Book 9 Summary

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Book 9 Summary

Agamemnon shown as weak at the start of the book as he sobs and tells the Greeks they have no chance of winning and should return home.

Diomedes gives a rousing speech altough Agamemnon has questioned his courage.

  • This highlights Agamemnons poor leadership skills as of all the warriors to accuse of cowardice, Diomedes should be the last
  • In Book 6 Helenus described him as the most fearful of all the Greeks.
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Book 9 Summary

Nestor then stands in and tells the Greeks what they need to do. He highlights the importance of listening to your elders. 

Nestor suggests posting sentries around the camp and hosting a feast for all the commanders where he can advise them. 

The Greeks eat and drink and Nestor proposes the embassy and names those who will be involved: Odysseus, Phoenix and Ajax. 

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Book 9 Summary

Achilles greets the embassy with xenia. He entertains and feeds them without questioning them.

Odysseus speaks first, focusing on Agamemnons offer of gifts and future marriage. When Achilles rejects this offer, Phoenix attempts a different approach based on family and hubris. When this is too rejected, Ajax tries some reverse psychology but is again rejected.

Achilles refuses based on his anger blinding his decision making ability. He is too bitter renounce his anger and does not feel the gifts will make up for his loss of kleos.

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Book 9 Summary

His bluntness shocks the embassy. He threatens to leave home for pythia the next day and suggests the other Greeks do the same aswell. 

The rejection of the embassy causes the Greeks great distress but they are committed to fighting on.

His menis does change with each speaker

  • Hardens at Odysseus'
  • Softens at Phoenix's
  • Much less noticeable at Ajax's
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