Free «Achilles and Odysseus» Essay Sample

Achilles is depicted as a hero in the conflict between the Greeks and the Trojans. As a warrior, he was also the foremost in Greek mythology. He figures highly in the Iliad, a story on the Trojan War. He had pride, honor, bravery, strength, in addition to numerous military skills. It is important to note that these skills are those that were highly prized and required in ancient Greeks as manly virtues. However, his conduct was also shaped by stubbornness and anger. As a mythological hero, Achilles was depicted as being partly human and part supernatural. His father was Peleus, a king, while the mother was Thetis, a sea nymph.

On the other hand, Odysseus, also known as Ulysses, was a Greek legend, a king of Ithaca, as well as the hero in Odyssey. He was the husband of Penelope, and father to Telemachus. His parents were Laertes and Anticlea. He is renowned for his resourcefulness and guile. He is mostly remembered for the ten eventful years that he undertook for his return home, that is after the Trojan War. He is also famous for the Trojan horse trick (Tole, 50).



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These two heroes had different goals. However, they were on two different sides of the war, so each one was seen as a hero in their community. This means that, each society had a different opinion on their goals whether or not they were moral, noble or important.

It is a fact that true heroes are always stereotyped as the ideal being, but not all are perfect. They are supposed to overcome their faults throughout their lives. Achilles was seen as being selfish and a conceited warrior. He helped a lot in to the Trojan War, but he was uncontrollable and a fickle. On the other hand, Odysseus was quick-witted, cunning and in respect of greater powers. Although Odysseus was seen as an ideal hero for his endurance, and reverence towards the gods, he had to overcome his flaws for him to become a hero.

A hero should overcome his or her flaws and become an individual of virtue and respect. Odysseus had to do this until he became the magnificent hero on his side. However, he had become proud after some time, but, he realized this was his downfall, and so became humble. More often than not, Odysseus never boasted about who he was either. On the other hand, Achilles believed he was a god and would have shown disrespect.

Heroes should battle the odds and overcome physical hardships with their different characters. Odysseus passed through numerous setbacks, which tested his strength, and intelligence. He used more of his mind than physical force to deal with obstacles.On the other hand, Achilles only had his force, while Odysseus used his cleverness and determination to be an ideal hero. Moreover, Odysseus had to be patient and bear numerous hardships so as to finally go back home. He also obeyed the gods.

Achilles, on the other hand, leant that honor is through glory and victory in the battlefield. He was honored and respected by the Greeks by being less arrogant. However, between the two, Odysseus did learn from his fault, but Achilles did not. Achilles used his force and strength so as to gain his heroism. Moreover, he did not respect those greater than him; he was blind and egotistic. Odysseus did change in the end for the better and became a hero for this; he displayed respectable qualities and sentiments (Tole, 132).

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Odysseus and Achilles were two Greek warriors renowned for very various reasons. Odysseus was cunning and wise, responsible for the end of the Trojan War. Achilles was fierce, determined, and skillful, leading to a number of casualties on the Trojan side. On his side, Achilles is seen as being direct and straightforward. He does not plan much, he prefers to be headstrong and fight till the end. He does this since he cannot be virtually killed.


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