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Homer’s metaphysics : the conception of reality in the Iliad and Odyssey Shaw, Millo Lawrence Goodship 1979

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HOMER'S METAPHYSICS: THE CONCEPTION OF REALITY IN THE ILIAD AND ODYSSEY by MILLO LAWRENCE GOODSHIP SHAW B.A., University of Manitoba, 1974 A THESIS SUBMITTED IN PARTIAL FULFILMENT OF THE REQUIREMENTS FOR THE DEGREE OF MASTER OF ARTS i n THE FACULTY OF GRADUATE STUDIES Department of Cl a s s i c s We accept t h i s thesis as conforming to the required standard THE UNIVERSITY OF BRITISH COLUMBIA February, 1979 /c) M i l l o Lawrence Goodship Shaw, 1979 I n p r e s e n t i n g t h i s t h e s i s i n p a r t i a l f u l f i l m e n t o f t h e r e q u i r e m e n t s f o r a n a d v a n c e d d e g r e e a t t h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a , I a g r e e t h a t t h e L i b r a r y s h a l l m a k e i t f r e e l y a v a i l a b l e f o r r e f e r e n c e a n d s t u d y . I f u r t h e r a g r e e t h a t p e r m i s s i o n f o r e x t e n s i v e c o p y i n g o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r s c h o l a r l y p u r p o s e s m a y b e g r a n t e d b y t h e H e a d o f my D e p a r t m e n t o r b y h i s r e p r e s e n t a t i v e s . I t i s u n d e r s t o o d t h a t c o p y i n g o r p u b l i c a t i o n o f t h i s t h e s i s f o r f i n a n c i a l g a i n s h a l l n o t b e a l l o w e d w i t h o u t my w r i t t e n p e r m i s s i o n . D e p a r t m e n t o f C LASS ICS T h e U n i v e r s i t y o f B r i t i s h C o l u m b i a 2075 Wesbrook Place Vancouver, Canada V6T 1W5 D a t e - i -ABSTRACT The I l i a d and the Odyssey contain a u n i f i e d , consistent, and comprehensive view of r e a l i t y . At no point i n the poems i s t h i s view d e f i n i t i v e l y and systematically expounded, but i t does extend i m p l i c i t l y throughout both works and a f f e c t s the representation of everything within them. In t h i s essay an attempt has been made to extract, define, and i l l u s t r a t e t h i s conception of r e a l i t y . The conception may be designated as supernaturalism. R e a l i t y i n the poems i s not considered to be confined within the natural order and, so, bounded by time, space, and m a t e r i a l i t y d i r e c t l y perceptible to the senses. The natural order i s conceived to be an "open," d i s -continuous system, characterized ultimately by mystery and undefinableness, through which i t merges with the supernatural. Moreover, the supernatural does not consist of a mere abstract extension to the natural; the former i s i n fact the hypostasis of the l a t t e r , that i s , i t sustains and controls i t , a r e l a t i o n that i s represented by the r u l e of the gods over natural phenomena. The supernatural i s the perfect, absolute centre of r e a l i t y of which the natural constitutes the dependent, imperfect, physical c r y s t a l l i z a t i o n . The supernatural order i s connected to the natural realm primarily through "essence." Essence i s the most c h a r a c t e r i s t i c and most r e a l property of every natural phenomenon and so i t constitutes the absolute, ultimate being of the natural order. Because of i t s absolute nature, i t cannot be defined. As a r e s u l t , the i d e n t i t y of no natural phenomenon can be f i x e d ; i t can only be outlined or suggested. The very undefinableness of essence leaves the natural system open to the u l t e r i o r metaphysical - i i -dimension. This p a r t i c u l a r fusion of the natural and supernatural orders renders the l a t t e r a d u a l i t y . The supernatural consists not simply of s p i r i t but of s p i r i t and essence i n a v a r i a b l e r a t i o . In the regions of the supernatural nearer the natural order, essence predominates over s p i r i t ; i n the regions remote from the natural world, however, s p i r i t i s pre-eminent. The e s s e n t i a l element i n the divine nature gives the gods form and substance, and associates them with p a r t i c u l a r natural phenomena. The d u a l i t y of s p i r i t and essence i n t h e i r natures permits them to pass between the natural and supernatural realms without impedi-ment . The r u l e of the supernatural hypostasis over the natural order i n the I l i a d and Odyssey i s effected both immanently, that i s , within the course of events, and transcendently, outside the course of events. In the former case, the gods, i n t h e i r immanent manifestations, wield supreme but l i m i t e d power over natural phenomena. A l l natural phenomena, however, as well as the immanent gods themselves, also f u l f i l the transcendent plan of h i s t o r y established by the universal p r i n c i p l e of order, designated as Fate, by the transcendent gods, and, ultimately, by the transcendent Zeus. The transcendent government of the world i s absolute, but i t i s f u l f i l l e d spontaneously; as a r e s u l t the i n t e g r i t y and freedom of the natural order are preserved. The supernatural rules the natural order i n two dimensions. The p r i n c i p l e of order at the heart of the supernatural determines the r e l a t i o n s of a l l phenomena. It fuses them into a whole while preserving to a l i m i t e d degree t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l i d e n t i t i e s . It apportions to each of them i n the great order of things a p a r t i c u l a r l o t co n s i s t i n g of i n d i v i d u a l and corporate a t t r i b u t e s , the bounds of which may not be exceeded. Any - i i i -transgression of these bounds upsets the u n i v e r s a l order and activates an inexorable compensatory force which restores equilibrium. The maintenance of t h i s p r i n c i p l e of order, Moira, constitutes Homeric j u s t i c e , Dike. The fundamental idea i n the Homeric conception of r e a l i t y i s that of hypostasis, the b e l i e f i n an u l t e r i o r , transcendent dimension that binds together, controls, and invests with meaning a l l r e a l phenomena. - i v -TABLE OF CONTENTS Page ABSTRACT i TEXTS AND TRANSLATIONS v i ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS v i i CHAPTER I: THE NATURAL ORDER IN ITS SUPERNATURAL CONTEXT 1 The Supernatural Hypostasis 1 The " E s s e n t i a l " Connection between the Natural and Supernatural Realms 14 The Homeric Conception of Identity 16 The Supernatural Depth and Meaning of Natural Phenomena 33 Conclusion 35 CHAPTER I I : THE NATURE OF THE SUPERNATURAL 36 S p i r i t and Essence 36 The " E s s e n t i a l " A t t r i b u t e s of the Gods 41 The Establishment of Moral Values 58 The Fusion of the Natural and Supernatural 60 The "Openness" of the Natural Order 63 The Constitution of the Supernatural 66 The Approximation of Men to the Gods 80 CHAPTER I I I : IMMANENCE AND TRANSCENDENCE 84 Immanence 84 The Power of the Immanent Gods 87 Transcendent Fate 93 -v-Page The Transcendent Gods 98 The Transcendent Zeus 101 The Immanent Execution of the Transcendent Plan of Fate . 115 The Combination of Divine Immanence and Transcendence 123 CHAPTER IV: ORDER AND UNITY 129 The Organic Nature of the World of the I l i a d and Odyssey 129 Unity through Analogies 131 The Unlimited P o t e n t i a l i t y for Correspondence 137 The Exchange of Q u a l i t i e s i n an Organic Association 139 The Corporate I d e n t i t i e s of Organically Related Phenomena 140 Correspondence through the Simile 143 The Adherence of the Part to the Whole 148 The Retention of Individual Identity i n a Corporate Relationship 148 The Balance between the Part and the Whole 154 Homeric J u s t i c e 156 Conclusion 162 BIBLIOGRAPHY 164 - v i -TEXTS AND TRANSLATIONS A l l references to the I l i a d and Odyssey i n t h i s paper are based on Monro's and Allen's t h i r d e d i t i o n of the I l i a d (1920) i n the Oxford C l a s s i c a l Text seri e s and on Stanford's second e d i t i o n of the Odyssey (1958 - 1959) i n the Macmillan C l a s s i c a l Series. For i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of the texts I have re f e r r e d to the trans-l a t i o n s of Lattimore (University of Chicago Press, 1969), Murray (Loeb, 1965, 1946), and Rieu (Penguin Books, 1954) for the I l i a d , and to the t r a n s l a t i o n of Rieu (Penguin Books, 1963) for the Odyssey. A l l tran s l a t i o n s i n t h i s essay, however, with the exception of several s p e c i f i e d passages, are my own. - v i i -ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS I should l i k e to thank Professors A. J . Podlecki, H. G. Edinger, and K. A. Dusing for t h e i r advice and c r i t i c i s m i n the preparation of t h i s essay. CHAPTER I THE NATURAL ORDER IN ITS SUPERNATURAL CONTEXT The Supernatural Hypostasis R e a l i t y i s represented i n the I l i a d and Odyssey from a super-n a t u r a l i s t i c point of view. I t i s not comprehended by the natural order, the realm of f i n i t e , physical beings and processes, both animate and inanimate, bounded by space and time, and apprehensible to the senses. This natural system i s shown to have order and i n t e g r i t y , but i t i s considered to be l i m i t e d and "open." Its basic elements, including a l l physical beings constituted of earth, a i r , f i r e , and water, i t s multiple forms, both s p a t i a l and temporal (that i s , sequences of events), and the very dimensions of space and time, are a l l , u l timately, i n essence and provenance, u n d e f i n a b l e — i n natural terms. P r e c i s e l y at the point of undefinableness the natural realm becomes discontinuous and "open," and the ph y s i c a l merges with the metaphysical. This metaphysical, or super-natural, dimension complements the natural order, and serves as i t s immediate context. This r e l a t i o n has a profound e f f e c t upon the conception and portrayal of r e a l i t y i n the I l i a d and Odyssey. The Homeric heroes are endowed with a metaphysical sense that allows them to perceive the ultimate mystery and "openness" of the natural system, and hence to i n f e r the u l t e r i o r existence of the supernatural. They most r e a d i l y discern points of t r a n s i t i o n between the natural and supernatural realms i n i n f i n i t e e n t i t l e s , such as the sky. It i s appropriate, then, that the sky should often be linked with Olympus or considered alone when reference i s made to the home of the gods. In Book I of the I l i a d Thetis ascends to "great heaven and Olympus" (497); the gods receive the formulaic designation, "they who hold the broad heaven," as at l i n e 150 of Book VI i n the Odyssey; and when men pray to Zeus they frequently look up to the sky rather than i n the d i r e c t i o n of the mountain. So Menelaus, i n f r u s t r a -t i o n at the destruction of h i s sword, "... looked into the broad heaven and groaned loudly: 'Father Zeus, there i s no other god more malevolent than you'" ( I I . I l l , 364 - 365). Nor do men pray only to Zeus, the t r a d i t i o n a l sky and weather god, when they look to heaven. Telemachus, i n order to communicate with Athene, places himself before the i n f i n i t y of sea and sky: "Telemachus went far o f f to the shore of the sea where he washed his hands i n the grey water and prayed to Athene" (Od. I I , 260 - 261) Often Homer's imagery i s s u f f i c i e n t l y v i v i d to suggest by i t s e l f the con-t i g u i t y of the natural with the supernatural when men attempt to reach out from the f i n i t e into the i n f i n i t e , as i n the d e s c r i p t i o n of a s a c r i f i c e to Apollo i n Book I of the I l i a d : "They s a c r i f i c e d to Apollo complete hecatomb of b u l l s and goats by the shore of the barren sea. Intertwining with smoke the savour reached the sky" (II. I, 315 - 317). Men also consider the boundless, mysterious sea to be a p r i n c i p a l realm of the gods. S a c r i f i c e s to Poseidon, such as Nestor's i n Book III of the Odyssey, are conducted on the sea-shore, and A c h i l l e s turns to the sea i n Book I of the I l i a d when he wishes to appeal to h i s mother for divine intervention. Ocean i s designated as the o r i g i n of the gods (II . XIV, 201). The sea also serves as the point of contact between the natural and the supernatural, the f i n i t e and the i n f i n i t e , i n Menelaus' account of his detention on the i s l a n d of Pharos, i n the fourth book of the Odyssey. In natural terms hi s s i t u a t i o n seems hopeless. Without a wind to propel his ships he must remain stranded on an i s l a n d with i n s u f f i c i e n t resources, -3-watching h e l p l e s s l y as he and h i s followers waste away from hunger. The so l u t i o n to the problem must come from beyond the natural order; and so i t does—out of the depths of the boundless sea. Proteus, the Old Man of the Sea, possesses the supernatural knowledge necessary for Menelaus' escape. The whole episode may serve as a symbol for the Homeric con-ception of the natural order; f i n i t e and d e f i c i e n t i n i t s e l f , dependent upon the supernatural for meaning and d i r e c t i o n . The incompleteness or "openness" of i t s system i s suggested by the j u x t a p o s i t i o n between the small, barren i s l a n d and the vast, mysterious sea. The earth, too, i s considered to be connected with the supernatural. Its dark, boundless mystery i s e a s i l y associated with the dark, " i n f e r n a l " powers, such as the s p i r i t s of death, headed by the appropriately named Hades, the "Unseen," and the mighty, elemental, impersonal forces of monstrous form, the Titans, bound i n Tartarus. P a r t l y out of recognition of t h i s s p i r i t u a l realm men pour l i b a t i o n s and burn and bury t h e i r dead. In f a c t , the combination of mystery and v i t a l power possessed by the earth i s s u f f i c i e n t to exalt i t to a goddess i n the minds of men. The supernatural i s conceived to be s p i r i t u a l at i t s heart. Most of the supernatural e n t i t i e s that appear i n the I l i a d and Odyssey possess s p i r i t u a l q u a l i t i e s as t h e i r fundamental a t t r i b u t e s . This s p i r i t u a l r e a l i t y occupies the very centre and core of the universe; i t i s the o r i g i n a l , animating, governing r e a l i t y behind a l l existent phenomena. Natural phenomena emanate from i t and revolve around i t . Homeric men recognize the supremacy of t h i s s p i r i t u a l r e a l i t y i n t h e i r r e l i g i o u s r i t e s , i n t h e i r worship of the multitude of d i v i n i t i e s both great and small that they perceive beyond the physical appearance of things. They even consider human l i f e i t s e l f to be an ultimately s p i r i t u a l phenomenon, since they value such abstract e n t i t i e s as glory, honour, and j u s t i c e , and since they treat men, even i n death as having supernatural worth, as they demonstrate by t h e i r elaborate b u r i a l ceremonies. Whenever possible, they attempt to trace t h e i r ancestry back to the supernatural, the o r i g i n of all."'" Many of the heroes are considered to be diogeneis, sprung from Zeus, while others ascribe t h e i r generation to l e s s e r gods, such as the River Alpheios from which Diocles claims descent ( I I . V, 544 - 545). The natural order may be described as the imperfect, physical c r y s t a l l i z a t i o n of the supernatural realm. The supernatural, at i t s heart, i s the re f i n e d , s p i r i t u a l o r i g i n of a l l . The gods are responsible for ordering and i n i t i a t i n g events i n the natural realm, although they themselves are obedient to fate. The pattern of h i s t o r y i s l a r g e l y determined i n t h e i r councils. At the beginning of the Odyssey and l a t e r i n Book V the gods convene to determine what amounts to the whole story of the poem. In the I l i a d s i m i l a r important meetings take place, as between Zeus and Thetis and then Zeus and the rest of the gods i n Book I, i n which Zeus f i r s t intimates h i s plan to give glory to A c h i l l e s and Hector; i n Book IV, i n which Zeus r e l u c t a n t l y agrees to the doom of Troy and continuation of the f i g h t i n g ; i n Book VIII, i n which he e f f e c t i v e l y takes d i r e c t control over the course of b a t t l e , and i n Book XX, when he unleashes the gods into the f i g h t i n g for the f i n a l , c l i m a c t i c struggle. When the gods have l a i d t h e i r plans they proceed to i n s t i g a t e action i n the natural order where matters would otherwise remain i n a state of i n e r t i a . At the beginning of the I l i a d a v i r t u a l stalemate e x i s t s between the Greeks and Trojans. The Greeks have the upper hand to be "*" W. F. Otto, The Homeric Gods, trans. Moses Hadas (London: Thames and Hudson, 1954), p. 236. -5-sure, but cannot press home t h e i r advantage. They cannot mount any kind of productive offensive beyond l i m i t e d raids into Trojan t e r r i t o r y , which they undertake more for the personal gain of the Achaean chiefs than f o r any substantial benefit to the whole war e f f o r t . The Trojans for t h e i r part, hemmed within t h e i r c i t y walls, are constrained to play a waiting game, venturing no farther than the "Scaean gates and the oak-tree" as A c h i l l e s says (IX, 354), while he and the rest of the Greeks oppose them. Into t h i s stagnant s i t u a t i o n comes the god Apollo, who i s s p e c i f i c a l l y designed by Homer as the i n s t i g a t o r of the quarrel between Agamemnon and A c h i l l e s : "Who then of the gods was i t that united these to f i g h t with s t r i f e ? The son of Leto and Zeus" (I, 8 -.9). The plague that he sends upon the Achaeans f o r dishonouring h i s p r i e s t sets i n motion the whole t r a g i c series of events that r e s u l t s i n a d r a s t i c r e v e r s a l of fortunes for both the Achaeans and Trojans, including the desperate b a t t l e at the ships, the g l o r i f i c a t i o n of Hector and, l a t e r , A c h i l l e s , the loss of many men's l i v e s , e s p e c i a l l y those of Patroclus and Hector, and the confirmation of Troy's eventual destruction. Apollo's i s one of the most i n f l u e n t i a l divine interventions, but others frequently occur i n the story to propel the action. Zeus i s usually d i r e c t l y or i n d i r e c t l y responsible for i n i t i a t i n g and steering h i s t o r i c a l movements. At the beginning of Book II i n the I l i a d he s t i r s up Agamemnon through a f a l s e dream to take the f i e l d i n sp i t e of A c h i l l e s ' absence. By the end of Book III the action seems again l i k e l y to grind to a ha l t when the Trojans are obliged to acknowledge Menelaus v i c t o r i n h i s duel with Paris and so, i n obedience to t h e i r oaths, to return Helen to the Greeks with worthy compensation. An abrupt end to the war appears possible, even i n e v i t a b l e , unsatisfactory and ignominious though i t may be a f t e r so much -6-s t r i v i n g and s u f f e r i n g . Extraordinary, even "supernatural" intervention i s required to ensure the continuation of the war, and so, at the beginning of Book IV, Zeus commissions Athene to cause the Trojans to break t h e i r oaths and so to increase the nemesis against them, which i s what happens when Pandarus wounds Menelaus with an arrow. Athene also resolves a d i f f i c u l t s i t u a t i o n at Hera's bidding i n Book I I , when, a f t e r Agamemnon has tested the mood of h i s men by suggesting they return home, the Achaeans a c t u a l l y t r y to board t h e i r ships. She promptly induces Odysseus to check t h e i r f l i g h t and so salvages the Achaean expedition. These are some of the p r i n c i p a l instances i n the I l i a d i n which the course of h i s t o r y i n the natural order i s most c l e a r l y shown to be dependent upon divine d i r e c t i o n . Supernatural intervention i s required as well i n the Odyssey, i n which, at the beginning of the story, a state of stagnation e x i s t s . After a l l h i s hardships and wanderings Odysseus has remained confined to Calypso's isl a n d for seven years. In Ithaca, Telemachus and Penelope watch i n helpless, hopeless f r u s t r a t i o n as the s u i t o r s devour the royal estate at t h e i r ease, while the day of the mother's forced marriage and the son's di s i n h e r i t a n c e appears increasingly i n e v i t a b l e . Telemachus 1 i n a c t i o n i s broken by Athene's descent into Ithaca a f t e r the f i r s t c o u n c i l of the gods. There she i n s p i r e s him to adopt a more responsible a t t i t u d e and to take p o s i t i v e action to learn news of h i s father's fate. Hermes complements her a c t i v i t y when he f l i e s to Ogygia at Zeus's command and orders Calypso to release Odysseus. These two divine interventions i n i t i a t e the pattern of events c o n s t i t u t i n g the Odyssey. The Homeric heroes are aware that the supernatural, represented by the gods, has supreme, i r r e s i s t i b l e control over the natural world and, i n -7-p a r t i c u l a r , that i t overrules human thought and action. Often the divin e w i l l i s opposed to that of men; so Menelaus found himself stranded on the is l a n d of Pharos: "The gods s t i l l confined me to Egypt, although I yearned to come home, for I had not s a c r i f i c e d perfect hecatombs to them; the gods ever wish men to be mindful of t h e i r laws" (Od. IV, 351 - 353). The gods i n fact operate according to t h e i r own r u l e s , often inscrutable to men. Priam lays the blame f or the Trojan War not upon Helen, or even on the Achaeans, or, for that matter, on Paris himself and h i s Trojan supporters, but upon the malevolent gods: " i t i s the gods who are to blame i n my opinion; i t was they who roused against me the dolorous onslaught of the Achaeans" (II . I l l , 164 - 165). Telemachus a t t r i b u t e s the disappearance of his father to the gods' mysterious designs: "they have made him u t t e r l y vanish" (Od. I, 235 - 236). Moreover men recognize that the power of the supernatural beings i s such that they determine and steer h i s t o r y i t s e l f . After the inconclusive ending of P a r i s ' and Menelaus' duel Athene appears as a portent i n the sky, and immediately the men i n both armies passively concede the r e s o l u t i o n of the.uncertain s i t u a t i o n to Zeus: "To be sure, there w i l l again be e v i l war and t e r r i b l e b a t t l e , unless Zeus, who i s the dispenser of war for men, i s es t a b l i s h i n g friendship among both sides" (II. IV, 82 - 84). Divine influence i s perceived as the ultimate motivating factor f o r events i n the natural world. This i s not to suggest that the gods wield unlimited, unqualified power over the natural realm. When they intervene to d i r e c t the course of events they act according to a preconceived plan, either established by Zeus or agreed upon i n co u n c i l . This plan concurs with the designs of fa t e , which rules over a l l h i s t o r i c a l phenomena, including the gods i n t h e i r h i s t o r i c a l manifestations. Occasionally they attempt to carry out t h e i r -8-own wishes, for example i n t h e i r partisan bias for either the Trojans or Greeks i n the I l i a d , but even these actions f u l f i l the higher plan of f a t e . The nature of t h e i r powers w i l l be examined more c l o s e l y i n the next two chapters. The r u l e of the supernatural over the natural i s not confined to the d i r e c t , personal influence of the gods. Certain mysterious "objects" also have supernatural power, such as the aegis of Zeus, Apollo, and Athene, the deadly bows and arrows of Artemis and Apollo, Aphrodite's g i r d l e , Poseidon's t r i d e n t , the wand and sandals of Hermes, or the "helmet of Hades" which Athene dons i n Book V of the I l i a d to acquire i n v i s i b i l i t y (845). The armour of A c h i l l e s , given o r i g i n a l l y to Peleus by the gods, i s p a r t i c u l a r l y i n t r i g u i n g i n t h i s respect. It endows i t s bearer with might, but i t also brings destruction upon those to whom i t does not belong. So both Patroclus and Hector prosper i n b a t t l e when they f i r s t put i t on, but eventually perish while wearing i t . Its f a t a l associations are indicated i n the narrative at the time of Patroclus' death: Phoebus Apollo struck the helmet from h i s head. The tubed helmet r o l l e d r inging beneath the feet of the horses, and i t s crests were stained with blood and dust. Before, the gods had not w i l l e d that the horse-hair helmet be d e f i l e d with dust, but i t had protected the head and handsome brow of a godlike man, A c h i l l e s . And then Zeus gave i t to Hector to wear upon his head, and death was near to him. (II.XVI,793-800) Thus the supernatural can be seen to penetrate what would normally be considered inanimate objects. Not only does the supernatural control the natural, but i n i t s operation r e f l e c t s occurrences i n the natural world, and so provides a standard of measurement of t h e i r importance. When Odysseus and Diomedes come upon the camp of the Thracians i n t h e i r night r a i d , recounted i n Book X of the I l i a d , they slaughter the regular Thracian s o l d i e r y i n -di s c r i m i n a t e l y , but the death of the king, Rhesos, i s rendered more t e r r i b l e -9-by the fact that i t i s accompanied, or seems to be, by a nightmare: When the son of Tydeus reached the king he robbed him, the thir t e e n t h , of h i s l i f e sweet as honey while he lay gasping. For a t e r r i b l e dream appeared over h i s head that night i n the form of the son of the Oeneid, by the device of Athene. (II.X,494-497) The supreme experience that men encounter i n the I l i a d and Odyssey i s that of war and b a t t l e ; therein men meet both death and glory. Con-sequently the gods and t h e i r supernatural influence appear most vigorously and obtrusively i n combat. So eager, i n f a c t , are they to p a r t i c i p a t e that Zeus has great d i f f i c u l t y i n r e s t r a i n i n g them. It i s therefore to be expected that i n the f i n a l c l i m a c t i c b a t t l e of the I l i a d , i n Books XX to XXII, the gods should play a major r o l e . In t h i s p a r t i c u l a r episode the premier warrior of the Achaeans, A c h i l l e s , returns to the f i g h t i n g to avenge Patroclus, and the fate of Hector and, by extension, that of Troy hang i n the balance. The f e r o c i t y and importance of the b a t t l e are r e f l e c t e d i n the divin e upheaval that occurs simultaneously. A l l the gods are summoned by Zeus to Olympus and from there sent into b a t t l e on the opposing sides. There, mingling with the mortals, they f i g h t among them-selves, the gods supporting the Achaeans ultimately triumphing over the defenders of the Trojans, and foreshadowing the ultimate f a l l of Troy, just as the Achaeans p r e v a i l over the Trojans and slay Hector. Such concurrence of the supernatural with the natural adds s i g n i f i c a n c e and gravity to events. For an e f f i c a c i o u s undertaking men must have divine approval and guidance. I d e a l l y , a l l successful action i s complemented by the influence of the gods, whether d i r e c t l y or i n d i r e c t l y . So, for example, i n the I l i a d , a f t e r the Achaean envoys have returned Chryseis to her father and p r o p i t i a t e d Apollo, he ensures the success of t h e i r mission by aiding t h e i r return voyage -10-with a favourable wind (II. I, 479 - 480). Diomedes' prowess i n Book V i s explained by the fact that Athene has increased h i s strength and courage: "And now Pal l a s Athene gave strength and courage to Diomedes, son of Tydeus, i n order that he should be distinguished among a l l the Argives and win noble fame" (V, 1 - 3 ) . When the t i d e of b a t t l e turns i n the Trojans' favour a f t e r the departure of A c h i l l e s i t i s not simply the Trojans and Hector who triumph but the Trojans and Zeus, and Hector and Zeus and Apollo. When A c h i l l e s faces Hector for the l a s t time he acknowledges Athene's a i d : "No longer i s there any escape for you, but P a l l a s Athene s h a l l overcome you by my spear" (II. XXII, 270 - 271). Throughout the Odyssey Athene supports the cause of Telemachus and Odysseus, except of course when Poseidon wishes to oppose the l a t t e r at sea, i n h i s own province. Her divine guidance i s t y p i c a l l y represented i n the scene i n Book XIX i n which the eerie l i g h t of her golden lamp illuminates the palace h a l l for the father and son as they remove weapons to the store room. Odysseus accepts her assistance quite n a t u r a l l y , informing h i s s t a r t l e d son that " t h i s i s t r u l y the way of the gods who dwell on Olympus" (42 - 43). Such divine influence i s simply to be expected i n successful human endeavours. In f a c t , at times the divine portion of action seems to take pre-cedence over the human part. So the divine nemesis inherent i n Odysseus' plot against the s u i t o r s occasionally ecl i p s e s the king's own desire for revenge and recovery of h i s estate. For instance, when he makes a genuine e f f o r t to save Amphinomus by warning him of impending catastrophe Athene's w i l l overrules h i s : Then Amphinomus went through the h a l l , heavy-hearted, shaking his head, for he presaged e v i l i n h i s heart. Not even so, however, did he escape his doom. Athene had bound him u t t e r l y to be overcome by the hands and spear of Telemachus. (Od.XVIII,153-156) -11-Since the supernatural controls the course of h i s t o r y , a l l successful human undertakings must of necessity be attended and even dominated by divine power. The c o r o l l a r y of t h i s p r i n c i p l e i s that action without divine help i s l i k e l y to have u n f r u i t f u l or even disastrous consequences. Eurylochus' reconnaissance party on the i s l a n d of Aeaea enters Circe's house without supernatural assistance, with the r e s u l t that i t s members are promptly turned into swine. Odysseus, however, with the help of Hermes' intervention and i n s t r u c t i o n , i s able to save both himself and h i s men (Od. X). In the tenth book of the I l i a d Diomedes and Odysseus receive a propitious omen from Athene before they embark upon t h e i r night-time scouting expedition and both pray to her, entreating assistance and promising s a c r i f i c e . Their e f f o r t s then meet with overwhelming success. Dolon, on the other hand, greedily takes no thought for anything other than the p r i z e and glory he w i l l win from Hector on completion of h i s mission, and so he i s s l a i n i n the most shameful fashion a f t e r betraying to Diomedes and Odysseus c r u c i a l information on the d i s p o s i t i o n of the Trojan camp. When Zeus weighs the fates of A c h i l l e s and Hector to confirm the former's triumph over the l a t t e r , P a l l a s Athene joi n s A c h i l l e s , but doomed Hector i s l e f t alone: "The f a t a l day of Hector sank down towards Hades and Phoebus Apollo abandoned him" ( I I . XXII, 212 - 213). The Phaeacians' f a i l u r e to obtain the approval of Poseidon for the entertainment and escort that they grant to Odysseus also meets with d i r e r e s u l t s . The metamorphosis into stone of the escort ship and the threatened encirclement with mountains of the Phaeacians' c i t y demonstrate the severity with which the gods judge and punish the s l i g h t e s t infringement, even one made i n good f a i t h , of t h e i r dominion. The Achaeans' f a i l u r e to consecrate the protective wall and -12-trench that they b u i l d around t h e i r ships on Nestor's advice s i n g u l a r l y provokes the gods, p a r t i c u l a r l y Poseidon. The Achaeans are motivated by fear and prudence; the gods, however, have no regard for motives. In t h e i r jealous concern for t h e i r own power and glory they can only view independent human action on the scale of such construction as a d i r e c t threat to themselves, as Poseidon claims: "Father Zeus, i s there anyone of mortals on the boundless earth who w i l l s t i l l declare h i s mind and planning to the immortals? Do you not see that the long-haired Achaeans have now b u i l t a wall for t h e i r ships and drawn a trench around i t without o f f e r i n g splendid hecatombs to the gods? Without a doubt the fame of i t w i l l extend as far as the dawn spreads. Then men w i l l forget the wall that I and Phoebus Apollo t o i l e d to b u i l d for the hero Laomedon." (II.VII,446-453) As a r e s u l t the gods ensure that the wall i s an utter f a i l u r e . The f o r t i -f i c a t i o n s do not prove as impregnable as desired; at the c r i t i c a l time Hector and h i s Trojans burst through them to hem the Achaeans i n among th e i r ships. F i n a l l y , a f t e r the war, the wall i s o b l i t e r a t e d under the combined assault of the gods. Its fate may serve as an admonitory symbol of the i n e f f i c a c y of a l l human endeavours unsupported by the div i n e powers. Homer's fundamentally s p i r i t u a l view of r e a l i t y r e s u l t s i n animism. Since the natural realm i s controlled by the supernatural i t s phenomena become e a s i l y s p i r i t u a l i z e d and personalized. Caves, groves, springs, and r i v e r s are p a r t i c u l a r l y suggestive of a supernatural presence. In the cave at the head of the cove of Phorcys, mentioned as the landing place of Odysseus i n Book XIII of the Odyssey, the shadows and eroded stone intimate the habitation of nymphs: At the head of the cove i s a long-leaved o l i v e and near i t a b e a u t i f u l dark cave sacred to the nymphs who are c a l l e d Naiads. Within i t are mixing bowls and amphorae of stone i n which bees store t h e i r honey. And i n i t are immense stone looms on which the nymphs weave t h e i r sea-purple cloaks, a marvel to behold. And i n i t are ever-flowing springs. (Od.XIII,102-109) A s i m i l a r "numinous" aura surrounds the spring and grove of the nymphs that Odysseus and Eumaeus encounter on t h e i r way to town i n Book XVII: "Around the spring was a grove of water-nurtured alders that formed a perfect c i r c l e , and cold water poured down from the rock above on which an a l t a r had been fashioned for the nymphs" (208 - 211). The c i r c u l a r pattern of the alders, and the image of cool water issuing from a rock are suggestive i n t h e i r arrangement and nature of a r e a l i t y that transcends the purely p h y s i c a l . The immaterial fleetness and mystery of the wind s u f f i c e to suggest a s p i r i t u a l presence which can engender more corporeal beings, such as the horses, Xanthus and Balius (II. XVI, 150).v Every r i v e r , too, i s informed with a s p i r i t which so animates i t s phy s i c a l substance that i t can r e s t r a i n or increase i t s waters at w i l l and even copulate with women. The Phaeacian r i v e r checks i t s flow to permit the suppliant Odysseus to enter i t s mouth (Od. V). The Scamander, a tutel a r y god of the Trojans, overflows i t s banks to f i g h t with A c h i l l e s . Some heroes claim descent from r i v e r s , as does Asteropaios from the Axius. Rivers also seem to have the same suggestive, "numinous" qu a l i t y as groves and springs since they are not only inhabited by gods but attended by nymphs as w e l l , such as those i n Sipylos who "dance about the Achelous" ( I I . XXIV, 616). Everything, i n f a c t , i n nature i s s p i r i t u a l l y animated, as the assembly of gods i n Book XX of the I l i a d reveals: "No one of the r i v e r s was absent, except Ocean, or any of the nymphs who inhabit the b e a u t i f u l groves, the springs of the meadows, and the grassy lawns" ( I I . XX, 7 - 9 ) . It i s not s u r p r i s i n g , then, that Odysseus, a f t e r Athene has proved to him that he has landed i n Ithaca, should express h i s joy at returning home by addressing the nymphs, the s p i r i t u a l inhabitants of the i s l a n d : Rejoicing i n h i s land, he kissed the f r u i t f u l earth. Then he immediately l i f t e d his hands and prayed to the nymphs: "Naiads, -14-daughters of Zeus, I thought that I should never see you again. Please now accept my loving prayers." (Od.XIII,354-358) S p i r i t u a l essence i s the i n t r i n s i c r e a l i t y of Homer's world. The " E s s e n t i a l " Connection between the Natural and Supernatural Realms The natural phenomenon i s thus connected to the supernatural through i t s essence, the fundamental, most c h a r a c t e r i s t i c and i n t r i n s i c part of i t s nature. P r e c i s e l y at t h i s point the phenomenon become i r r e -ducible and undefinable, and, hence, mysterious and "open" to the meta-phy s i c a l , s p i r i t u a l dimension. This conception of natural beings profoundly a f f e c t s the port r a y a l of r e a l i t y i n the I l i a d and Odyssey. I t releases the poet from the need to employ " p o e t i c a l " imagery, refined and abstracted from r e a l i t y , since i t endows everything with i t s own i n e f f a b l e , i n c o r r u p t i b l e beauty,—the beauty of i t s undefinable essence, i t s fundamental mystery. In t h i s " e s s e n t i a l i s t " view, natural phenomena are not defined by f i n i t u d e and m a t e r i a l i t y ; p r e c i s e l y i n the most e s s e n t i a l , the most r e a l , portions of t h e i r natures they possess the unlimited depth and dimension, and beauty, of the supernatural."*" Consequently the beauty and vividness of the poet's descriptions increase i n d i r e c t proportion to his concentration upon and success i n conveying the e s s e n t i a l natures of natural phenomena rather than to his p r o f i c i e n c y i n r e f i n i n g or avoiding them. The excellence of his art depends upon his realism, not h i s idealism. In the Homeric view of r e a l i t y , then, everything i s n a t u r a l l y refulgent with beauty. Consequently, the range of the poet's d e s c r i p t i o n i s unlimited. Even the presentation of s i t u a t i o n s that would, i n normal "*" Otto, The Homeric Gods, p. 7. -15-circumstances, be dismissed as quotidian and t r i v i a l s t r i k e s the imagination with i n e x p l i c a b l e charm, or even magnificence, as does the r e l a t i o n of Telemachus' preparations for sleep: He opened the doors of the strongly made room, then sat down on the bed and took o f f h i s soft tunic which he placed i n the hands of the wise old woman. When she had smoothed and folded the tunic and had hung i t up on a peg by the i n l a i d bed she went out of the room, pulled the door shut by i t s s i l v e r handle, and pushed home the bolt by i t s thong. (Od.1,436-442) Under usual circumstances one would expect the concentration upon d e t a i l that appears i n t h i s passage to render an already uninteresting d e s c r i p t i o n even more tedious. Yet the opposite e f f e c t occurs; the emphasis upon d e t a i l s , including things, such as "doors," "room," "bed," " t u n i c , " "peg," "handle," " b o l t , " and "thong;" a t t r i b u t e s , such as "strongly made,""soft," "wise," " i n l a i d , " and " s i l v e r ; " and actions, such as "opened," "sat down," "took o f f , " "placed," "smoothed," "folded," "hung up," "went out," "pulled shut," and "pushed home;" demonstrates not a desire on the part of the poet to achieve maximum mediocrity i n h i s d e s c r i p t i o n , but to capture and convey the essence, and hence the elemental mystery and beauty of the s i t u a t i o n . His e f f o r t s succeed. The picture penetrates the senses to s t i r the imagination; i t has the appearance of a dream. The poet follows the same purpose when he concentrates upon d e t a i l s i n his d e s c r i p t i o n of the "lever du r o i " i n Book II of the I l i a d : He sat up and put on h i s soft tunic, b e a u t i f u l and new, and cast about him his great cloak. Then he bound h i s b e a u t i f u l sandals beneath h i s feet and placed h i s silver-studded sword about h i s shoulders. He grasped the ancestral sceptre, imperishable ever. (42-46) By focusing upon things, a t t r i b u t e s , and actions that might at f i r s t be considered of i n f e r i o r import the poet s t r i v e s to e s t a b l i s h the essence of -16-the scene. He i s thus able to il l u m i n a t e the fundamental beauty and splendour of an occurrence that might otherwise be considered t o t a l l y unremarkable and i n s i g n i f i c a n t . The r i s i n g from bed, even of a king, would not normally be thought of as a s p e c i a l occasion. The poet's conception, however, of the ultimate mystery and e s s e n t i a l beauty of a l l phenomena and h i s a b i l i t y to capture t h i s mystery and beauty combine to exalt everything to the l e v e l of the div i n e . Because the supernatural penetrates the natural order through "essence," nothing within the natural world can ever be t r i v i a l or i r -relevant and, conversely, everything i s meaningful for i t s own sake. The i n t e r e s t that the gods have i n the Trojan War, or i n human h i s t o r y i n general for that matter, derives from no other source than the i r r e d u c i b l e , inexhaustible grandeur and beauty of the essence of the object i t s e l f of t h e i r i n t e r e s t . The mere sight of the Greek and Trojan hosts assembled i n f u l l armour opposite each other, not even f i g h t i n g , i s s u f f i c i e n t to f i l l Athene and Apollo with d e l i g h t : Athene and Apollo of the s i l v e r bow sat down i n the form of vultures on the l o f t y oak of father Zeus of the aegis and took pleasure i n the men whose ranks were s e t t l e d i n close formation, b r i s t l i n g with shields and helmets and spears. (II.VII,58-62) In fact everything i n the Homeric world may be considered "holy." Hence the night may be termed "ambrosial," as i n l i n e 41 of Book X of the I l i a d , while the day and darkness may be c a l l e d "sacred" as in Book XI, l i n e s 84 and 194 r e s p e c t i v e l y . The Homeric Conception of Identity Since essence i s undefinable no phenomenon can have an i d e n t i t y that i s completely f i x e d . It may be outlined or suggested but never defined; everything i s ultimately and, i n the deepest sense of the term, mysterious. -17-This fundamental, inherent i n s c r u t a b i l i t y of i d e n t i t y may p a r t i a l l y explain the r i c h use of epithets i n the Homeric poems. To maintain some p r e c i s i o n i n i d e n t i f i c a t i o n the poet must set the object of consideration within some sort of context by a f f i x i n g a q u a l i f i e r to i t . At the simplest l e v e l the q u a l i f i e r may consist of short, formulaic epithets. Such examples as "swift-footed" A c h i l l e s , " l ong-suffering" Odysseus, "blue-eyed" Athene, "man-slaying" Hector, "far-shooting" Apollo, and "horse-grazing" Argos spring to mind. In t h i s category one may include patronymics, such as "Kronides," "Atreides," and "Tydeides," to mention a few. A l l such epithets serve to place at least some l i m i t a t i o n s on the undefinable i d e n t i t i e s of things animate and inanimate; they l i n k them, no matter how tenuously, to contexts that prevent them from remaining complete enigmas. It should be stressed that t h i s i n t e r p r e t a t i o n provides only a p a r t i a l explanation of the Homeric use of epithets. One may not acquire a f u l l understanding of i t without taking into account the more t e c h n i c a l charac-t e r i s t i c s of o r a l poetry, such as the establishment of formulaic patterns through t r a d i t i o n and exigencies of metre. Such a comprehensive study i s , however, beyond the scope of t h i s discussion. The only point that i s to be emphasized here i s that the poet's frequent and varied use of epithets i s necessitated by his conception of the ultimately undefinable nature of a l l r e a l phenomena, regardless of a l l other reasons. The s i m i l e often represents a type of extended q u a l i f i e r . Homer's similes are notorious for t h e i r apparently inexact comparisons and frequent outright i n c o n g r u i t i e s . They are consequently often condemned as i r r e l e v a n t or even detrimental to the main themes. Close examination of them i n context, however, reveals that they are, i n general, f u n c t i o n a l . For the mistake i s made of expecting them to correspond exactly to t h e i r subjects of comparison -18-which are, i n essence, enigmatic and hence insusceptible to precise comparison. They can only be suggested. To appreciate Homer's similes one must examine them through an aesthetic of impressionism rather than n a t u r a l i s t i c d e s c r i p t i o n ; one must consider the suggestion or impression made by the s i m i l e rather than the accuracy of correspondence between i t and i t s subject. An ar r e s t i n g s i m i l e i s used i n connection with the death of Gorgythion: "He drooped h i s head to one side l i k e a poppy i n a garden, laden with f r u i t and spring r a i n s . So he bowed down to one side his head laden with h i s helmet" (II . VIII, 306 - 308). If the s i m i l e i s considered as a s t r i c t , d e f i n i t i v e comparison then the image of the poppy weighed down with f r u i t and water, i n the prime of l i f e and f e r t i l i t y , clashes with that of the warrior weighed down with death, and the comparison f a i l s . I f , however, one looks f i r s t to the p r i n c i p a l impression created by the s i m i l e , that i s , of a body drooping down and on the verge of collapse, an impression i n t e n s i f i e d by the r i c h , luxuriant q u a l i t i e s associated with the garden, the rains of spring, the poppy, and the water-laden f r u i t , then the whole si m i l e captures i n a s u r p r i s i n g , moving fashion some of the essence of the scene of Gorgythion 1s death. The contrasts between the l i f e - g i v i n g r a i n and death-dealing arrow, the luxuriant plant i n the garden and the dying warrior on the b a t t l e f i e l d serve only to heighten the pathos and strangeness of the scene. The poet has not embarked upon an unwarranted and ta s t e l e s s digression but has sought to suggest an aspect of the sl a y i n g of a warrior which could not otherwise be represented. So an impressionistic painter w i l l use colours and forms not normally associated with a p a r t i c u l a r object to portray some part of i t s essence that would otherwise remain i n -tangible. "The si m i l e catches the temper of the occasion and illuminates i t . " C. M. Bowra, Homer (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1972), p. 64. -19-In Book IV of the Odyssey Menelaus expresses i n a s i m i l e h i s view of the crime of the s u i t o r s and t h e i r i n e v i t a b l e punishment: "To think of i t ! — t h a t these men who are themselves weaklings should r e a l l y want to sleep i n the bed of a lion-hearted man! Just as when a hind puts to sleep her new-born, unweaned fawns i n the wooded l a i r of a mighty l i o n and then ranges over the mountain ridges and grassy v a l l e y s to graze, and then the l i o n comes into his l a i r and i n f l i c t s t e r r i b l e destruction on both of the fawns, so Odysseus w i l l i n f l i c t t e r r i b l e destruction upon those men." (Od.IV,333-340) A d i r e c t , d e t a i l e d correspondence cannot be drawn between the s u i t o r s and the fawns. Not only do the s u i t o r s not share the fawns' helplessness and innocence but they are c e r t a i n l y more than two. The comparison, however, i s more i n d i r e c t ; i t i s drawn between the carnage that the l i o n wreaks upon the fawns and the destruction that Odysseus w i l l bring upon the s u i t o r s . Moreover, there i s no accumulation of inappropriate or i r r e l e v a n t d e t a i l s i n t h i s s i m i l e . The poet fashions i t i n the same, c a r e f u l manner i n which he moulds a l l h i s imagery, heightening and ordering c e r t a i n d e t a i l s that w i l l combine to produce a concentrated, v i v i d impression. He d e l i b e r a t e l y contrives the extreme contrast between the helpless, unwitting fawns and the mighty l i o n i n order to present a picture of utter destruction, which w i l l be automatically associated i n the mind of the reader with the im-pending doom of the s u i t o r s and w i l l add terror and dimension to i t . An aspect of the punishment of the su i t o r s and Odysseus' revenge i s intimated which could not otherwise be expressed. This i s not to suggest that exact correspondence does not e x i s t i n the Homeric s i m i l e s ; obviously i t does. For example the l i o n that Menelaus conjures up i n the passage quoted above i s an i d e a l metaphor for Odysseus. But such correspondence i s usually of secondary importance; a l l that matters ultimately i s the impression that the s i m i l e produces. One might object that, regardless of the aptness of the impression, -20-incongruities of d e t a i l between the s i m i l e and i t s subject must s t i l l mar the poem. In adopting t h i s p o s i t i o n one presupposes that the subject of comparison i s already well enough defined that the comparison i t s e l f must be subordinate to and governed by the pre-existent d e f i n i t i o n . Nothing, however, i n Homer's world i s ever ultimately defined; i t can only be intimated and so the simile's prime function i s not to elaborate upon the subject of comparison but to q u a l i f y and l i m i t i t through suggestion. The undefined subject of comparison must be subordinated to and governed by the s i m i l e so that i t s impression may dominate the reader's mind. The s i m i l e determines some part of i t s subject's nature that would remain unknown without some such q u a l i f i c a t i o n . T h u s e v a l u a t i o n of the a r t i s t i c q u a l i t y of a s i m i l e should not be based upon the symmetry between the simile and i t s subject but the success of the former at sharpening and deepening an impression of the l a t t e r . The impressionistic p o r t r a y a l of s i t u a t i o n s of superior moment e n t a i l s even greater incongruities of d e t a i l between similes and t h e i r subjects. For such a portrayal requires an i n t e n s i f i c a t i o n of the impression that i n turn necessitates an augmentation of the use of the s i m i l e , both i n number and variety."'" The marshalling and advance into b a t t l e of the Achaean host has outstanding s i g n i f i c a n c e both as a spectacle and as an incident i n the development of the story of the I l i a d . The poet attempts to capture and convey the exceptional import of t h i s scene through a sequence of three similes that compare the f l a s h i n g of the army's bronze armour with a great forest f i r e (II. I I , 455 - 458) and the numbers and noise of the host with 2 flocks of birds and swarms of f l i e s (459 - 473). These nonhuman e n t i t i e s 1 Ibid., p. 65. 2 I b i d . -21-might seem to have l i t t l e i n common with a m a r t i a l host i n t h e i r p a r t i c u l a r s . In t h e i r essences, however, i n t h e i r fundamental r e a l i t i e s , the modes of being that they represent, they r e f l e c t d i f f e r e n t aspects of the essence of the scene of the advancing army."'" F i r e , flocks of b i r d s , and swarms of f l i e s each suggest fundamental t r a i t s of the r e a l i t y of the marching mass of warriors. Any one of them would s u f f i c e to suggest to a l i m i t e d degree t h i s r e a l i t y . In combination they illuminate i t even more, i n a degree appropriate to i t s s i g n i f i c a n c e . The r e s u l t of t h e i r a s s o c i a t i o n i s not a random sequence of b i z a r r e , discordant correspondences but an impressionistic picture of great splendour and import. T h e o r e t i c a l l y , any number and v a r i e t y of analogies could be applied to a phenomenon to suggest d i f f e r e n t asepcts of i t s essence and so, e s s e n t i a l l y , to mould i t s i d e n t i t y . The fundamental mystery and even amorphism of essence produce a f l e x i b i l i t y of i d e n t i t y that i s expressed i n the mutations and metamorphoses of the Odyssey and I l i a d . The gods, of course, as pure s p i r i t s can take on any forms they l i k e . Even when they do seem to manifest themselves without disguise they are generally only described as resembling a p a r t i c u l a r form. When Athene reveals her true i d e n t i t y to Odysseus shortly a f t e r h i s return to Ithaca she only "seems i n form l i k e a woman b e a u t i f u l , t a l l , and highly s k i l l e d " (Od. XIII, 288 - 289). The appearance of men changes as w e l l , on a much smaller scale, under varying circumstances. In the Odyssey Athene e a s i l y transforms Odysseus' aspect according to the demands of each s i t u a t i o n . She may d i s f i g u r e him with ugliness and old age to permit him to carry out his designs unimpeded under disguise, as in Books XIII and XVI, or she may r e f i n e and improve hi s f i g u r e to reveal h i s true i d e n t i t y and to win him admiration, as i n Books VI, XVI, and XXIII. In the l a s t instance, i n f a c t , Paolo Vivante, The Homeric Imagination (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1970), p. 85. -22-the goddess has to enhance his appearance i n order that Penelope may recognize him. He explains the m a l l e a b i l i t y of h i s form to Telemachus i n Book XVI: "Athene makes of me what she wishes — f o r she has the power. At one time she causes me to resemble a beggar, but at another a young man with b e a u t i f u l clothes upon hi s skin. It i s easy for the gods who own the broad heaven both to g l o r i f y and to abase a mortal man." (Od.XVI,208-212) Nor are his disguises l i m i t e d to externals. He adopts as well a persona suitable f o r each s i t u a t i o n ; hence the f a n t a s t i c yarns about h i s adventurous past that he spins out to Athene, Eumaeus, the s u i t o r s , and Penelope. Indeed i t sometimes becomes d i f f i c u l t for the reader to d i s t i n g u i s h between the falsehood and truth of h i s s t o r i e s and to discern his r e a l i d e n t i t y . Elsewhere i n the Odyssey Penelope and the men i n Eurylochus' scouting party also undergo changes i n varying degrees. Athene b e a u t i f i e s Penelope i n Book XVIII to ensnare further the s u i t o r s . Circe changes Eurylochus 1 twenty-two companions into swine — a n d back to men again. Whatever symbolic s i g n i f i c a n c e the l a t t e r instance may import the easy transmutation that occurs demonstrates the unfixed nature of i d e n t i t y that appears i n an " e s s e n t i a l i s t " view of r e a l i t y . In the I l i a d Agamemnon and Hector possess t h i s f l e x i b i l i t y of i d e n t i t y . Agamemnon, as an i n d i v i d u a l among other men, often appears weak and petulant and not at a l l extraordinary; yet when he acts i n his s o c i a l function as king of the Greeks the appropriate power and glory are ascribed to him, as i n the de s c r i p t i o n of the marshalling of the host i n Book I I : Among them was lo r d Agamemnon, i n eyes and head l i k e thunder-loving Zeus, i n waist l i k e Ares, i n breast l i k e Poseidon. Like a b u l l that i s greatly pre-eminent over a l l i n the herd, since -23-he i s distinguished among the gathered c a t t l e , such did Zeus make Agamemnon that day, so that he was outstanding i n the multitude and supreme among heroes. (11.11,477-483) Agamemnon here acquires the proportions of a god and, as before, the change i s due to d i v i n e influence. (The prestige attendant upon royalty i s also manifested i n the Odyssey, i n which Nausicaa describes her father seated on h i s throne: "and there he s i t s drinking h i s wine l i k e a god" (VI, 309)). Hector, too, though by nature a great warrior, i s exalted while f i g h t i n g under div i n e influence. When Zeus has strengthened the Trojans to rout the Achaeans his aspect i s supernaturally al t e r e d to i n s p i r e fear: "He had the eyes of the Gorgon and of Ares, bane of mortals" (II. VIII, 349). In the f i g h t i n g near the ships i n Book XV h i s b a t t l e fury gives him an even more t e r r i f y i n g appearance: He was raging l i k e Ares, or as when destroying f i r e rages i n the mountains, i n the thickets of the deep f o r e s t . Foam appeared around hi s mouth, and h i s eyes blazed beneath his grim brows. His helmet shook t e r r i b l y about hi s temples as he fought. (II.XV,605-610) The characters of the I l i a d , as of the Odyssey, possess i d e n t i t i e s which are, i n essence, unfixed. In the view of the Homeric heroes one of the most important a t t r i b u t e s of i d e n t i t y i s glory. Since i t , l i k e the rest of i d e n t i t y , i s not inherently f i x e d , i t must be established externally. It i s , i n f a c t , the conception of one's glory held by other men, that i s , one's fame or renown. Thus the Greek word for fame, "kleos," represents glory as w e l l . The close dependence of personal glory and s e l f worth upon fame i s r e f l e c t e d i n the heroes' ardent pursuit of i t . Hector designates i t s a c q u i s i t i o n as a major motivation behind h i s p a r t i c i p a t i o n i n warfare: "I have learnt ever to be brave and to f i g h t i n the front ranks of the -24-Trojans to gain the great renown of my father, and my own" ( I I . VI, 444 - 446). So valuable does A c h i l l e s consider t h i s ornament that he prefers an abbreviated l i f e to a long one without i t . He c i t e s the early death of Heracles as a precedent for his own; "so I, too, i f a s i m i l a r fate has been fashioned for me, s h a l l f a l l i n death; but now I would win glorious renown" (II . XVIII, 120 - 121). The Homeric heroes seek to assert and, i f possible, to enhance t h e i r fame and glory mainly through s i x external standards of personal worth: genealogy, s o c i a l status, heroism, div i n e i n t e r e s t , wisdom, and wealth. They are i n t e r -related; divine i n t e r e s t and wealth i n p a r t i c u l a r often appear to be d e r i v a t i v e from the other four q u a l i f i c a t i o n s . Most of the heroes possess a l l s i x of these v i r t u e s i n varying degrees. They gain p a r t i c u l a r d i s -t i n c t i o n from only a few. The importance that the heroes place upon t h e i r family connections has already been noted i n t h e i r frequent use of patronymics. Those des-cended from gods and outstanding heroes are assigned commensurate glory. A c h i l l e s , for instance, i s a d i r e c t descendent of Zeus and the son of a goddess, and so vaunts h i s s u p e r i o r i t y over the f a l l e n Asteropaeus, who could name only the River Axius, h i s grandfather, as an immortal ancestor: "The man who begot me was...Peleus, son of Aeacus, and Aeacus was the o f f s p r i n g of Zeus. Therefore, as Zeus i s mightier than the r i v e r s that flow to the sea, so i s the race of Zeus mightier than that of a r i v e r . " (II.XXI,188-191) Aeneas, before b a t t l i n g A c h i l l e s i n Book XX of the I l i a d , takes great pains in t r a c i n g h i s descent from Aphrodite and Zeus to prove his worth. Usually, in f a c t , the assertion of one's i d e n t i t y takes precedence over a l l else. Tlepolemus seeks to e s t a b l i s h his s u p e r i o r i t y over Sarpedon through comparison of genealogies: -25-"They l i e who say that you are the o f f s p r i n g of Zeus of the aegis since you f a l l f a r short of those men who were born of Zeus i n the time of the men of old. Of a d i f f e r e n t kind, men say, was the might of Heracles, my father, bravely steadfast, lion-hearted, who once came here a f t e r the horses of Laomedon with only s i x ships and very few men and sacked the c i t y of Ilium." (II.V,635-642) Diomedes, son of Tydeus, must f i n d h i s father's reputation burdensome at times, for he i s expected and constantly exhorted to equal h i s matchless deeds, as when the Greeks enter b a t t l e i n Book IV. Yet he does not fear to invoke h i s lineage and expects to be held by the gods i n the same honour as h i s father; so he prays to Athene: " I f ever you thought well of my father and stood by him i n t e r r i b l e war, favour me now also, Athene" (II. V, 116 - 117). If one extends the q u a l i f i c a t i o n of genealogy to include a l l family connections then one may mention the case of Menelaus as w e l l . The Greeks undertake the Trojan expedition on h i s behalf because he i s the brother of the High King, Agamemnon, and the husband of Helen, daughter of Zeus. His marriage to Helen also assures him of a p r i v i l e g e d fate: t r a n s l a t i o n to Elysium and immortality (Od. IV, 561 - 569). Few of the p r i n c i p a l heroes i n the I l i a d can claim outstanding d i s -t i n c t i o n f o r t h e i r s o c i a l status; as kings they are more or le s s of equal rank. Agamemnon i s an exception, though, as supreme Lord of the Greeks. His primacy i s based upon his superior natural n o b i l i t y and p o l i t i c a l power, as the reference to him i n the catalogue of ships i n d i c a t e s : "With him followed the most and noblest people. In t h e i r midst he put on the f l a s h i n g bronze, exulting, pre-eminent among a l l the heroes, because he was the noblest and led by f a r the most men" ( I I . I I , 577 - 580). So i n Book IX Agamemnon claims as his due the respect of A c h i l l e s , a f t e r he has made the o f f e r of l a v i s h g i f t s of appeasement: "Let him submit to me, since I am more royal and claim to be the elder i n age" (160 - 161). Hector -26-and Priam may also claim d i s t i n c t i o n as, r e s p e c t i v e l y , the crown prince and general of the Trojans, and the Trojan King. Many of the Greeks and Trojans acquire glory through t h e i r heroic deeds. Indeed heroism o f f e r s a greater p o s s i b i l i t y for advance-ment than any other heroic q u a l i f i c a t i o n , apart from the a c q u i s i t i o n of wealth. Hector occasionally gives indications that he f i g h t s as much to increase h i s own glory as to defend Troy; such i s the implication of h i s address to the Trojans a f t e r they have driven the Greeks behind t h e i r barricade and appear to have v i c t o r y within t h e i r grasp: "Would that I would be immortal and ageless forever, that I would be honoured as Athene and Apollo are honoured, as now t h i s day brings i l l to the Argives" (II. VIII, 538 - 541). He d e s i r e s , i n e f f e c t , the stature of a god for h i s triumph over the Achaeans. A c h i l l e s bases his claim to preeminence on his prowess. When he considers himself dishonoured before the Greek host he conceives the disrespect to be ingratitude for h i s f i g h t i n g a b i l i t y and so departs from the army, refusing to return at any p r i c e : "I think that neither Agamemnon, son of Atreus, nor the rest of the Danaans s h a l l sway me since there were no thanks for f i g h t i n g ever r e l e n t l e s s l y against h o s t i l e men" (II. IX, 315 - 317). In f a c t , A c h i l l e s and Agamemnon quarrel and refuse to y i e l d to each other because they adduce d i f f e r e n t values to prove t h e i r worth. Nestor, i n his attempt to r e c o n c i l e the two, also t r i e s to harmonize t h e i r d i f f e r e n t claims to d i s t i n c t i o n . He f i r s t addresses A c h i l l e s : "Though you are stronger and the mother who bore you was a goddess, s t i l l , t h i s man i s superior since he rules over more people. But you, son of Atreus, r e s t r a i n your vehemence. In f a c t , I entreat you to put away your anger against A c h i l l e s who i s a great defence for the Achaeans against e v i l war." (11.1,280-284) Both Telemachus and Odysseus must resort to heroic action to prove t h e i r i d e n t i t i e s i n the Odyssey. Telemachus, as Athene f i r s t finds him i n -27-Book I, i s helpless and i n s i g n i f i c a n t within h i s father's own house; he i s not even sure whether Odysseus i s h i s father: "My mother says that I am h i s son, but I am not sure. For no one has yet been c e r t a i n about his own descent" (215 - 216). He must s t r i v e throughout the Odyssey to e s t a b l i s h h i s true i d e n t i t y and heroic pedigree. Odysseus, too, must continually prove himself. He must t o i l to return to Ithaca from Troy and once there he must f i g h t again to regain his throne. The heroic action of Telemachus and Odysseus i s ultimately the measure of t h e i r heroic status and the j u s t i f i c a t i o n of t h e i r ranks as King and Prince of Ithaca and as husband and son of Penelope. The hero's prowess may i t s e l f be measured by the magnitude of the obstacles he encounters. In b a t t l e , the number of men s l a i n and the prominence of the opponents, the quantity and q u a l i t y , as i t were, of the enemy, gauge the i n d i v i d u a l ' s heroism. A c h i l l e s and Diomedes are two of the greatest heroes because they slay the enemy i n large numbers and contend with the chief warriors of the foe and even with gods, such as Scamander, or Xanthus, Apollo, Ares, and Aphrodite. I r o n i c a l l y A c h i l l e s himself considers i t no honour to f i g h t with a r i v e r , even one possessed of such a mighty d i v i n i t y as the Scamander. In complaining to Zeus of the ignominy of perishing i n a r i v e r he defines the conditions of death that he considers appropriate to h i s own glory: "Would that Hector had s l a i n me, since he i s the best of the men brought up here. Then would a brave man have s l a i n me, and a brave man would he have s l a i n . But i t was ordained that I should now be overwhelmed by a wretched death, trapped i n a great r i v e r l i k e a swineherd boy whom a winter torrent swept away as he was crossing i t . " (IL.XXI,279-283) In the Odyssey Odysseus' greatness i s measured by the p e r i l and magnitude of his adventures, such as his journeys to H e l l and through S c y l l a and -28-Charybdis, h i s v i c t o r y over the Cyclops, h i s endurance of the elements and i n t o l e r a b l e s i t u a t i o n s i n general. Of course, a man's heroism may also be judged by h i s a b i l i t y to overcome the obstacles and dangers he meets, that i s , to survive. The greater the hero, the greater w i l l be the i n t e r e s t the gods show for him.''" So A c h i l l e s , Diomedes, and Odysseus are constantly attended by Athene while Apollo protects and helps Hector, and Aphrodite and Apollo, and even Poseidon watch over Aeneas. Zeus, more i n d i r e c t l y , to be sure, honours the outstanding heroes of the I l i a d , such as A c h i l l e s and Hector, who have cen t r a l importance i n the story, and Odysseus, the cent r a l f i g u r e of the Odyssey. Wisdom, e s p e c i a l l y i n counsel, i s greatly admired by the Achaeans. Nestor and Odysseus a t t a i n pre-eminence for i t . In Book II of the I l i a d the l a t t e r b r i l l i a n t l y demonstrates h i s powers of organization and per-suasion when he prevents the Achaeans from f l e e i n g Troy and encourages them to continue f i g h t i n g . In p a r t i c u l a r , h i s humiliation of Thersites acquires the proportions of a fable representing the triumph of " r i g h t " over "wrong" thinking. His use of the ro y a l sceptre to beat Thersites has p a r t i c u l a r symbolic import. The Achaeans show proper approval: "In truth, Odysseus has excelled on countless occasions at i n i t i a t i n g good plans and preparing war. But now t h i s deed i s by far the best thing that he has done among the Argives; - he has stopped t h i s abusive slanderer from ranting." (11.11,272-275). Nestor, whose counsel frequently helps the Greek leaders to regain control of unstable s i t u a t i o n s , receives the s p e c i a l commendation of Agamemnon: "To be sure, old man, you have again outshone the sons of the Achaeans i n the co u n c i l . Father Zeus, Athene, and Apollo, would that I had ten such counsellors among the Achaeans! Then soon would the c i t y of lord Priam have f a l l e n , taken and sacked under our hands." (11.11,370-374) 1 G. M. A. Grube, "The Gods of Homer," Phoenix V (1951): 62-78. -29-In the Odyssey Odysseus must depend upon his wits as much as h i s courage to survive and triumph. I t i s no doubt h i s peculiar combination of heroism and i n t e l l i g e n c e that so endears him to Athene and makes him one of the outstanding Homeric characters. F i n a l l y , the Homeric heroes also measure t h e i r glory by t h e i r wealth. Menelaus, recognizing the prestige and glory imparted by affluence, made deliberate e f f o r t s to secure wealth even before returning home from Troy, as he t e l l s Telemachus and P e i s i s t r a t u s : "Few men, i f any, can r i v a l me i n wealth. For I suffered much and t r a v e l l e d widely to bring i t home i n my ships, and I did not a r r i v e u n t i l the eighth year" (Od. IV, 80 - 82). His prosperity i s r e f l e c t e d i n the splendour of h i s palace which seems to r i v a l the very home of the gods for opulence, as Telemachus remarks to P e i s i s t r a t u s : "Behold... the gleam of bronze through the echoing h a l l s and the l u s t r e of gold and amber and s i l v e r and ivory! The court of Zeus must be l i k e t h i s inside so great i s the inexpressible splendour of the place! The sight of i t f i l l s me with awe." (Od.IV,71-75) Odysseus' reinstatement as king i n Ithaca would be incomplete without accompanying ri c h e s , and so Zeus ordains that the Phaeacians supply him l i b e r a l l y with them (Od. V, 37 - 40). Agamemnon's rank as High King of the Greeks i s also appropriately matched by the abundance of h i s wealth. The Homeric characters consider that q u a l i t y and quantity of g i f t s represent the worth both of the d i s t r i b u t o r and the receiver. So Agamemnon seeks to appease A c h i l l e s with l a v i s h presents as well as to demonstrate his own greatness and magnanimity. A c h i l l e s honours both the dead Patroclus and those attending h i s funeral with c o s t l y prizes for the funeral games, thus manifesting at the same time his own l i b e r a l i t y . The Phaeacians endow -30-Odysseus on two separate occasions. In the f i r s t instance, i n Book VIII of the Odyssey, they make the presentation of g i f t s as much to acknowledge his esteem of them for t h e i r dancing as t h e i r respect for him a f t e r h i s v i c t o r y i n t h e i r games. They honour him for the second time i n Book XIII to show t h e i r increased admiration for him a f t e r he has revealed more of h i s heroic character i n his account of h i s glorious deeds and wisdom. Odysseus accepts them a l l quite n a t u r a l l y as i f they were h i s due. One may include i n t h i s category of veneration the sumptuous offerings that the Homeric characters make to the gods to demonstrate t h e i r reverence and t h e i r own worth and worthiness of divine patronage. If one subsumes armour under the general heading of "wealth," then the magnificence of a man's arms may also r e f l e c t h i s excellence. At any rate the dazzling appearance of Agamemnon's armour, described near the beginning of Book XI, i s s u f f i c i e n t to e l i c i t the approval of Athene and Hera themselves, who act, along with Zeus, as h i s patron d e i t i e s : "the bronze shone from him far into heaven, and Athene and Hera thundered at the sight to honour the king of Mycene, r i c h i n gold" (44 - 46). A c h i l l e s ' armour, too, i s a measure of the greatness of the man. His f i r s t s u i t of armour holds supernatural powers that bring glory and dis a s t e r to Patroclus and Hector, while h i s second has such divine p e r f e c t i o n and beauty that i t enhances his valour and prowess i n the f i n a l great b a t t l e of the I l i a d . Such are the main, external standards that may indic a t e the true i d e n t i t y of a man. There are others of less importance. One may mention for instance the magnificence of the funeral that a man receives. The outstanding heroes such as Patroclus, Hector, and l a t e r , A c h i l l e s , a l l receive elaborate b u r i a l r i t e s on an enormous scale. Ignominious death without proper b u r i a l i s accordingly judged to be a great outrage, as A c h i l l e s ' ghost implies when he speaks to the shade of Agamemnon: -31-"Would that you had enjoyed your share of honour due to your rank and had met your death and doom i n the land of the Trojans! Then would the Panachaeans have made your grave, and you would have won great glory for your son to i n h e r i t . But at the time i t was ordained that you be overwhelmed by a most p i t i f u l death." (Od.XXIV,30-34) In the face of a n n i h i l a t i o n a man's funeral provides the l a s t opportunity to his friends to measure his worth and f i x him i n the memory of future generations. The splendour of A c h i l l e s ' funeral guarantees him immortal fame, as Agamemnon's ghost informs him: "So, i n dying, you did not lose your renown, but your glory w i l l be admired by a l l men forever, A c h i l l e s " (Od. XXIV, 93 - 94). The ultimately unfixed nature of human i d e n t i t y compels Homeric men to place great value upon external i d e n t i f i c a t i o n . The catalogue of ships i n the second book of the I l i a d does not appear i n the poem as mere ornamentation. It i s e n t i r e l y necessary for the i d e n t i f i c a t i o n of the Greeks and Trojans, and p a r t i c u l a r l y t h e i r leaders, p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the war. The scene i n Book III i n which Priam and Helen discuss and i d e n t i f y some of the p r i n c i p a l Achaean heroes serves a s i m i l a r function. They not only name the i n d i v i d u a l warriors but provide e s s e n t i a l i n -formation about t h e i r characters and backgrounds. Most importantly, t h e i r descriptions of the men as well as the wonder and i n t e r e s t they show for them fur n i s h objective standards of measurement for t h e i r heroic stature; they provide "objective c o r r e l a t i v e s " for the assessment of the heroes' characters. Priam's and Helen's discussion of Odysseus i s representative: Seeing Odysseus next the old man i n q u i r e d , " T e l l me now als o , dear c h i l d , who t h i s man may be. He i s shorter than Agamemnon, the son of Atreus, by a head, but he appears broader i n the shoulders and chest. His armour l i e s on the -32-bounteous earth but he goes l i k e a ram through the ranks of men. I should l i k e n him to a young ram thick of fl e e c e who ranges through a great f l o c k of white sheep." Then Helen, o f f s p r i n g of Zeus, r e p l i e d to him, "This man i s the son of Laertes, Odysseus of many wiles, who was rai s e d i n the land of Ithaca, though i t i s a rocky place, and who knows stratagems of every kind and profound counsels." (11.111,191-202) As i t has been noted, i n the b a t t l e scenes the heroes are often ready to i d e n t i f y themselves i n d e t a i l to t h e i r foes while t h e i r c u r i o s i t y about t h e i r opponents' backgrounds occasionally exceeds t h e i r pugnacity. Such an exchange of i d e n t i f i c a t i o n occurs i n Book VI of the I l i a d i n the encounter between Diomedes and Glaucus. Glaucus i n p a r t i c u l a r , at Diomedes' request, recounts h i s genealogy i n great d e t a i l , with the r e s u l t that Diomedes recognizes between them bonds of friendship dating from t h e i r grandfathers' days, bonds strong enough to overrule t h e i r enmity: "Therefore I am now a close guest-friend of yours i n the heart of Argos and you are mine in Lycia whenever I come to the land of the people there. So l e t us shun each other's spears, even i n the thick of the f i g h t i n g . " (II.VI,224-226) Glaucus' meticulous d e l i n e a t i o n of h i s ancestry and Diomedes' assertion that he and an enemy should be bound by an a l l i a n c e made two generations before both demonstrate the Homeric hero's desire to e s t a b l i s h f i r m l y i n an external context h i s otherwise undefinable i d e n t i t y . This desire i s further manifested i n Diomedes' insistence that they renew t h e i r ancestral friendship not merely with words but with concrete, objective action: "Let us exchange armour with each other i n order that these men may also know that we claim to be ancestral guest-friends" (230 - 231). Of course, i n th i s instance, Diomedes' asseverations of friendship may be somewhat obreptitious. The prospect of obtaining Glaucus' golden armour would no doubt render amiable h i s most h o s t i l e enemy. Nevertheless Glaucus' -33-acceptance of Diomedes' claims demonstrates the seriousness with which the Homeric hero regarded ancestral l i n k s . He viewed h i s lineage as a concrete dimension of h i s i d e n t i t y . I d e n t i f i c a t i o n and recognition have s i m i l a r importance i n the Odyssey. Before anyone can accept him and treat him as he deserves, Odysseus must fur n i s h proof of his i d e n t i t y . Athene must embellish and r e f i n e h i s appearance to reveal h i s true, heroic stature and glory to Nausicaa, Telemachus, and Penelope. Before the Phaeacians can properly esteem him he must demonstrate h i s s k i l l at a t h l e t i c s and provide a lengthy and de t a i l e d account of h i s background, including a l l h i s adventures from the time he l e f t Troy. In e f f e c t h i s h i s t o r y serves as a symbol of h i s i d e n t i t y and the Phaeacians can wholly honour him only when they see the whole symbol. S i m i l a r l y E u r y c l e i a , P h i l o e t i u s , and Phemius only recognize him when they can perceive and f e e l the scar on his l e g , which has i t s e l f a h i s t o r y that the poet i s c a r e f u l to r e l a t e i n f u l l d e t a i l . Neither Penelope nor Laertes can completely accept h i s claims u n t i l he displays knowledge of c e r t a i n intimate domestic information with which only he could be acquainted. Throughout the story Odysseus must take great pains to e s t a b l i s h h i s i d e n t i t y . The Supernatural Depth and Meaning of Natural Phenomena The Homeric conception of the fundamentally supernatural, s p i r i t u a l nature of r e a l i t y influences the physical imagery of the poems to the extent that i t quite often takes on symbolic, s p i r i t u a l s i g n i f i c a n c e . Usually such imagery serves not only to describe a s i t u a t i o n , but to suggest i t s s p i r i t and mood. Sympathetic portents function most e f f e c t i v e l y to t h i s end. The darkness with which Ares shrouds the b a t t l e i n Book V of the I l i a d aptly suggests the fury of the Trojans as well as the te r r o r -34-and confusion of the f i g h t i n g : "They bore the might of t h e i r hands st r a i g h t forward. Furious Ares, ranging everywhere, shrouded the b a t t l e a l l around with night to help the Trojans" ( I I . V, 506 - 508). The darkness that Zeus sends upon the b a t t l e for Sarpedon's corpse also indicates and heightens the horror and importance of the issue, and even the god's own g r i e f : When the Trojans and Lycians, and Myrmidons and Achaeans had strengthened t h e i r ranks on both sides, they clashed to contend over the l i f e l e s s corpse and shouted t e r r i b l y , and the armour of the men rang loudly. Zeus stretched e v i l night over the mighty b a t t l e i n order that the t o i l of the f i g h t i n g for his dear son should be deadly. (II.XVI,563-568) The portent of darkness also suggests i n d i r e c t l y the greatness of the hero over whom the s t r i f e i s wrought; so too the b a t t l e over Patroclus' body i n Book XVII i s accompanied by the same awesome obscurity. The prodigy that occurs before the b a t t l e i n Book XI v i v i d l y portends i t s horror and destruction: "The son of Cronos roused an e v i l din among them and sent down from high heaven a dew dripping with blood, because he intended to send f o r t h many mighty heads to Hades" (II. XI, 52 - 55). Theoclymenus' t e r r i b l e v i s i o n i n Book XX of the Odyssey has a s i m i l a r l y ominous nature: "Ah, wretches, what i s t h i s horror that you are suffering? Your heads and faces above and knees beneath are shrouded with darkness, lamentation has burst out, cheeks are wet with tears, the walls and b e a u t i f u l alcoves have been spattered with blood, the porch i s f u l l of ghosts - the court i s f u l l of them - they are hastening to Erebus under darkness, the sun has perished from the sky, a h o r r i b l e mist has spread over a l l ! " (Od.XX,351-357) Such portents draw t h e i r impressive power not so much from t h e i r d epiction of the future as from t h e i r r e v e l a t i o n of the moral and s p i r i t u a l contexts of s i t u a t i o n s . At the time of Theoclymenus' v i s i o n the mean, f r i v o l o u s -35-behaviour of the su i t o r s and the apparent helplessness and abjection of Odysseus, Telemachus, and Penelope before t h e i r b u l l y i n g insolence threaten to submerge the n a r r a t i v e i n mediocrity. The true dimensions of the s u i t o r s ' s a c r i l e g i o u s i n i q u i t y and t h e i r corresponding g u i l t , as well as the power and glory of the Ithacan royal house, have become obscured. The sudden, h o r r i f i c f l a s h of i n s p i r a t i o n experienced by Theoclymenus and the s u i t o r s throws the whole s i t u a t i o n i n Ithaca into sharp r e l i e f , a g a i n s t i t s supernatural context and so exposes the r e a l s i g n i f i c a n c e of what i s happening. The s u i t o r s ' arrogance and the r o y a l family's humiliation do i n fact constitute i n the larger scheme of things a grave moral offence that requires c o r r e c t i o n of equal g r a v i t y , on the l e v e l of tragedy. Through t h i s momentary i l l u m i n a t i o n the poet r e c t i f i e s the reader's perspective on the story. For the portents i n h i s poetry do not serve merely to enhance incidents i n the natural order; the concept of the "pathetic f a l l a c y " would probably be foreign to him. He employed them to reveal the r e a l meaning of events, which was, for him, s p i r i t u a l and moral. Conclusion The supernatural profoundly influences the natural order i n Homer's world. It governs i t , s p i r i t u a l i z e s i t , and provides i t with meaning. It adds dimension to i t ; i t imbues i t with grandeur and magnificence and exalts i t out of mediocrity to the l e v e l of tragedy. In f a c t , Homer's representation of the natural world can only be understood i n i t s super-natural context. -36-CHAPTER II THE NATURE OF THE SUPERNATURAL S p i r i t and Essence The supernatural i s portrayed i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey as a d u a l i t y . It consists, i n the t r a d i t i o n a l sense, of a s p i r i t u a l realm, as opposed to the purely material order of the natural world. As such, however, i t i s not divorced from the world of material things; i t e x i s t s also as the o r i g i n a l , hypostatic r e a l i t y that animates and governs the natural order. Its v i t a l power i s c l e a r l y manifested i n the generative, and for that matter, degenerative influence that the gods exert upon natural phenomena. The love-making of Zeus and Hera induces the e f f l o r e -scence of the earth: "Beneath them the glorious earth sent f o r t h fresh sprouting grass, dewy lotus , crocus, and hyacinth, thick and s o f t , that held them above the ground" (II. XIV, 347 - 349). The sea and i t s creatures respond vigorously to the presence of Poseidon, t h e i r informing s p i r i t : "On a l l sides beneath him gambolled the monsters of the sea from t h e i r depths, and they did not f a i l to recognize t h e i r l o r d ; and the sea opened for him i n i t s joy" (II. XIII, 27 - 29). The gods have also the power to invigorate and heal men, and conversely, to d e b i l i t a t e and i n f l i c t sickness and death upon them, as the Achaeans discover to t h e i r chagrin when they s l i g h t the p r i e s t of Apollo i n Book I of the I l i a d . In general t h i s o r i g i n a l r e a l i t y i s seen to penetrate the natural order through essence, the absolute, undefinable, and hence mysterious being that i s the most c h a r a c t e r i s t i c property of every natural phenomenon and by which that phenomenon subsists. Since no d i s c o n t i n u i t y occurs i n the t r a n s i t i o n from physical existence through essence to the s p i r i t u a l -37-realm, every natural e n t i t y i s perceived to be connected with a s p i r i t u a l e n t i t y , while every supernatural being i s endowed with " e s s e n t i a l " q u a l i t i e s i n addition to i t s fundamentally s p i r i t u a l nature. No supernatural e n t i t y may be reduced either to an unencumbered, f r e e -f l o a t i n g s p i r i t or to a mere a l l e g o r i z a t i o n of natural phenomena.'*" In the supernatural s p i r i t and essence are fused inseparably together. This d u a l i t y constitutes the higher, archetypal, hypostatic r e a l i t y of which'the forms i n the natural order are but the imperfect, p h y s i c a l expressions. The material connection of the supernatural greatly f a c i l i t a t e s the depiction of i t . As a purely s p i r i t u a l realm i t would not be susceptible to d e s c r i p t i o n . Due, however, to i t s o r i g i n a l , hypostatic r e l a t i o n to the natural order, the natures of i t s e n t i t i e s may be deduced from t h e i r imperfect representations i n the natural world. To be sure, the supernatural realm of the I l i a d and Odyssey i s structured l a r g e l y according to t r a d i t i o n a l mythology. The references to the Olympic pantheon, the subjugated Titans, the myriad of pantheistic d i v i n i t i e s associated with natural phenomena, as well as the metaphysical extensions of heaven, earth, and h e l l , a l l correspond to the system expounded i n Hesiod's Theogony. Even these t r a d i t i o n a l forms, however, must have been inf e r r e d o r i g i n a l l y from natural e n t i t i e s , and the p r a c t i c e i s continued i n the I l i a d and Odyssey. Even i n i t s fundamental forms the supernatural r e f l e c t s the natural world. The l i m i t a t i o n and d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n of d i v i n e powers correspond to the f i n i t u d e and v a r i e t y of natural e n t i t i e s . The immortality of the gods i s p a r t l y r e f l e c t e d i n the permanence of most 1 George Grote, Greece, v o l . 1 (New York: Peter Fenelon C o l l i e r , 1899), p.2. -38-phenomena - i f not i n p a r t i c u l a r s , then at least i n types - within human experience. Superior power and control over human a f f a i r s i s ascribed to them p a r t l y i n accordance with the fundamental human experience of forces i n nature that exceed men's strength and influence human destiny."'" The natures of physical phenomena are matched, to some extent, by the characters of the d i v i n i t i e s associated with them; love and war and t h e i r counterparts, Aphrodite and Ares, are cases i n point. Most conscious supernatural beings share i n p a r t i c u l a r the human, personal q u a l i t i e s , both i n d i v i d u a l and s o c i a l , of men. The gods eat and drink, a l b e i t ambrosia; they sleep; they display emotions such as love, hatred, anger, and envy; they f e e l pain and pleasure; they may be wounded and healed; they laugh, rage, and quarrel; they think and express themselves i n human terms; and they bear human form and dress. Although they can transport themselves with superhuman swiftness, they s t i l l frequently t r a v e l with the slower human g a i t , whether walking or running. On the s o c i a l l e v e l they hold councils and feasts. They are fascinated by war. Their s o c i a l structure, as Nilsson has observed, c l o s e l y resembles that of the human ar i s t o c r a c y portrayed i n the I l i a d 2 and Odyssey. It consists of a high king holding an inhe r i t e d suzerainty over a group of self-seeking, contumacious, but ultimately d e f e r e n t i a l princes. Moreover the arrangement of the gods' dwellings on Olympus mirrors the t y p i c a l s e t t i n g of a r i s t o c r a t i c homes at the beginning of the h i s t o r i c a l age i n Greece and i n e a r l i e r Mycenaean times. Just as "*" C. H. Whitman, Homer and the Heroic T r a d i t i o n (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1958), pp. 227-229. 2 M. P. Nilsson, Homer and Mycenae (New York: Cooper Square Publishers, Inc., 1968), pp. 268-271. -39-the king's palace was situated on the acropolis and surrounded by the houses of his r e t a i n e r s , so Zeus's palace stands on the topmost peak of Olympus above the e n c i r c l i n g homes of the l e s s e r gods.'*" In fact the gods, and p a r t i c u l a r l y the Olympians, represent the supernatural archetype of humanity i n form, nature, s o c i a l organization, and even se t t i n g . In i t s " e s s e n t i a l " aspects the supernatural p a r a l l e l s the natural order. S p i r i t and essence are combined i n d i f f e r e n t proportions within the supernatural. Their unfixed d u a l i t y i s recognized i n invocations that embrace the whole supernatural realm for the solemnization of oaths of supreme importance. Before the duel between Paris and Menelaus Agamemnon c r i e s "Father Zeus, guardian of Ida, most glo r i o u s , most great, and you, 0 Sun, who beholds everything and hears a l l , and you r i v e r s and earth, and you below who punish dead men, whoever has sworn a f a l s e oath, be witnesses and guard our trusted oaths." (11.111,276-280) The king addresses divine e n t i t i e s , Zeus and the i n f e r n a l Powers, i n whom the s p i r i t u a l predominates as well as those, the Sun, Rivers, and Earth, much more c l o s e l y associated with p h y s i c a l phenomena. Yet even the more s p i r i t u a l beings have physical attachments - Zeus to Ida and the s p i r i t s of r e t r i b u t i o n to H e l l , while those of a more phys i c a l nature, due to t h e i r primeval, elemental character, remain, through essence, mysterious and suggestive of the s p i r i t u a l dimension beyond the natural order, and so are personified. The measures of s p i r i t and essence vary from deity to deity, and sometimes from manifestation to manifestation of a s i n g l e d i v i n i t y . A supernatural being w i l l be r e l a t i v e l y autonomous according M. P. Nilsson, The Mycenaean Origin of Greek Mythology (Berkeley: University of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1972), pp.249-250. -40-to the proportion of s p i r i t u a l i t y i n i t s nature, and, conversely, i t w i l l be r e s t r i c t e d i n i t s behaviour by physical a t t r i b u t e s according to the strength of i t s connection through essence with natural phenomena. Of a l l supernatural beings presented i n the I l i a d and Odyssey the Olympic d e i t i e s possess the highest degree of s p i r i t u a l i t y , which distinguishes them i n majesty and influence. Besides partaking of immortality and perf e c t i o n they can change t h e i r forms and c o r p o r a l i t y at w i l l , they may move with the speed of thought, l i t t l e hampered by distance and obstructions, and they have the a b i l i t y , to a greater or less extent, to operate outside those domains to which they are connected through essence. Other gods may possess i n t h e i r own l i m i t e d spheres of influence a concentration of power and sovereignty that the Olympians may not overrule; even Zeus forbears to oppose the w i l l of Night, "who over-powers both gods and men" (II. XIV, 259), and the gods must appease Hyperion when he threatens to withdraw h i s l i g h t from the world and shine only f o r the dead, a f t e r the slaughter of his c a t t l e (Od. XII, 377 - 388). The influence, however, of these gods i s confined to t h e i r own j u r i s d i c t i o n s , while the autonomy of the Olympians enables them to have a greater t o t a l e f f e c t upon the course of events. The greater degree of s p i r i t u a l i t y i n t h e i r natures i s also manifested i n t h e i r possession of the most d i s t i n c t , spontaneous p e r s o n a l i t i e s among a l l the inhabitants of the supernatural realm. Consequently they are the d i v i n i t i e s most receptive to communication with men. The conjunction i n t h e i r characters of independence, general e f f i c i e n c y , and personality elevates them to the highest l e v e l of human reverence. The superior s p i r i t u a l i t y of the Olympians makes them the most important of the gods. Among the Olympians themselves, Zeus, Athene, and Apollo, followed by -41-Poseidon and Hera, possess the highest degree of s p i r i t u a l i t y and so exhibit the greatest independence and v e r s a t i l i t y i n t h e i r operations. The f i r s t three c e r t a i n l y exert the greatest influence upon the course of events i n the I l i a d , while Zeus and Athene d i r e c t matters i n the Odyssey. As a r e s u l t , Zeus, Athene, and Apollo are distinguished as a group within the I l i a d . On several occasions they are linked together i n invocations, and they alone share the p r i v i l e g e of deploying the aegis. The greater s p i r i t u a l i t y of the Olympians i s also manifested i n t h e i r closer proximity to transcendence, the a b i l i t y to r i s e above the course of events and control i t from without, as opposed to the greater immanence, the containment within the course of events, that characterizes the other gods. These p a r t i c u l a r a t t r i b u t e s w i l l be discussed i n more d e t a i l i n the t h i r d chapter. Even the Olympians' natures, however, are determined to some degree by essence; yet t h e i r e s s e n t i a l a t t r i b u t e s do not diminish t h e i r importance. For they serve as the archetypes of the most important and valued elements of human l i f e , including wisdom, courage, love, war, order, and s k i l l s of every kind, which exalt them i n the reverence of men and accord them a cen t r a l r o l e i n the d i r e c t i o n and enactment of human hi s t o r y . Moreover, the natures of some of the gods, p a r t i c u l a r l y Zeus, Apollo, and Athene, are considered to r e f l e c t the e s s e n t i a l q u a l i t i e s of the numerous natural phenomena over which t h e i r s p i r i t u a l v e r s a t i l i t y permits them to extend t h e i r influence. As a r e s u l t , t h e i r characters are further enriched and enhanced i n the eyes of men. The " E s s e n t i a l " A t tributes of the Gods Some of the s a l i e n t " e s s e n t i a l " or a l l e g o r i c a l aspects of the natures -42-of the Olympic d e i t i e s may be e a s i l y i d e n t i f i e d . Zeus, the most powerful of the gods, i s also the most s p i r i t u a l , and so the most removed from events i n the natural realm. He intervenes personally and immanently within the natural order much less often than the other gods, although he does wield supreme, transcendent control over both the natural and supernatural orders on a par with, and ultimately with pre-eminence over fate. Even his nature, however, i s conditioned by the properties of natural e n t i t i e s . His dominion over the gods i s appropriately r e f l e c t e d i n h i s l i t e r a l , p h y s i c a l supremacy as the "highest" of the d i v i n i t i e s ; he i s the one most c l o s e l y associated with the sky. It i s f i t t i n g , moreover, that the awesome presence and power of the sky-god should f i n d expression i n equally awesome meteorological phenomena, p a r t i c u l a r l y those inherent i n the thunder-storm. Formulaic weather epithets, such as "loud-thundering/'"delighting i n thunder," "high-thundering," "cloud-gatherer," "lightning-gatherer," and "l i g h t e n e r , " become so inseparably attached to h i s name that they acquire permanent ass o c i a t i o n with his nature. He i s also the divine archetype of r o y a l t y , and so patronizes earthly kings: "Great i s the soul of kings fostered of Zeus; t h e i r honour i s from Zeus, and Zeus the counsellor loves them" (II. I I , 196 - 197). He also possesses, supremely, the f a c u l t i e s of wisdom and counsel. He i t i s who convenes the councils of the gods and who plans the course of events. Consequently he has great influence over the f a c u l t y of thought i n men, which he may obfuscate as well as illuminate. Hence i n Book II of the I l i a d he sends a f a l s e dream to Agamemnon, and when Glaucus ex-changes h i s golden armour for the bronze of Diomedes, h i s f o l l y i s att r i b u t e d to the god's influence ( I I . VI, 234 - 236). Since he i s the highest and noblest of the gods, h i s character must constitute the i d e a l -43-for the Homeric hero; hence his supremacy i n counsel i s matched by h i s supremacy i n the province of war, and so he personally supports the premier Greek and Trojan warriors, A c h i l l e s and Hector, during the r i s e of t h e i r fortunes. H o s p i t a l i t y i s also ascribed to h i s j u r i s d i c t i o n , and so Odysseus refe r s the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for the b l i n d i n g of the impious Polyphemus to him (Od. IX, 479). The l i m i t a t i o n of Zeus's power i s manifested i n h i s lack of dominion over Night, an elemental phenomenon which i s , appropriately, dark and impenetrable by nature, fortunately for Sleep, who escaped to her i n h i s f l i g h t from the god: "Though enraged, he stopped. For he shrank from offending swift Night" ( I I . XIV, 260 - 261). Many aspects, then, of Zeus's nature are r e f l e c t e d i n the natural order. Athene's character i s also determined, to some extent, by essence. She i s p r i m a r i l y connected with wisdom, courage, and e f f i c i e n c y , q u a l i t i e s that she shares, to a smaller degree to be sure, with her father, Zeus, which explains h i s p a r t i a l i t y towards her even when she opposes his w i l l . Her close r e l a t i o n to him i s i l l u s t r a t e d by her private epithet, "obrimopatreij' "Daughter of a mighty s i r e . " Since these q u a l i t i e s have such general a p p l i -c a b i l i t y , Athene i s able to excel at whatever a c t i v i t y she undertakes. In the theatre of war, her wisdom, courage, and e f f i c i e n c y are translated into the cunning, prowess, and deadliness of a mighty warrior goddess. Consequently she p r e v a i l s over Ares, who i s , n a t u r a l l y enough, endowed only with the valour and b l u s t e r of war, as well as over Aphrodite whose power i s l i m i t e d to love. In f a c t , among the l e s s e r gods, excluding Poseidon and Hera, her only r i v a l i n power and i n t e l l i g e n c e would appear to be the other member of the Olympian t r i n i t y , Apollo, with whom she never comes into d i r e c t c o n f l i c t , even though he takes the Trojans' side. Since her wisdom, courage, and e f f i c i e n c y are regarded by men as v i r t u e s , she occupies a high place i n t h e i r reverence. -44-Indeed her possession of these v i r t u e s makes her v i r t u a l l y a model of excellence, i n f e r i o r only to Zeus. As a r e s u l t of her e s s e n t i a l connection with these p a r t i c u l a r q u a l i t i e s , Athene i s c l o s e l y associated with the Greek heroes out-standing for t h e i r wisdom and prowess, the q u a l i t i e s that make the ideal, hero, such as A c h i l l e s , Diomedes, and Odysseus."*" Usually, when they take counsel or embark upon some important endeavour, her presence i s v i r t u a l l y presupposed. When A c h i l l e s has need of c l e a r , c o n t r o l l e d thinking to subdue his v i o l e n t desire to slay Agamemnon i n Book I of the I l i a d , Athene conveniently a r r i v e s on the scene j u s t i n time to r e s t r a i n him. Indeed her influence often has the appearance merely of the super-natural extension to a man's thinking and power. In Book XXII of the I l i a d , when A c h i l l e s must beguile Hector to induce him to stand and f i g h t , Athene e f f e c t s the necessary deception. When Diomedes and Odysseus require both courage and discernment for t h e i r night r a i d into the Trojan camp i n Book X Athene appropriately sends them a propitious omen and supports t h e i r undertaking. As Odysseus prepares to persuade the Achaeans to remain at Troy, Athene, goddess of wisdom and counsel, attends him: Then Odysseus, sacker of c i t i e s stood up holding the sceptre, while beside him bright-eyed Athene i n the appearance of a herald commanded the people to keep s i l e n c e so that both the nearest and the farthest sons of the Achaeans might hear h i s speech and mark his counsel." (11.11,278-282) Throughout the Odyssey Athene helps Odysseus with h i s plans and suggests to him her own. Her i n t e r e s t i n the hero i s related d i r e c t l y to h i s cunning, courage, and e f f i c i e n c y . "*" Otto, The Homeric Gods, p. 46. -45-Athene's e s s e n t i a l a s s o c i a t i o n with the Achaean heroes and the Achaeans i n general consists of more than a supernatural complement to t h e i r wisdom and prowess. She also acts as t h e i r t u t e l a r y and patron goddess, i n a word, t h e i r genius. And so she prevents Pandarus' bow shot from f a t a l l y wounding Menelaus. To some extent her partisanship may be at t r i b u t e d to an independent act of w i l l from the more s p i r i t u a l side of her character. Her hatred of the Trojans, f i r s t aroused by Paris's preference for Aphrodite over Hera and h e r s e l f , explains, i n part, her p a r t i a l i t y towards the Achaeans. Nevertheless, her passion to defend and advance the cause of the Achaeans exceeds the l i m i t e d i n t e r e s t i n human a f f a i r s that one would expect of a deity unaffected by human su f f e r i n g and mortality. It i s natural that Athene's association with the mind extends to confusion of thought, as i n the case of the s u i t o r s ' i r r a t i o n a l response to Telemachus' r e f u s a l to force h i s mother into marriage: "So Telemachus spoke; but P a l l a s Athene s t i r r e d up unquenchable laughter among the suito r s and confounded t h e i r wits" (II. XX, 345 - 346). Where wisdom or, for that matter, f o l l y , abounds i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey, Athene, Zeus, or Apollo cannot be far away. Athene's association with wisdom embraces as well s k i l l i n c r a f t s -manship and the domestic a r t s . She employs the former f a c u l t y , which she shares with Hephaestus, to enhance the appearance of Odysseus: "As when some craftsman whom Hephaestus and P a l l a s Athene have taught every kind of s k i l l g i l d s s i l v e r with gold and creates works of beauty, so then she poured beauty over his head and shoulders" (Od. VI, 232 - 235). Her influence i s perceived i n excellence i n t h i s f i e l d regardless of n a t i o n a l i t y , such as that of the Trojan carpenter, Phereclus, whom "Pallas Athene loved -46-pre-eminently" ( I I . V, 61), s l a i n by Meriones. Her pr o f i c i e n c y i n domestic s k i l l s she demonstrates i n her i n s t r u c t i o n of the daughters of Pandareus (Od. XX, 72), and by her manufacture of her own and Hera's b e a u t i f u l dresses. Athene's combination of s p i r i t u a l autonomy and es s e n t i a l dependence upon human wisdom, courage, and e f f i c i e n c y gives her the ri c h e s t and most v e r s a t i l e nature a f t e r that of Zeus. Ares' nature i s determined by essence on a larger scale. To be sure, he possesses, as an Olympian, a high degree of s p i r i t u a l independ-ence and free w i l l , which he exercises i n his decision to support the Trojans i n the series of events recounted i n the I l i a d . In many ways, however, his character represents the essence of war. Indeed, h i s very name often stands as a synonym for war. His impetuous, turbulent behaviour r e f l e c t s the nature of combat. As an i n d i v i d u a l d e i t y , he may f i g h t for one side i n confined, i s o l a t e d areas of the b a t t l e f i e l d . As the essence, of war, however, he must be present wherever f i g h t i n g and k i l l i n g occur. So the narrator of the I l i a d asks i n Book V, "Then whom f i r s t , whom l a s t did both Hector, son of Priam, and brazen Ares slay?" ( I I . V, 703 - 704). Since both partie s i n a war suffer from i t s violence and destruction, so Ares i n his e s s e n t i a l form a f f e c t s and i s a danger to a l l who enter his domain. In the I l i a d , i n s p i t e of his championship of the Trojans, such epithets as "dear to Ares" and "henchmen of Ares" are continually applied to the Achaeans, as i n the case of Menelaus, whom, at one point, Ares strengthens i n order that he might challenge and f a l l before Aeneas (Bk. V, 561 - 564). When the god learns that Deiphobus has s l a i n h i s son, in Book XV, he desires to avenge him by opposing h i s erstwhile favourites, the Trojans. Moreover, Athene, while encouraging Diomedes, l e v e l s the accusation of treachery against Ares: -47-"Fear not furious Ares, t h i s maniac, t h i s born plague, t h i s t r a i t o r ! L a t e l y, i n speaking to Hera and myself, he pretended that he would f i g h t against the Trojans and support the Argives, but now he accompanies the Trojans and has forgotten the l a t t e r . " (II. V, 830 - 834) War i s ultimately no respecter of persons, valuing only f i g h t i n g and k i l l i n g . Zeus rebukes the god for h i s undiscerning, unprincipled love of violence when, wounded by Diomedes, he seeks commiseration: "Don't you dare s i t by me and whine, you renegade! To me you are the most hate f u l of the gods who inhabit Olympus, for s t r i f e i s ever dear to you, and wars and f i g h t i n g " ( I I . V, 889 - 891). A l l the negative aspects of war are r e f l e c t e d i n Ares' nature and experience. Since war i s ultimately s e l f - d e s t r u c t i v e , i t i s appropriate that the War-god should be driven from the b a t t l e f i e l d at the end of Book V of the I l i a d , wounded by a mortal combatant. As the presence of death and corpses i s an important element of every b a t t l e , i t i s f i t t i n g that Ares should t y p i f y a l l f a l l e n warriors when he collapses at Athene's hands i n Book XXI of the I l i a d : "He f e l l , covering seven plet h r a , and befouled his h a i r with dust, and his armour rang upon him" (407 - 408). War, or any type of c o n f l i c t , as they are portrayed i n the I l i a d and Odyssey, are never determined by f i g h t i n g alone. Their outcome i s always decided ultimately by higher powers. This l i m i t a t i o n i s transferred to the r e s t r i c t i o n s placed upon Ares' behaviour and power. In s p i t e of the important r6*le that he plays i n b a t t l e he has l i t t l e e f f e c t upon i t s issue, and he i s i n f e r i o r i n might to the more independent, higher gods, such as Zeus and Athene. In h i s whole being, i n f a c t , he i s i n f e r i o r to the more sublime Olympians. Ares' nature, however, does not consist of s o l e l y negative q u a l i t i e s . -48-War also embraces p o s i t i v e values; the Homeric heroes esteem the warrior's might and prowess, and the glory of b a t t l e . Consequently Ares, the re-presentative of war, receives the a t t r i b u t e s of a mighty, heroic warrior, to whom an Achaean f i g h t e r of the stature of Aias may be compared: Then, a f t e r he had put a l l h i s armour upon his f l e s h , he charged out just as huge Ares goes f o r t h , he who goes to war a f t e r men whom the son of Cronos has hurled together to f i g h t with the fury of soul-devouring s t r i f e . (II. VII, 207 - 210) The importance and glory of war i n the l i v e s of men elevate Ares to the rank of Olympian and son of Zeus, and so, even though he reproves him for h i s contentious nature, the king of the gods does not cast him out of Olympus. He even preserves his well-being: "I w i l l no longer s u f f e r you to bear pain, for you are my o f f s p r i n g ; your mother bore you to me" (II. V, 895 - 896). Ares sums up i n hi s own character a l l the splendour and ugliness of war. Aphrodite's nature i s conditioned as much by the phenomenon that she represents, love, as i t i s by her Olympian s p i r i t u a l autonomy. Since e r o t i c love would seem to be incompatible with or unrelated to i n t e l l i g e n c e and prowess, Aphrodite remains i n f e r i o r to the supreme Olympians. Just as love i s a n t i t h e t i c a l to the hatred and violence of war, so she does not fare well i n f i g h t i n g , and i s forced to r e t i r e wounded from the ba t t l e s of Books V and XXI i n the I l i a d . Zeus himself gently admonishes her to confine her a c t i v i t i e s to love: "The deeds of war have not been a l l o t t e d to you, my c h i l d ; rather, you attend to the lovel y a f f a i r s of marriage. A l l these things w i l l be the care of swift Ares and Athene" (II. V, 428 - 430). It i s i n love-related matters that Aphrodite excels and the other gods recognize her supremacy i n t h i s f i e l d . Hera appeals to her for help i n -49-beguiling Zeus, and Aphrodite responds with the loan of her ornate "zone," which amounts to an emblem of love: "... there a l l her charms have been wrought. Therein i s love, therein desire, therein the allurement of f a m i l i a r converse which steals away the wits even of the wise" (II . XIV, 215 - 217). The pre-eminent power of the love-goddess within her own domain i s demonstrated by the subsequent e f f i c a c y of her g i r d l e i n the deception of the greatest of the gods. The i n t e r e s t s of the goddess of love are n a t u r a l l y centred upon love and everything associated with i t , and so she tends to exalt i t above a l l e l s e . When she rescues Paris from his duel with Menelaus i n Book III of the I l i a d , her concern i s not for his b a t t l e honour or for the possible c r i t i c a l and even disastrous r e s u l t s of her intervention, but for u n i t i n g Helen and her favourite i n love. When she addresses Helen i n the Trojan tower she seems oblivious to the war and the gravity of Troy's s i t u a t i o n . Her mind i s preoccupied with the q u a l i t i e s of Paris conducive to e r o t i c desire: "He i s i n his room and i n l a i d bed, radiant i n h i s beauty and c l o t h i n g . You would not think that he has come from a duel, but that he i s going to a dance or that he i s s i t t i n g down a f t e r recently ceasing to dance" (II. I l l , 391 - 394). It i s to be expected that the divine p r i n c i p l e of e r o t i c love should have the tendency towards promiscuity that she displays i n the song of Demodocus. Indeed, she sums up i n her person a l l the q u a l i t i e s , both good and bad, associated with love. As the deceived Hephaestus observes, she i s indeed the daughter of Zeus, and b e a u t i f u l , but incontinent (Od. VIII, 320). It i s natural that Aphrodite be also considered the divine p r i n c i p l e behind beauty, the assistant of love. In t h i s capacity she dispenses beauty wherever she goes, even among the dead, as W. F. Otto observes: -50-"Just as her "beauty" endows Penelope with the fresh charm of youth, so with unguents and ambrosial attar of roses she protects from d i s f i g u -r a t i o n the body of Hector which was abused by A c h i l l e s , and day and night keeps the dogs away from it.""* " In the appearance of comeliness of form the power or the presence of Aphrodite can be i n f e r r e d . The characters of the other Olympians are also p a r t l y determined by deduction. Hera, as the i n f e r i o r female counterpart of Zeus, shares his royal p r i v i l e g e s and exercises h i s functions to a l i m i t e d extent. She has the power to command the gods, such as Athene and I r i s , indepen-dently. Moreover, when Zeus i s preoccupied with the f i g h t i n g around Troy, she deputizes for him by ordering the departure of the sun at the end of the day ( I I . XVIII, 212 — 239). As the supreme goddess on Olympus she represents also the feminine p r i n c i p l e i n the universe. She i s the mother of the goddesses of c h i l d b i r t h and controls t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s to some degree, as she demonstrated when she compelled them to withhold t h e i r services from Alcmene (II. XIX, 119). To Hades i s a t t r i b u t e d an implacable, merciless nature, appropriate for death ( I I . IX, 158 - 159). So c l o s e l y i s he linked with the dead, that h i s name i s often synonymous with H e l l (e.g. I I . XXIII, 244). Hermes' nature i s determined not only from his function as messenger of the gods but from h i s association with g u i l e , l y i n g , and thieving. When Odysseus requires deception to overcome Circe, Hermes appropriately appears on the scene, apparently from nowhere, to provide him with the necessary cunning stratagem and antidote to her magic. To Artemis i s ascribed the s k i l l of hunting with the bow. Con-sequently Scamandrius' s k i l l i n t h i s f i e l d i s due to her i n s t r u c t i o n ( I I . 1 Ibid., p. 100. -51-V, 51 - 52). Her brother, Apollo, i s also c l o s e l y associated with the bow. The accuracy of the Trojans, p a r t i c u l a r l y Pandarus and P a r i s , with t h i s weapon may be re l a t e d to the patronage that Leto's c h i l d r e n accord them. To be sure, Pandarus prays to Apollo before shooting h i s f a t e f u l arrow at Menelaus (II . IV, 119 - 121); i t i s even recorded that Apollo gave him h i s bow (II. I I , 827). Teucer, the outstanding archer on the Achaeans' side, also holds t h i s d i s t i n c t i o n ( I I . XV, 441). The reference to the feast of Apollo (Od. XX, 276 - 278) on the day of Odysseus' revenge suggests that h i s influence may be present i n the di s a s t e r that b e f a l l s the s u i t o r s , i n i t i a t e d by the king's great bow. S k i l l with the bow i s also a t t r i b u t e d to both gods i n a more f i g u r a t i v e sense i n the f a t a l a f f l i c t i o n s of natural death and plague. Apollo i s also considered to be a divine representative of the same noble q u a l i t i e s , wisdom and courage, with which Athene i s associated. His i n t e l l i g e n c e i s manifested i n h i s p r o f i c i e n c y with l y r i c a l poetry, with which he entertains the gods at t h e i r feast i n Book I of the I l i a d and which prompts Odysseus to assert that Demodocus must have been instructed by either the Muse or the god (Od. VIII, 488). His association with courage i s displayed i n his championship of the Trojans and t h e i r outstanding heroes. Hephaestus and Athene are the divine patrons of craftsmanship. In the I l i a d Hephaestus i s appropriately married to Charis, grace, the perfect complement to manu-facturing s k i l l . Perhaps because of h i s connection with metal-working and the forge he i s also c l o s e l y associated with f i r e , so c l o s e l y , indeed, that at times he appears v i r t u a l l y to personify i t , as when he contends against the waters of Xanthus. His name may even be metonymically substituted for f i r e ( I I . I I , 426). Poseidon has the a t t r i b u t e s of the sea. As the sea i s p h y s i c a l l y i n f e r i o r to the sky, so Poseidon i s i n f e r i o r to Zeus. The -52-impersonality, i n s c r u t a b i l i t y , and intermittent, uncontrollable violence of the sea upon which Odysseus spends much of h i s time and suff e r s so much, are to some extent a l l e g o r i z e d i n the god's h o s t i l e behaviour towards the hero. Moreover these q u a l i t i e s are transferred to the monstrous progeny of Poseidon, such as Otus and Ephialtes (Od. XI, 307 -316), and Polyphemus. I r i s , the female messenger of the gods, i s generally presented i n the process of rec e i v i n g and d e l i v e r i n g messages. Themis, as her name in d i c a t e s , represents the p r i n c i p l e of law and order i n the universe, and so exercises her authority to convoke that organization most concerned with the establishment of s o c i a l order and p o l i c y , the cou n c i l , whether human or di v i n e . The most important elements of human experience are traced back, through essence, to the Olympic gods. The s p i r i t u a l and e s s e n t i a l sides of the gods' characters occasionally come into c o n f l i c t , or, at l e a s t , give to the behaviour of some gods a rather e r r a t i c appearance. Ares i n p a r t i c u l a r suffers from such an anomaly. As an actual combatant i n the I l i a d he i s shown to have k i l l e d by himself only Periphas near the end of Book V, and Isander at a point i n time previous to the Trojan War, i n the days of Bellerophon (VI, 203 -204). He also makes an attempt upon the l i f e of Diomedes (V, 842 — 849). Yet the deaths of many warriors, including Trojans, are ascribed to him, the p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n of war, both by characters i n the story, who may be excused t h e i r ignorance of his r e a l a c t i v i t i e s , and by the narrator who i s aware, presumably, of everything that occurs i n the poem. Priam a t t r i b u t e s the deaths of h i s sons to Ares (XXIV, 259) and Glaucus the death of Sarpedon, a l b e i t , by "the spear of Patroclus" (XVI, 543). On the great t h i r d day of b a t t l e i n the I l i a d , a f t e r Zeus has confined a l l -53-the gods to Olympus, Ares i s referred to as a p a r t i c i p a n t i n the sl a y i n g of Alcathous, a Trojan: "The spear stuck fast i n his heart, which throbbed and shook the butt-end of the spear; but then mighty Ares sapped i t s strength" ( I I . XIII, 442 - 444). The expression concerning Ares' staying of the spear i s demonstrated to be formulaic by i t s repeated a p p l i c a t i o n to missed spear throws i n Book XVI, l i n e 613, and i n Book XVII, l i n e 529. I t would appear to be more a metonymic d e f i n i t i o n of a regular battle-phenomenon involving the e s s e n t i a l side of Ares' character than a reference to the independent Olympian r e s t r i c t e d by the command of Zeus. The incongruity, however, remains awkward. Ares also appears in Book XVII, l i n e s 210 - 212, again, ostensibly, i n contravention of Zeus's behest, a f t e r Zeus has helped Hector to don A c h i l l e s ' f a t a l armour, stripped from Patroclus: "Ares the dread, the warlike, then entered him and his limbs were f i l l e d within with courage and strength." Here again the manifestation of Ares would seem to be more the pe r s o n i f i e d essence of war than the independent god. Hera, Athene, and Apollo also appear at convenient but incongruous times when the presence of t h e i r more e s s e n t i a l a t t r i b u t e s and powers i s required. On the tenth day of the f i r s t episode of the I l i a d Hera and Athene intervene i n the quarrel of Agamemnon and A c h i l l e s i n t h e i r capa-c i t i e s as geniuses of the Achaeans and d e i t i e s of counsel and wisdom, i n order to prevent t h e i r dissension from becoming ir r e p a r a b l e . S i m i l a r l y , Apollo, as the god of Chryses and the source of plague, at l a s t averts his wrath from the Achaeans at Chryses' su p p l i c a t i o n (II. I, 456 - 457), and takes pleasure i n t h e i r c o n c i l i a t o r y paean (472 - 474). Yet Thetis reports to her son that the en t i r e company of the gods followed Zeus to a feast of the Ethiopians on the previous day, and that they w i l l not -54-return f or another twelve days (423 - 425). After Zeus's express i n t e r -d i c t i o n , imposed upon the gods at the beginning of Book VIII of the I l i a d , Apollo intervenes as the t u t e l a r y d i v i n i t y of the Trojans to save Hector from a bow shot made by Teucer (VIII, 311). Apollo's protection i n t h i s case extends only to Hector; the arrow that misses him s t r i k e s Archeptolemus instead, and Teucer i s able to bring down a number of other Trojans as w e l l . Athene also v i o l a t e s the p r o h i b i t i o n of Zeus when, i n her function as genius of the Greeks, she prevents Socus' spear from f a t a l l y wounding Odysseus (II. XI, 437 - 438). Later, she helps Nestor to r a l l y the Achaeans at the ships: "So speaking he roused the strength and s p i r i t of each man, and Athene thrust away the t e r r i b l e cloud of mist from t h e i r eyes" ( I I . XV, 667 - 669). One might mention as well the a c t i v i t i e s of Athene and Apollo i n the night r a i d of Diomedes and Odysseus recounted i n Book X. Since, however, t h i s episode occurs outside the normal d a i l y course of b a t t l e , presumably the gods are no longer bound by Zeus's r e s t r i c t i o n . In a l l of the genuine incidents mentioned above the divine interventions appear sudden and d i s j o i n t e d , as though they were merely supernatural extensions of natural events. To be sure, to the extent that the natures of Hera, Athene, and Apollo constitute the personal, u l t e r i o r , sustaining r e a l i t i e s of the Greek and Trojan armies and t h e i r outstanding heroes, they must act i n conjunction with them. Consequently t h e i r behaviour occasionally appears inconsistent. The natures of the gods not associated with Olympus are much more c l o s e l y connected, through essence, to natural phenomena. The elementary phenomena of r e a l i t y , such as the Earth, Sky, Ocean,Sun, Night, Dawn, and Time are considered to be the phy s i c a l manifestations of the elementary, o r i g i n a l d i v i n i t i e s of the universe. The more l i m i t e d , l e s s crude and -55-impersonal e n t i t i e s , such as trees, meadows, springs, r i v e r s , and caves are, accordingly, informed by s p i r i t s , s p e c i f i c a l l y nymphs and gods, of i n f e r i o r power but of greater refinement than the elemental gods. Although t h e i r natures are dominated by essence, they too have a measure of s p i r i t u a l independence, as evidenced by the threatened r e v o l t of Hyperion i n Book XII of the Odyssey and the congregation of the gods and nymphs from every r i v e r "except Ocean," f o r e s t , stream, and meadow in Zeus's grand council i n Book XX of the I l i a d ( 7 - 9 ) . Because everything i n the natural order i s considered to be supported by an u l t e r i o r s p i r i t u a l r e a l i t y , many natural phenomena, with which no d e i t i e s are t r a d i t i o n a l l y associated, are p e r s o n i f i e d . These p e r s o n i f i -cations, l i k e a l l d i v i n i t i e s i n the I l i a d and Odyssey, consist of s p i r i t and essence i n combination. In t h i s instance, however, s p i r i t i s f a r outweighed by the essence of the thing p e r s o n i f i e d , which, consequently, l a r g e l y determines the nature and behaviour of the p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n . Generally p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s are applied to abstract e n t i t i e s within subjective human experience. Terror, panic, and s t r i f e , e s s e n t i a l but intangible ingredients of any b a t t l e , are a l l pe r s o n i f i e d . The close connection of these elements with war i s r e f l e c t e d i n the close r e l a t i o n of t h e i r p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s to Ares. They usually attend him when he enters b a t t l e . Panic, Phobos, i s even designated as h i s son ( I I . XIII, 299) and S t r i f e , E r i s , h i s s i s t e r (II. IV, 441). Yet Homer's p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s r a r e l y remain extended, completely dependent abstractions and conceits. They are a l l accorded s u f f i c i e n t degrees of autonomy and o b j e c t i v i t y to render credible t h e i r existence as r e a l , supernatural beings. Through t h e i r association with Ares, a r e a l god, Terror, Panic, and S t r i f e acquire - 5 6 -the status of r e a l d i v i n i t i e s . When S t r i f e appears by the ships of the Achaeans i n Book XI of the I l i a d , her presence seems l o g i c a l enough for the mere p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n of an element of war, but not for a goddess, a f t e r Zeus's s p e c i a l i n t e r d i c t i n Book VIII. Yet her status as a d i v i n i t y i s confirmed through the a s c r i p t i o n of her intervention to a s p e c i a l command from Zeus (XI, 3 - 4 ) . The d e a t h - s p i r i t s , keres, which are c l o s e l y associated with fate because of t h e i r destructive power and which are referred to by Sarpedon i n his famous exhortation to Glaucus i n Book XII of the I l i a d (310 - 328), also appear i n myriads on the b a t t l e -f i e l d , representing the sudden, v i o l e n t , and omnipresent k i l l i n g prevalent i n f i g h t i n g . This personalization of death as a numberless host of deadly, malevolent demons sets i n r e l i e f the true t e r r o r and horror of b a t t l e ; i t stresses the magnitude of k i l l i n g on the b a t t l e f i e l d and elevates impersonal destruction to a conscious, malevolent force. War-phenomena do not constitute the only subjects for p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n . Zeus sends an e v i l dream to deceive Agamemnon (II. I I , 8 - 10). It has s u f f i c i e n t autonomy to d e l i v e r Zeus's message by i t s e l f . Rumour receives d i s t i n c t i o n by serving i n the appropriate r $ l e of messenger of Zeus (II. I I , 93 - 94). Much of Sleep's behaviour harmonizes with the phenomenon he represents. He s u c c e s s f u l l y exercises upon Zeus his power to induce sleep at a c r i t i c a l stage i n the f i g h t i n g around the Achaean ships (II. XIV, 353). Sleep and Death, c l o s e l y related i n t h e i r physical manifesta-tio n s , are f i t t i n g l y p e rsonified as brothers (II. XIV, 231). I t i s f i t t i n g , then, that the former helps the l a t t e r i n the removal of Sarpedon's corpse to L y c i a (II. XVI, 682 - 683). Moreover, Sleep once f l e d to the protection of Night, since, of course, sleep and night are c l o s e l y associated. Never-theless he, too, possesses a degree of s p i r i t u a l autonomy. Both Zeus and -57-Hera treat him as a d i s t i n c t d i v i n i t y ; Hera goes so far as to o f f e r him l a v i s h material g i f t s ( I I . XIV, 238 - 241) and one of the Graces as his wife (267 - 269), hardly the sorts of things l i k e l y to arouse the i n t e r e s t of a purely abstract p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n . He also appears to reside i n a s i n g l e place, Lemnos (II. XIV, 230 - 231), and thus does not manifest the omnipresence that one would expect of the u n i v e r s a l phenomenon that he represents. The L i t a i , or Prayers, are presented as p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s i n Phoenix's b e a u t i f u l allegory, related to A c h i l l e s i n Book IX of the I l i a d . They, too, are l a r g e l y conditioned by essence. Yet they are also accorded some degree of s p i r i t u a l i t y and independence. In nature they c l o s e l y resemble prayer. Just as repentance must, by nature, always follow a f t e r f o l l y and s i n , so the L i t a i are obliged to t r a i l Ate at a distance to correct the -havoc she has wreaked (II. IX, 502 - 507). Since prayer represents one of man's noblest a c t i v i t i e s and expresses his most sincere and humble supplications, the L i t a i are exalted to the status of Daughters of Zeus (IX, 502). A man's prayers, or lack of them, and h i s responsiveness to the entreaties of others w i l l decide his own r e c o n c i l i a t i o n with the gods. The L i t a i , correspondingly, have the power to bless or condemn a man according to h i s reception of t h e i r requests ( I I . IX, 508 - 512). They demonstrate most s t r i k i n g l y t h e i r s p i r i t u a l autonomy i n t h e i r objective, independent existence, since the r e a l phenomenon of prayer would seem to be inseparable from the agent issuing i t . Moreover, they are endowed with d i s t i n c t power, honour, and r e s p o n s i b i l i t y as the s p e c i a l envoys of Zeus, with whom they have great influence. Every natural phenomenon, even the most intimate and subjective, i s considered to emanate from a r e a l s p i r i t u a l e n t i t y . This b e l i e f explains -58-the vividness, v i t a l i t y , and c r e d i b i l i t y of p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s i n the I l i a d and Odyssey. They far exceed the l i m i t e d dimensions and p a l l i d i t y of mere abstract extrapolations. Even such a supernatural "object" as the aegis i s deduced, i n form and nature, from i t s influence i n the natural world. Whatever may be i t s precise mythological character, that i s , as i t was inherited by Homer, i t i s c l o s e l y linked i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey with the t e r r o r and panic of b a t t l e . It i s described as having been given by Hephaestus to Zeus "fo r the routing of men" (II. XV, 310). When i t i s unfurled and shaken, as against the Achaeans i n Book XV of the I l i a d and against the sui t o r s i n Book XXII of the Odyssey, i t unmans them completely and d i s -comfits them. The horrors that are either imprinted symbolically upon i t , or that are inherent within i t , represent and explain i t s dreadful power. "Rout i s wreathed a l l around i t ; on i t i s S t r i f e , on i t i s Might, on i t i s the cold t e r r o r of Pursuit, on i t i s the head of the dread monster, the Gorgon, t e r r i b l e and t e r r i f y i n g , a portent of Zeus of the aegis" (II. V, 739 - 742). The Establishment of Moral Values If d i f f e r e n t gods are associated with the various provinces of human experience, the gods i n turn s a n c t i f y the experience from which t h e i r powers and in t e r e s t s are deduced. Zeus, the highest of the gods, possesses the highest human f a c u l t i e s of wisdom and authority. He i n turn, through the symbol of the roy a l sceptre which, as A c h i l l e s says, "the sons of the Achaeans who are judges and who guard the laws from Zeus now bear i n t h e i r hands," (II. I, 237 - 239), consecrates the councils of men that seek wisdom and order. Men ascribe to Aphrodite c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s of love that -59-they detect i n t h e i r own experience. She, for her part, authorizes men to indulge t h e i r passions. Her a c t i v e support for the rape and adultery of Helen explains i n part the Trojans' reluctance to restore Helen to her husband and to chastise P a r i s . Ares shares the violence and b a t t l e -l u s t of warriors and, since war i s within h i s j u r i s d i c t i o n , he permits f i g h t i n g and k i l l i n g on a scale that would be i n t o l e r a b l e i n d i f f e r e n t circumstances. To Hermes i s imputed cunning with the arts attendant upon that q u a l i t y , deception and thievery. Consequently under his patronage one may s t e a l and l i e . Autolycus, Odysseus' grandfather, i s s p e c i f i c a l l y mentioned as having achieved success with his a i d : "He outstripped mankind in theft and chicanery. The god Hermes himself i n s p i r e d him. For he burned thigh-pieces of lambs and kids that were pleasing to him. The god r e a d i l y attended him" (II. XIX, 395 - 398). Athene, l i k e her father, i s associated with cunning and wisdom. She has no compunction about using deception to achieve her ends. Her frequent interventions i n the natural order in the Odyssey, when she i s v a r i o u s l y disguised as Mentes, Mentor, a herald, a common Phaeacian, or an Ithacan shepherd-boy, are a l l f u n c t i o n a l and so foreshadow and j u s t i f y Odysseus' own disguise upon h i s return home. Retributive j u s t i c e , i n the form of Nemesis and Ate, i s considered a pro-perty of the gods i n general. When men execute i t they believe themselves to be acting under divine authorization. In t h i s frame of mind Odysseus wreaks righteous vengeance upon the s u i t o r s . He t e l l s E u r y c l e i a that "the fate of the gods and t h e i r own wicked deeds overwhelmed these men" (Od. XXII, 413). The gods, with t h e i r separate spheres of influence, secure the various aspects of human behaviour and experience within moral law. This system does have a weakness. D i f f e r e n t values, adduced i n the same circumstances, may come into c o n f l i c t . Stealing may be sanctioned -60-for v o t a r i e s of Hermes, but i t also constitutes an outrage f o r those who are i t s victims. Autolycus acknowledges that his brigandage has not been free from such moral complications: "Hated by many men and women throughout the a l l - n o u r i s h i n g earth have I come to t h i s age" (Od. XIX, 407 - 408). By the same reasoning Paris and the Trojans may regard the pursuit and maintenance of his passion i n the rape and detention of Helen to be f u l l y j u s t i f i e d by the laws of Aphrodite. Yet the Achaean chiefs consider t h i s behaviour of s u f f i c i e n t enormity to warrant t h e i r combined assault on and eventual destruction of Troy, with the f u l l sanction of Zeus (II. I I , 324 - 325) and many of the other gods. Nevertheless, regardless of the c o n f l i c t of values, and gods, the divin e s a n c t i f i c a t i o n of a l l human experience provides i t s p a r t i c u l a r s with moral absolutes by which they may be measured, r e l a t e d , and interpreted. It gives them pattern and s i g n i f i c a n c e . The Fusion of the Natural and Supernatural It was observed at the beginning of th i s chapter that no d i s c o n t i n u i t y can be detected i n the connection of the natural and supernatural orders through essence. Essence does not merely place them i n contiguity; i t fuses them together. As a r e s u l t i t permits an easy t r a n s i t i o n between the two realms. The gods, to the extent that they are s p i r i t u a l beings, may remain i n d i s c e r n i b l e to the natural observer; but inasmuch as they share i n the " e s s e n t i a l " h a l f of the supernatural they may acquire form and substance , - and move with ease through the natural order. Calypso and Circe always appear i n human form and are associated with ph y s i c a l (or at le a s t p a r t l y physical) places. Even e n t i t i e s that are nothing more than p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s may acquire concrete, objective r e a l i t y i n the -61-natural world through the e s s e n t i a l connection of the supernatural. At the beginning of Book XI i n the I l i a d S t r i f e i s sent from Olympus into a r e a l , physical s i t u a t i o n by the ships of the Achaeans to rouse the men to b a t t l e . The "great and t e r r i b l e " shout that she utters there (10 - 11) does not remain a complete abstraction as i t e l i c i t s the correct response from the Greeks. Many d i v i n i t i e s are c l o s e l y associated with p h y s i c a l objects. Zeus handles l i g h t n i n g , and so receives the epithet terpikeraunos (II. I, 419). Hyperion i s shown i n Book XII of the Odyssey to possess a herd of c a t t l e . Poseidon, god of the sea, i s na t u r a l l y attended by waves, such as that which covered Tyro and himself (Od. XI, 243 - 244). Men and gods e a s i l y and frequently communicate and i n t e r a c t . In Book I of the I l i a d A c h i l l e s asks h i s mother i n the natural world to p e t i t i o n Zeus i n the supernatural. Odysseus, i n Book V of the Odyssey, girds himself with the v e i l of Leucothea to gain supernatural protection from the raging sea. The gods, as s p i r i t u a l beings, may a f f e c t men s p i r i t u a l l y by encouraging them, r e v i v i n g them, or even unmanning them. They may supernaturally heal them, as Leto and Artemis heal Aeneas i n Book V (447 - 448) of the I l i a d and as Apollo heals Glaucus i n Book XV (528 - 529). Through t h e i r e s s e n t i a l connection with the natural world, they may also deal with them p h y s i c a l l y , by leading them into b a t t l e , by smiting and k i l l i n g them with r e a l weapons, or even by caressing them, as Athene touches Odysseus i n Book XIV of the Odyssey. Gods and mortals may also engage i n sexual intercourse. The true proximity of the supernatural to the natural realm i s s t r i k i n g l y i l l u s t r a t e d by the divine contentions that occur i n the midst of human s t r i f e , as i n Book XXI of the I l i a d . The two orders of r e a l i t y i n t e r s e c t and overlap. The fusion of the supernatural and natural orders explains the divine -62-i n t e r e s t i n the natural world. As s p i r i t u a l creatures the gods should be expected to have only s p i r i t u a l i n t e r e s t s , and to f e e l complete i n d i f f e r e n c e to material phenomena. To the extent, however, that the supernatural i s the o r i g i n a l , absolute r e a l i t y behind the natural world, from which the natural order emanates, the gods must also have a r e a l i n t e r e s t i n the material, mortal phenomena of that order. For t h i s reason they value and respond to human prayers, l i b a t i o n s , s a c r i f i c e s , and votive o f f e r i n g s , both for t h e i r symbolic, s p i r i t u a l aspects and t h e i r material q u a l i t i e s . Consequently the s a c r i f i c e that the Achaeans make and the paean that they sing to p r o p i t i a t e Apollo i n Book I of the I l i a d are pleasing to him and prove e f f i c a c i o u s . So important, moreover, do the gods consider the o f f e r i n g s of men that Hermes a t t r i b u t e s to the lack of them, i n part, his reluctance to cross the sea, as he informs Calypso: "Zeus ordered me to come here, though I was unwilling. For who would v o l u n t a r i l y traverse so great an expanse of boundless s a l t water? There i s nowhere i n the v i c i n i t y any c i t y of mortals who o f f e r s a c r i f i c e s and sumptuous hecatombs to the gods." • (Od. V, 99 - 102) They also appreciate the objects without p a r t i c u l a r r e l i g i o u s s i g n i f i c a n c e that are esteemed by men, such as armour and arms, chariots, horses, wealth, f i n e c l o t h i n g , p a l a t i a l homes, food, and drink, inasmuch as they have possessions s i m i l a r i n nature, though refined and ethereal. Most of a l l , however, they are fascinated with men themselves, and t h e i r d e s t i n i e s , mortal and mundane though they may be, i n both t h e i r physical and s p i r i t u a l aspects, since men r e f l e c t , imperfectly to be sure, the gods themselves. Hence they value heroic magnificence and glory, by which men most c l o s e l y approach the gods. Athene and Hera thunder i n approval of Agamemnon's martial appearance i n Book XI (45 - 46) of the I l i a d , while -63-Athene, i n Book XIII of the Odyssey, praises Odysseus for h i s i n t e l l i g e n c e and character. Men are the representatives of the gods i n the natural world. The "Openness" of the Natural Order The fusion of the natural order with the supernatural leaves i t an "open" system. It i s not "closed" to those supernatural influences that may interrupt the regular pattern of natural cause and e f f e c t . Consequently form and i d e n t i t y are subject to mutability, which was demonstrated i n the f i r s t chapter. Moreover, the normal course of events may be disrupted at any time by supernatural prodigies. When Athene enters the natural world she often preserves i t s continuity by adopting natural, human form under an appropriate disguise. Occasionally, however, af t e r maintaining appearances, she shatters the normal order of things by casting o f f a l l natural l i m i t a t i o n s and transforming h e r s e l f into a b i r d , as when she changes i n appearance from Mentor into an eagle before the astonished gaze of Telemachus, Nestor, and the assembled Pylians (Od. I l l , 371 - 373). Frequently i n the I l i a d the gods upset the normal course of events by removing t h e i r favourite Trojans, such as P a r i s , Aeneas, and Hector from danger on the b a t t l e f i e l d . Xanthus' prophetic reply to A c h i l l e s so r a d i c a l l y v i o l a t e s the natural order that i t e l i c i t s an immediate response from the Erinyes, who r e s t r a i n the horse and so correct the abnormal s i t u a t i o n ( I I . XIX, 418). In the world of the I l i a d and the Odyssey anything can happen. In the instances c i t e d above, the gods manifest the s p i r i t u a l more than the e s s e n t i a l side of t h e i r natures when they intervene since they act as independent e n t i t i e s , having no close e s s e n t i a l r e l a t i o n with the -64-phenomena that they a f f e c t . In other cases, however, t h e i r behaviour corresponds much more c l o s e l y to the e s s e n t i a l portion of t h e i r natures, thereby acquiring an a l l e g o r i c a l tinge. When Apollo removes Sarpedon from the b a t t l e f i e l d i n Book XVI of the I l i a d , his action seems independent enough. When, however, Sleep and Death transport him from Troy to Ly c i a , t h e i r action i s e n t i r e l y appropriate to the phenomena that they represent, for i t i s the corpse of Sarpedon which they handle. When Aphrodite, the goddess of love, snatches up Paris out of Menelaus' f a t a l grasp i n Book I I I , her action i s e n t i r e l y i n keeping with her e s s e n t i a l character. She not only releases him i n safety, but i n love, with Helen. It i s appropriate that P a r i s , who prefers love to f i g h t i n g , should be sent from defeat i n combat to v i c t o r y i n the bedchamber. When Scamander attacks A c h i l l e s i n Book XXI his assault consists of more than the defensive action of a tutelary d i v i n i t y of the Trojans. For, f i t t i n g l y , he harries A c h i l l e s with his own water, a t a c t i c that i s e n t i r e l y f e a s i b l e , since the Achaean hero has f i l l e d the r i v e r ' s course with enough corpses to flood i t . The supernatural interventions of the gods may harmonize with as well as disrupt natural processes. Once the natural order has been determined to be an "open" system, i t s openness may be observed everywhere that d e f i n i t i o n i s lacking and mystery e x i s t s . The mist that attends the gods wherever they go, shrouding them from mortal sight, possesses an opacity and an undefinable, almost intangible substance and form that provide the necessary lack of d e f i n i t i o n and mystery for the t r a n s i t i o n from the natural to the supernatural. The sanctity accredited to strangers may be derived from the mystery of t h e i r i d e n t i t i e s and ori g i n s since such mystery would automatically connect them with the supernatural. 1 So the gods are considered to v i s i t men i n the M. P. Nilsson, A History of Greek R e l i g i o n , trans. F. J. Fielden (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1925), p. 160. guise of strangers; when Odysseus appears suddenly i n the assembly of the Phaeacians Alcinous i s quite as ready to believe him to be a d i v i n i t y as a man (Od. VII, 199). Undefined distance o f f e r s another entrance to the supernatural, e x i s t i n g , as i t was noted i n the f i r s t chapter, i n the vast mysteries of sky, earth, and sea. It i s i n the uncharted paths of the sea that Odysseus departs from the known world of men and encounters a l l manner of strange sights and marvels. His experiences are never removed from the province of the c r e d i b l e , as there are always s u f f i c i e n t recognizable natural forms along his course to give h i s adventures the appearance of r e a l i t y . Once, however, he has entered the mystery of the sea the r e s t r a i n t s of the natural world are no longer absolute, and any quantity and inordinateness of supernatural occurrences may be mingled with natural events. Odysseus i s able to enter the supernatural world of the dead simply by s a i l i n g over the sea i n a p a r t i c u l a r d i r e c t i o n . Upon leaving Egypt Menelaus i s confined to the Island of Pharos, which i s a day's s a i l away from the mouth of the N i l e (Od. IV, 354 - 357), and hence s u f f i c i e n t l y remote to be comprehended i n the mystery of the sea. Thus he i s able to converse with Eidothea, a goddess of the sea, and with her father, Proteus, the Old Man of the Sea. The same s p a t i a l vagueness characterizes mountains. Their heights seem p a r t i c u l a r l y remote, j u t t i n g into the i n f i n i t e sky, and so they, too, are considered to intrude into the supernatural. Olympus, or rather i t s summit, i s regarded as the p r i n c i p a l home of the gods. Yet every mountain peak may be reckoned to have a numinous q u a l i t y about i t , and so Zeus i s also associated with Ida by the Trojans. Neither Olympus nor Ida e x i s t s e n t i r e l y i n the supernatural. Just as every natural phenomenon subsumes both p h y s i c a l existence and essence without d i s c o n t i n u i t y , so a mountain, or the sea, or any other en t i t y characterized by remoteness, passes without i n t e r --66-ruption into the supernatural i n the mystery of distance. S p a t i a l vagueness does not o f f e r the only medium for t r a n s i t i o n from the natural to the supernatural. Mountains, and, for that matter, sky, sea, and earth are as much endowed with undefinable essence as any other phenomenon. The mystery and numinous nature of mountains may be a t t r i b u t e d to t h e i r awesome appearance as much as to t h e i r height and i n a c c e s s i b i l i t y . The mysteries of space and essence combine to i n t e n s i f y the supernatural auras of such phenomena. The Constitution of the Supernatural The remoteness of supernatural e n t i t i e s from the natural world a f f e c t s t h e i r r a t i o of s p i r i t and essence. On the border between the natural and supernatural, phenomena are dominated by the p h y s i c a l and physical laws, being only s p i r i t u a l l y animated. Deeper within the supernatural, however, the r e l a t i o n changes, and phenomena become more l i k e l y to bear the nature of materialized s p i r i t u a l beings. As t h i s change occurs the p h y s i c a l laws of the natural order become d i s t o r t e d or even replaced by s p i r i t u a l laws, with the r e s u l t that' the depiction of supernatural scenes may appear exaggerated or inconsistent i n natural terms. It i s deep within the supernatural that many of the more f a n t a s t i c and outlandish creatures and occurrences of the I l i a d and Odyssey appear. It was there that Thetis freed Zeus from the chains that other Olympians had cast upon him, and summoned the hundred-armed monster, Briareus, to protect him from t h e i r further machinations (II. I, 401 - 406). It was there, too, that Ares suffered the i n d i g n i t y of imprisonment within a bronze urn at the hands of the giants Otus and Ephialtes (II. V, 385 - 387), and that Hades was wounded by the audacious Heracles (V, 395 - 397). As Odysseus journeys farther into remote waters, and hence, into the supernatural, -67-the world becomes increasingly outlandish and u n i n t e l l i g i b l e . The natures of the gods, monsters, men, and things that he encounters exceed normal human experience, while regional geography and the course of h i s voyage become impossible to ascertain. Within that part of the supernatural dominated by the s p i r i t u a l , anything conceivable to the imagination may e x i s t . The d e t a i l s of Odysseus' journey to Hades i n Book XI are p a r t i -c u l a r l y perplexing. Although Hades l i e s , supposedly, beneath the earth, his course takes him over the earth's surface to i t s very o u t s k i r t s , i n the North. Once he has reached Hades' kingdom, he i s permitted to converse with the s p i r i t s of the dead, again, apparently, on the surface of the earth, u n t i l he has spoken to Aias, at which point he i s suddenly presented with scenes from the depths of H e l l , including Minos judging the dead, Tityos out-stretched on the ground and constantly assaulted by vultures, Tantalus attempting to drink from h i s pool and eat from hi s tree, and Sisyphus struggling with h i s boulder upon his h i l l . It i s very d i f f i c u l t to resolve and r e c o n c i l e the d e t a i l s of t h i s adventure i n s t r i c t l y natural terms and to conceive of the topography of i t s s e t t i n g . When, however, one considers that the s e t t i n g i s a supernatural one and, hence, fundamentally s p i r i t u a l i n nature, the inconsistencies and uncertainties become less objectionable. In f a c t , the story has a core of p h y s i c a l d e t a i l s that make i t c r e d i b l e i n s p i t e of the d i s t o r t i o n s and ambiguities. A d e f i n i t e voyage by sea i s undertaken to a d e f i n i t e place i n which a r e a l disembarkation occurs, followed by a r e a l s a c r i f i c e and a r e a l conversation with the dead upon the earth's surface. If the adventure i s to have concrete form and not simply to d i s s i p a t e into a metaphysical abstraction i t must consist p a r t l y of such elementary physical d e t a i l s . Nevertheless, as a journey into the supernatural, -68-the adventure must also have s p i r i t u a l a t t r i b u t e s . Consequently, i t s ph y s i c a l features must appear incomplete and symbolic. A voyage by sea i s not only undertaken to a foreign country, but to the "mist and cloud-shrouded land and c i t y of the Cimmerian men" (Od. XI, 14 - 15), which i s also covered with the darkness of perpetual night (XI, 15 - 19). The mist and darkness symbolically s i g n a l i z e through t h e i r vagueness and opacity the end of the known and the beginning of the unknown and mysterious, the supernatural, and they provide the appropriate atmosphere for the death and sorrow of H e l l . Since H e l l consists not only of the s p i r i t s of the dead, but of judgment and punishment, Odysseus receives a panoramic view of that whole world despite the fact that i t cannot be represented i n purely physical terms. This perfect combination of the s p i r i t u a l and physical renders the account of the journey to Hades r e a l and s i g n i f i c a n t at the same time. In f a c t , far from detracting from each other, the s p i r i t u a l and p h y s i c a l enhance each other when so connected. Both, however, must be taken into account for a proper understanding of supernatural places. In the heart of the supernatural the s p i r i t u a l predominates. The depiction of i t i n p h y s i c a l , formal terms must therefore have symbolic as well as purely d e s c r i p t i v e s i g n i f i c a n c e . The home of the gods must be a s p i r i t u a l as well as a physical place, and so Olympus i s occasionally portrayed i n terms that hardly accord with the normal phy s i c a l conditions of a mountain summit. There ...men say, i s the e t e r n a l l y secure abode of the gods. It i s neither buffeted by winds nor ever drenched by r a i n , nor does snow approach i t ; but c l e a r sky stretches out unclouded, while the sun's white radiance suffuses a l l . There the blessed gods l i v e i n happiness forever. (Od.VI,42-46) The imagery of t h i s passage represents a state of s p i r i t u a l b l i s s rather than the top of a mountain. Yet the deliberate vagueness of other passages o f f e r i n g a more t o p i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n prevents the natural and supernatural aspects of Olympus from becoming di s s o c i a t e d or incongruous. The t o t a l p o r t r a y a l of the mountain i s constructed to comprehend the gradual, continuous t r a n s i t i o n from the imperfect, con-crete forms of the natural order, through the refinement and p e r f e c t i o n of essence, into the purely s p i r i t u a l dimension of the supernatural. The representation of Elysium i n the passage referred to i n the f i r s t chapter concerning the fate of Menelaus i s s t r i k i n g l y s i m i l a r to the d e s c r i p t i o n of Olympus c i t e d above. It i s the land "at the ends of the earth... where l i f e i s easiest for men. No snow storm occurs there, or great tempest, or ever r a i n , but Ocean ever sends f o r t h gusts of the West Wind's wh i s t l i n g breath for the refreshment of men" (Od. IV, 563 -568). I t , too, i s at least as much a symbolical representation of a s p i r i t u a l r e a l i t y as the depiction of a r e a l , physical place. In f a c t , the s p i r i t u a l and physical aspects of Elysium are p e r f e c t l y , inseparably fused together, so that Menelaus i s promised not only the s p i r i t u a l happiness of the place, but the p h y s i c a l enjoyment of i t . He i s not to enter i t as a disembodied s p i r i t ; he i s to t r a v e l p h y s i c a l l y to i t i n physical form, f u l l y a l i v e (Od. IV, 561 - 564). Even i n i t s more s p i r i t u a l regions the supernatural i s generally depicted in concrete terms. It i s never presented as an abstraction but as a higher, purer r e a l i t y of which the natural order i s the imperfect r e f l e c t i o n . Descriptions of the l i f e of the gods on Olympus possess a symbolical character of a more i n d i r e c t kind. When Artemis has been struck by Hera in Book XXI of the I l i a d she f l i e s to Olympus to seek consolation from Zeus. The contrast between the picture of Zeus dis p l a y i n g f a t h e r l y a f f e c t i o n to h i s daughter, comforting her on h i s knees, and reducing, through laughter, her injury to i n s i g n i f i c a n c e , and the scene of b i t t e r , desperate f i g h t i n g i n the world below serves to emphasize the b l i s s f u l condition of the gods (II. XXI, 506 - 510). The depiction of the feasting of the gods transcends purely t o p i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n to represent, v i r t u a l l y , the i d e a l of c o n v i v i a l i t y , s o harmonious and j o y f u l are i t s a c t i v i t i e s : "So, then, they feasted f o r the whole day u n t i l the s e t t i n g of the sun, and t h e i r heart lacked nothing of the perfect feast, of the very b e a u t i f u l harp that Apollo held, and of the Muses, who sang a l t e r -nately with b e a u t i f u l voice" ( I I . I, 601 - 604). Xenophanes' i d e a l symposium would have been harmoniously situated i n t h i s Olympian scene."'" So important i s such c o n v i v i a l i t y to the gods, so natural i s such i d e a l behaviour to th e i r natures, that Hephaestus takes great pains to extinguish the quarrel between Zeus and Hera and to arouse j o v i a l i t y among the other gods. This divine merry-making i s then set i n r e l i e f by the contrast between i t and the discord and b i t t e r f e e l i n g i n the world of men, p a r t i c u l a r l y between A c h i l l e s and Agamemnon. The councils of the gods also have symbolic import. It was observed i n the f i r s t chapter that these meetings occur usually at c r i t i c a l times i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey when they play a major r o l e i n i n i t i a t i n g and guiding events i n the natural world. In a way, then, these assemblies, co n s i s t i n g mainly of thought, consensus, and action under the con t r o l of Zeus, represent the i n t e l l i g e n t determination of h i s t o r y , better known i n i t s transcendent form as fate. In f a c t , most Xenophanes, "Fragment I," i n Die Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, Vol. 1, ed. H. Di e l s and W. Kranz (Zurich/Berlin: Weidmannsche Verlagsbuchhand-lung, 1952), pp. 126-128. -71-divine a f f a i r s have some symbolic s i g n i f i c a n c e since the gods are, pr i m a r i l y , s p i r i t u a l beings. As essence constitutes the absolute, i r r e d u c i b l e , and hence mysterious i d e n t i t y of a natural phenomenon, i t represents the perfect, absolutely refined condition of that phenomenon. Consequently, those supernatural e n t i t i e s that bear a close, hypostatic r e l a t i o n , through essence, to natural phenomena w i l l possess t h i s e s s e n t i a l p e r f e c t i o n , and so have the nature of i d e a l archetypes. The depiction of divine excellence r a r e l y involves elaborate, a n a l y t i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n . Rather, i t consists of l i m i t e d i m p r e s s i o n i s t i c e f f e c t s that quicken the imagination to a greater conception of beauty, and that avoid d e f i n i t i o n of s p i r i t u a l , " e s s e n t i a l " e n t i t i e s that are ultimately undefinable. As a r e s u l t , the poet i s able to suggest i d e a l feminine beauty by r e f e r r i n g to a few outstanding t r a i t s i n Aphrodite's form, namely, "her exceedingly b e a u t i f u l neck, love l y breast, and sparkling eyes" (II. I l l , 396 - 397), or by a simple d e s c r i p t i o n of Athene when she manifests her true nature to Odysseus i n Book XIII of the Odyssey: "In form she was l i k e a woman b e a u t i f u l and t a l l and s k i l l e d at b e a u t i f u l work" (Od. XIII, 288 - 289). Certai n l y the t r a i t s of Aphrodite's form, recorded i n the former passage, are s u f f i c i e n t to f i l l Helen with wonder (II. I l l , 398). Perfec t i o n of beauty i s also ascribed to Hera i n Book XIV of the I l i a d (170 - 186) i n a more de t a i l e d passage that produces a correspondingly more v i v i d impression. Tallness appears to have p a r t i c u l a r importance as a q u a l i f i c a t i o n for i d e a l beauty, both for gods and goddesses, and for men and women. It i s c e r t a i n l y the extra feature that distinguishes Artemis from her attendant nymphs. Rieu's re n d i t i o n of the passage concerning her pre-eminence i s f e l i c i t o u s : -72-"They too are heaven-born, but Artemis overtops them a l l , and where a l l are b e a u t i f u l there i s no question which i s she" (Od. VI, 105 - 108; p. 1 0 5 ) . H e r m e s represents the i d e a l of youthful, masculine comeliness i n his encounter with Odysseus i n Book X of the Odyssey. He looks, i n Rieu's t r a n s l a t i o n , l i k e "a young man at that most charming age when the beard f i r s t s t a r t s to grow" (278 - 279; p. 163). The imp r e s s i o n i s t i c representation of the gods i s extended i n epithets and short descriptions that impart to t h e i r subjects t h e i r splendour, very often associated with gold, s i l v e r , and bronze. Zeus's majestic appearance i s suggested by his "dark brows" and "ambrosial locks" (II. I, 528, 529). Poseidon's dark h a i r (II. XV, 201) produces a s i m i l a r e f f e c t . The r i c h beauty of Hera i s suggested by her white arms (II. I, 595), her "ox eyes" (II. I, 568), her b e a u t i f u l h a i r (II. X, 5), and the golden throne ( I I . I, 611) frequently associated with her; that of Aphrodite i s expressed i n her frequent epithet, "golden" ( I I . I l l , 69), and by her b e a u t i f u l crown (Od. VIII, 267). Athene i s noted for her blue or f l a s h i n g eyes (II. IV, 439), and her b e a u t i f u l h a i r (II. VI, 303), Artemis for her "golden spindle" (I. XVI, 183), f a i r tresses (Od. XX, 80), and b e a u t i f u l crown (II. XXI, 511), Thetis for her s i l v e r feet ( I I . I, 538), I r i s f o r her golden wings (II. VIII. 399), Dawn for her rosy fingers (Od. I I , 1), her saffron robe ( I I . VIII, 1) and b e a u t i f u l throne (Od. VI, 38), and Charis f o r her bright head-band (II. XVIII, 382). Apollo's splendour i s s i g n a l i z e d by h i s s i l v e r bow (II. I I , 766) and golden sword (II . V, 509). F i n a l l y , Ares' m a r t i a l b r i l l i a n c e i s emphasized by h i s epithet "brazen" (II. V, 704), h i s f l a s h i n g helmet ( I I . XX, 38), i t s waving plume (II. XXII, 132) and his "golden r e i n s " (Od. VIII, 285). Such r i c h , v i v i d , 1 Homer, Odyssey, trans. E.V. Rieu (London: Penguin Books, Limited, 1963). -73-concentrated imagery kindles i n the imagination an overwhelming impression of d i v i n e glory. The excellence of the gods i s as inherent i n t h e i r natures as th e i r appearance. Their excellence of character i s also indicated by flashes of impressionism from epithets that have, generally, appropriate superlative meaning. Zeus's supreme majesty i s suggested by the s p a t i a l epithet, "high-throned" (II. IV, 166), and the descriptions, "supreme i n might" (II. I I , 350) and "highest of l o r d s " (II. VIII, 31). His awesome might and sovereignty over the weather are di v e r s e l y set i n r e l i e f by such epithets as "the cloud-gatherer" (II. I, 511), " l o r d of the black cloud" (II. I I , 412), " l o r d of the l i g h t n i n g " (II. VII, 443), " d e l i g h t i n g i n thunder" (II. VIII, 2), and " l o r d of the bright l i g h t n i n g " ( I I . XXII, 178). In his capacity as the possessor and d i s t r i b u t o r of wisdom he i s ca l l e d "the counsellor" (II. I, 175), or "the a l l - w i s e " (II. I, 175). Poseidon's great might, associated with h i s support of the world, i s manifested i n such epithets as "the Earth-shaker" (II. VII, 445), and "G i r d l e r of the Earth" (II. XX, 34). Hades, the god of death, i s f i t t i n g l y c a l l e d "loathed" (II. VIII, 368), and "the mighty gate-keeper" (II. XIII, 415). Apollo, renowned f or h i s deadly bow, i s appropriately described as "famous for the bow" (II. IV, 101). His deadly power and accuracy are summed up i n such epithets as "the far-worker" (II. I, 479) and "the one who smites from a f a r " (II. VII, 83). To Ares, the War-god, are ascribed the a t t r i b u t e s of war. He i s c a l l e d "the bane of mortals," "blood-stained," and "the stormer of wal l s " ( I I . V, 455), as well as "f u r i o u s " (II. V, 904), " s w i f t " (II. VIII, 215), " f i e r c e " ( I I . VII, 330), "wielder of the spear" (II. XV, 605), "loud-voiced and mighty" (II. XIII, 521), "rouser of hosts" (II. XVII, 398), and "piercer of s h i e l d s " (II. -74-XXI, 392). Hermes i s designated "the luck-bringer" (Od. VIII, 322), and so he proves to be to Odysseus. Hephaestus, the god of craftsmanship and the p l a s t i c a r t s , i s , appropriately, "renowed for h i s a r t " (Od. VIII, 286) and c a l l e d "very wise" (II. XXI, 367). On the goddesses' side, Athene, the representative of wisdom and s k i l l , receives the d e s c r i p t i o n " r i c h i n counsel" (II. V, 260); as a war goddess, she i s termed "the rouser of hosts" (II. XIII, 128), and "driver of the s p o i l " ( I I . VI, 269); and, as a t u t e l a r y d e i t y , she i s addressed as "the Unwearied One" (Od. VI, 324), and "Protector of the C i t y " (II. VI, 305). Artemis, the supreme huntress, i s designated "showerer of arrows" (II. V, 447) and described as "fond of the hunt" (II. XXI, 471). Aphrodite, responsible for love and i t s pleasures, i s evocatively c a l l e d "laughter-loving" (II. I l l , 424). I r i s , the speedy messenger of the gods, i s f i t t i n g l y "wind-footed," " s w i f t " ( I I . V, 368), "swift-footed" ( I I . XXIV, 87), and even "storm-footed" (II. XXIV, 77). The gods are v i r t u a l l y personal archetypes of the q u a l i t i e s that they represent. The conception of the supernatural as, i n part, a sublimation of the natural order i s dramatically demonstrated i n the contest between Hephaestus and the r i v e r , Xanthus, i n Book XXI of the I l i a d . The b a t t l e between the Greeks and Trojans i s elevated to one between A c h i l l e s and a r i v e r god and refine d u l t i m a t e l y to a struggle between the elements of f i r e and water, represented r e s p e c t i v e l y by Hephaestus and Xanthus. Thus the merely human, mortal s t r i f e acquires cosmic s i g n i f i c a n c e . Since the gods partake of p e r f e c t i o n they have the power to r e f i n e and perfect whatever they wish. The products of Hephaestus' craftsmanship possess consummate formal and f u n c t i o n a l excellence. A c h i l l e s ' armour i s matchless i n beauty and e f f i c a c y , as are the tripods that Thetis finds him i n the process of fashioning, which have golden wheels attached to th e i r legs "that they might enter the assembly of the gods of t h e i r own accord and go back home again, a wonder to behold" ( I I . XVIII, 373 - 377) . S i m i l a r l y Athene so excels i n domestic s k i l l s that when Hera seeks to beguile Zeus with her beauty she puts on "an ambrosial robe, which Athene had fashioned for her with delicacy and covered with embroidery" (II. XIV, 178 - 179). The gods can also r e f i n e the human form. Athene's enhancement of Odysseus' appearance has already been noted. She also bestows superhuman beauty upon Penelope "that the Achaeans might marvel at her" (Od. XVIII, 191): F i r s t she p u r i f i e d her lovel y cheeks with ambrosial beauty, of that kind with which Cythereia of the b e a u t i f u l crown anoints h e r s e l f whenever she goes to the lo v e l y dance of the Graces. Next she made her t a l l e r and s t u r d i e r to behold, and she made her whiter than sawn ivory. (Od.XVIII,192-196) Aphrodite, according to Hector, supplied Paris with his "locks and comeliness" ( I I . I l l , 54-55). The possessions of the gods also manifest divine beauty and per-f e c t i o n . Mention has already been made of Hera's golden throne, Artemis' golden spindle, Apollo's golden sword, and Ares' golden r e i n s , as well as the b e a u t i f u l crowns of Aphrodite and Artemis, the saf f r o n robe and be a u t i f u l throne of Dawn, the bright head-band of Charis, Apollo's s i l v e r bow, and Ares' bronze armour and plumed helmet. Other items of p a r t i c u l a r b r i l l i a n c e include the golden f l y i n g sandals of Athene and Hermes, referred to i n Books I and V of the Odyssey, Athene's golden helmet, "double-crested and four-plated, adorned with infantry from a hundred c i t i e s " ( I I . V, 743 - 744), the teams of bronze-hoofed horses with "flowing golden manes" that belong to Zeus and Poseidon, together with t h e i r golden armour and golden whips (II . VIII, 41 - 44; XIII, 23 --76-26), the golden hobbles that Poseidon places on h i s horses ( I I . XIII, 36), the f r o n t l e t s of gold on Ares' horses (II. V, 358), and the golden cups of the gods (II. IV, 3). Nor should one forget the b e a u t i f u l l y r e of Apollo ( I I . I, 603). As in the case of the d i v i n i t i e s , the poet generally depicts the inanimate elements of the supernatural with i s o l a t e d , concentrated, impressionistic e f f e c t s , strong enough to suggest t h e i r splendour and excellence, but fragmentary enough to leave i n the imagination a b e a u t i f u l , but vague idea of an e s s e n t i a l l y undefinable r e a l i t y , whose mystery and e t h e r e a l i t y would be undermined by a n a l y t i c a l d e s c r i p t i o n . Olympus i s portrayed with such fragmentary sketching. At no point i n the I l i a d or the Odyssey i s a d e t a i l e d d e s c r i p t i o n embracing the whole home of the gods presented. Only i t s outstanding features are set down. Every god i s reported to have his own b e a u t i f u l house fashioned by Hephaestus, i n the folds of Olympus (II. I, 606 - 608). Generally the gods congregate on golden thrones i n the main h a l l of the palace of Zeus, which has a threshold of bronze (II. I, 426), a golden f l o o r (II. IV, 2), and polished colonnades (II . XX, 11 - 12). It also has automatic gates kept by the Horai, who, as guardians of "great heaven and Olympus," bear the a d d i t i o n a l r e s p o n s i b i l i t y of "opening and c l o s i n g the thick cloud," the natural b a r r i e r between earth and heaven (II. V, 749 - 751). Not much more information i s offered. The d e t a i l s that are supplied, however, are s u f f i c i e n t to e s t a b l i s h i n the imagination an overwhelming impression of great splendour. The reference to the house of the West Wind, referred to i n Book XXIII of the I l i a d , i s even more devoid of d e t a i l , and appro-p r i a t e l y so, due to the i m p o s s i b i l i t y of portraying wind with concrete form. In f a c t , the only precise, concrete feature supplied i n the whole -77-account i s that of the house's stone threshold (XXIII, 202), which provides the scene with j u s t enough substance to confirm i t s r e a l i t y . The depiction of Hephaestus' house i n Book XVIII of the I l i a d has d e t a i l s i n s u f f i c i e n t i n t h e i r p r e c i s i o n and number to provide a clear picture of the e d i f i c e , but v i v i d and r i c h enough to create a strong impression of extraordinary magnificence. The house i s described as "imperishable, g l i t t e r i n g , distinguished among the houses of the immortals, and brazen" (II. XVIII, 370 - 371). Some supernatural scenes and objects possess f i n i t u d e and substance s u f f i c i e n t to permit the poet to describe them i n d e t a i l without under-mining t h e i r supernatural i d e a l i t y . Indeed, elaborate d e s c r i p t i o n sets i n r e l i e f t h e i r true beauty and perfection. Such enhancement r e s u l t s not so much from analysis as from i n t e n s i f i e d impressionism. The chariot that Hebe prepares for Hera o f f e r s a b r i l l i a n t spectacle: . Hebe quickly f i t t e d the curved wheels, bronze and eight-spoked, to the chariot on opposite ends of the i r o n axle. Of these, the f e l l o e consists of r e a l , imperishable gold, and above the f e l l o e s bronze t i r e s are snugly f i t t e d , a wonder to behold. The naves, which rotate on either end of the axle, are made of s i l v e r . The chariot-board i s braced with gold and s i l v e r straps, and there are two rims that run around i t . A s i l v e r pole projects from i t . On the end of the pole Hebe bound the b e a u t i f u l golden yoke and put upon i t the b e a u t i f u l golden breast-straps. (II.V,722-731) Calypso's home possesses s u f f i c i e n t magnificence to make the god Hermes pause i n wonder and admiration. It r e f l e c t s the divine beauty of the nymph her s e l f (Od. V, 59 - 75)."*" The divine Circe's maids c o l l e c t i v e l y organize the i d e a l household: One of them l a i d b e a u t i f u l purple rugs on the chairs, having placed l i n e n cloths beneath them. Another drew up s i l v e r tables before the chairs and placed golden bread-baskets upon them. The t h i r d mixed sweet wine i n a s i l v e r mixing-bowl, and set out cups of gold. The fourth brought f o r t h water and kindled a large f i r e under a great t r i p o d . (Od.X,352-359) Norman Austin, Archery at the Dark of the Moon (Berkeley: U n i v e r s i t y of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1975), p.150. -78-Intense concentration upon c e r t a i n d e t a i l s of d e s c r i p t i o n , such as " b e a u t i f u l purple rugs," " l i n e n c l o t h s , " "golden bread-baskets," "sweet, refreshing wine," " s i l v e r mixing-bowl," "cups of gold," and "great t r i p o d , " as well as the recording of simultaneous, r i t u a l i z e d domestic a c t i v i t i e s , render the whole scene v i v i d and harmonious, so that i t acquires an unearthly beauty, e n t i r e l y f i t t i n g f o r the divine housemaids and t h e i r immortal mistress. The concentrated magnificence of such d e t a i l e d imagery s t i r s the imagination. Like the gods, supernatural objects are endowed with immortality and p e r f e c t i o n i n t h e i r natures as well as t h e i r forms. To preserve t h e i r immortality the gods drink nectar and eat ambrosia instead of the food and drink s u i t a b l e only to mortal men. Even the divine horses consume ambrosia, as opposed to the ordinary fodder of t h e i r natural counterparts ( I I . V, 369) . In addition, the gods anoint themselves with immortal o i l , and they wear immortal c l o t h i n g and sandals. Circe even operates an i n d e s t r u c t i b l e loom (Od. X, 222). Even the things that the gods manufacture for men remain imperishable, such as A c h i l l e s ' divine armour. Since the essence of a natural phenomenon must contain within i t s e l f every property of that phenomenon i n absolute form, i t must comprehend in refined form i t s negative as well as p o s i t i v e a t t r i b u t e s . Those supernatural e n t i t i e s whose natures consist l a r g e l y of essence must also share these r e f i n e d negative q u a l i t i e s . The correspondence between the l i m i t a t i o n and d i f f e r e n t i a t i o n of divine powers and those of natural phenomena has already been observed,. In addition, the gods are, l i k e men, r e s t r i c t e d by time and space, though to a less degree, being able to overcome such obstacles through t h e i r immortality, mutability, and -79-l i g h t n i n g speed. The gods, l i k e men, f e e l pain. Both Aphrodite and Ares suffe r grievously i n Book V of the I l i a d . Far from being incorporeal creatures of ghostly form and substance they are quite s u b s t a n t i a l , having refinements of human f l e s h and blood that may be disrupted even by the weapons of men. When Diomedes 1 spear s t r i k e s Aphrodite's wrist i t pierces her f l e s h and draws f o r t h ichor, the immortal blood of the gods. Later, when he drives h i s spear at Ares' stomach, he achieves the same r e s u l t s . Due, however, to the immortality and perf e c t i o n of the d i v i n i t i e s ' natures t h e i r wounds do not l i n g e r and f e s t e r . Dione quickly heals Aphrodite's i n j u r y simply by wiping away i t s ichor while Ares' wound, under the influence of Paeeon's salve, i s stanched i n the same short time "as when the j u i c e of the f i g quickly thickens the l i q u i d white milk so that i t i s very s w i f t l y curdled when s t i r r e d " ( I I . V, 902 - 904). The lameness of Hephaestus, the supreme craftsman, may symbolically r e -present the natural human i n s e c u r i t y and i n s u f f i c i e n c y that oblige men to acquire and develop technological s k i l l s . The ghosts that Odysseus encounters i n Hades are characterized by q u a l i t i e s appropriate for the dead. Stripped of l i f e , vigour, and t h e i r corporeal bodies, they are s h i f t l e s s , strengthless, and i n s u b s t a n t i a l . As the body requires blood for l i f e , so they must drink i t even to communicate. As the corpse i s but a grim vestige of the l i v i n g body, so the ghosts of the dead are but sorrowful, despondent shadows of l i v i n g men. As A n t i c l e i a t e l l s her son, at the time of death "the soul f l y s away l i k e a dream, f l o a t i n g on the a i r " (Od. XI, 222). The dead, i n t h e i r nature and existence, are com-prehended almost e n t i r e l y by the essence of death; to such an extent indeed that A c h i l l e s claims that he ( i n Rieu's translation) "would rather be a serf i n the house of some landless man, with l i t t l e enough for himself -80-to l i v e on, than king of a l l these dead men that have done with l i f e " (Od. XI, 489 - 491; p. 184). Divine armour corresponds so c l o s e l y to i t s natural counterpart that, although i t may not be destroyed, i t may c e r t a i n l y be dented. Aeneas' spear cannot pierce A c h i l l e s ' s h i e l d to wound him, but i t does penetrate two of i t s layers ( I I . XX, 269). The supernatural e n t i t i e s , i n t h e i r e s s e n t i a l aspects, correspond exactly, i n sublimated form, to those natural phenomena of which they constitute the hypostasis. The Approximation of Men to the Gods According to t h e i r greatness and favour among the gods men gain divine favour and, consequently, they may approach them and share t h e i r c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s and powers. A l l the great Greek and Trojan heroes, p a r t i c u l a r l y A c h i l l e s , Diomedes, Odysseus, and Hector enjoy patronage from one or more gods. They are also permitted to encounter them un-disguised. So Athene appears i n her own form to A c h i l l e s , Diomedes, and Odysseus, while Apollo manifests h i s true i d e n t i t y to Aeneas and Hector. Athene, i n f a c t , permits Diomedes to perceive supernatural phenomena: "I have taken away from your eyes the mist that was previously upon them, that you may c l e a r l y discern both god and man" (II. V, 127 - 128). The remoteness of Phaeacia i n the mystery of the sea q u a l i f i e s the land and i t s people for at l e a s t semi-supernatural status. Alcinous a t t e s t s the close r e l a t i o n s between his people and the Olympic d e i t i e s : "Up to now the gods have ever openly manifested themselves to us whenever we have offered glorious hecatombs, and they have feasted with us i n the very place where we s i t . I f some t r a v e l l e r walking a l l by himself meets them, they hide nothing, since, j u s t l i k e the Cyclopes and the wild t r i b e s of the Giants, we are close to them." (Od.VII,201-206) -81-The great heroes contend with the gods. Diomedes, i n h i s exalted martial state, wounds Ares and Aphrodite grievously enough to drive them from b a t t l e ; he even attempts to break through Apollo's defence to slay Aeneas (II. V). Patroclus, too, dares to s t r i v e against Apollo (II. XVI, 702 - 704). Both Patroclus and Hector gain the negative d i s t i n c t i o n of being s l a i n by the d i r e c t intervention of the gods, Apollo and Athene, r e s p e c t i v e l y . Moreover, by v i r t u e of t h e i r proximity to the d e i t i e s , the heroes acquire godlike q u a l i t i e s both i n character and form. Antitheos, "godlike," and s i m i l a r epithets provide standard descriptions of heroes, such as Aias and Sarpedon. Athene invests A c h i l l e s with awesome supernatural a t t r i b u t e s : "About his mighty shoulders Athene cast the tasseled aegis; around his head the glorious goddess ringed a golden cloud from which she kindled an incandescent flame" (II . XVIII, 203 - 206), a t t r i b u t e s which s u f f i c e to t e r r i f y the Trojans (222 - 227). It was observed i n the f i r s t chapter that Zeus g l o r i f i e s Agamemnon during the i n i t i a l marshalling of the host by according him the divine characte-r i s t i c s appropriate for the High King of the Achaeans: "He resembled Zeus, lover of thunder, i n head and eyes, Ares i n waist, Poseidon i n breast" (II. I I , 478 - 479). When Athene removes Odysseus' disguise i n Book XVI of the Odyssey i n order that he might reveal his true i d e n t i t y to h i s son he acquires perfect masculine comeliness, including the all-important t a l l n e s s of stature: "She f i r s t placed a well-washed mantle and a tunic around his chest then she increased h i s stature and youth. He became swarthy again, and his jaws were f i l l e d out; his beard became blue-black about his chin" (Od. XVI, 173 - 176). So splendid are h i s features and so r a d i c a l i s the change i n his appearance that Telemachus responds i n wonder: "Truly you are one of the gods who hold the broad heaven" (Od. XVI, 183). -82-As men approach the gods i n d i v i n i t y of a t t r i b u t e s t h e i r possessions acquire the beauty and pe r f e c t i o n of the gods' belongings. The splendour of Rhesus' horses, chariot, and armour should s u f f i c e to rouse d i v i n e envy i n Dolon's opinion: "I have beheld h i s very b e a u t i f u l and large horses. They are whiter than snow; they run l i k e winds. His chariot has been well fashioned with gold and s i l v e r . He has brought with him armour golden and huge, a wonder to behold. I t i s i n no way f i t t i n g for mortal men to possess these things, but the immortal gods." (II.X,436-441) The possessions of the semi-divine Phaeacians f a l l i nto the same category. The splendour of Alcinous' palace and gardens r e f l e c t s the proximity of the Phaeacians to the gods. The in s i d e of the king's palace r i v a l s Olympus i t s e l f for superhuman magnificence: It was as i f the radiance of the sun or moon f i l l e d the high-roofed h a l l of great-hearted Alcinous. Walls of bronze ran opposite each other into the heart of the house from the threshold; they were crowned with a blue cornice. Golden doors protected the impregnable house within. S i l v e r door-posts stood on the bronze threshold beneath a s i l v e r l i n t e l . The door handle was golden. Gold and s i l v e r dogs were situated on either side of the door. With s k i l f u l mind had Hephaestus fashioned them to guard the home of great-hearted Alcinous as they were deathless and ageless forever... (Od.VII,84-94) The abundance of gold, s i l v e r , and bronze i n t h i s scene demonstrates the close association throughout the I l i a d and Odyssey between material beauty and m e t a l l i c splendour. Alcinous' garden possesses the p e r f e c t i o n of paradise: There the trees grow t a l l and luxuriant, pears and pomegranates and apples of b e a u t i f u l f r u i t , sweet f i g s and r i c h o l i v e s . Of these the f r u i t never perishes or ceases during winter or summer. It l a s t s a l l year. Indeed, the constant breath of the West Wind brings f o r t h some f r u i t while ripening others. Pear a f t e r pear ripens, apple a f t e r apple, c l u s t e r a f t e r c l u s t e r of grapes, f i g a f t e r f i g . (Od.VII,114-121) -83-Nor does such superhuman pe r f e c t i o n embrace only domestic things i n Phaeacia. Even the ships possess q u a l i t i e s that would s a t i s f y a s a i l o r ' s conception of the i d e a l v e s s e l : "The Phaeacians have no p i l o t s and no type of rudder which other ships possess, but the ships themselves know the plans and minds of men, and they know the c i t i e s and f e r t i l e f i e l d s of a l l men. Concealed by mist and cloud they traverse very quickly the gulf of the sea. Fear of any type of harm or destruction never besets them." (Od.VIII,557-563) As the natural order blends with the supernatural i t becomes transfigured. -84-CHAPTER III IMMANENCE AND TRANSCENDENCE Immanence In the I l i a d and Odyssey the Olympic gods are portrayed as the planners and r u l e r s of h i s t o r y . Their administrative power has two fundamental modes of execution. On the one hand they may govern trans-cendently, that i s , outside the course of events, i n which case they d i r e c t the course i t s e l f rather than the i n d i v i d u a l events. On the other hand they may r u l e immanently, that i s , within the course of events, and so d i r e c t l y influence the i n d i v i d u a l events themselves rather than the whole pattern of h i s t o r y that the events constitute. This immediate type of divine contact with the world occurs more frequently than the remote influence. The immanent manifestation of d i v i n i t y imposes a major r e s t r i c t i o n upon divine behaviour. It requires, by d e f i n i t i o n , that the god be contained within the course of events, that h i s influence a c t u a l l y be a part of h i s t o r y rather than the d i r e c t o r of i t . Since the part cannot i n any way comprehend the whole the immanent d i v i n i t y cannot possess omniscience, omnipresence, or omnipotence. Although the immanent gods may survey everything from Olympus they cannot be aware and i n control of everything, everywhere, at the same time. This holds true even for the greatest of the gods. In the beginning episode of the I l i a d Thetis must wait for eleven days before approaching Zeus since he i s absent for that period from Olympus (II. I, 423 - 427). When he averts his attention from the f i g h t i n g at the beginning of Book XIII Poseidon i s able to insinuate himself into the Achaean ranks without h i s knowledge. Hera i s able to enslave him to e r o t i c passion i n Book XIV and so -85-to deceive him, thereby giving Poseidon a free r e i n to influence the course of b a t t l e around the ships i n contravention of Zeus's ostensible plan. According to Agamemnon, she and Ate also t r i c k e d Zeus at an e a r l i e r time into giving precedence to Eurystheus over Heracles ( I I . XIX, 95 - 133). Zeus, the supreme Olympian, i s d e f i n i t e l y l i m i t e d i n knowledge, presence, and power i n his immanent form, as are a l l the other immanent d e i t i e s . The attention of the immanent d i v i n i t i e s tends to be l i m i t e d and t o p i c a l , focused upon immediate, i n d i v i d u a l phenomena without t h e i r complete contexts. Often the gods devote t h e i r i n t e r e s t , f o r good or for i l l , to i n d i v i d u a l s rather than large groups. Athene and Apollo d e l i b e r a t e l y stop the general f i g h t i n g near the beginning of Book VII i n the I l i a d to determine the day's v i c t o r y by means of a duel between Aias and Hector. The gods' d i s p o s i t i o n to patronize i n d i v i d u a l heroes, on either t h e i r own or human i n i t i a t i v e , i s one of t h e i r outstanding features. Athene's devotion to Odysseus throughout the Odyssey never wavers. Apollo's concern for one of h i s favourite v o t a r i e s , Hector, extends even to his corpse, which he protects with h i s aegis. Because they are borne along i n the stream of h i s t o r y , l i k e everything they a f f e c t , the immanent gods often react to events instead of a n t i c i p a t i n g them. Athene and Hera do not attempt to avert the quarrel between Agamemnon and A c h i l l e s i n Book I of the I l i a d . Athene only intervenes when t h e i r contention has reached an extremity that threatens the l i f e of the High King himself and the success of the whole expedition. S i m i l a r l y , Athene and Hera do not a n t i c i p a t e Agamemnon's disheartening address to the Greek host i n Book I I . Only when the men are a c t u a l l y f l o c k i n g around t h e i r ships to return home and so to abandon t h e i r enterprise does Athene appear on the -86-scene to check t h e i r rout. In t h e i r immanent manifestation the gods do, in f a c t , d i r e c t the course of events, but t h e i r control i s c o l l e c t i v e and cumulative. Their i n d i v i d u a l actions are l i m i t e d and secondary. A close connection e x i s t s between the d u a l i t i e s of transcendence and immanence, and s p i r i t and essence. To the extent that the immanent gods act i n d i r e c t contact with natural events and phenomena t h e i r operations w i l l tend to o r i g i n a t e i n that area of the supernatural with the greatest proximity to the natural order, that i s , i n the region of essence. Con-versely, as they acquire transcendence the gods' influence w i l l proceed from that portion of the supernatural more remote from the order of events and phenomena, i n the area of s p i r i t . It should again be stressed that no divine manifestation ever consists ex c l u s i v e l y of s p i r i t or essence. The predominance of eit h e r element i n a p a r t i c u l a r appearance of a god w i l l , however, correspond to the transcendence or immanence of that manifestation. Since the supernatural realm i s conceived to be hypostatic i n i t s r e l a t i o n to the natural order, that i s , determining and c o n t r o l l i n g the natures and behaviour of natural phenomena whether immanently or trans-cendently, there i s a tendency towards the predominance of essence and immanence i n the divin e manifestations. The gods tend to be connected to the phenomena over which they r u l e . This tendency i s apparent even i n references to the influence of fate, which should be, almost by d e f i n i t i o n , e n t i r e l y transcendent. Yet i t , l i k e the gods, becomes connected with the things over which i t r u l e s , and so i t i s transformed into a female deity and even divided into a number of Moirai (II. XXIV, 49), or "Spinners" (Od. VII, 197), to r e f l e c t the nature and p l u r a l i t y of the p a r t i c u l a r s within i t s s i n g l e , grand plan. In the state of immanence and essence the behaviour of the gods w i l l -87-tend to conform to the physical laws of the natural order. They w i l l operate within the confines of time and space. When Poseidon wishes to strengthen the resistance of the Achaeans i n Book XIII of the I l i a d he does not externally manipulate events i n t h e i r favour. He abandons his vantage point i n Samothrace to t r a v e l s w i f t l y , but p h y s i c a l l y a l l the same, to Troy, where he can only i n s p i r e the Achaeans by entering t h e i r very ranks. The influence of the immanent gods tends to be physical i n nature. They a f f e c t the physical beings of men through sickness, healing, enfeeblement,and i n v i g o r a t i o n , as when Athene passes through the Greek army: "Flashing f o r t h the aegis Athene rushed through the host of the Achaeans and spurred them to advance. She s t i r r e d up strength i n the heart of each man to war and f i g h t r e l e n t l e s s l y " ( I I . I I , 450 - 452). So p h y s i c a l l y do Hera and her divine horses exert themselves on behalf of the Achaeans that they a c t u a l l y sweat and t i r e , as she informs Zeus when he suggests that peace might be established between the Greeks and Trojans: "How can you wish to render vain and u n f u l f i l l e d my t o i l and the sweat that I have sweated i n my s t r i v i n g while my horses have grown weary i n my gathering of the host for the bane of Priam and his chi l d r e n ? " ( I I . IV, 26 - 28). In the state of immanence the gods often seem more l i k e supermen than s p i r i t s . The Power of the Immanent Gods In f a c t , when they operate immanently, i n d i r e c t contact with things and events, the gods depend upon t h e i r superior physical power more than t h e i r supernatural, s p i r i t u a l f a c u l t i e s to uphold t h e i r supremacy. When, in Book VIII of the I l i a d (133 - 156), Zeus desires to check the onslaught of Diomedes and Nestor, he i s obliged to demonstrate his power by thundering -88-and h u r l i n g l i g h t n i n g before the heroes. This stark exercise of strength alone s u f f i c e s to daunt them. Calypso a t t r i b u t e s the gods' a b i l i t y to determine the success of Odysseus' return to Ithaca not primarily to t h e i r transcendent power, but to t h e i r pre-eminence i n planning and execution: "You may reach unscathed your fatherland i f the gods wish i t , they who hold the broad heaven and who are mightier than I at planning and f u l f i l l i n g " (Od. V, 168 - 170). Men usually recognize the s u p e r i o r i t y of the gods only i n t h e i r greater strength. Hector t e l l s h i s men that he would be prepared to argue with the gods, but not to f i g h t with them "since they are indeed much stronger" ( I I . XX, 367 - 368). Yet, because divi n e s u p e r i o r i t y i s believed to rest s o l e l y upon phys i c a l power, the idea of a t t a i n i n g equality with the gods i s not inconceivable. Under Athene's authorization, Diomedes does not hesitate to attack, wound, and drive from the b a t t l e f i e l d both Aphrodite and Ares. Indeed, Aphrodite i s s p e c i -f i c a l l y designated as a "weakling goddess" not to be compared for f i g h t i n g a b i l i t y with Athene or Enyo (II. V, 331 - 333) or, apparently, even with great mortal heroes. Menelaus, i n awaiting Hector's onset, acknowledges that his foe i s supported by a god, and so not to be withstood by a s i n g l e man; " I f , however, I should hear the b a t t l e - c r y of brave Aias we should both again advance and remember our b a t t l e - l u s t , even though we should oppose a god" (II. XVII, 102 - 104). A c h i l l e s , enraged at the deception of Apollo, even goes so far as to threaten the god: "Truly, I should pay you back, i f I had the power" (II. XXII, 20). The immanent gods master men p r i m a r i l y by v i r t u e of t h e i r physical strength. Relative power determines as well the eminence of the gods among themselves. I t has already been observed how most of the d i v i n i t i e s p r e v a i l only i n t h e i r own spheres of influence, while some, such as Zeus, Apollo, -89-Athene, Poseidon, and Hera excel i n many f i e l d s and so have superior i n -fluence. Generally they describe t h e i r s u p e r i o r i t y i n terms of strength. Poseidon claims greater might f o r the gods a l l i e d with the Achaeans than for those supporting the Trojans: "Very quickly, I think, s h a l l they return to Olympus and the assembly of the rest of the gods when they have been parted from b a t t l e , overpowered perforce by our hands" (II. XX, 141 - 143). Sure enough, i n Book XXI the Trojans' gods are compelled to withdraw before the power of the Greeks' patrons a f t e r a purely physical struggle. Hephaestus subdues Xanthus i n a v e r i t a b l e b a t t l e of the elements, as the god's f i r e overwhelms the r i v e r ' s water. Athene stretches out Ares with a blow from a rock, and Aphrodite with a blow to the chest. Apollo r e t i r e s before Poseidon's challenge while Hera boxes Artemis' ears. Only Hermes on the Achaeans' side withdraws from a Trojan supporter, i n his case, Leto. The net v i c t o r y of the Achaeans' gods, through sheer phy s i c a l strength, appro-p r i a t e l y r e f l e c t s the Achaeans' phys i c a l s u p e r i o r i t y over the Trojans, and th e i r ultimate v i c t o r y . It also establishes the r e l a t i v e eminence of the i n d i v i d u a l Olympians. Zeus's r e l a t i o n to the other gods i s well defined by Grote: A l l the other gods have t h e i r s p e c i f i c potency and pecu l i a r sphere of action and duty, with which Zeus does not usually i n t e r f e r e ; but i t i s he who maintains the lineaments of a p r o v i d e n t i a l superintend-ence, as well over the phaenomena of Olympus as over those of earth.1 He i s the divin e power most concerned with ordering and d i r e c t i n g events i n heaven and earth and both gods and men acknowledge his authority. They obey his commands and even, frequently, seek h i s approval or d i r e c t i o n for t h e i r own actions. So i n Books I and V of the Odyssey Athene proposes before Zeus and the other gods divine assistance for Odysseus before a c t u a l l y going to his aid h e r s e l f , while Poseidon seeks permission from Zeus i n Book XIII to punish the Phaeacians for t h e i r h o s p i t a l i t y to Odysseus. George Grote, Greece, v o l . I (New York: Peter Fenelon C o l l i e r , 1899), p. 3. -90-The gods give precedence to Zeus i n t h e i r s o c i a l functions. When they return from Ethiopia they are led by him (TI. I, 493 - 495) and when he enters t h e i r assembly they r i s e before him (II. I, 533 - 535). They may claim c e r t a i n r i g h t s for themselves but these are usually subsumed under h i s ultimate c o n t r o l . So Apollo informs Hector: "Take courage now, so great a helper has the Son of Cronos sent f o r t h to stand by and protect you, even Phoebus Apollo of the Golden Sword, I who, even before, have protected both you and your sheer c i t a d e l " (II. XV, 254 - 257). Zeus's w i l l reigns supreme. Nevertheless, h i s immanent supremacy over the gods, j u s t as over mortals, i s l i m i t e d . Although they always, perforce, defer to h i s judgment, they do not hesitate to assert t h e i r r i g h t s . When, at the beginning of Book IV i n the I l i a d , Zeus ponders whether to e s t a b l i s h peace between the Trojans and Achaeans Hera boldly asserts the defiant w i l l of the gods i n her party: "Go ahead. But, i n tru t h , not a l l the other gods approve of your acti o n " ( I I . IV, 29). She repeats t h i s formula when Zeus considers pre-serving his son, Sarpedon, beyond h i s fate ( I I . XVI, 435 - 443). When he wonders at Hera's h o s t i l i t y to Troy, h i s favourite c i t y , she j u s t i f i e s her independent a t t i t u d e on the grounds of her high rank: "But my labour should not be rendered i n e f f e c t u a l . For I, too, am a god of the same stock as yourself, and cunning Cronos begot me as the greatest of his daughters both because of my age and because I am c a l l e d your wife, since you r u l e among a l l the immortals." (II. IV, 57 - 61) Poseidon commits the greatest act of defiance when he refuses to obey Zeus's command to leave the Achaean host. He claims equal status with h i s older brother: "Truly, indeed, when the l o t s were shaken I received as my portion the eternal habitation of the grey sea, Hades got the murky nether darkness, and Zeus won the broad heaven i n the sky and clouds. Yet -91-the earth and l o f t y Olympus are common to a l l . Therefore I w i l l i n no way act according to the w i l l of Zeus, but, though he be imperturbable and mighty, l e t him remain i n his t h i r d portion." (II. XV, 190 - 195) There i s also i n Book I the story of the gods' successful attempt to chain Zeus who, subsequently, only achieved and retained l i b e r t y through the aid of Thetis and Briareus ( I I . I, 396 - 406). Zeus's powers, then, i n h i s immanent manifestation, may be circumscribed. Naturally, he prefers to avoid provoking the gods. When, i n Book I of the I l i a d , Thetis asks him to honour her son by supporting the Trojans he shows genuine reluctance to accede to her demand since i t must anger Hera (518 - 519). In many of the councils of the gods, p a r t i c u l a r l y i n the Odyssey, he does not simply declare his w i l l and demand obedience to i t but delegates r e s p o n s i b i l i t y to the other d i v i n i t i e s . He i s e s p e c i a l l y d e f e r e n t i a l to Athene and Poseidon i n the Odyssey. When the l a t t e r demands punishment for the Phaeacians' h o s p i t a l i t y to Odysseus, Zeus r e p l i e s : "Do whatever you want, whatever i s your heart' s d e s i r e " (Od. XIII, 145). Only a f t e r Poseidon has stated h i s own plan of action does Zeus declare h i s w i l l , which concurs with his brother's proposal. In the I l i a d he defers to Hera's determination to destroy Troy, s t i p u l a t i n g only that she be prepared to surrender to destruction one of her own c i t i e s i n compensation (II . IV, 40 - 41). He openly admits the personal s a c r i f i c e he must make to concede to her: "... I have yielded to you of my own w i l l , but with heart u n w i l l i n g " (II. IV, 43). When he considers saving Sarpedon from his f a t e , Hera openly threatens him with s i m i l a r interventions on the part of the other gods as well as t h e i r b i t t e r h o s t i l i t y (II. XVI, 445 - 449). Instead of rebuking his wife and following h i s own desire, he obeys her in s t r u c t i o n s ( I I . XVI, 458). Such compliance relegates h i s status among the gods to that of "primus -92-i n t e r pares." Yet even these voluntary r e s t r i c t i o n s on his power do not always pacify the gods; they occasionally seek to transgress h i s commands. Consequently he, too, i s obliged to r e l y u ltimately upon phy s i c a l might. When Hera quarrels with him i n Book I he s e t t l e s the argument with the threat of laying upon her his " i r r e s i s t i b l e hands" (II. I, 567). When Athene and Hera prepare to disobey his commands and enter the fray i n Book VIII he threatens them with a d i r e punishment which reveals his formidable power: "I w i l l lame the swift horses attached to t h e i r c h a r i o t , and I w i l l h u r l them from the chariot-board and shatter the ch a r i o t . Nor for ten returning years s h a l l they be completely healed of t h e i r wounds that the thunderbolt w i l l i n f l i c t . " (II.VIII,402-405) After Poseidon has f i n a l l y submitted to h i s brother's order that he quit the Achaean army, Zeus comments to Apollo about the t e r r i b l e s t r i f e that would have arisen had he further r e s i s t e d : "For indeed even the other gods who dwell i n the nether regions, those i n the company of Cronos, would have heard of our s t r i f e " (II. XV, 224 - 225). Moreover "the a f f a i r would not have been concluded without sweat" (228). He reveals the f u l l extent of his strength, however, i n h i s warning to the gods about disobedience: "Hang a golden chain from heaven, a l l you gods and goddesses, and fasten i t to yourselves. Even so you could not p u l l supreme Zeus, the counsellor, out of heaven to the earth, no matter how hard you t r i e d . But when I r e a l l y wanted to p u l l you, I should draw you up together with the earth and sea themselves. Then should I bind the chain about a peak of Olympus and a l l these things would be suspended in space. By so much am I greater than gods and greater than men." (II.VIII,19-26) When aroused, Zeus claims access to strength that appears v i r t u a l l y unlimited; strength that i s so great that i t would seem to approach transcendence of the f i n i t e and the immanent. -93-Nevertheless, regardless of h i s p o t e n t i a l for unlimited power, Zeus, i n his immanent form, i s always l i m i t e d i n strength, knowledge, and presence, and confined within the course of events, as are a l l the other immanent gods. They are, i n the f i n a l a n a l y s i s , p a r t i c u l a r s , not universals. They may serve as the primary agents of the plan of hi s t o r y but they, l i k e everything else within the course of events, conform to that plan. The formulation - and formulator - of the plan must be sought elsewhere, i n the transcendent. The immanent gods themselves acknowledge a higher authority i n th e i r obedience to c e r t a i n r e s t r i c t i o n s upon t h e i r behaviour. Zeus recognizes the law of f a m i l i a r l o y a l t y when he declines to banish Ares from Olympus i n sp i t e of h i s i n t o l e r a b l e character, and even ensures h i s well-being: "I w i l l no longer endure that you suffe r pain. For you are of my stock and your mother bore you to me. But i f you had been born of any other god, so v i o l e n t i s your nature, then would you long ago have been lower than the heavenly gods." (II.V,895-898) When I r i s reminds Poseidon that Zeus's primacy as the eldest of the gods i s upheld by the Erinyes ( I I . XV, 204) he acknowledges t h e i r higher authority and f i n a l l y submits to Zeus's command. In the passage c i t e d e a r l i e r , i n which Poseidon claims equality with Zeus, the d e f i n i t i o n and d i s t r i b u t i o n of "portions" to the gods presupposes a higher, p r o v i d e n t i a l p r i n c i p l e i n the universe. The immanent gods are themselves part of a greater plan. Transcendent Fate The higher, ordering p r i n c i p l e i s fate. In the various words used to r e f e r to i t or i t s function i t seems to be most c l o s e l y associated with apportionment. Everything that e x i s t s or occurs i n the natural -94-order and the supernatural realm receives i t s own f i x e d character, influence, and s i g n i f i c a n c e , and i s r e l a t e d to everything else under the d i r e c t i o n of t h i s p r i n c i p l e . Its control i s transcendent; i t operates outside the dimensions of time and space, moulding everything that exists and occurs within them externally as i t were, rather than immanently, i n the province of the gods. Consequently i t s power compre-hends everything within these dimensions. Because fate embraces everything within i t s transcendent plan, the t o t a l plan must possess such complexity and magnitude as to be an impenetrable mystery. Consequently, reference to the r u l e of fate i s li m i t e d to s p e c i f i c , f i n i t e events and phenomena. Yet even such r e s t r i c t e d examples of i t s power may indicate the amplitude of i t s transcendent scheme. Such i s the e f f e c t of Apollo's warning to Patroclus when he attempts to storm a Trojan w a l l : " Y i e l d , Zeus-born Patroclus! It i s not fated that the c i t y of the l o r d l y Trojans be l a i d waste by your spear, or even by A c h i l l e s who i s much greater than you" ( I I . XVI, 707 - 709). This si n g l e d e s c r i p t i o n of the plan of fate places not only Patroclus' actions, but those of A c h i l l e s and, indeed, of the whole I l i a d i n a much broader context. The I l i a d i s concerned with a s i n g l e episode i n the l i f e of A c h i l l e s , but the supreme plan of fate i s shown to comprehend his whole l i f e and the whole Trojan War. I t s t o t a l scale i s unfathomable. The plan of fate places everything within a larger pattern and gives everything greater meaning than i t possesses i n i t s immediate context. In the catalogue of ships i n Book II of the I l i a d A c h i l l e s i s reported to be prostrate with g r i e f for B r i s e i s (688 - 689). Just as, however, the catalogue places the i n d i v i d u a l Greek and Trojan heroes i n the contexts of t h e i r respective forces, so A c h i l l e s ' d i s t r e s s i s shown to be merely -95-part of a greater pattern; i t i s supplemented by the a f f i r m a t i o n , "but soon was he to r i s e " (II. I I , 694). Zeus frequently experiences great i r r i t a t i o n at Hera's contumacy and shrewishness, but a f t e r the attempted insubordination of Athene and he r s e l f i n Book VIII he r a t i o n a l i z e s her behaviour as something not t o t a l l y lawless, incomprehensible, and reprehensible, but fixed as though by a higher law: "But I am not so much angered or vexed with Hera. For she has ever been wont to f r u s t r a t e whatever I decree" ( I I . VIII, 407 - 408). Even e v i l and s u f f e r i n g are subsumed under the r u l e of fate, and so are invested with the same si g n i f i c a n c e and beauty as everything els e . Demodocus' lay concerning the end of the Trojan War comprises both the glory of heroic action and the tragedy of destruction. Both elements constitute a s i n g l e , b e a u t i f u l story, the memory of which causes Odysseus to weep with n o s t a l g i c g r i e f . His emotion i s compared to that of a woman s t r i c k e n with g r i e f at the v i o l e n t death of her husband on a b a t t l e f i e l d , a form of s u f f e r i n g that the Achaeans, including Odysseus, i n f l i c t e d upon the wife of many a Trojan (Od. VIII, 521 -531). That the causes of t h e i r sorrow are d i f f e r e n t , indeed, almost d i a -m e t r i c a l l y opposed, i s of no consequence. The point of the s i m i l e i s to suggest the depth of Odysseus' f e e l i n g . In f a c t , f ar from appearing i n -congruous, the s i m i l e a c t u a l l y enriches Odysseus' own experience, for i n the comprehensive plan of fate pain and s u f f e r i n g are of equal v a l i d i t y with heroic action and glory. In the world as i t i s presented i n the I l i a d and Odyssey nothing i s ever meaningless. Everything i s comprehended in a grand design and drama known as fate. Fate, the a l l - i n c l u s i v e transcendent plan of h i s t o r y , provides order and meaning to the i n d i v i d u a l l i v e s of men. The fa c t that every man's existence has i t s own p r e c i s e l y defined, i n v i o l a t e "portion" means that i t can never be ult i m a t e l y subject to chance or ended prematurely. So -96-Hector comforts Andromache: "No man s h a l l send me f o r t h to Hades beyond my f a t e " (II. VI, 487). Odysseus i s able, on Aeaea, to l i f t h i s men out of t h e i r d i s t r e s s and despair at t h e i r s u f f e r i n g and loss of comrades by appealing to the same b e l i e f : "My f r i e n d s , although we may f e e l miserable, we w i l l not be going down to the Ha l l s of Hades j u s t yet, before the appointed day a r r i v e s " (Od. X, 174 - 175). "Death i s not a problem for the Homeric hero; h i s death concludes his story and completes his fate.""'" However awesome and dangerous the s i t u a t i o n i n which men f i n d themselves, t h e i r b e l i e f i n the higher, comprehensive plan of fate enables them to transcend t h e i r sense of i n s e c u r i t y . Fate i s n a t u r a l l y associated with death since i t i s only death that f i x e s a man's destiny. It thus becomes connected with the keres, the s p i r i t s , or forces, of death, such as those that Sarpedon perceives, i n myriads, everywhere ( I I . XII, 326 - 327), or such as the hat e f u l one that Patroclus' ghost claims was assigned to him as soon as he was born ( I I . XXIII, 78 - 79). Moira he r s e l f accompanies Death i n A c h i l l e s ' s l a y i n g of Echeclus ( I I . XX, 476 - 477). The gods, and occasionally men, are permitted foreknowledge of fate's plan. So Athene i s always confident about Odysseus' fate: " I , for my part, never doubted i t , but knew i n my soul that you would return home, though with the loss of a l l your companions" (Od. XIII, 339 - 340). Although, however, the gods may know the predestined course of events, as immanent creatures they remain bound within i t , helpless to change i t . In his discussion with Agamemnon concerning the Achaeans 1 desperate s i t u a t i o n 1 James M. Redfield, Nature and Culture i n the I l i a d (Chicago: University of Chicago, 1975), p. 175. a f t e r the breaching of t h e i r w a l l , Nestor asserts that Zeus himself could not have alt e r e d the pattern of events: "Such a state of a f f a i r s has indeed already developed, and Zeus himself could not have fashioned i t otherwise" (II. XIV, 53 - 54). Athene, under disguise, informs Telemachus that the gods cannot break the i n e x o r a b i l i t y of death: "But t r u l y , the gods cannot ward o f f the common fate of death even from a man they love, whenever the deadly fate of prostrate death overpowers him" (Od. I l l , 236 - 238). According to the attachment of a god to a man such helpless foreknowledge must prove burdensome. So Thetis spends a great deal of time sorrowing for her foredoomed son. Fate i s not simply presented as the pattern into which every process n a t u r a l l y f a l l s . It i s shown a c t i v e l y , though transcendently, i n f l u e n c i n g the course of events. So i t d i r e c t s the actions of Amphius: "Fate led him to bring aid to Priam and h i s sons" ( I I . V, 613 - 614). In such an active r o l e i t usually has negative consequences. I t i n fact leads Amphius to h i s death at the hands of Aias. When Hector remains outside the Scaean gates, thereby ensuring h i s destruction at A c h i l l e s ' hands, h i s disastrous action i s referred to the influence of fate, which i s a c t u a l l y described as "baneful" and i s reported to have bound him there ( I I . XXII, 5 - 6). Fate wields absolute c o n t r o l over the l i v e s of men and everything else within h i s t o r y . The plan of fate presupposes some u l t e r i o r , personal i n t e l l i g e n c e responsible f o r i t s formulation. Consequently fate i s frequently personi-f i e d . Hecuba ascribes Hector's death to the predestined plan of the dread goddess: "Such, no doubt, was the destiny that mighty Fate spun f o r him with her thread at the time of h i s b i r t h , when I bore him to glut the swift-footed dogs far from his parents i n the presence of a cr u e l man" -98-(II. XXIV, 209 - 212). So cl o s e l y i s the l i f e of a man associated with a thread spun according to the design of a transcendent i n t e l l i g e n c e , that the personal power behind fate i s even designated as the Clothes or "Spinners" to whom Alcinous r e f e r s as the authors of Odysseus' destiny (Od. VII, 196 - 198). This u l t e r i o r , personal r e a l i t y i s also referred to i n the p l u r a l by Apollo who a t t r i b u t e s to the "Moirai" such compre-hensive c o n t r o l over the l i v e s of men that he describes them as es t a b l i s h i n g human nature i t s e l f : "the fates have placed an enduring soul i n men" (II. XXIV, 49). The Transcendent Gods The gods possess c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s that q u a l i f y them as well for transcendence and the personal determination of fate and d i r e c t i o n of hi s t o r y . C e r t a i n l y the general concept of d i v i n i t y , i n i t s elementary, unqualified form, i s frequently elevated to the l e v e l of the personal, i n t e l l i g e n t , and transcendent author and r u l e r of a l l things. As such i t i s designated by the terms theos and daimon which are generally interchangeable, although, as Martin Nilsson observes, i n some measure "daimon ... has i t s centre i n the undefined, i n power, whereas theos centres i n the i n d i v i d u a l and personal."^ Hector uses both words i n hi s address to Aias at the end of t h e i r duel i n Book VII of the I l i a d , i n which he refer s to the hypostatic power at the heart of r e a l i t y i n both i t s transcendent creative and regulatory c a p a c i t i e s : "Aias, since the god (theos) gave you stature, might, and wisdom, and since you are by far the best of the Achaeans with the spear, l e t us now leave o f f from f i g h t i n g and s t r i f e for today. Later we w i l l f i g h t again, u n t i l the god (daimon) should decide between us and grant v i c t o r y to one side or the other." (II. VII, 288 - 292) Whenever s i t u a t i o n s a r i s e that appear to exceed the control of the immanent gods, or even men, and that seem to be subject to chance, t h e i r r e s o l u t i o n 1 Nilsson, A History of Greek Re l i g i o n , p. 165. -99-i s a t t r i b u t e d to a transcendent power, such as the unspecified god to whom A c h i l l e s ascribes the s e l e c t i o n of Trojans who w i l l encounter him: "Now there i s no one who w i l l escape death, whoever, at any rate, the god (theos) w i l l cast into my hands before Troy" (II. XXI, 103 - 104). Indeed so c l o s e l y are theos and daimon associated with the transcendent ru l e of fate that Hector, i n taunting Diomedes, depersonalizes daimon into a synonym for destiny: "... you s h a l l not mount upon our towers without my opposition, and carry off our women i n your ships. Before that I w i l l give you your doom (daimona)" (II. VIII, 164 - 166). In t h e i r immanent manifestations the i n d i v i d u a l gods have l i m i t e d natures and powers and thus cannot a t t a i n transcendence. In a c o l l e c t i v i t y , however, t h e i r combined power a f f e c t s a l l phenomena, which would eminently q u a l i f y them for the transcendent c o n t r o l of everything. In f a c t , t h i s exalted p o s i t i o n i s often accorded to them i n the I l i a d and Odyssey. So Thetis a t t r i b u t e s Patroclus' doom to the w i l l of the gods (II. XIX, 8 - 9). A c h i l l e s , r e f e r r i n g to the gods as the Ouraniones, or "heaven-dwellers," lays to t h e i r c o l l e c t i v e charge the Trojan War i t s e l f , as he attempts to console Priam: "But since the gods brought t h i s woe upon you, there i s ever f i g h t i n g and slaughter around your c i t y " (II. XXIV, 547 - 548). When men wish to re f e r t h e i r own actions to the execution of a higher plan, they may designate the gods, as does Odysseus i n h i s yarn about h i s escape from Thesprotian brigands. After they bound him i n t h e i r ship i t was not he who freed himself, but the gods: "the gods themselves e a s i l y loosed my bonds" (Od. XIV, 348 - 349). Later, h i s success at hiding on land from his captors i s also a t t r i b u t e d to divine influence: "the gods themselves had no trouble i n hiding me" (Od. XIV, 357 - 358). The transcendent power of the gods i s distinguished from t h e i r -100-immanent a c t i v i t i e s . In the l a t t e r part of Book XIV i n the I l i a d Zeus, i n his immanent form, l i e s asleep i n the arms of Hera, o b l i v i o u s to the course of the f i g h t i n g at the Achaean ships, while the other gods, except for Poseidon, remain confined i n ineffectiveness on Olympus. Poseidon alone plays a l i m i t e d r o l e i n the b a t t l e , s t i r r i n g up the Achaeans. The immanent gods, then, wield very l i t t l e c o n t r o l over events at t h i s point i n time. Yet t h e i r transcendent d i r e c t i o n of the natural order i s never slackened, as the death of Archelochus from Aias' spear reveals: "Archelochus, son of Antenor, received the spear, since the gods planned h i s destruction" ( I I . XIV, 464). Whenever an issue i s considered to be indeterminate i n the l i g h t of a l l possible immanent influences, only the transcendent control of the gods i s admitted. So Hector ref e r s to them the r e s u l t of his struggle with A c h i l l e s when he refuses to accept h i s v i c t o r y as a foregone conclusion: "But, to be sure, these matters l i e on the knees of the gods, whether I, though i n f e r i o r to you, s h a l l take away your l i f e with a blow from my spear, since my weapon has also been sharp before" (II. XX, 435 - 437). The gods, conceived as a s i n g l e , hypostatic e n t i t y rather than d i s t i n c t , anthropomorphic, " e s s e n t i a l " p e r s o n a l i t i e s , are considered to co n t r o l r e a l i t y comprehensively and transcendently. Even i n d i v i d u a l gods of extraordinary power and influence, such as Poseidon, Athene, and Zeus, may be exalted to positions of transcendence. Upon Odysseus' departure from the i s l a n d of the Cyclopes Polyphemus c a l l s down an imprecation upon him and entreats h i s father, Poseidon, to execute i t . Poseidon, i t i s reported, "hears" h i s prayer (Od. IX, 536). Since i t i s subsequently f u l f i l l e d , even to the smallest d e t a i l s , some degree of transcendent control over the course of events must be a t t r i b u t e d to -101-the Sea-god. Athene demonstrates possession of s i m i l a r power i n her predestination of Amphinomus, whom Odysseus attempts to warn of h i s impending revenge, yet who, though presaging d i s a s t e r , does not avoid destruction: "But not even so did he escape h i s fate. Athene, rather, compelled him to f a l l v i o l e n t l y under the hands and spear of Telemachus" (Od. XVIII, 155 - 156). Her transcendent power i s most c l e a r l y revealed i n Book I I I of the Odyssey when, disguised as Mentor, she prays to Poseidon for a blessing upon Nestor and his sons, the other Pylians, and Telemachus and h e r s e l f : "So, then, she prayed, and she h e r s e l f f u l f i l l e d every prayer" (Od. I l l , 62). The Transcendent Zeus It i s natural that Zeus, the most powerful, supreme de i t y , should have h i s power extended i n d e f i n i t e l y , even to the point of transcendence, to the extent that he can ordain whatever he w i l l s with a mere nod of h i s head. So he promises to accomplish Thetis' request: "Come then, I w i l l bow my head i n consent to you, that you may believe. For t h i s action on my part i s the surest sign among immortals. For, anything of mine to which I s h a l l bow my head s h a l l not be revocable or deceptive or unaccomplished." (II. I, 524 - 527) So inexorable i s h i s w i l l that Hermes t e l l s Calypso p l a i n l y : " I t i s i n no way possible for another god either to transgress the w i l l of Zeus of the aegis or to f r u s t r a t e i t " (Od. V, 103 - 104). So absolute and comprehensive i s Zeus's control that he can hide Odysseus' fate from a l l men, as Telemachus informs Nestor (Od. I l l , 88). He establishes the dest i n i e s of men from t h e i r very b i r t h , as Agamemnon t e l l s Menelaus: "Thus, no doubt, did Zeus send heavy woe upon us at the time of our b i r t h " (II. X, 70 - 71). By as c r i b i n g to Zeus the long s u f f e r i n g of the Achaeans, -102-Odysseus reveals the magnitude of h i s transcendent plan: "Zeus has l a i d i t upon us to wind o f f grievous wars from youth even to old age, u n t i l each man of us per i s h " (II. XIV, 85 - 87). Hector a t t r i b u t e s the whole Trojan War to the anger of Zeus: "Now the b e a u t i f u l treasures have perished u t t e r l y from the homes and many goods have been sold abroad to Phrygia and lovel y Maeonia since great Zeus became angry" (II. XVIII, 290 - 292). The transcendence of Zeus's power i s demonstrated by i t s e f f i c a c y without p h y s i c a l , immanent intervention. He can cont r o l the course of events ex t e r n a l l y , as i t were, by moulding h i s t o r y i t s e l f from without rather than d i r e c t i n g i t s events from within. So Tlepolemus' f a i l u r e to k i l l Sarpedon i s ascribed to Zeus's influence: "Tlepolemus had struck h i s l e f t thigh with the long spear, and the blade sped through i t eagerly, grazing the bone, but s t i l l h i s father warded o f f destruction" (II. V, 660 - 662). So, too, Idomeneus does not consider the Achaeans' reverses as the r e s u l t of i n f e r i o r b a t t l e s k i l l or of cowardice: "Thoas, no man i s to blame, as far as I know. For we a l l know how to f i g h t . Nor does fear hold anyone back demoralized nor does anyone shrink back from t e r r i b l e war by y i e l d i n g to t e r r o r . But I think that t h i s must be dear to the son of Cronos, supreme i n might, that the Achaeans perish i n o b l i v i o n here f ar from Argos." (II.XIII,222-227) Zeus exercises absolute control over the natures of things as much as over events. So he i s credited with causing the dimunition of w i l l and motivation experienced by slaves: "Far-seeing Zeus takes away h a l f the good of a man whenever the day of slavery seizes him" (Od. XVII, 322 -323). One of the outstanding marks of Zeus's transcendence i s h i s a b i l i t y to f o r e t e l l and simultaneously to ordain the future i n d e t a i l , as though i t were e n t i r e l y h i s own creation. In one p a r t i c u l a r prophetic passage he not only traces the future course of events i n the present -103-episode of the Trojan War, but the end of the War i t s e l f , which l i e s beyond the scope of the I l i a d . This combination of p r e d i c t i o n and predestination i s i l l u s t r a t e d i n the following section of the prophecy, beginning with the death of Patroclus: "Glorious Hector s h a l l slay him with the spear before Ilium a f t e r he has s l a i n many other youths, including my god-like son Sarpedon. In anger for him the noble A c h i l l e s s h a l l k i l l Hector. From that time f o r t h I w i l l cause the Trojans to turn from the ships i n con-tinuous rout, u n t i l the Achaeans s h a l l take steep Ilium through the counsels of Athene." (II.XV,65-71) Zeus's transcendence i s manifested i n many ways. Zeus's control over fate i s also i l l u s t r a t e d by h i s frequently transcendent r e l a t i o n to the other gods. Both immanent gods and men appear to a f f e c t s i t u a t i o n s d i r e c t l y and p h y s i c a l l y , yet t h e i r actions may be subsumed under the higher d i r e c t i o n of Zeus. So Apollo alone of a l l the gods i s represented as a c t u a l l y p h y s i c a l l y p a r t i c i p a t i n g i n the sla y i n g of Patroclus, together with Euphorbus and Hector, yet Patroclus recognizes the w i l l of Zeus as well i n h i s k i l l i n g , as he t e l l s Hector: "To you have Zeus the son of Cronos and Apollo, who conquered me e a s i l y , granted v i c t o r y " ( I I . XVI, 844 - 846). Since Zeus was not p h y s i c a l l y involved i n t h i s action h i s influence must have been transcendent. Zeus exercises s i m i l a r suzerain r u l e over Athene. As the Trojan War drew to a close, some Achaeans provoked the wrath of the god. It was h i s daughter, Athene, however, who meted out the appropriate punishment to them, (Od. I l l , 130 - 136). Throughout the Odyssey, i n f a c t , Zeus makes few appear-ances. Athene alone intervenes p h y s i c a l l y i n the course of events to aid Odysseus and Telemachus. Yet references to Zeus suggest that everything she does harmonizes with h i s w i l l . So, i n planning for the struggle i n the h a l l , Odysseus informs h i s son that they w i l l be able to depend upon both gods: "Then w i l l P a l l a s Athene and Zeus the counsellor confound them" -104-(Od. XVI, 297 - 298). Telemachus Is impressed not so much by the patronage that Athene has shown his father as by the support of Zeus implied by that patronage. He counsels Odysseus that they should not seek the help of other Ithacans, " i f i t i s true that you know some sign of aegis-bearing Zeus" (Od. XVI, 320) , not j u s t of Athene. The trans-cendent Zeus, i s also considered by Agamemnon to be the authority behind Ate's b l i n d i n g of him since the god i s r e f e r r e d to i n the same context as having removed his wits from him (II. XIX, 137). S i m i l a r l y the w i l l of Zeus i s perceived behind the physical actions of men. The immediate cause of Aias' withdrawal before the Trojans i n Book XVI i s shown to be the extreme pressure exerted upon him by enemy m i s s i l e s . Yet the i n v i s i b l e influence of Zeus i s also reckoned as a f a c t o r : "Aias no longer stood f a s t , f o r he was hard pressed by the weapons. Both the mind of Zeus and the assault of the noble Trojans overwhelmed him" (II. XVI, 102 - 104). The gods, and men, are the immanent agents of the transcendent Zeus. The transcendent r e s o l u t i o n of problems that are subject to chance in the n a t u r a l , immanent order i s also ascribed to Zeus. The uncertainty in Hector's mind as to the issue of his looming c o n f l i c t with A c h i l l e s i s demonstrated by h i s reference of i t to the supreme god's authority: "Let us know to which of us the Olympian w i l l grant glory" (II. XXII, 130). S i m i l a r l y , when neither Odysseus nor Aias can acquire the advantage i n t h e i r wrestling match, the outcome i s l a i d at Zeus's charge: "Scion of Zeus, son of Laertes, resourceful Odysseus, either l i f t me up or I w i l l l i f t you; but the whole matter w i l l be the care of Zeus" (II. XXIII, 723 - 724). The r e s o l u t i o n of a problem would seem t o t a l l y subject to chance when i t must be reached by the casting of l o t s . Yet t h i s a c t i v i t y may also be comprehended by the transcendent control of the god. As the l o t s are shaken -105-to determine which of the Achaeans w i l l confront Hector the assembled Greeks pray to the god as the transcendent a r b i t e r of the l o t s : Each man marked h i s l o t and cast i t i n the helmet of Agamemnon, son of Atreus. The people then prayed and held up t h e i r hands to the gods. So would one of them speak, looking into the broad heaven: "Father Zeus, grant that Aias receive the l o t , or the son of Tydeus, or the king himself of Mycene, r i c h i n gold." (II.VII,175-180) The men of the I l i a d and Odyssey refuse to accept the ultimate f o r t u i t y of anything. Even s u f f e r i n g , or any u n i n t e l l i g i b l e , chaotic experience, may be subsumed under the higher plan of a transcendent god. Agamemnon blames his quarrel with A c h i l l e s upon Zeus: "But Zeus of the aegis, the son of Cronos, has l a i d much d i s t r e s s upon me, since he has hurled me into useless s t r i f e and quarrels" (II. I I , 375 - 376). A c h i l l e s also lays to Zeus's charge the dissension between himself and Agamemnon and the ensuing s u f f e r i n g and disorder experienced by the whole Achaean host: "Father Zeus, great indeed i s the confusion that you send upon men. Surely the son of Atreus would not have s t i r r e d up l a s t i n g anger i n my breast, or implacably removed the g i r l against my w i l l . But Zeus, I think, wanted death to come upon many Achaeans." (II.XIX,270-274) In accomplishing h i s own comprehensive, unfathomable designs, the supreme god may harm as w e l l as bless, as Aeneas informs A c h i l l e s : "Zeus both increases and diminishes the valour of men according to his w i l l . For he i s the mightiest of a l l " ( I I . XX, 242 - 243). This unequal, incomprehensible d i s t r i b u t i o n of bane and boon does not necessarily imply div i n e caprice and ind i f f e r e n c e to human s u f f e r i n g . It simply r e f l e c t s the dispensation of the transcendent plan of fa t e , which must include both good and e v i l . This transcendent plan i s a mystery, since good and e v i l would seem to be incompatible and mutually -106-destructive. Their mysterious unity i s symbolically represented i n A c h i l l e s ' explanation of human s u f f e r i n g recounted to Priam: "For the gods have spun the thread for wretched men to l i v e i n di s t r e s s while they themselves are untroubled. For two urns rest on Zeus's f l o o r with the sorts of g i f t s that he gives, one of bad things, one of good things. The man to whom Zeus who delights i n thunder may grant a mingled portion at one time meets with e v i l , at another with good. But the man to whom he gives baneful things he renders a v i c t i m of outrage,and b i t t e r , grinding poverty drives him over the holy earth, and he wanders honoured by neither gods nor mortals." (II.XXIV,525-533) In fact a l l r e a l i t y i s the execution of a transcendent, mysterious, and meaningful plan that only Zeus, i n his transcendent nature, can understand.. So, though men are doomed to su f f e r i n g and mor t a l i t y , he cares f o r them (II. XX, 21), and, s i t t i n g apart from the other gods who are l i m i t e d by the i r sectarian i n t e r e s t s , he r e j o i c e s i n the f i g h t i n g around Troy with i t s combination of horror and glory: "Of them the father took no heed, but turned aside and sat down far away from the others, exulting i n h i s glory, looking upon the c i t y of the Trojans and the ships of the Achaeans, and gleam of bronze, and slayers and s l a i n " (II. XI, 80 - 83). The supreme Olympian d i r e c t s the course of events according to an inscrutable plan, but a plan nevertheless. Several incidents suggest that his power exceeds that of f a t e . Helen ascribes to him the f a c u l t y of d i s t r i b u t i n g men's d e s t i n i e s , as to he r s e l f and P a r i s , upon whom, she says, "Zeus has l a i d an e v i l doom (moron), that, from henceforth, we may be sung about to men who are yet to be" (II. VI, 357 - 358). When Zeus ponders whether or not to save Sarpedon from death, Hera, i n rebuking him, implies that he may indeed overrule f a t e : "Most dread son of Cronos, what are you saying? Do you wish to release again from grievous death a man who i s mortal and long since consigned to hi s doom? Go ahead; but be sure that not a l l the rest of us who are gods commend you for i t . " ( I I . XVI, 440 - 443) -107-Athene reproaches her father i n s i m i l a r fashion when he considers saving Hector from A c h i l l e s i n Book XXII (178 - 181). In fac t Zeus's w i l l i s supreme. He has, i n h i s transcendent form, f u l l power to ordain the future. He i s indeed frequently portrayed as the cr e a t i v e , guiding i n t e l l i g e n c e behind fate. In several instances Zeus's transcendence i s dramatically confirmed through symbolism. His d i r e c t i o n of fa t e , p a r t i c u l a r l y i n b a t t l e where the issue may seem subject to chance, i s often represented by the image of weighted scales, as Odysseus t e l l s A c h i l l e s : ''Quickly to men comes s u r f e i t of b a t t l e . . . when Zeus who has been made dispenser of war for men i n c l i n e s h i s sc a l e s " ( I I . XIX, 221 - 224). In the f i g h t i n g recounted i n Book VIII he determines the course of the b a t t l e by comparing the fates of the Greeks and Trojans: When Helios had bestridden the midst of heaven, even then did the Father extend h i s golden scales. In them he placed two fates of prostrate death for both the horse-taming Trojans and the bronze-armoured Achaeans, and grasping the scales i n the middle he l i f t e d them up. The fates of the Achaeans sank down upon the bounteous earth, while those of the Trojans were raised up to the broad heaven. Then Zeus himself thundered loudly from Ida and hurled blazing l i g h t n i n g at the host of the Achaeans. They, beholding i t , were appalled, and green fear s t o l e upon them. (Il.VIII.,68-77) At t h i s point i n the narrative the f i g h t i n g begins to turn i n the Trojans' favour. Zeus employs the scales again i n Book XXII to determine the out-come of the contest between Hector and A c h i l l e s and again defeat i s decided by the decline of one side of the balance (II. XXII, 209 - 213). I t might be objected that, i n these instances, the i n c l i n a t i o n of the scales occurs independently from Zeus's influence and thus that t h e i r determination of destiny i s due to chance rather than to the w i l l of Zeus. The f u l l meaning of the symbol of the scales, however, can only be perceived when they are viewed i n context. It i s , i n f a c t , Zeus who employs them, holds them, and -108-places the fates of men upon them. The t o t a l image thus represents h i s supervision of and control over b l i n d chance i t s e l f . His transcendent control over even such an uncertain phenomenon as v i o l e n t warfare i s f i g u r a t i v e l y represented by the image of him applying tension to the c o n f l i c t as he would tauten a rope, as he does i n the struggle over Sarpedon's corpse: "And many men f e l l over him when the son of Cronos stretched t i g h t the mighty s t r i f e " ( I I . XVI, 661 - 662). The same image i s used to explain the fury of the f i g h t i n g for Patroclus' body: "Such a t e r r i b l e struggle for both men and horses did Zeus s t r e t c h out on that day over Patroclus" ( I I . XVII, 400 - 401). This imagery suggests that the s t r a i n and t o i l of f i g h t i n g are not so much due to the opposing strengths of enemies, and thus uncontrolled and unpredictable i n t h e i r e f f e c t s , as they are the products of the transcendent might of Zeus alone and thus e n t i r e l y subject to h i s w i l l . Such symbolism gives concrete expression to the abstract idea of the supreme god's absolute, trans-cendent control over the most apparently uncertain phenomena and occur-rences. There are other s i g n i f i c a n t i n d i c a t i o n s of Zeus's transcendence. Prayers of supreme importance not involving s i n g l e , l i m i t e d actions but whole episodes with great import for the future are addressed to h i s personal agency. At the marshalling of the Achaean host i n Book II of the I l i a d the ordinary s o l d i e r s pray each to a d i f f e r e n t god " f o r escape both from death and the moil of Ares" (400 - 401). Their prayers express a l i m i t e d , purely i n d i v i d u a l and personal concern. Agamemnon, however, because he i s not only interested i n his immediate safety, entreats Zeus himself to permit the Achaeans to sack Troy on that very day (412 - 418). Only a transcendent god with the power to mould the future according to -109-his w i l l could e f f e c t such a prayer. In Book I I I , Menelaus prays only to Zeus for v i c t o r y and vengeance upon Paris as he moves against him (349 - 354), yet the sing l e invocation i s e n t i r e l y appropriate i n the circumstances, as the issue of t h e i r duel, they think, w i l l end the Trojan War. Zeus's intervention may also be requested for the r e s o l u t i o n of a problem of only immediate relevance, provided that i t i s s u f f i c i e n t l y pressing. So, when Diomedes wreaks havoc upon the Trojan ranks a f t e r Athene has invigorated him, Aeneas asks Pandarus to shoot him down a f t e r f i r s t praying to Zeus, who may be the only god who can p r e v a i l against him, since the hero's destructiveness i s so great that he may a c t u a l l y be "some god angered over s a c r i f i c e s and bearing a grudge against the Trojans" (II. V, 171 - 178). When, however, Diomedes desires to k i l l Pandarus, a warrior of less account, only for wounding him, he prays merely for the support of Athene ( I I . V, 115 - 120). Zeus's transcendent supremacy renders him the god most l i k e l y to accomplish p e t i t i o n s of the greatest magnitude, whether they require transcendent or immanent f u l f i l m e n t . If values are to have weight they must be based upon some absolute, unshakeable authority. In the I l i a d and the Odyssey they are a t t r i b u t e d to the transcendent Zeus, the ultimate judge and r u l e r of a l l . Kings claim the support of the Olympian for the roy a l prerogative; so the epithet "Zeus-nurtured," diotrephes, i s frequently attached to the word for king, basileus. Agamemnon, as High King of the Achaeans, claims, as i t has been seen, s p e c i a l honour from the god. When, i n t h e i r quarrel, A c h i l l e s threatens to abandon his expedition, Agamemnon t e l l s him to proceed: "There are others with me who w i l l honour me, e s p e c i a l l y Zeus the counsellor" ( I I . I, 174 - 175). In Hades A c h i l l e s remarks to Agamemnon that the Achaeans deemed him the eve r l a s t i n g favourite of the god, "because -110-you ruled over men great i n numbers and strength i n the land of the Trojans" (Od. XXIV, 24 - 27). The d e l i v e r y of information i s also considered a sacred function, and so heralds and messengers are given s p e c i a l status by Zeus. Their persons are, consequently, treated as i n v i o l a b l e . So when Talthybius and Eurybates f e a r f u l l y approach A c h i l l e s to demand the surrender of B r i s e i s , he does not vent h i s wrath upon them, but t h e i r master. He i n fact greets them with the reverence due to t h e i r consecrated p o s i t i o n : " H a i l , heralds, messengers of Zeus and of men, draw nearer! It i s not you who are i n any way g u i l t y i n my eyes, but Agamemnon" (II. I, 334 - 335). Law and order are also founded on Zeus's inexpugnable authority the v i s i b l e symbol of which i s the r o y a l sceptre that originated with the gods. This, says A c h i l l e s , "the sons of the Achaeans who are judges bear i n t h e i r hands, they who guard the laws from Zeus" ( I I . I, 237 - 239). A c h i l l e s considers t h i s object s u f f i c i e n t l y august to swear upon. Zeus i s also the guardian of morality. Hector ascribes some degree of holiness to him by refusing, while unclean, to pour a l i b a t i o n to him: "I shrink from pouring flaming wine to Zeus with unwashed hands. Nor should one i n any way pray to the son of Cronos, l o r d of the black cloud, while d e f i l e d with blood and gore" ( I I . VI, 266 - 268). Zeus i s also the ultimate judge of s i n . So the Prayers, the daughters of Zeus i n Phoenix's allegory, demand of t h e i r father punishment of the proud and hard-hearted (II. IX, 510 - 512). Zeus i s credited with the punishment of the unjust state by natural catastrophe, such as floods, "when he i s angry and bears a grudge against men who give crooked judgments in the assembly and d r i v e out j u s t i c e , heedless of the vengeance of the gods" (II. XVI, 386 - 388). After Pandarus has v i o l a t e d the Trojan oaths by wounding Menelaus a f t e r h i s duel with P a r i s , Agamemnon comforts h i s brother by reminding him of -111-the i n e x o r a b i l i t y of divine j u s t i c e , however belated i t s execution: "For even i f the Olympian has not immediately effected j u s t i c e , eventu-a l l y he w i l l , and men make atonement at great cost, with t h e i r own heads, t h e i r wives, and t h e i r c h i l d r e n " (II. IV, 160 - 162). Zeus also maintains the s a n c t i t y of h o s p i t a l i t y , as Menelaus asserts while r a i l i n g against the Trojans for the rape of Helen: "You did not at a l l fear i n your heart the harsh wrath of loud-thundering Zeus, the god of h o s p i t a l i t y , who w i l l some day destroy your steep c i t y . For you went your reckless way, bearing o f f my wedded wife and many possessions a f t e r you were welcomed by her." (II.XIII,623-627) The ultimate triumphs of A c h i l l e s over Hector and of the Greeks over the Trojans depend upon the transcendent execution of the w i l l of Zeus, the holy god of j u s t i c e and morality. Zeus's transcendence i s also revealed i n the omens that he sends f o r t h . He i s a c t u a l l y c a l l e d panomphaios,the "author of a l l d i v i n a t i o n " (II. VIII, 250). He may dispatch omens that do not amount to much more than purely physical signs of encouragement or discouragement, such as peals of thunder during the day and night. In many instances, however, his omens are of such complexity and coincidence as to require a trans-cendent o r i g i n . Some are c r y p t i c , such as that of the two eagles that the god sends to f i g h t over the heads of the assembled Ithacans as a sign of Odysseus' imminent return and the impending d i s a s t e r for the s u i t o r s (Od. I I , 146 - 167). In others, however, the pattern has obvious symbolic s i g n i f i c a n c e . When the Achaeans were conducting a s a c r i f i c e to the gods before s e t t i n g out for Troy, the Olympian s t i r r e d up a large snake to devour a family of nine b i r d s , the mother l a s t of a l l . In Chalcas' i n t e r p r e t a t i o n the ingestion of the birds represents the number of years that the Achaeans must f i g h t for Troy ( I I . I I , 308 - 329). One might add -112-that the rapacious serpent s i g n i f i e s the Achaean army while the death of the mother b i r d stands for the climax and conclusion of the Trojan War. It i s noteworthy that the Trojans and Achaeans are again repre-sented, r e s p e c t i v e l y , by birds and a serpent, though i n a d i f f e r e n t r e l a t i o n , i n the portent that occurs during the f i g h t i n g at the Achaeans 1 wall (II. XII, 200 - 207). An eagle appears overhead holding a snake in i t s talons, a phenomenon that i s designated "an omen from Zeus of the aegis" (208). Polydamas c o r r e c t l y i n t e r p r e t s the eagle's subsequent f a i l u r e to convey the serpent to i t s young for food as a sign that the Trojans w i l l not succeed i n destroying the Greek camp i n t h e i r present assault (217 - 227). Both omens appear to evolve for the most part within the bounds of natural law. Only i n the former instance does anything p a r t i c u l a r l y unusual occur: the snake, upon consuming the family of b i r d s , i s changed to stone (II. I I , 319). For the r e s t , these natural processes only acquire symbolic s i g n i f i c a n c e through Zeus's transcendent manipulation of the natural realm. The immense, v i r t u a l l y unlimited range of Zeus's ownership and influence i n both natural and supernatural realms indicates an omnipresence that would seem to exceed the c a p a b i l i t i e s of a f i n i t e d i v i n i t y . In f a c t , t h i s omni-presence i s an a t t r i b u t e of the transcendent aspect of the god's nature. It i s most c l e a r l y revealed i n the numerous applications of the genitive i n f l e x i o n , "Dios," "of Zeus," which, i n aggregate, show that he enjoys possession of a wide v a r i e t y of things, such as the f l o o r of the Olympic palace ( I I . V, 734), the sky and beams of the sun (II. XIII, 837), an oak tree i n the Trojan p l a i n ( I I . V, 693), and time i t s e l f , as Agamemnon implies i n h i s address to the Achaeans i n Book II of the I l i a d : "In t r u t h , nine years of great Zeus have passed by" (134). Moreover, Zeus i s considered the o r i g i n -113-of a l l . One of his p r i n c i p a l t i t l e s i s "father," and often the word i s expanded beyond the li m i t e d meaning of an ordinary parent. His progeny among the gods do indeed address him as "father," but so does everyone else, including h i s s i s t e r and wife, Hera, ( I I . V, 757), and brother, Poseidon, (Od. XIII, 128), and Priam ( I I . XXII, 60). Indeed, he i s often c a l l e d "the father of gods and men" (e.g..II. I, 544). His t i t l e r e f l e c t s the reverence that a l l creatures, both divine and mortal, f e e l for the supreme god, but i t also implies that he i s the author and r u l e r of everything i n the universe i n at least one aspect of his nature, that he i s , i n f a c t , not only the f i n i t e , immanent King of the Olympians but the transcendent F i r s t Cause. His influence and presence pervade the world, as the frequent usage of epithets bearing h i s name, such as diogenes, "Zeus-born," and diotrephes, "Zeus-nurtured," demonstrates. The l a t t e r not only designates i n d i v i d u a l s , but embraces whole groups as w e l l , such as kings ( I I . I I , 445) or the companies of youths that follow the two Aiantes ( I I . IV, 280). As Polydamas t e l l s Hector, Zeus influences the l i v e s of a l l men i n a v a r i e t y of ways that reveals the l i m i t l e s s range of h i s own q u a l i t i e s : "For to one man the god has given b a t t l e s k i l l , to another a b i l i t y i n dancing, to another s k i l l with the l y r e and song, and i n the breast of another far-seeing Zeus places noble discr i m i n a t i o n , and many derive p r o f i t from him, and he saves many, as he himself knows w e l l . " (II.XIII,730-734) The sheer abundance of a l l manner of references to the god creates an overwhelming impression of his omnipresent, hypostatic s u b s t a n t i a l i t y . Apollo may be the immediate agent i n the i n s t i g a t i o n of s u f f e r i n g and s t r i f e i n the Greek camp at the beginning of the I l i a d , but mention of the fact at his f i r s t appearance i n the text that he i s the son of Zeus -114-establishes an ineradicable impression of his constant presence and p a r t i c i p a t i o n , no matter how remote, i n the story, and places Apollo's intervention i n the larger context of h i s w i l l . S i m i l a r l y , Athene may be the p r i n c i p a l divine agent in the events recounted i n the Odyssey, but the frequent d e s c r i p t i o n of her as the daughter of Zeus serves as a constant reminder of his u l t e r i o r presence and of her subordination to him. The transcendent Zeus i s everywhere, including H e l l , as Phoenix's remarkable reference to Hades as "Zeus of the Underworld" reveals ( I I . IX, 457). Zeus, i n h i s transcendent form, i s the s p i r i t u a l hypostasis under-pinning the whole of r e a l i t y . Even i n his immanent manifestations Zeus displays a t t r i b u t e s that suggest, at l e a s t , h i s transcendence. Generally a d i s t i n c t i o n i s main-tained between him and the other gods through h i s primacy among them and his frequent aloofness from t h e i r company. When the gods return from Ethiopia to Olympus i n Book I of the I l i a d , they appear together i n a throng, but Zeus alone i s described as leading the way (495). When Thetis goes to supplicate him she finds him s i t t i n g apart from the other d i v i n i t i e s on the very summit of Olympus (498 - 499). Hera and Athene discover him i n s i m i l a r i s o l a t i o n i n Book V (753 - 754). Moreover he i s not only p h y s i c a l l y d i s t i n c t from the other gods, but mentally and s p i r i t u a l l y as w e l l , as he thinks and plans independently and always remains to some degree self-contained and secretive. He does not respond immediately to Thetis' request but maintains an awesome si l e n c e ( I I . I, 511 - 512). At the beginning of Book I I , while a l l other gods and men slumber i n o b l i v i o n , he remains awake, pondering by himself the future course of events ( I I . I I , 1 - 4 ) . His independence and i n s c r u t a b i l i t y i r r i t a t e and alarm Hera exceedingly as she shows i n her outburst against -115-him a f t e r h i s conversation with Thetis: "Who, then, of the gods, 0 wily one, has once again taken counsel with you? You always prefer to make decisions by planning s e c r e t l y apart from me. You have never yet i n any way r e a d i l y undertaken to inform me about what you have purposed." (II. I, 540 - 543) Zeus's aloofness and mystery combine to project him beyond the l i m i t s of nature and experience that constrain the other gods. His freedom and elevation above other immanent beings are confirmed by his detachment from the course of events. To be sure, he d i r e c t s a l l natural and supernatural processes, but usually at a distance. A mere nod from h i s head shakes Olympus (II. I, 530). When he wishes to convey information to men or gods beyond Olympus he employs messengers. When he wishes to accomplish something away from the mountain, he Commissions other gods to act as his agents. His residence on mountain peaks aptly r e f l e c t s h i s separation from events i n the external, immanent world. He may remove from Olympus to acquire a better view of earthly a f f a i r s , as he does i n Book VIII of the I l i a d , but he does not become d i r e c t l y , p h y s i c a l l y involved i n the s i t u a t i o n i n which he i s interested. In Book VIII he does not a c t u a l l y enter the f i g h t i n g between the Greeks and Trojans. He goes no farther than to p o s i t i o n himself on another mountain, Ida, for better observation. From that remote l o c a t i o n he appears to control matters i n a manner that can only be described as transcendent. Cert a i n l y his separation from other immanent beings, even i n his immanent form, adumbrates the transcendent part of h i s nature. The Immanent Execution of the Transcendent Plan of Fate The c o r o l l a r y of fate's transcendent r u l e i s that immanent gods and men f u l f i l i t s plan by acting spontaneously and independently. Towards the -116-end of Book XVIII i n the Odyssey the s u i t o r s ' feasting i s set i n an uproar, apparently by the disguised Odysseus' scornful a t t i t u d e towards Eurymachus and Eurymachus' v i o l e n t response. Yet Telemachus a t t r i b u t e s the tumult to d i v i n e influence: "You madmen! You are out of your senses and you no longer control the e f f e c t s of eating and drinking. Some god, then, i s s t i r r i n g you up" (Od. XVIII, 406 - 407). Such an i n t e r p r e t a t i o n places an ostensibly natural occurrence with a natural cause i n a transcendent context. It also elevates Odysseus i n importance by implying that he i s the agent of the gods i n the execution of the s u i t o r s ' fate. In Book II of the I l i a d , a f t e r Agamemnon's disheartening speech, the Achaeans prepare to abandon Troy, thereby threatening to annul Zeus's transcendent plan for the Trojan War which was revealed i n the omen of the snake and the birds and interpreted by Calchas before the departure for Troy, and, on a more immediate l e v e l , h i s agreement to accomplish Thetis' request which s t i p u l a t e d the abasement of Agamemnon and the Achaean host, not i t s d i s s o l u t i o n or destruction. Something must happen to preserve Zeus's plans. In fac t Hera and Athene intervene, not out of any concern for the supreme plan of h i s t o r y , but i n support of t h e i r own f i n i t e , immediate, biased i n t e r e s t s . As Hera remarks to Athene: "They (the Argives) would abandon to Priam and the Trojans t h e i r boast, Argive Helen, on whose account many Achaeans perished i n Troy, far from t h e i r dear native land" (II. I I , 160 - 162). They r e s t r a i n the Achaeans not through any overwhelming supernatural prodigy, but by i n s p i r i n g Odysseus to check them. Zeus's transcendent plan i s sustained by the spontaneous, immanent, divine action which becomes thereby comprehended within i t . The duel between Menelaus and Paris also threatens to resolve prematurely the Trojan War. Again, however, the gods intervene opportunely, not through any prearranged p o l i c y of regulation -117-according to the plan of fate, but through spontaneous, independent reactions to an immediate state of a f f a i r s not i n accordance with t h e i r own l i m i t e d , p a r t i a l i n t e r e s t s . Just as Menelaus prepares to slay P a r i s , Aphrodite b e s t i r s h e r s e l f to rescue her favourite, and so leaves the issue of the combat i n some doubt. Agamemnon claims the v i c t o r y for his brother, and the gods proceed to debate whether to have the Trojans acknowledge him as v i c t o r , and so to end the war. They argue as though Troy's fate has not already been determined, and Zeus agrees to the destruction of the c i t y only at Hera's st r i d e n t insistence ( I I . IV, 25 -38). Again, the gods do not openly e f f e c t t h e i r w i l l through sheer might, but by prompting Pandarus to shoot and wound Menelaus, and so to i n v a l i d a t e the oaths and treaty of the Trojans and Achaeans. The transcendent order of fate and Zeus's w i l l are established through f i n i t e , apparently t o t a l l y spontaneous, immanent decisions and actions, — or perhaps i t would be more accurate to say "reactions." This r e l a t i o n imparts meaning to the l i v e s of men and gods without depriving them of free w i l l . They f u l f i l the plan of fate without appearing constrained to do so. The i n e x o r a b i l i t y of fate i s transcendent, not immanent. The impression of immanent freedom and spontaneity i s i n t e n s i f i e d by references to contingencies that would disrupt the predestined order of things. Zeus has f o r e t o l d that Hector w i l l die only at the hands of A c h i l l e s (II. XV, 68), yet Teucer receives the opportunity of k i l l i n g him himself: "Teucer drew another arrow for Hector armed with bronze and he would have stopped him from f i g h t i n g at the ships of the Achaeans i f , having struck him, the great hero, he had taken away his l i f e " ( I I . XV, 458 - 460). At one point i n the f i g h t i n g over Patroclus' corpse, the Achaeans threaten prematurely to r o l l the Trojans back to Troy: -118-Then had the Trojans retreated demoralized into Ilium before the Achaeans, beloved of Ares, and the Argiveshad won glory exceeding the allotment (aisa) granted by Zeus through t h e i r own courage and strength, had not Apollo himself spurred on Aeneas. (II. XVII, 319-323) Of course nothing ever does happen beyond the design of fate i n s p i t e of the p o t e n t i a l aberrations. The mere speculation, however, about t h e i r existence s u f f i c e s to r e i n f o r c e the impression that the immanent dimension of h i s t o r y has unlimited p o s s i b i l i t i e s of development. Men and gods do recognize the i n e x o r a b i l i t y of fate but r a r e l y do they passively accept i t . To be sure, A c h i l l e s displays a somewhat f a t a l i s t i c a t t i t u d e i n conversation with Odysseus when he questions the worth of h i s e f f o r t s f o r the Achaeans' cause i n the l i g h t of t h e i r ingratitude: "I think that neither Agamemnon, son of Atfeus, w i l l persuade me, nor the r e s t of the Danaans, since there were no thanks for f i g h t i n g against h o s t i l e men ever r e l e n t l e s s l y . There i s an equal fate for the man who holds back and the warrior, however hard he may f i g h t . Both the coward and the brave man are held i n one honour. The i d l e man and the t o i l e r perish a l i k e . " (II.IX,315-320) In f a c t , h i s f a t a l i s m derives more from s e l f - p i t y than despair, as he attempts to r a t i o n a l i z e his determination to remain aloof from the Achaean army before Agamemnon's embassy of p r o p i t i a t i o n . Elsewhere, men and gods make a complete d i s t i n c t i o n between transcendent predestination and im-manent spontaneity. When the Achaeans turn i n rout from the Trojans i n Book VIII of the I l i a d Hector acknowledges the influence of Zeus's w i l l , but then t a l k s as though the defeat of the enemy w i l l be accomplished through the Trojans' superior strength: "I perceive that the son of Cronos has r e a d i l y granted v i c t o r y and great glory to me, but woe to the Danaans. What fools they were to construct these weak, worthless walls! They s h a l l not ward o f f our strength. Our horses s h a l l e a s i l y leap over t h e i r hollowed trench." (II.VIII,175-179) -119-In Book XX Aeneas seems imperilled i n h i s duel with A c h i l l e s . Poseidon states that he w i l l need s p e c i a l divine assistance to escape death, while paradoxically asserting that he has already been fated to survive the war: "But come, l e t us draw/ him away from death l e s t the Son of Cronos possibly become angry i f A c h i l l e s should k i l l him. I t i s fated for him to escape i n order that the race of Dardanus may not perish i n o b l i v i o n without issue;" (II. XX, 300-304) Regardless of t h e i r knowledge of the future men and gods may yet hesitate before the immanent uncertainty of the course of events. In s p i t e of Zeus's e x p l i c i t i n j u n c t i o n and assurance of safety delivered to Priam through I r i s , Hecuba seeks to r e s t r a i n him from approaching A c h i l l e s to ransom Hector's body: "Your heart i s of i r o n . For i f he lays hold of you and beholds you with hi s eyes such a b l o o d t h i r s t y , treacherous man i s he that he w i l l not p i t y you and i n no way respect you" ( I I . XXIV, 205 - 208). In fact immanent gods and men w i l l even act without consider-ation for or contrary to the revealed plan of fate. When Poseidon perceives Odysseus approaching Phaeacia i n Book V of the Odyssey, he admits that he i s destined to end h i s s u f f e r i n g , yet he p e r s i s t s i n hindering h i s passage: "So! the gods completely changed t h e i r minds about Odysseus while I was among the Ethiopians! And now he i s near the land of the Phaeacians, where i t i s h i s fate f i n a l l y to escape the t e r r i b l e hardship that has overwhelmed him. But I think that I w i l l yet a f f l i c t him with hi s f i l l of s u f f e r i n g . " (Od.V,286-290) Hector informs Andromache of h i s c e r t a i n t y of the eventual destruction of Troy (II. VI, 447 - 449) but continues to f i g h t unwaveringly, as though the Danaans a c t u a l l y could be driven into the sea. Then, i n Book XII, when Polydamas counsels that the Trojans hold back from the Achaeans' ships i n accordance with the omen of the eagle and the snake Hector repudiates a l l -120-consideratlon of presages of the plan of fa t e : "One augury i s best: to defend the fatherland" ( I I . XII, 243). When A c h i l l e s r e p l i e s to Xanthus' prophecy concerning h i s death he does not display the passive f a t a l i s m of h i s e a r l i e r conversation with Odysseus: "Xanthus, why do you prophesy my death? There i s absolutely no need for you to do so. For I myself know well that i t i s my fate to perish here far from my dear father and mother. But, nevertheless, I w i l l not l e t up u n t i l I have hounded the Trojans to s u r f e i t of war." (II.XIX,420-423) Whatever the design of fate and however ineluctable i t s execution may be, immanent men and gods are never deprived of free w i l l and the fundamental b e l i e f i n t h e i r a b i l i t y to influence the course of events. The freedom inherent i n the immanent dimension of r e a l i t y affords a degree of complexity and i n d i v i d u a l i n t e g r i t y to i t s inhabitants that would be impossible were the r i g i d order of fate enforced within rather than without the course of events. Consequently both gods and men do not act i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey as mere stereotyped automatons. They possess personality t r a i t s that render them cr e d i b l e as d i s t i n c t i n d i v i -duals. They often behave emotionally, petulantly, and i r r a t i o n a l l y according to t h e i r own s e l f i s h desires. So Agamemnon dishonours Apollo's p r i e s t and refuses to exchange his daughter for the generous ransom that he o f f e r s . When an assembly of the Achaeans i s convoked to discuss the plague that a f f l i c t s them Agamemnon remains s i l e n t u n t i l Calchas lays the blame upon him for angering Apollo. In accordance with the god's w i l l Agamemnon agrees to restore Chryses' daughter to him but i n a most ungracious manner, with a v i o l e n t outburst against Calchas, as though h i s communication were a matter more of malice than d i v i n a t i o n ; "Prophet of e v i l s , never yet have you spoken good to me. Ever i s i t dear to your heart to prophesy e v i l and never yet have you declared or accomplished a good word" (II . I, -121-106 - 108); and with a demand for compensation from h i s fellows. His bad temper and stubborn pride then help to p r e c i p i t a t e the quarrel and subsequent breach between himself and A c h i l l e s for which the Achaeans pay so dearly. Pride and stubbornness are also q u a l i t i e s exhibited by A c h i l l e s i n h i s quarrel with Agamemnon i n which h i s resentment at the High King's superior rank becomes increasingly evident, a resentment that i s f i r s t intimated i n h i s pledge to protect Calchas: "While I am a l i v e and can see on the earth no one of a l l the Danaans s h a l l lay h i s heavy hands upon you by the hollow ships, not even i f you should designate Agamemnon, who now boasts that he i s by f a r the best of the Achaeans." (11.1,88-91) His d i s i n c l i n a t i o n to avoid provoking Agamemnon at the height of h i s wrath, and h i s subsequent j u s t i f i c a t i o n of himself rather than acknow-ledgement of the King's authority, further demonstrate h i s resentment and pride. He appears, however, most conceited, unfeeling, and unreasonable i n h i s l a t e r r e j e c t i o n of Agamemnon's generous and humble s u i t of appease-ment. Indeed, as A c h i l l e s himself reveals, h i s r e c a l c i t r a n c e i s due more to h i s wounded pride than h i s loss of B r i s e i s : "But my heart swells with anger when I consider those matters, how i n s o l e n t l y the son of Atreus treated me among the Argives, as though I were some despised vagabond" ( I I . IX, 646 - 648). A c h i l l e s , of course, s u f f e r s for h i s excessive pride through the death of Patroclus. The gods, too, are subject to pride and f i t s of passion. Hera, Athene, and Poseidon a l l zealously pursue t h e i r own i n t e r e s t s and causes to the extent that, often when Zeus r e s t r i c t s t h e i r a c t i v i t i e s , they either barely contain t h e i r anger and f r u s t r a t i o n or a c t u a l l y r a i l against him. Even Zeus does not remain at a l l times sublimely detached and unemotional; he, too, occasionally reproaches and threatens the other gods and even attempts to provoke them, -122-as when he suggests to Hera the p o s s i b i l i t y of e s t a b l i s h i n g peace between the Greeks and Trojans (II. IV, 5 - 19). Due to the freedom of w i l l a l l o t t e d to them gods and men i n the I l i a d and Odyssey can be s e l f i s h l y and emotionally motivated. In pursuit of t h e i r ends they do not hesitate to use deception and g u i l e . Agamemnon confides to the Achaean c h i e f s h i s plan to assure himself of the devotion of the army a f t e r the departure of A c h i l l e s by s u r r e p t i t i o u s l y o b l i g i n g them to decide between staying at or leaving Troy while masking h i s true intentions ( I I . I I , 53 - 75). Odysseus, the master of c r a f t , beguiles Dolon into revealing the d i s p o s i t i o n of the Trojan camp, and employs cunning extensively i n the Odyssey to achieve h i s ends, as i n h i s escape from the Cyclops and dealings with the s u i t o r s . The gods, too, are quite prepared to deceive each other to accomplish t h e i r designs, as when Poseidon insinuates himself into the f i g h t i n g i n Book XIII while Zeus's back i s turned, and when Hera d i s t r a c t s Zeus i n Book XIV to allow Poseidon to operate e f f e c t i v e l y among the Achaean ranks. The behaviour of both gods and men can be quite subtle and sophisticated due to t h e i r immanent freedom. They also possess the capacity for p o s i t i v e f e e l i n g s that are equally independent from the determinism of f a t e . Agamemnon may at times act s e l f i s h l y and ungraciously, but he may also exhibit genuine love and concern, as towards h i s brother a f t e r Pandarus has wounded him: "But I w i l l have t e r r i b l e g r i e f on your account, Menelaus, i f you die and f i l l up the l o t of your l i f e " ( I I . IV, 169 - 170). He also shows r e a l c o n t r i t i o n , humility, and c o n c i l i a t o r i n e s s i n h i s attempts to appease A c h i l l e s i n Book IX. A c h i l l e s , too,, has noble q u a l i t i e s beyond s e l f i s h appreciation of h i s own worth and glory, as he demonstrates i n h i s g r i e f for Patroclus and his remorse for q u a r r e l l i n g with Agamemnon. The gods, -123-too, are capable of f e e l i n g , as Athene and Hera demonstrate by t h e i r zealous support of the Achaeans, as Thetis shows by her continual sorrowing for her son's untimely fate, and as Zeus proves by his desire to save h i s son, Sarpedon, from his fate. Immanent gods and men display an autonomy of thought, f e e l i n g , and action that d i s t i n g u i s h them as r e a l , c r e d i b l e i n d i v i d u a l s . The Combination of Divine Immanence and Transcendence There i s an apparent c o n t r a d i c t i o n i n the a s c r i p t i o n of both immanence and transcendence to the gods. The former implies possession of l i m i t e d power and i n c l u s i o n i n the course of events. The l a t t e r requires v i r t u a l l y unlimited power and comprehension of the course of events. The two would seem to be incompatible i n a single e n t i t y . This combination, however, does not prove, ul t i m a t e l y , to be an i n t o l e r a b l e inconsistency since the divine nature i s never fixed as an e n t i r e l y immanent or transcendent phenomenon. The mixture i s c l o s e l y related to the v a r i a b l e d u a l i t y of essence and s p i r i t of which every d i v i n i t y c o n s i s t s . Just as the r a t i o of s p i r i t and essence may vary i n the d i f f e r e n t manifestations of a s i n g l e god, so a d i v i n i t y may appear more confined i n immanence on some occasions, and closer to transcendence on others. No manifestation of any deity i s ever d e f i n i t i v e since there i s always another of the same god, or of a d i f f e r e n t one, of greater nature and power. The nature of d i v i n i t y , as i t i s represented i n the I l i a d and Odyssey, i s not ultimately inconsistent since divine manifest-ations form a continuous progression from the f i n i t u d e of immanence to the i n f i n i t y of transcendence. The natures and actions of the gods f a l l into larger contexts and patterns i n the grand transcendent plan of fate. Their c o l l e c t i v e w i l l -124-may not r e f l e c t the i n d i v i d u a l preferences of each d i v i n i t y ; i t may correspond instead to the p r e v a i l i n g opinion among them, which i s usually that of Zeus. Apollo and Zeus p i t y Hector's dishonoured corpse, while Hera shows he r s e l f to be implacable and i n d i f f e r e n t towards him even i n death (II. XXIV, 56 - 61). Because Zeus's view i s d e c i s i v e , he commissions Thetis to inform her son that the gods i n general are angry with him for his obstinate retention of Hector's body (II. XXIV, 113 - 116). Hera's personal opinion disappears i n the consensus of the gods. When, i n Book XIII of the I l i a d , Poseidon takes advantage of Zeus's lapse of attention to enter s e c r e t l y the army of the Achaeans i n order to aid them, subsequent events i n the episode are not simply resolved into the fo r t u i t o u s r e s u l t s of the separate influences of two gods pursuing independent, f i n i t e i n t e r e s t s . They are shown to be the ordered r e s u l t s of the deliberate execution of a s i n g l e , higher plan: "The two (Zeus and Poseidon) stretched out the cord of mighty s t r i f e and equal war, tugging i n opposite d i r e c t i o n s , a cord that was not to be broken, not to be loosed, which loosened the knees of many" (II. XIII, 358 - 360). The manifestations of the two gods i n t h i s d e s c r i p t i o n surpass t h e i r appearances elsewhere i n the episode i n both power and understanding; they are, i n short, much less immanent. The imagery i n t h i s passage i s metaphorical, but i t nevertheless represents a higher p r i n c i p l e of order that subsumes the l i m i t e d and apparently independent a c t i v i t i e s of Zeus and Poseidon. The "depth" of r e a l i t y i s unlimited. Since he resides at the top of the divine hierarchy, Zeus faces no b a r r i e r s to h i s attainment of absolute power and control of the universe, except within the realms of other divine beings, such as Night. Indeed i t has been seen that he does exercise transcendent r u l e over the world i n h i s -125-higher manifestations more often than any other god. Yet he never becomes t o t a l l y removed from the course of events; he holds a d e f i n i t e place i n the scheme of things as an Olympian god, and so he i s always immanent to some degree and a p a r t i c i p a n t within, as well as the formu-l a t o r of, h i s t o r y . To be involved and immanent he must accept l i m i t a t i o n , either consciously or unconsciously. So he, who has the a b i l i t y to ordain the future merely by nodding hi s head, does not always simply t e l l the gods what i s to happen, as at the beginning of Book VIII of the I l i a d , but gives some semblance of sharing the determination of events with them. The omen that he sent to the Greeks before t h e i r departure for Troy re-vealed that he had already decided upon the course of the whole Trojan War. Yet as the war develops he i n t e r m i t t e n t l y proposes to the divine assembly that i t define i t s future d i r e c t i o n . Moreover, he l i s t e n s to i n d i v i d u a l prayers as though t h e i r objects had not already been determined. In t h i s manner he attends to A c h i l l e s ' s u p p l i c a t i o n requesting glory and safety for Patroclus, whose fate has, i n r e a l i t y , already been f i x e d : "Zeus the counsellor heard him. The father granted a part of h i s prayer to him, but denied the other. He permitted him to thrust back war and f i g h t i n g from the ships, but he did not allow him to return safe from b a t t l e " (II. XVI, 249 - 252). Every manifestation of Zeus i s transcended by one more powerful and more comprehensive. After the death of Patroclus reference i s made to the god's desire not to have the hero's corpse f a l l into the hands of the Trojans (II. XVII, 270 - 273). One would presume, then, that he would take measures to ensure the performance of h i s w i l l . Yet, l a t e r , when I r i s rouses A c h i l l e s to f r i g h t e n o f f the Trojans and so to allow the r e t r i e v a l of the body, the divine action i s reported to have occurred -126-without Zeus's knowledge (II. XVIII, 184 - 186). The implication i s , then, that the god's manifestation i n the l a t t e r instance i s more l i m i t e d i n knowledge and power than that i n the former; the l a t t e r may even be considered to be contained by the former. The p e t i t i o n of Thetis to which Zeus nods i n assent i n Book I only concerns the elevation of the dishonoured A c h i l l e s through the advancement of the Trojan cause and the dejection of Achaean fortunes. Yet the subsequent course of events involves a great deal more than t h i s simple a n t i t h e s i s . The Achaeans are indeed driven to desperation by A c h i l l e s ' absence, but, in the meantime, many Achaean heroes gain d i s t i n c t i o n , such as Diomedes, Aias, and Patroclus, while many Trojans perish. Nor does the I l i a d consist only of Zeus's f u l f i l m e n t of Thetis' and A c h i l l e s ' request. It recounts as well the q u a r r e l l i n g and chastisement of Agamemnon and A c h i l l e s , and, indeed, the whole Achaean army, as well as the t r a g i c r i s e and f a l l of Troy's greatest hero and, together with him, of the fortunes of Troy i n the War. A c h i l l e s comes to recognize that Zeus responded to h i s request i n f u l f i l m e n t of a much greater plan: "Father Zeus, i n truth you bestow great f o l l y upon men. Surely the son of Atreus would never have roused anger so thoroughly i n my breast, and he would not so implacably have taken the g i r l against my w i l l . But Zeus undoubtedly wanted death to b e f a l l many Achaeans." (II.XIX,270-274) The manifestation of the god to which A c h i l l e s r e f e r s i n t h i s passage transcends that which Thetis approached i n Book I. In the council of the gods described i n Book I of the Odyssey Zeus, appearing merely i n his lim i t e d r o l e as president of the divine assembly, asserts h i s own benevolence towards Odysseus, while a t t r i b u t i n g to Poseidon the divine h o s t i l i t y to which he i s subject (65 - 69). Yet Eu r y c l e i a l a t e r -127-lays her master's s u f f e r i n g to the charge of the supreme god: "Alas, my c h i l d , that I cannot help you! Zeus t r u l y hated you above a l l men although you had a god-fearing soul. For no one among mortals ever burned as many fat thigh pieces or choice hecatombs for Zeus who delights i n thunder as you gave to him while you prayed that you might come to a comfortable old age and rear your glorious son. But now from you alone he has u t t e r l y removed the day of return." (Od.XIX,363-369) Odysseus himself blames Zeus and his attendants for his long hardship and e x i l e : "But Zeus and the other gods bound me i n s u f f e r i n g against my w i l l f a r from my fatherland" (Od. XXIII, 352 - 353). The sympathy for Odysseus that Zeus expresses i n h i s more l i m i t e d manifestations i s ultimately superseded by h i s transcendent control over the whole of the hero's fate. Zeus has merely to nod to ordain the future; such l i m i t e d but omnipotent involvement i n the course of events would seem to be s u f f i c i e n t . Yet he doesn't hesitate to act as the primary, immanent agent i n the execution of his own plan, as he demonstrates by sending a f a l s e dream to Agamemnon a f t e r considering "how he might honour A c h i l l e s while destroying many men by the ships of the Achaeans" (II . I I , 4 - 5 ) . Zeus himself acknowledges the f l e x i b i l i t y of his power and manifestations when he t e l l s Hera that he w i l l strengthen the Trojans: " I f you wish, 0 ox-eyed r o y a l Hera, you s h a l l surely behold at dawn the son of Cronos with even greater overwhelming power destroying the multitudinous army of the Argive spearmen. For mighty Hector s h a l l not cease from war u n t i l the swift-footed son of Peleus r i s e up by h i s ships, on that day when, i n the most t e r r i b l e d i s t r e s s , they f i g h t by the sterns of the ships for the dead Patroclus, for so i s i t ordained." (II. VIII, 470 - 477) By equating h i s own e f f o r t s with those of Hector and the Trojans Zeus, while i n an immanent manifestation, ascribes to himself transcendent d i r e c t i o n of the events that constitute most of the remaining story of the I l i a d . Every f i n i t e , immanent action that he undertakes i s always -128-comprehended by a greater, more transcendent one. He, and to a l e s s extent, the other gods, through a progression of manifestations resolve i n t h e i r own persons the dichotomy of d i v e r s i t y and unity i n the world. They fuse together the apparently independent, spontaneous parts into a patterned, i n t e l l i g i b l e whole. The r e l a t i o n between transcendence and immanence within the I l i a d and the Odyssey i s v i v i d l y i l l u s t r a t e d i n the account of Hephaestus' fashioning of A c h i l l e s ' s h i e l d . The scenes that he engraves, or embosses, upon the s h i e l d represent the universe, centred upon the world of men, i n a l l i t s richness and v a r i e t y . The complete picture that they form includes the three dimensions of heaven, earth, and ocean; pas t o r a l l i f e and c i t y l i f e ; the a c t i v i t i e s of war and those of peace; l i f e and death. Its analogy with the r e a l world i s confirmed by the circumscription of the River of Ocean around the rim of the s h i e l d . The minuteness and accuracy of d e t a i l i n the portrayal of l i f e increase i t s v e r i s i m i l i t u d e and impart to the figures within i t the appearance of spontaneity and independent existence. Yet the whole picture forms a pattern, fixed i n metal, planned and wrought by the god Hephaestus. The figures,within i t thus correspond to phenomena immanent within the universe, the s h i e l d p a r a l l e l s the framework of the universe i t s e l f , and the craftsman god resembles the transcendent divine creator. Just as d i v i n i t y has both immanent and transcendent manifestations, so gods such as Ares and Athene (II. XVIII, 516), as well as the divine p e r s o n i f i c a t i o n s , S t r i f e , Tumult, and Fate, appear within the picture (535) while Hephaestus, the maker of the s h i e l d , works outside i t . The s h i e l d of A c h i l l e s serves as an apt symbol of r e a l i t y , as i t i s portrayed i n the I l i a d and Odyssey. -129-CHAPTER IV ORDER AND UNITY The Organic Nature of the World of the I l i a d and Odyssey The extra dimension that the supernatural adds to r e a l i t y connects phenomena on a l e v e l deeper than the purely p h y s i c a l . I t extends the l i m i t s of t h e i r a s s o c i a t i o n beyond physical q u a l i t i e s , such as contiguity or attachment, so that they may conjoin i n patterns of unlimited v a r i e t y and complexity. Their aggregate constitutes an organic, ordered unity. The course of events, as i t i s presented i n the I l i a d and Odyssey, does not have the appearance of an a r b i t r a r y conglomeration of unordered, unrelated incidents. Rather i t shows a strong tendency to c r y s t a l l i z e into patterns and formulae, p a r t i c u l a r l y where c e r t a i n incidents recur. A highly systematic p i c t u r e of r e a l i t y thus emerges. Events acquire the aspect of ceremony, as Norman Austin observes: Whether i t be a noble scene l i k e Priam's meeting with A c h i l l e u s i n the I l i a d or a more mundane de s c r i p t i o n - Agamemnon's sceptre, an arming scene, preparations for morning's b a t t l e or the evening meal - everywhere there i s the sense of the processional: orderly arrangement of events within a sequence, s t y l i z e d exaggeration of gesture, a reverence for d e t a i l . ^ Some a c t i v i t i e s , such as s a c r i f i c e and feasting, e n t a i l such rigorously conventional forms of behaviour that they take on the appearance of r i t u a l s . Reference to the r e g u l a r i t y of r e p e t i t i o n of natural processes, such as the advent of dawn and that of night, the behaviour of S c y l l a and Charybdis— "Three times during the day she sends f o r t h her water, and three times she sucks i t down again" (Od. XII, 105), and the t o l l taken of the doves of ^ Austin, Archery at the Dark of the Moon, p. 130. -130-Zeus at the Wandering Rocks—"Neither the birds nor the shy doves that bear ambrosia to father Zeus ever pass by there without the smooth rock diminishing t h e i r number. The father, however, adds another to make up t h e i r complement" (Od. XII, 62 - 65)—emphasizes the c y c l i c nature of reality."*" Formulaic phrases, e s p e c i a l l y those d e s c r i p t i v e phrases and epithets that are fastened inseparably to c e r t a i n phenomena, also stress the orderliness of the world. In many instances these applications seem to bear l i t t l e relevance to t h e i r contexts, but they nevertheless emphasize 2 the fundamentally f i x e d , unchanging nature of r e a l i t y . Sarpedon, i n attempting to rouse Hector to greater valour, makes a passing reference to the great wealth that he l e f t at home i n L y c i a , concerning which he comments, apparently superfluously, that "the man who lacks i t desires i t " (II. V, 481). Yet such a statement does have value, for i t accentuates the fact that the world, regardless of circumstances, i s ruled by fixed laws, and thus i t firm l y establishes the s i t u a t i o n i n which i t appears within the context of a higher order and s t a b i l i t y . The same may be said of the epithet, "much-nourishing" (poluboteira), applied to the earth. It would seem to belong s o l e l y i n an a g r i c u l t u r a l context but i t i s yet used, paradoxically, i n a s i t u a t i o n that involves the slaughter of men, who f a l l upon the "much-nourishing earth" ( I I . VII, 277), or i t may be said of the Dawn, which, regardless of the v i c i s s i t u d e s of human existence, always appears "saffron-robed," "rosy-fingered," or "with 3 b e a u t i f u l tresses," as during Odysseus' sufferings at sea (Od. V, 390). 1 Ibid., p. 133. 2 C. S. Lewis, A Preface to Paradise Lost (London: Oxford University Press, 1971), p. 22. 3 Whitman, Homer and the Heroic T r a d i t i o n , p. 115. -131-Re a l i t y i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey i s very much a system; i t does not to l e r a t e permanent anarchy or chaos. Unity through Analogies The organic nature of the Homeric world i s r e f l e c t e d i n analogies."'" Phenomena among which no physical or s p a t i a l l i n k s exist are yet bound together because they possess some s i m i l a r properties. Often the s p i r i t u a l or psychological condition of a person i s r e f l e c t e d symbolically i n h i s physical condition. In such circumstances the two are merged inseparably together i n a unity, yet each retains i t s i n t e g r i t y . Often s p i r i t u a l desolation i s mirrored and accentuated i n images of physical i s o l a t i o n , as i n the picture of Odysseus looking out i n yearning over the sea from Calypso's i s l a n d : "He was s i t t i n g on the shore, i n the same place, weeping, breaking h i s heart with tears and groans and agony. While pouring out his tears he stared out over the barren sea" (Od. V, 82 - 84). The des c r i p t i o n of Odysseus s i t t i n g alone and motionless i n the vast expanse of sea and shore makes him appear i n s i g n i f i c a n t and helpless and so conveys his f e e l i n g s of f r u s t r a t i o n and despair. Similar imagery r e i f i e s s e n t i -ments of helpless f r u s t r a t i o n and injury i n the scene i n which Chryses wanders s i l e n t l y along the shore of the sea a f t e r being rebuffed by Agamemnon (II. I, 34) and i n the account of A c h i l l e s ' behaviour a f t e r the removal of B r i s e i s : "Then A c h i l l e s , weeping, withdrew f ar from h i s companions and sat down on the shore of the grey sea, looking out over the wine-dark water" ( I I . I, 348 - 350). Apollo's majesty and formidable power are strongly suggested i n h i s wrathful descent from Olympus: "Angry at heart he went down from the peaks of Olympus, bearing on h i s shoulders his bow and close-covered quiver. And the arrows r a t t l e d on the shoulders 1 Austin, Archery at the Dark of the Moon, p. 105. -132-of the angry god as he moved; and he came l i k e the night" ( I I . I, 44 -47). He resembles a mighty hunter pursuing his prey, and so evokes te r r o r and awe, which are sharpened by h i s asso c i a t i o n with darkness. The r a t t l i n g of his arrows indicates the violence of h i s passage and hence h i s great wrath. The physical and s p i r i t u a l are also p e r f e c t l y blended i n the episode involving Priam's recovery of Hector's corpse (II. XXIV). It i s ca r r i e d out under the cover of darkness, the appro-p r i a t e atmosphere for the king's sorrowful and unpleasant mission. It i s f i t t i n g that Hermes, the god of deception and conductor of the souls of the dead (as he appears i n the f i n a l book of the Odyssey), should guide Priam through the Greek camp to h i s dead son and out again with his corpse. Laertes' despair and g r i e f at the long absence of h i s son are r e f l e c t e d i n h i s physical circumstances as depicted by A n t i c l e i a ' s ghost: "Your father remains rooted i n the country and does not go to town. There are no beds for him, or cloaks, or shining blankets, but during the winter he sleeps i n the house with the servants i n the dust by the f i r e , and wears ragged clothing on his skin. Then, when summer comes, and luxuriant l a t e summer, he has a bed of f a l l e n leaves scraped together for him on the ground anywhere on the slope of h i s wine-producing vineyard. There he l i e s sorrowing, fanning his g r i e f i n h i s longing for your return. He has attained to a harsh old age." (Od.XI,187-196) A c h i l l e s ' wrath, indignation, and a l i e n a t i o n from Agamemnon f i n d expression i n the s i n g l e , simple action of casting down the sceptre of judgment (II. I, 245 - 246). In an organic world the physical becomes the symbolic representation of the s p i r i t u a l . Nor do only negative emotions have symbolic, physical analogies. Agamemnon's c o n c i l i a t o r i n e s s towards A c h i l l e s i s matched by his physi c a l humility i n Book XIX of the I l i a d when he remains, uncustomarily, s i t t i n g -133-while apologizing to A c h i l l e s (77).^ The natural shelter that Odysseus discovers on Phaeacia a f t e r his harrowing struggles at sea creates a perfect harmony between his i n t e r n a l and external conditions: He entered a copse that he found i n an open space near the water. Then he crawled under two bushes that were growing from the same stem; one was a wild o l i v e , the other an ordinary one. The damp blast of blowing winds did not blow through them, nor ever did the b r i l l i a n t sun pierce them with i t s beams, nor did r a i n penetrate r i g h t through them, so t h i c k l y did they grow together. Odysseus ducked beneath them. Then he scraped together a spacious bed with his trusty hands. For there was a very great p i l e of leaves, large enough to cover two or three men i n the winter season, no matter how harsh i t might be. (Od.V,475-485) Cedric Whitman i d e n t i f i e s and explains the e f f e c t s of t h i s imagery: "The passage i s f u l l of an overwhelming sense of r e l i e f and s a l v a t i o n , but i t arises not from anything Odysseus says about i t , but from the nature 2 of the things which he encounters." Nor do analogies exist only between the emotional and the p h y s i c a l . In an organic world the condition of any phenomenon must be mirrored by i t s context. When, aft e r Hera's seduction of Zeus, Poseidon gains a free hand to support the Achaeans against the Trojans, the account of the renewed onset of the opposing sides i s accompanied by a reference to a s i m i l a r phenomenon i n the b a t t l e ' s immediate context, the surging of the sea against the shore (II. XIV, 392 - 393). The assault of waves upon the beach corresponds to the clash of the armies both i n energy and r e g u l a r i t y , as well as i n i n s p i r a t i o n : the Sea-god impels both the Greek host and the water. Agamemnon's martial glory i s , appropriately, measured Ibid., p. 102. Whitman, Homer and the Heroic T r a d i t i o n , p. 120. -134-i n terms of the magnitude, both i n s i z e and importance of the c i t y he destroyed, as Odysseus t e l l s Polyphemus:"*' "Surely h i s fame i s the greatest under heaven, for so great a c i t y did he sack, and many were the people that he k i l l e d " (Od. IX, 264 - 266). Society i n p a r t i c u l a r i s portrayed as an organic whole. When i t s heart and head are healthy, the rest of i t f l o u r i s h e s . The realm of a good king must be prosperous, as Odysseus indicates i n p r a i s i n g Penelope: "Truly your fame has reached the broad heaven, l i k e that of some blameless king. A god-fearing man, he rules among men numerous and mighty and upholds j u s t i c e ; the black earth bears wheat and barley and the trees are weighed down with f r u i t ; the sheep give b i r t h c o n t i n u a l l y , and the sea supplies f i s h , - a l l from h i s good government. And so the people prosper under him." (Od.XIX,108-114) The moral, physical and economic dimensions of society are shown by t h i s 2 passage to be fused i n d i v i s i b l y together. I r o n i c a l l y , although Odysseus compares Penelope's reputation with that of an excellent king, the con-d i t i o n of Ithaca i n no way matches that of the dominions of the l a t t e r . In f a c t , i f the health of the monarchy i s i n any way impaired, that of the rest of the state must also be undermined. The disorder i n Ithaca i s the i n e v i t a b l e r e s u l t of Odysseus' prolonged absence and the i n a b i l i t y of the other members of the r o y a l family to r u l e strongly and e f f i c i e n t l y i n his place. A vacuum ex i s t s i n the centre of the land, t y p i f i e d by 3 Laertes' withdrawal from the palace to the country. Where the centre does not hold, things may be expected to f a l l apart, as the upheaval of the normal s o c i a l order i n the royal palace i n d i c a t e s . On the one hand, Austin, Archery at the Dark of the Moon, p. 89. 2 H. D. F. K i t t o , P o i e s i s : Structure and Thought (Berkeley: U n i v e r s i t y of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1966), p. 134. 3 Austin, Archery at the Dark of the Moon, p. 164. -135-Penelope and Telemachus are powerless, v i r t u a l l y imprisoned i n t h e i r own home, while the body of t h e i r servants i s s p l i t between l o y a l t y and disobedience. On the other hand, the extremely abnormal s i t u a t i o n has arisen i n which two servants, E u r y c l e i a and Eumaeus, are obliged to shoulder the management of the royal household.''" The dejection of the House of Odysseus i s represented by the abject condition of Laertes. I t i s analogously expressed as well i n the degradation suffered by Argus, once Odysseus' sleek, favoured hunting dog but, i n his absence, a diseased, neglected shadow of his former s e l f , at the extremity of misery i n the manure outside the palace. Eumaeus draws the connection between the conditions of Argus and the r o y a l household, contrasting h i s present circumstances with those of happier times: "Most c e r t a i n l y t h i s i s the dog of a man who died far away. If he were i n form and a b i l i t y such as he was when Odysseus l e f t him behind to go to Troy you would soon see h i s speed and strength. No wild animal that he pursued escaped him i n the depths of the deep wood, and he was highly p r o f i c i e n t i n following tracks. But now he i s bound i n misery while his master has perished outside h i s fatherland and the negligent women do not tend him. Servants, when t h e i r masters no longer supervise them, no more then wish to do t h e i r work properly." (Od.XVII,312-321) The r u i n of Odysseus' home i s summed up i n the r u i n of Argus. I t i s highly appropriate that Athene disguise Odysseus as a beggar. A king who returns home a f t e r much s u f f e r i n g to discover his household subjected to outrage at the hands of arrogant men and to f i n d himself incapable of immediately remedying the s i t u a t i o n suffers humiliation that can only be approximated by the wretchedness of a beggar. In the organic Homeric society p r i v a t e j u s t i c e , e s p e c i a l l y that of 1 Ibid., pp. 165-166. -136-royalty, must have a public counterpart. So Telemachus brings h i s complaint against the su i t o r s before an assembly of Ithacans i n Book II of the Odyssey. S i m i l a r l y , Odysseus' private revenge and reassertion of domestic c o n t r o l must be followed by a confrontation with the s u i t o r s ' kinsmen and supporters among the Ithacan public and by the extension of his r u l e over the whole realm. So the s t r i f e and f i n a l truce that occur i n Book XXIV must follow the events of Books XXII and XXIII. As K i t t o remarks, "no Greek audience could think that the t a l e had reached i t s conclusion i n a bedroom, when over a hundred young men of Ithaca were l y i n g dead j u s t outside the house.""'" S o c i a l unity must be preserved. Analogies not only r e f l e c t the natures of i n d i v i d u a l phenomena; they also determine them. Since human experience i s conceived to be a unity, the i n t e r p r e t a t i o n of s i t u a t i o n s i n the present i s based upon paradigms 2 of mythical or h i s t o r i c a l content. So Agamemnon seeks to diminish h i s r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for h i s churlishness towards A c h i l l e s by imputing i t to divine powers, since they are considered to be the hypostasis of everything: " I t i s not I who am guilty, but Zeus and Moira and Erinys, who walks i n darkness. It was they who injected wild madness into my wits i n the assembly on the day when I wrested from A c h i l l e s his p r i z e . But what was I to do? The god brings about everything." (II.XIX,86-90) S i m i l a r l y , he attempts to mitigate the gravity of the offence by comparing his own f o l l y with the i n f a t u a t i o n , wrought by Ate, of the greatest being, Zeus (II . XIX, 95-96). Phoenix t r i e s to influence A c h i l l e s ' behaviour through appeal to the story of Meleager who, though alienated from h i s 1 K i t t o , P o i e s i s , pp. 139-140. 2 Austin, Archery at the Dark of the Moon, p. 125. -137-people by his mother's curse, was yet placated i n time to save his c i t y from destruction. Phoenix expects A c h i l l e s to behave s i m i l a r l y with regard to the Achaeans. In an organic world such examples are con-sidered to possess e f f i c a c y i n moulding human action. The Unlimited P o t e n t i a l i t y for Correspondence In an organic world r e l a t i o n s among d i f f e r e n t phenomena need not be confined to s t r i c t analogies. In f a c t , correspondences may be drawn between any two e n t i t i e s . Everything i s , as i t were, rel a t e d to everything els e . The configuration of phenomena i n r e a l i t y i s thus, t h e o r e t i c a l l y , of unlimited complexity and depth. Such i s the nature of r e a l i t y as Baudelaire depicted i t i n his poem, "Correspondances": La Nature est un temple ou de vivants p i l i e r s Laissent p a r f o i s s o r t i r de confuses paroles; L'homme y passe a travers des for£ts de symboles Qui l'observent avec des regards f a m i l i e r s . Comme de longs echos qui de l o i n se confondent Dans une tenebreuse et profonde unit£, Vaste comme l a nuit et comme l a clart£, Les parfums, l e s couleurs et les sons se repondent. The i n t e r r e l a t i o n of a l l things accords meaning to everything; nothing can be without s i g n i f i c a n c e . The omen depends upon t h i s u n i v e r s a l i n t e r -r e l a t i o n for i t s meaning and e f f i c a c y . The correspondence between the omen and the future event may be e x p l i c i t , as i n the dream that Penelope recounts to the disguised Odysseus, i n which the eagle slaughtering the geese represents her husband avenging himself upon the su i t o r s (Od. XIX, 535-558), or i t may be obscure, l i k e the skirmish between the two eagles above the assembly of the Ithacans, which again foreshadows Odysseus' revenge (Od. I I , 146 - 167). In either case the omen r e f l e c t s the under-Charles Baudelaire, Les Fleurs du Mal, ed. Marcel G a l l i o t (Paris: L i b r a i r i e Marcel D i d i e r , 1961), w. 1 - 8, p. 19. -138-l y i n g order and unity of the world. In f a c t , any occurrence whatsoever may have the quality of an omen. Telemachus has only to sneeze for his mother to seize upon the incident as a sign of the s u i t o r s ' impending doom: "Do you not see how my son has sneezed at a l l that I have said? Therefore the destruction of every one of the su i t o r s w i l l not be l e f t incomplete; not one of them s h a l l escape death and the f a t e s " (Od. XVII, 545 - 547). As Norman Austin remarks, Characters within the Homeric poems f i n d what we should c a l l "symbol" i n any phenomenon at a l l , i n a word or exclamation, a sneeze, a dream, a shout, i n thunder or l i g h t n i n g , i n the movement of b i r d s , i n any chance coincidence of two events.1 The organic nature of the world permits d i f f e r e n t phenomena to be fused together into new e n t i t i e s . Homophrosyne, oneness of mind, i s a v i r t u e of great value, as Odysseus t e l l s Nausicaa i n blessing her: "There i s nothing of greater benefit and excellence than when a man and woman keep house i n unity of thinking and d i s p o s i t i o n . They cause great d i s t r e s s to t h e i r enemies and great delight to t h e i r f r i e n d s , as they themselves know best." (Od.VI,182-185) Of a s i m i l a r nature and worth i s the state of being of one "thumos," or soul, or heart, experienced by two or more counsellors or warriors who have attained singleness of purpose and f e e l i n g - . Nestor, i n speaking to Telemachus, fondly r e c a l l s how he and Odysseus, sharing a " s i n g l e s o u l , " were able to o f f e r the best advice to the Achaeans at Troy (Od. I l l , 128 -129). In the I l i a d Telamonian Aias describes himself and h i s companion i n arms, Aias son of Oileus, as having "equal soul with equal name" (II. XVII, 720), with which they have withstood f i e r c e Ares i n the past (720 - 721). When s p e c i a l resistance i s required to ward off the Trojan onset, the Achaeans r a l l y with oneness of heart, as when they protect Patroclus' body (II . XVII, 266 - 267). When Idomeneus and his companions abide Aeneas' assault to regain the body of Alcathous, they, too, "take t h e i r 1 Austin, Archery, p. 118. -139-stand i n a throng, having one soul i n t h e i r breast" (II. XIII, 487 - 488). S i g n i f i c a n t l y , such fusion of s p i r i t i s accompanied by physical proximity, even contiguity.''" At one point during the f i g h t i n g at the ships both Achaean and Trojan hosts are animated by a si n g l e w i l l : "Theystood hard by each other, having one soul, and they fought with t h e i r sharp axes and battle-axes, and great swords and double-pointed spears" (II. XV, 710 - 712). Trojans and Achaeans a l i k e are united i n l o c a t i o n , hatred, and b a t t l e - l u s t , and so share a s i n g l e soul. S o c i a l units that possess s i m i l a r p h y s i c a l and s p i r i t u a l conditions are e a s i l y fused together. The Exchange of Q u a l i t i e s i n an Organic Association Even when no s t r i k i n g s i m i l a r i t y e x i s t s between separate phenomena t h e i r connection r e s u l t s i n an organic r e l a t i o n i n which they impart t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l a t t r i b u t e s to each other. The exchange of q u a l i t i e s creates a corporate i d e n t i t y f or each phenomenon, i n addition to i t s o r i g i n a l , i n d i v i d u a l i d e n t i t y . Each phenomenon thus enriches the other with extra dimension and depth. When the poet wishes to enhance anything he has recourse to imagery i n which t h i s p r i n c i p l e of enrichment operates. A c h i l l e s describes the r o y a l sceptre of the Achaeans i n d e t a i l that may seem i r r e l e v a n t at f i r s t s i g h t : "But I w i l l speak out to you and swear upon i t a great oath on t h i s very s t a f f , which s h a l l never grow leaves and branches since i t f i r s t l e f t i t s stump i n the mountains, nor s h a l l i t sprout afresh; for the bronze stripped i t u t t e r l y of leaves and bark; and now the sons of the Achaeans who are judges bear i t i n t h e i r hands, the men who watch over the laws from Zeus; but t h i s w i l l be the great oath..." (II. I, 233-239) Bruno S n e l l , Poetry and Society (Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1961), p. 16. -140-In f a c t , however, A c h i l l e s provides a d e t a i l e d record of the sceptre's h i s t o r y to illuminate i t and stress i t s importance, and hence the gravity of h i s oath. The d e s c r i p t i o n i s i n e x t r i c a b l y fused with i t s subject and so enriches i t , bestowing upon i t i t s own q u a l i t i e s . It seems a natural extension to the subject rather than an incongruous appendage; i t i s i n e f f e c t an extended q u a l i f i e r . So, too, the long "digression" on the i n -f l i c t i o n of Odysseus' scar adds enormous dimension to both the scar and i t s bearer. Of course, i t i s not only the scar, the small i r r e g u l a r i t y of t i s s u e on Odysseus' skin, that causes E u r y c l e i a to recognize her master, but also her acquaintance with the personal experience of Odysseus that brought about and was associated with the rent i n his f l e s h . Indeed, without t h i s knowledge, she would probably f i n d the scar i t s e l f as i n s i g n i f i c a n t i n import as i t i s i n s i z e . The long elaboration imparts to Odysseus dimensions that render him recognizable. The place, Dorium, receives s i m i l a r enhancement from the anecdote concerning the meeting between Thamyris and the Muses recounted i n the catalogue of ships ( I I . I I , 594 - 600). The name ceases to be j u s t the designation of a p a r t i c u l a r l o c a t i o n ; i t acquires s i g n i f i c a n c e and substance. Nothing i n the descrip-tions of the I l i a d and Odyssey i s ever i r r e l e v a n t or i n s i g n i f i c a n t ; every-thing establishes the corporate i d e n t i t y of everything e l s e . Reality i s represented as a whole the t o t a l i t y of which exceeds the sum of i t s parts, and from which no part may be removed. The Corporate I d e n t i t i e s of Organically Related Phenomena The process of fusion that accompanies ju x t a p o s i t i o n of d i f f e r e n t d e t a i l s i n the imagery of the poems gives c e r t a i n scenes a symbolic, suggestive form. The appearance of Penelope i n Book I of the Odyssey has -141-a haunting q u a l i t y : "When she, a woman of divin e beauty, arr i v e d before the s u i t o r s , she stood by a p i l l a r of the great, well-made roof and held her shining v e i l before her cheeks, while a l o y a l handmaid stood on each side of her" (332 - 335). A very d i s t i n c t pattern appears i n the organi-zation of physi c a l features within t h i s p i c t u r e , yet the pattern i s bound into a si n g l e e n t i t y that transcends a mere phys i c a l arrangement. The combination of pattern and unity gives the scene a symbolic, suggestive aspect. Both the d i s p o s i t i o n of d e t a i l s and t h e i r corporate influence suggest and enhance the beauty, aloofness, and majesty of the queen. She f i r s t occupies the centre of the reader's attention by her r e l a t i v e i s o l a t i o n opposite the s u i t o r s . This s o l i t u d e also emphasizes her aloofness and, together with her v e i l , increases her mystery. Her beauty i s heightened by her symmetrical r e l a t i o n s h i p to the other elements of the pict u r e , including the s u i t o r s , the p i l l a r , and the maids. The p i l l a r communicates to her i t s own solitude and, together with the roof, indomit-able strength and majesty. Her importance i s further magnified by her ce n t r a l l o c a t i o n between her two maids. Exclusion of i r r e l e v a n t material accentuates and concentrates the i n d i v i d u a l d e t a i l s and t h e i r p h y s i c a l arrangement and hence f a c i l i t a t e s t h e i r u n i f i c a t i o n . The whole scene thus acquires the appearance of an archetype. The d e t a i l s of a de s c r i p t i o n i n Book VI of the Odyssey concerning Nausicaa asleep also concur i n a u n i f i e d pattern: Athene went into an elaborately fashioned chamber i n which lay asleep a g i r l l i k e the immortals i n stature and appearance. She was Nausicaa, the daughter of great-hearted Alcinous. On each side of her, by the door-posts, were two maids who had received t h e i r beauty from the Graces. The shining doors were shut together. (Od.VI,15-19) As i n the previous passage the exclusion of a l l extraneous information -142-induces the reader to focus h i s attention only on e s s e n t i a l d e t a i l s which, i n combination, amplify the beauty and majesty of Nausicaa. One's v i s i o n centres f i r s t upon the d i v i n e l y b e a u t i f u l princess whose beauty i s increased by that of the room, the two attendants, and the general symmetry of the p i c t u r e . The s i t u a t i o n of the three figures emphasizes Nausicaa's importance; she occupies the centre of the scene while her two maids l i e beside the door-posts. The imagery has the i d e a l i z e d , suggestive form of a dream. The communication of i n d i v i d u a l q u a l i t i e s i n such u n i f i e d imagery i s v i v i d l y demonstrated i n a passage involving Nestor i n Book III of the Odyssey: "The Gerenian knight Nestor arose from h i s bed, went out, and sat down upon the polished marble throne, white and shining with o i l , which had been placed for him before h i s l o f t y doors" (Od. I l l , 405 - 408). Due to the coalescence of d e t a i l s , the beauty and l u s t r e of the marble bench as well as the might and magnificence of the doors are imparted to Nestor. The features of the picture, unobscured by superfluous d e t a i l , unite i n a pattern that pierces the senses and s t i r s the imagination, leaving an overwhelming impression of Nestor's royal splendour. Such symbolical configurations may acquire l i m i t l e s s v a r i e t y and complexity. The d e s c r i p t i o n i n Nausicaa's i n s t r u c t i o n s to Odysseus i s p a r t i c u l a r l y d e t a i l e d : "But when the buildings and courtyard have enclosed you pass very quickly through the great h a l l u n t i l you reach my mother. She s i t s at the hearth i n the l i g h t of the f i r e , spinning the sea-purple wool while leaning on a column with her serving maids s i t t i n g behind her, a wonder to behold. There the throne of my father rests against hers, and there he s i t s drinking h i s wine l i k e a god." (Od.VI,303-309) At f i r s t the viewer's attention f i x e s upon the queen, who i s f i r s t to appear i n the great h a l l . Her importance and majesty are emphasized by -143-her proximity to the hearth, the heart of the palace, and to the column which, as i t supports the b u i l d i n g , i s expressive of strength, as w e l l as by placement i n front of her attendants. The act of spinning and the purple colour of the yarn accentuate her feminity and roy a l beauty. The unity and dimension of the picture do not end here, however, for the reader's gaze i s expanded to comprehend the king. The presence of the queen, the king's throne, and his magnificent quaffing of wine exalt him with regal glory. He does not appear apart from the queen, or superior, or i n f e r i o r to her; rather, they and t h e i r surroundings complement each other i n an organic unity that amounts to a celebration of ro y a l t y , or even an archetype of the Homeric conception of ro y a l t y . Correspondence through the Simile The impressionistic function of the Homeric s i m i l e was commented upon in the f i r s t chapter. I t also, however, o f f e r s another way of es t a b l i s h i n g correspondences without p a r t i c u l a r regard to s i m i l a r i t y . Indeed, i t s open conjunctive element permits, i n theory, the connection of any two phenomena, no matter how na t u r a l l y disparate they may be. The s i m i l e i s ever able, by nature, to e f f e c t an organic unity i n which the parts share t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l c h a r a c t e r i s t i c s . The organic fusion of s i m i l e and subject renders impossible complete analysis of t h e i r union, but the p r i n c i p a l e f f e c t s of the sim i l e upon the subject may be noted. When Panderus wounds Menelaus the flow of blood receives an ostensibly incongruous comparison: As when some woman, Maeonian or Carian, stains ivory with crimson to be a cheek-piece for horses, and i t l i e s i n a store-room, and many horsemen pray to own i t , but i t remains there a treasure for the king and both an ornament for his horse and a glory for the charioteer, even so, Menelaus, were your shapely thighs stained with blood, as well as your legs and f i n e ankles beneath. (II.IV,141-147) -144-Th e s i m i l a r i t y of nature and context between Menelaus' thighs streaming with blood as the r e s u l t of a wound, and an ivory cheek-piece painted crimson by a woman, would seem to be rather s l i g h t . Yet, i n the fusion of elements effected by the s i m i l e the depiction of Menelaus' wound receives an extra dimension that renders i t r e a l and v i v i d to a degree that could not otherwise be attained. Without l o s i n g i t s own i n d i v i d u a l i d e n t i t y , the wound gains that of the ornament. In p a r t i c u l a r , the s i m i l e heightens the contrast between the blood and skin on Menelaus' thighs. The metaphysical poets,blessed with a u n i f i e d s e n s i b i l i t y , achieved s i m i l a r e f f e c t s . In "A V a l e d i c t i o n Forbidding Mourning" John Donne compares the souls of parted lovers both to t h i n gold f o i l and to a pair of compasses: Our two souls therefore, which are one, Though I must goe, endure not yet A breach, but an expansion, Like gold to ayery thinnesse beate. If they be two, they are two so As s t i f f e twin compasses are two, Thy~ soule the f i x t foot, makes no show To move, but doth i f the other doe. And though i t i n the center s i t , Yet when the other far doth rome, It leaves, and hearkens a f t e r i t , And growes erect, as that comes home. At f i r s t sight the r e l a t i o n between separated lovers would seem to have l i t t l e i n common with either gold f o i l or " s t i f f e twin compasses." In f a c t , the q u a l i t i e s of the two similes are superimposed upon the r e l a t i o n , thus giving the intangible phenomenon concrete form and r e a l i t y . John Donne, "A V a l e d i c t i o n Forbidding Mourning," i n The Complete Poetry  of John Donne, ed. John Shawcross (New York: New York University Press, 1968), v. 6 - 8, 11. 21 - 32, p. 88. -145-In the I l i a d , the might and grandeur of a v i o l e n t storm at sea enhance the might and glory of Hector i n act i o n : "He went among the foremost ranks courageous i n s p i r i t and charged into b a t t l e l i k e a b l u s t e r i n g storm wind, which rushes down and s t i r s up the purple sea" (II. XI, 296 - 298). In another passage wave, f i r e , and wind impart t h e i r d i f f e r e n t types and q u a l i t i e s of noise to that of the onset of the Trojans and Greeks, and thus enrich and magnify i t : They clashed with great clamour. The wave of the sea does not crash so loudly against the land when i t i s s t i r r e d up from the main by the harsh wind of the North; moreover the roar of blazing f i r e i s not so great i n the wooded glens of a mountain when i t breaks f o r t h to burn the f o r e s t ; nor does the wind howl so greatly about the high-leafed oaks, the wind that rages most v i o l e n t l y , as then was the cry of the Trojans and Achaeans t e r r i b l y shouting, when they charged each other. (II.XIV,393-401) The sudden serenity of a mountain peak appearing c l e a r l y i n the midst of d i s s i p a t i n g clouds accentuates the Achaeans' sense of r e l i e f a f t e r t h e i r thwarting of the Trojan attempt to f i r e the ships: As when from the l o f t y summit of a great mountain Zeus the lightning-gatherer removes a dense cloud and a l l the peaks appear, and highest headlands, and wooded glens, and the l i m i t l e s s sky i s revealed from the depth of heaven, so the Danaans caught t h e i r breath for a short time when they had thrust back consuming f i r e from the ship. (II.XVI,297-302) The s i m i l e provides the poet with v i r t u a l l y unlimited p o s s i b i l i t i e s f o r the i n t e n s i f i c a t i o n and enrichment of a subject. The extra dimension that the s i m i l e applies to i t s subject may serve to impose order upon i t s d e t a i l s when they appear chaotic or i n d i s t i n -guishable. The image of leaves and flowers imparts i n d i v i d u a l d e t a i l to the promiscuous mass of the Achaean army without obscuring i t s multitud "They stood i n the flowery meadow of Scamander i n t h e i r myriads, as many a the leaves and flowers i n t h e i r season" ( I I . I I , 467 - 468). Similar -146-imagery gives order and meaning to the apparently random and meaningless cycle of b i r t h and death: "Just as the generation of leaves, such also i s that of men. The wind sheds some leaves on the ground but the burgeoning forest grows others when the season of spring a r r i v e s . So one generation of men comes f o r t h while another ceases." (II.VI,146-149) In t h i s passage the seasonal patterns and order of nature embrace the l i f e of men. The e f f e c t s of winds which, though impetuous, yet operate within the laws of nature, give expression and order to the a g i t a t i o n raised i n the Achaean host by the despairing address of Agamemnon: The assembly was s t i r r e d l i k e the long waves of the sea, of the Icari a n Main, which the East Wind or even the South Wind has raised a f t e r rushing upon the sea from the clouds of father Zeus. As when the West Wind comes and moves the deep c o r n f i e l d rushing upon i t f u r i o u s l y , and i t s ears bend down, so the whole assembly of men was moved. (11.11,144-149) The straightness of the carpenter's l i n e , superimposed upon a b a t t l e scene, serves to emphasize the stalemate i n the f i g h t i n g between the Trojans and Greeks as well as the orderliness of t h e i r ranks: But as the carpenter's l i n e i n the hands of a s k i l l e d craftsman straightens a ship's timber, a craftsman who i s w e l l trained i n every s k i l l through the influence of Athene, so upon them were stretched equal f i g h t i n g and war. (II.XIV,410-413) Penelope's r e l i e f and joy at being reunited with her husband are given substance and depth through comparison with the s i m i l a r sentiments of shipwrecked s a i l o r s who have escaped the sea: As when the welcome land appears to swimmers whose well-wrought ship Poseidon has shivered i n the sea, crushed by wind and mighty wave; few have escaped from the grey sea and swum to land, and much brine has become encrusted upon t h e i r skin, and j o y f u l l y do they set foot on the earth, having escaped danger; so then was her husband a welcome sight to her as she gazed upon him. (Od.XXIII,233-239) -147-This s i m i l e , however, provides more than a measurement of the queen's f e e l i n g s . It unites the experiences of hers e l f and Odysseus, since he has personally experienced the s u f f e r i n g and feeli n g s of the ship-wrecked sailor."'" The simile places i t s subject i n a larger order. In similes describing weather phenomena reference i s often made to Zeus. These not only accord order and dimension to t h e i r subjects but suggest the transcendent c o n t r o l of Zeus over a l l . The Achaeans are described as r e s i s t i n g the assaults of the Trojans ... l i k e clouds, which the son of Cronos sets i n calm weather motionless upon l o f t y mountains while sleeps the might of the North Wind and the other raging winds that blow and disperse the shadowy clouds with t h e i r w h i s t l i n g b l a s t s . So the Danaans unceasingly withstood the Trojans and did not f l e e . (II.V,522-526) A d i r e c t correspondence i s established between the Achaeans and the clouds of the s i m i l e . Thus, since Zeus controls the motion of the clouds, the implication i s that the unyielding Greeks are also e f f e c t i n g his w i l l . When A c h i l l e s leads the army f o r t h from the ships, i t s s p i r i t e d onset i s compared to a snowstorm: As when the snowflakes of Zeus f l y f o r t h thick and f a s t , cold beneath the bl a s t of the ether-born North Wind, so then the b r i g h t l y gleaming helmets were borne out thick and fa s t from the ships, as we l l as the bossy s h i e l d s , strong-plated breastplates, and ashen spears. (II.XIX,357-361) The main correspondence here i s fi x e d between the wind-blown snowflakes and the j o s t l i n g a r t i c l e s of armour. Zeus's control over the former i s thus extended to the l a t t e r . As he produces the snow-storm, so he i s the transcendent author of the Achaeans' attack. The order, then, that the s i m i l e applies to i t s subject may include the very w i l l of Zeus. "*" A. J . Podlecki, "Some Odyssean Similes", Greece and Rome, Vol. XVIII, 1971, p. 90. -148-The Adherence of the Part to the Whole Once phenomena have been merged into an organic unity they can be separated only with great d i f f i c u l t y . The corporate i d e n t i t y that they acquire connects them to t h e i r context by an unbreakable bond. So Odysseus s t r i v e s to return home because that i s where he belongs; i t i s a part of his i d e n t i t y . I t holds an i r r e s i s t i b l e , unceasing a t t r a c t i o n upon him which not even the blandishments of Calypso and Circe can over-come, as he t e l l s the Phaeacians: "The b e a u t i f u l goddess Calypso kept me confined i n her cavernous caves since she earnestly desired me to be her husband. So, too, Circ e , the cunning Aeaean, detained me i n her h a l l s , longing for me to marry her. But never did she persuade the soul i n my breast. For there i s nothing sweeter than a man's fatherland and parents, even i f he should dwell afar i n a wealthy house i n a foreign land, f ar from h i s parents." (Od.IX,29-36) An e n t i t y belonging to an organic unity can no longer e x i s t independently. The Retention of Individual Identity i n a Corporate Relationship The great unity of r e a l i t y does not, however, eliminate or diminish the i n t e g r i t y of i t s components. It merely adds an extra dimension to them. Everything retains a measure of i n d i v i d u a l i d e n t i t y and worth. The super-na t u r a l , i n both i t s transcendent and immanent aspects, rules over and u n i f i e s the natural order without o b l i t e r a t i n g i t s i n t e g r i t y . On the one hand, i t was demonstrated i n the t h i r d chapter that the transcendent plan of hi s t o r y i s effected spontaneously within the natural order and the immanent portion of the supernatural, with the r e s u l t that they appear to have freedom and autonomy. On the other hand, since the forms, natures, and developments of the immanent supernatural and natural dimensions are transcendently f i x e d , no immanent power may exercise absolute c o n t r o l over any immanent phenomenon. Thus the natural order has i t s own d i s t i n c t -149-portion or "moira" and destiny which the immanent gods do not so much ordain as f u l f i l , according to the higher d i r e c t i o n of fate and the transcendent Zeus. Men have des t i n i e s that the gods, i n t h e i r immanent manifestations, may not a f f e c t . So the immanent Zeus must accept the deaths of Sarpedon and Hector against h i s w i l l , although he, as a trans-cendent god, determined t h e i r d e s t i n i e s and has the power to a l t e r them. Before returning to Ithaca Odysseus learns from Circe that he must v i s i t Hades to inquire of T e i r e s i a s . Avoidance of the journey i s impossible; i t i s part of h i s destiny. The prospect causes him a great deal of d i s t r e s s (Od. X, 496 - 498) but he accepts i t . When he asks Circe i f he might bring h i s crew and ship unharmed through the t e r r o r s of S c y l l a and Charybdis by f i g h t i n g o f f the former she rebukes him as though he were challenging fate i t s e l f : "You are perverse! Are you r e a l l y eager for s t r i f e and t o i l ? W i l l you not y i e l d even to the gods?" (Od. XII, 116 - 117). He has h i s own d i s t i n c t destiny the preservation of which causes him to prefer a hard struggle to return home and the rigours of mortal existence over a l i f e of ease and immortality i n the company of the nymph, Calypso. Cohabitation with Calypso, i n s p i t e of the material benefits that i t would hold, would deprive him of his destiny and the meaning that i t gives to his l i f e . Moreover, i t would render a l l h i s previous experience and s u f f e r i n g incomplete and p o i n t l e s s . Zeus himself i m p l i c i t l y acknowledges the s p e c i a l i t y and independence of h i s fate when he f o r e t e l l s the prominent d e t a i l s of the f i n a l stage of h i s journey, which he must t r a v e l "... with escort neither of gods nor mortal men" (Od. V, 32). In f a c t , although immanent gods and men do i n t e r a c t , and though the supernatural and natural realms are fused together they nevertheless -150-constitute two d i f f e r e n t orders of being with d i f f e r e n t "apportionments" according to the dispensation of fate. The gods d i f f e r from men not only q u a n t i t a t i v e l y , i n t h e i r physical strength, but q u a l i t a t i v e l y as well. Apollo warns Diomedes of the d i s t i n c t i o n between them when the l a t t e r attempts to breach even the god's defence to slay Aeneas: "Beware, son of Tydeus, and give way! Do not aspire to match the gods i n s p i r i t (phroneein), since the race of men who walk upon the ground can never be the same as that of the immortal gods!" ( I I . V, 440 - 442). His words drive home to the hero the fact that, regardless of human might, the gods exist ultimately on a plane of r e a l i t y superior and in a c c e s s i b l e to men. When they f i n d themselves becoming too deeply involved i n human a f f a i r s they remind themselves of the gulf fixed between them. So Hera r e s t r a i n s Hephaestus from continuing to burn the r i v e r , Xanthus, for h i s assault upon A c h i l l e s and support of the Trojans: " I t i s not f i t t i n g thus to smite an immortal god on account of mortals" (II. XXI, 379 - 380). To preserve the sanc t i t y and continuum of the natural order, as well as the mystery and secrecy of the supernatural, the gods prefer to become i n v i s i b l e or to disguise themselves i n human or animal form when they approach men. Of course, as s p i r i t u a l beings they have no form at a l l , but as e s s e n t i a l beings they must have some sort of appearance. Occasionally they do reveal t h e i r true i d e n t i t i e s to i n d i v i d u a l s whose o r i g i n s , natures, or actions approximate them to the l e v e l of the divine; but these are only a select few, and the gods may hide t h e i r i d e n t i t i e s even from these, as Athene occasionally does from Odysseus i n the Odyssey. Even when they do reveal themselves t h e i r manifestations may not be c l a s s i f i e d as human. As supernatural, superhuman beings they possess a presence that i s invested with a numinous power that i n s p i r e s awe. So Athene t e r r i f i e s -151-the farm dogs when she enters Eumaeus1 hut (Od. XVI, 162 - 163). Indeed, the difference between the supernatural and natural renders d i r e c t , un-r e s t r i c t e d intercourse between gods and men d i f f i c u l t . I t may only occur under s p e c i a l circumstances. Hermes, thus, having only l a t e l y revealed his true i d e n t i t y to Priam refuses to accompany him into A c h i l l e s ' quarters: "I w i l l not go before the eyes of A c h i l l e s . It would be a matter for indignation for an immortal god thus to exchange greetings with mortals" ( I I . XXIV, 462 - 464). The gods may a f f e c t human destiny, but only according to the terms of that destiny. They may expedite or hinder i t only i n accordance with the demands of fate. Consequently they never release men from t h e i r d e s t i n i e s or provide them with short-cuts to t h e i r goals. Athene helps and strengthens Odysseus i n his adventures; she never resolves h i s pro-blems without h i s p a r t i c i p a t i o n . When he arr i v e s back i n Ithaca, Athene t e l l s him that he w i l l have to undergo hardships and endure them of necessity; she does not remove them for him (Od. XIII, 306 - 307). When they begin p l o t t i n g the punishment of the su i t o r s and the recovery of h i s throne the goddess lays upon him the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for developing a plan of action (Od. XIII, 375 - 378). When the b a t t l e i n the h a l l occurs between Odysseus' company and the su i t o r s Athene does not overwhelm the l a t t e r with her supernatural might; she leaves most of the f i g h t i n g to the men; she pa r t i c i p a t e s only by enhancing and complementing t h e i r e f f o r t s . At one point, i n f a c t , she appears i n the form of Mentor, ostensibly to bring aid to Odysseus' party; i n f a c t , she only encourages them before vanishing again: "She spoke, and did not yet give d e c i s i v e v i c t o r y to either side but s t i l l she tested the strength and might both of Odysseus and of his glorious son" (Od. XXII, 236 - 238). The goddess does not simply inform Telemachus of h i s -152-father's whereabouts and destined return; she merely encourages him to seek information about these matters and to regain hope. Thus she compels him to exercise his own mind, w i l l , and character, and so to f u l f i l h i s own destiny. S i m i l a r l y , Eidothea does not reveal to Menelaus the reason for his confinement to the isl a n d of Pharos. She only t e l l s him how to discover i t , thus o b l i g i n g him to act on h i s own and to take r e s p o n s i b i l i t y for h i s own destiny. The ghost that Athene sends to Penelope to remove her fears for her son's safety cannot reassure her about her husband (Od. IV, 836 - 837), no doubt because such a r e v e l a t i o n would dissolv e the destined secrecy of Odysseus' return and undermine h i s own demonstration of his i d e n t i t y . If fate l i m i t s the gods' a b i l i t y to help men, i t also r e s t r i c t s t h e i r power to harm them. Poseidon s t r i v e s to hinder Odysseus' progress from Ogygia to Phaeacia i n the f u l l knowledge that he i s fated to reach the land and f i n d safety there (Od. V, 288 - 290). He cannot a l t e r the hero's destiny; he can only complete i t by i n f l i c t i n g upon him part of the s u f f e r i n g that i s his l o t , which Odysseus l a t e r a t t r i b u t e s to the plan of the transcendent Zeus, which i s fate (Od. XXIII, 350 - 353). The influence of the gods on human l i f e i s t y p i f i e d by the l i m i t a t i o n of t h e i r a b i l i t y to a l t e r human appearance. They can embellish and r e f i n e i t or d i s f i g u r e i t ; Athene works both e f f e c t s upon Odysseus. They cannot, however, destroy or recreate the man himself unless i t i s part of h i s destiny to experience such r a d i c a l changes. Men are c l o s e l y , even insepar-ably related to the gods, but they r e t a i n a measure of independence according to the allotment of fate. P a r a l l e l occurrences, examples of which were discussed i n the f i r s t chapter, preserve the i n t e g r i t i e s of both the natural and supernatural -153-orders while revealing t h e i r close, complementary r e l a t i o n . While Odysseus i s enduring the fury of the storm sent upon him by Poseidon i n Book V of the Odyssey the goddess Leucothea supplies him with a magic v e i l which, she t e l l s him, w i l l preserve him from i n j u r y and death (Od. V, 347). Yet Odysseus does not passively r e l y upon the v e i l but a c t u a l l y works out h i s own s a l v a t i o n , waiting i n h i s boat for as long as possible, apparently under the constant threat of death. The whole s i t u a t i o n i s rendered more complex by Athene's interventions, as when she calms the storm (Od. V, 382 - 387) and i n s p i r e s him with ideas that enable him to avoid destruction on the rocks of the Phaeacian coast (426 - 429; 436 - 440). Yet even with Athene's help the hero must endure the battering of the sea and make his own decisions. His f i n a l escape from the water appears to be due more to h i s own e f f o r t s than to those of the two goddesses. The divine interventions complement the man's experi-ence; they do not dominate i t . Odysseus perceives a s i m i l a r dual dimension to the t e r r i b l e fate of the s u i t o r s , as he t e l l s E u r y c l e i a : "The fate of the gods and t h e i r wicked deeds overwhelmed these men. For they respected no one of earth-dwelling men whether good or bad, whoever should come upon them. Therefore, through t h e i r arrogant deeds they encountered an unseemly end." (Od.XXII,413-416) The punishment of the s u i t o r s was both divine and human, since they angered the gods through t h e i r v i o l a t i o n of the moral law and since they outraged the family and household of Odysseus. In Book IV of the I l i a d the gods decide to break the treaty between the Achaeans and Trojans and so to confirm the eventual destruction of Troy. They do not, however, enforce t h e i r w i l l i n a high-handed manner without regard for'the human p a r t i c i p a n t s in the drama. Zeus ensures that the Trojans j u s t i f y the gods' decision by breaking t h e i r oaths of t h e i r own v o l i t i o n . To be sure, Athene tempts -154-Pandarus with the promise of glory i f he should s t r i k e Menelaus, but the r e s p o n s i b i l i t y f o r the action devolves upon the man, since i t i s he who makes the f i n a l d ecision to shoot. Again, the course of events i s given both divine and human dimensions. In f a c t , i t i s not uncommon for human action to be at t r i b u t e d to a dual i n s p i r a t i o n : human w i l l and divine inducement. Odysseus explains Eurycleia's discovery of h i s i d e n t i t y as the r e s u l t of personal observation and the re v e l a t i o n of a god (Od. XIX, 485). Diomedes reckons that A c h i l l e s w i l l return to b a t t l e when h i s desire for combat overmasters him and a d i v i n i t y spurs him on (II. IX, 702 - 703). Such p a r a l l e l occurrences maintain the proper balance between the opposing demands of unity and d i v e r s i t y . The high conception of both gods and men presented i n the I l i a d and Odyssey precludes the o b l i t e r a t i o n or even depreciation of t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l worth and i n t e g r i t y i n the comprehensive, transcendent plan of fate. This high conception i s revealed i n the great value accorded to i n d i v i d u a l honour, time. Each god and man receives his own measure of time, which he s t r i v e s to uphold and expects everyone else to r e s p e c t . 1 The Balance between the Part and the Whole The p r i n c i p l e of order, apportionment, which i s c l o s e l y associated with the terms, moira and a i s a , and which rules r e a l i t y i n the I l i a d and Odyssey, has thus been demonstrated to have a dual nature. It accords to every phenomenon a s p e c i f i c quantitative and q u a l i t a t i v e "portion" which consists of a p a r t i c u l a r i n d i v i d u a l i d e n t i t y and a p a r t i c u l a r r e l a t i o n to everything else. The ultimate r e a l i t y i s not the part, or the whole, but the part and the whole. ^ W. H. Adkins, Merit and Res p o n s i b i l i t y (Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1960), p. 64. -155-This d u a l i t y permits the poet an easy v a r i a t i o n i n scope from the p a r t i c u l a r to the whole and v i c e versa. So the narrative alternates harmoniously between descriptions of i n d i v i d u a l warriors or gods and panoramic depictions of whole armies or of the gods i n assembly. In Book II of the I l i a d the centre of attention s h i f t s from the i n d i v i d u a l Achaean chiefs involved i n the s a c r i f i c e of s u p p l i c a t i o n to Zeus, to the en t i r e Achaean host, v i v i d l y described in the three successive s i m i l e s before the catalogue of ships ( I I . I I , 455 - 473). Moreover the catalogue i t s e l f expands the i n t e r e s t of the narrative from the immediate incidents i n the Greek camp to the background and h i s t o r y of both Greek and Trojan forces. Then, near the beginning of Book I I I , the range of the n a r r a t i v e contracts back to the immediate and p a r t i c u l a r i n the confrontation between Paris and Menelaus. Such a l t e r n a t i o n enriches the n a r r a t i v e . The d u a l i t y of order appears most s t r i k i n g l y i n the representation of the l i v i n g human body. I t i s not portrayed i n terms of the whole but of the parts. Each member i s assigned a d i s t i n c t i d e n t i t y , according to the p a r t i c u l a r function that i t performs. When Poseidon invigorates the Aiantes i n Book XIII of the I l i a d the e f f e c t i s not a b s t r a c t l y associated with the whole body, but i s d i s t r i b u t e d concretely to the i n d i v i d u a l limbs (59 - 61); i n f a c t , i t i s d i s t r i b u t e d to the more s p i r i t u a l as well as the p h y s i c a l aspects of the men. So the son of Oileus remarks: "My own heart within my dear breast i s more s t i r r e d to war and to f i g h t while my feet below and hands above are equally eager" (II. XIII, 73 - 75). Yet the i n d i v i d u a l limbs do not become t o t a l l y autonomous. To balance t h e i r i n d i v i d u a l i t y the adjective of possession, emoi, i s present; they are always re l a t e d to the person himself. As Hermann Frankel observes, "Every i n d i v i d u a l organ of Homeric man can deploy an energy of i t s own, but at the same time each -156-represents the person as a whole,""'" and again, "Homeric man i s ... a whole. But of t h i s whole, s p e c i f i c portions, or better, organs, can sometimes occupy the foreground. A l l i n d i v i d u a l organs appertain d i r e c t l y to the 2 person." In the Homeric representation of r e a l i t y a perfect balance i s maintained between the part and the whole. Homeric J u s t i c e The maintenance of t h i s p r i n c i p l e of order constitutes j u s t i c e i n the Homeric world. So the term dike, besides having an as s o c i a t i o n with the general, abstract idea of j u s t i c e , possesses a very concrete denotation 3 as the preservation of the established order. When j u s t i c e p r e v a i l s , every e n t i t y remains confined within the bounds, be they moral, s o c i a l , or physic a l , of i t s own apportionment, and harmoniously re l a t e d to a l l the other e n t i t i e s with which i t i s o r g a n i c a l l y united. It i s no accident that the harmonious, smooth operation of t h i s state of apportionment, whether i n speaking (e.g. I I . I, 286), m i l i t a r y organization ( I I . XVI, 367), l i s t e n i n g ( I I . XIX, 256), erection of a ship's mast (Od. IV, 783), milking of sheep and goats (Od. IX, 245), h o s p i t a l i t y (Od. IX, 352), augury (Od. XV, 170), or making a promise (Od. XV, 203), should be designated by the expression kata moiran, "as i s due," "as i s meet." When, however, i n j u s t i c e e x i s t s , a transgression of t h i s apportionment occurs that not only upsets the symmetry of the i n d i v i d u a l e n t i t y but of the whole organic system to which i t belongs. The univer s a l p r i n c i p l e of order then asserts i t s e l f by s e t t i n g forces i n motion that w i l l inexorably and exactly cancel the imbalance. The former l i m i t a t i o n and harmony are restored and j u s t i c e p r e v a i l s . 1 Hermann Frankel, Early Greek Poetry and Philosophy, trans. Moses Hadas and James W i l l i s (Oxford: B a s i l Blackwell, 1975), pp. 76 - 77. 2 Ibid., p. 76. 3 Hugh Lloyd-Jones, The J u s t i c e of Zeus (Berkeley: University of Californxa Press, 1971), p. 4. -157-Insofar as the gods are considered to represent t h i s p r i n c i p l e of order, they are believed to be j u s t . Their justness does not depend upon t h e i r personal morality - or immorality - but upon t h e i r s t r i c t regulation of the state of apportionment i n the world. As long as they compensate among themselves for t h e i r own excesses t h e i r justness i s not impugned. In t h e i r judgment of human a f f a i r s they are as much concerned with human moderation and propriety as righteousness per se. Eumaeus t e l l s the disguised Odysseus that "the blessed gods do not love wicked deeds but they value dike ( j u s t i c e ) and the deeds that are aisima (proper, meet, or agreeable to f a t e ) " (Od. XIV, 83 - 84). The gods are primarily a force for order rather than righteousness alone. They are t r u l y the agents of the transcendent plan of fate, Moira. Eumaeus demonstrates i n his comportment the close r e l a t i o n between righteousness and order i n the Homeric world. Not only do the su i t o r s commit a moral outrage by v i o l a t i n g the sanc t i t y of Odysseus' home; they also throw i t into v i r t u a l anarchy and confusion. By contrast, Eumaeus, the righteous, obedient servant, runs, within h i s means, an orderly, t i d y farming operation."'' Righteousness i s only one aspect of a nature that behaves kata moiran. Breaches i n the order of the universe occur most often i n the province of human morality. Generally, men are restrained from acting immoderately by aidos, a sense of private honour or shame, and by nemesis, 2 the public and divine indignation aroused by s i n . Due, however, to t h e i r high conception of t h e i r own worth, rooted i n t h e i r thumos, the heroes may e a s i l y succumb to pride and act with hubris, or wantonness, thus trans-gressing the bounds of moral propriety and evoking human and divine wrath, - Charles R. Beye, The I l i a d , the Odyssey, and the Epic T r a d i t i o n (London: Macmillan, 1968), p. 171. 2 B.C. D i e t r i c h , Death, Fate, and the Gods (London: Athlone Press, 1965),pp.18-19. -158-and punishment. 1 Homeric j u s t i c e i s dispensed with adamantine rigour. In order for the former harmony and rec t i t u d e to be restored a f t e r the overstepping of moira, a degree of counteraction must be taken that w i l l f u l l y neutra-l i z e or compensate for the transgression. So Helios demands the punishment of Odysseus' men i n terms of a " f a i r exchange," epieikes amoibe,for h i s 2 slaughtered c a t t l e (Od. XII, 382 - 383). The immoderate behaviour of such figures as Agamemnon, A c h i l l e s , Patroclus, and Hector i n the I l i a d , and the s u i t o r s , Melantheus, the disobedient maids of Odysseus' household, his men, and Aias i n the Odyssey, e l i c i t equally immoderate forms of punishment. The punishment must always exactly f i t the crime. The necessity for an exact compensation i n the execution of j u s t i c e leaves l i t t l e room for mercy i n the world of the I l i a d and the Odyssey. So Odysseus r u t h l e s s l y executes upon the su i t o r s the precise measure of ven-geance to which he i s e n t i t l e d even when they grovel before him and supplicate him, as does Leodes. He does spare Phemius, but not so much because of his plea for mercy as because Telemachus clears him as a n a i t i o s , 3 " g u i l t l e s s " (Od. XXII, 356). Moreover he has no compunction whatsoever about slaughtering the su i t o r s while they are unarmed, since they are only receiving t h e i r j u s t deserts. Indeed he i s outraged that they should even attempt to r e s i s t t h e i r own destruction: "My fr i e n d s , now I would speak and we should cast our spears into the throng of the s u i t o r s who desire to slay us i n addition to t h e i r previous crimes" (Od. XXII, 262 - 264). Yet Odysseus i s c a r e f u l not to exceed the bounds of h i s righteous revenge. He i s 1 Ibid., p. 18. 2 Charles Mugler,Les origines de l a science grecque chez Home're (Paris: L i b r a i r i e C. Klincksieck, 1963), p. 171. 3 Adkins, Merit and Re s p o n s i b i l i t y, p. 11. -159-implacable and c r u e l while accomplishing i t , but when he has f i l l e d up i t s f u l l measure he rigorously checks himself and his partisans. So he rebukes E u r y c l e i a for gloating over the dead: "Keep your joy i n your heart, old woman, and contain yourself. Do not cry out. I t i s s i n f u l to exult over dead men" (Od. XXII, 411 - 4 1 2 ) . J u s t i c e i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey i s simply the preservation and r e s t o r a t i o n of equilibrium. To be sure, a l l s u f f e r i n g does not come upon men as punishment for crimes. Every man receives an allotment of pain and misery, as well as death, as a part of h i s destiny, as A c h i l l e s ' a l l e g o r y of the two urns of Zeus reveals (II. XXIV, 527 - 533). Zeus himself remarks upon the n a t u r a l l y wretched state of men: "There i s nothing more p i t i a b l e than a man among a l l things that breathe and walk upon the ground" ( I I . XVII, 446 - 447). Yet men can c e r t a i n l y bring extra woe upon themselves by i n f r i n g i n g the moral order of the universe. Such i s the observation of Zeus to the other gods near the beginning of the Odyssey: "I t i s astonishing, the sort of thing that mortals blame on the gods! For they say that s u f f e r i n g comes from us; but they themselves suff e r beyond t h e i r due because of t h e i r own arrogance, as, even now, Aegisthus improperly married the legitimate wife of the son of Atreus whom he k i l l e d upon his return home though he knew that t h i s would bring about his own utter destruction." (Od.1,32-37) Sin and consequent s u f f e r i n g are not, however, i n e v i t a b l e . Most of the heroes are quite capable, most of the time, of maintaining s e l f - c o n t r o l and prudence. Odysseus, i n p a r t i c u l a r , i s one of the most successful heroes because he generally manages to keep a t i g h t r e i n on h i s thoughts, f e e l i n g s , and actions regardless of external pressures. He r a r e l y transgresses the bounds of moderation. In the funeral games for Patroclus the various con-testants demonstrate such correctness i n t h e i r emulation for the prizes that they serve as f o i l s to the other characters i n the I l i a d . When a disagree-ment a r i s e s between Antilochus and Menelaus over the second p r i z e i n the -160-chariot race, the former graciously concedes i t to the l a t t e r , and the l a t t e r i n turn restores i t to the former (II. XXIII, 586 - 611). Their comportment stands i n marked contrast to that of the q u a r r e l l i n g Agamemnon and A c h i l l e s who lose control of t h e i r tempers and refuse to compromise. Moreover the games are conducted for the most part smoothly without i n -ordinate d i s t r e s s being caused for anyone, while the quarrels of Agamemnon and A c h i l l e s bring d i s a s t e r on a l l . The compensations that the p r i n c i p l e of order makes for excess are not even necess a r i l y negative i n nature. The great hardships that Odysseus and, to a less extent, Penelope and Telemachus undergo are redeemed by the eventual triumph of the family over t h e i r enemies and t h e i r reunion i n peace and prosperity. Odysseus loses a l l the prizes from his long sojourn at Troy but the Phaeacians give him wealth i n such abundance "as he would never have c a r r i e d o f f from Troy even i f he went h i s way unharmed having gained hi s portion of the s p o i l " (Od. V, 39 - 40). Whatever may be the imbalance i n the natural order of things, i t i s always corrected. The Homeric moral order applies not only to men but to a l l other e n t i t i e s as w e l l . It has already been noted how the gods are confined within t h e i r own "apportionments," and, consequently, how they follow a s t r i c t code of behaviour towards each other. The i n f e r i o r gods may be occasionally r e f r a c t o r y towards t h e i r superiors but they r a r e l y rebel outright. Zeus may possess supreme power among the gods, but he generally shows consideration for t h e i r desires and opinions and r a r e l y exercises an unrestrained tyranny over them. It has also been noted how t h e i r r e l a t i o n s with men are l i m i t e d , both i n t h e i r contact with them and i n t h e i r power over them. They, too, are subject to the p a r t i c u l a r order of the great plan of Fate. -161-The moral equilibrium, that i s , j u s t i c e i n the narrow, moral sense of the term, i s also maintained among a l l e n t i t i e s . Any transgressions of the l i m i t s of t h e i r "portions," however infrequently they may occur, meet with redress. Aphrodite i s punished for i n t e r f e r i n g i n warfare, a domain outside her own j u r i s d i c t i o n , while both Ares and Artemis are d i s -comfited for opposing d i v i n i t i e s of superior rank and power, r e s p e c t i v e l y , Athene and Hera. Zeus threatens the other gods with d i r e chastisement when confronted with t h e i r insubordination, while I r i s goes so far as to warn Poseidon of r e t r i b u t i o n from the Erinyes i f he should r e j e c t the authority of h i s older brother (II. XV, 204). In Calypso's view, the gods order her to release Odysseus because of the impropriety of marriage between a goddess and a man: "You are c r u e l , you gods, and jealous beyond compare, you who begrudge a goddess to sleep by a man without dissimulation even i f she should make him her beloved husband" (Od. V, 118 - 120). As examples of other divine and human couples who have broken propriety and roused divine anger she c i t e s the r e l a t i o n s of Dawn and Orion, and Demeter and Iasion. When the semi-divine monster, Polyphemus, breaks the law of h o s p i t a l i t y by murdering h i s guests, he i s punished for h i s crime through b l i n d i n g . F i n a l l y , when the horse, Xanthus, defends himself and Balius against A c h i l l e s ' rebuke for t h e i r neglect of Patroclus, and prophesies the hero's death, he v i o l a t e s the order of nature, a transgression that i s immediately cancelled by the Erinyes, the moral guardians of the universe: "When he had spoken thus the Erinyes checked h i s voice" ( I I . XIX, 418). The moral equilibrium i s maintained i n everything. The state of balance i s not confined to the area of morality. Any form of excess or incongruity e l i c i t s the opposition of forces that seek to e s t a b l i s h moderation and harmony. When the r i v e r Scamander overflows -162-hi s banks i n pursuit of A c h i l l e s h i s waters are r e s i s t e d by t h e i r a n t i -t h e t i c a l element, f i r e , wielded by Hephaestus, u n t i l they return to t h e i r proper course. Thersites lacks moderation and symmetry both i n form and nature. He i s ugly, arrogant, d i s r e s p e c t f u l , and i r r a t i o n a l . When h i s offensiveness becomes i n t o l e r a b l e , a f t e r he r e v i l e s both Agamemnon and the rest of the Achaeans, he i s chastised by Odysseus. The l a t t e r employs, appropriately, the sacred r o y a l sceptre to punish him (II. I I , 265 - 269). The whole episode thus becomes something of an allegory. The symbol of authority and order subdues the representative of anarchy and discord. In everything the univer s a l p r i n c i p l e of order removes or r e s t r a i n s disorder. J u s t i c e p r e v a i l s i n the Homeric world. Conclusion The consideration of j u s t i c e brings to i t s conclusion t h i s study of the conception of r e a l i t y i n the I l i a d and the Odyssey. The p a r t i c u l a r s of th i s conception are not presented e x p l i c i t l y or systematically within the poems. They are, however, i m p l i c i t throughout them. The depiction of the world i n the I l i a d and Odyssey i s based upon a consistent, compre-hensive idea of r e a l i t y . An attempt has been made i n t h i s study to extract and formulate t h i s i m p l i c i t idea. The fundamental p r i n c i p l e of the Homeric view of r e a l i t y may be described as hypostasis. Every phenomenon i s considered to issue from and to depend upon an u l t e r i o r , greater, and i d e a l r e a l i t y . Beyond the natural order l i e s the supernatural, whose o r i g i n a l r e l a t i o n and s u p e r i o r i t y to the former i s revealed by i t s mergence with natural phenomena through essence. Beyond essence i s an even greater, more sublime r e a l i t y , s p i r i t . Beyond the immanent portion of the supernatural are transcendent d i v i n i t y and fate which constitute the ultimate o r i g i n and authority of r e a l i t y . -163-They determine the natures, r e l a t i o n s , and behaviour of a l l phenomena, and unify them without destroying the i d e n t i t i e s of the parts. They es t a b l i s h the p r i n c i p l e of order that gives meaning and purpose to a l l things. They occupy the heart of r e a l i t y i n the Homeric poems. They are the ultimate hypostasis. -164-BIBLIOGRAPHY I. Editions Homer. I l i a d . Edited by T. W. A l l e n . 2 Vols. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1976, 1971. Homer. Odyssey. Edited by W. B. Stanford. 2 Vols. London: Macmillan, 1971, 1973. I I . Lexicons and D i c t i o n a r i e s Autenrieth, Georg, ed. A Homeric Dictionary. Translated by R. P. Keep; revised by I. Flagg. Norman: University of Oklahoma Press, 1958. L i d d e l l and Scott, eds. An Intermediate Greek-English Lexicon. 7th ed. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1968. Onions, C. T., ed. The Shorter Oxford English Dictionary. 3rd ed. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1964. II I . Concordances Dunbar, Henry. A Complete Concordance to the Odyssey of Homer. Edited by B. Marzullo. Hildesheim: Georg 01ms Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1962. Prendergast, G. L. A Complete Concordance to the I l i a d of Homer. Edited by B. Marzullo. Hildesheim: George 01ms Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1962. IV. Translations Homer. I l i a d . Translated by Richmond Lattimore. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1969. Homer. I l i a d . Translated by A. T. Murray. 2 Vols. London: William Heinemann Limited, 1965, 1946. Homer. I l i a d . Translated by E. V. Rieu. London: Penguin Books Limited, 1954. Homer. Odyssey. Translated by E. V. Rieu. London: Penguin Books, Limited, 1963. V. Secondary Reference Works Adkins, Arthur W. H. Merit and R e s p o n s i b i l i t y . Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1960. Auerbach, E r i c h . Mimesis. Translated by Willard Trask. New York: Doubleday and Company, Inc., 1957. -165-Austin, Norman. Archery at the Dark of the Moon. Berkeley: University of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1975. Baudelaire, Charles. Les f l e u r s du mal. Edited by Marcel G a l l i o t . P a r i s : L i b r a i r i e Marcel Di d i e r , 1961. Beye, Charles Rowan. The I l i a d , the Odyssey, and the Epic T r a d i t i o n . London: Macmillan, 1968. Bowra, C. M. Homer. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 1972. Calhoun, George M. "Homer's Gods: Prolegomena." Transactions and Proceedings of the American P h i l o l o g i c a l Association LXVIII (1937): 11 - 25. Chantraine, P i e r r e . "Le d i v i n et l e s dieux chez Homere." In La notion  du d i v i n depuis Home're jusqu'a^ Platon. Vol. 1 of Entretiens  sur 1'antiquity classique. Geneva: Vandoeuvres, 1952. D i e t r i c h , B. C. Death, Fate, and the Gods. London: Athlone Press, 1965. D i l l e r , Hans. "Der vorphilosophische Gebrauch von Kosmos und Kosmein." In F e s t s c h r i f t Bruno S n e l l . Munich: C. H. Beck'sche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1956. Donne, John. The Complete Poetry of John Donne. Edited by John T. Shawcross. New York: New York University Press, 1968. El s e , G. F. "God and Gods i n Early Greek Thought." T.A.P.A. LXXX (1949): 24 - 36. Frankel, Hermann. Early Greek Poetry and Philosophy. Translated by Moses Hadas and James W i l l i s . Oxford: B a s i l Blackwell, 1975. Greene, W. C. Moira: Fate, Good, and E v i l i n Greek Thought. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard Un i v e r s i t y Press, 1944. Grote, George. Greece. Vol. 1. New York: Peter Fenelon C o l l i e r , 1899. Grube, G. M. A. "The Gods of Homer." Phoenix. V (1951): 62 - 78. Guthrie, W. K. C. "The Rel i g i o n and Mythology of the Greeks." Chapter XL of Vol. I I , Part 2, The Cambridge Ancient History. 3rd ed. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1975. Kirk, G. S. Homer and the Epic. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1965. K i t t o , H. D. F. P o i e s i s : Structure and Thought. Berkeley and Los Angeles: University of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1966. Lesky, A l b i n . A History of Greek L i t e r a t u r e . Translated by James W i l l i s and Cornelius de Heer. London: Methuen and Company, Ltd., 1966. -166-Lewis, C. S. A Preface to Paradise Lost. London: Oxford University Press, 1971. Lloyds-Jones, Hugh. The J u s t i c e of Zeus. Berkeley: University of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1971. Mugler, Charles. Les origines de l a science grecque chez Home*re. Pa r i s : L i b r a i r i e C. Klincksieck, 1963. Nilsson, Martin P. A History of Greek Re l i g i o n . Translated by F. J. Fielden. Oxford: Clarendon Press, 1925. Nilsson, Martin P. Homer and Mycenae. New York: Cooper Square Publishers, Inc., 1933 (1968). Nilsson, Martin P. The Mycenaean Or i g i n of Greek Mythology. Berkeley: University of C a l i f o r n i a Press, 1972. Otto, Walter F. The Homeric Gods. Translated by Moses Hadas. London: Thames and Hudson, 1954. Podlecki, A. J . "Some Odyssean Similes." Greece and Rome XVIII (1971): 81 - 90. Redfield, James M. Nature and Culture i n the I l i a d . Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1975. Severyns, Albert. Les dieux d'Homere. P a r i s : Presses U n i v e r s i t a i r e s de France, 1966. S n e l l , Bruno. Poetry and Society. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1961. S n e l l , Bruno. The Discovery of the Mind. Translated by T. G. Rosenmeyer. New York: Harper and Row, 1960. Vivante, Paolo. The Homeric Imagination. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 1970. Whitman, C. H. Homer and the Heroic T r a d i t i o n . Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1958. Willcock, M. M. "Some Aspects of the Gods i n the I l i a d .." I n s t i t u t e of  C l a s s i c a l Studies, University of London, B u l l e t i n No. 17 (1970): 1 - 10. Xenophanes. "Fragmente." In Die Fragmente der Vorsokratiker, Vol. 1, edited by H. Diels and W. Kranz. Z u r i c h / B e r l i n : Weidmannsche Verlagsbuchhandlung, 1952. 

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