Homer? When and where did Homer live? Was there a Homer? Read more