This material has been used for many years by Professor Tom Sienkewicz in his courses at Howard University and at Monmouth College in Monmouth, Illinois. If you have any questions, you may contact him at


This analysis is based upon A Study of the "Iliad" in Translation by Frank Lowry Clark. (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1927).

I. Dejection of the Greeks, 1-8

II. The assembly of the Greeks, 9-78

a) Speech of Agamemnon advising the Greeks to return home, 9-28

b) Diomedes' spirited rejoinder, 29-49

c) Nestor condemns the lover of strife, advises the posting of sentinels, and calls on Agamemnon to make a feast for the members of the council, 50-78

III. The posting of sentinels, 79-88

IV. The banquet in the tent of Agamemnon, 89-181

a) Nestor advises that Achilles be appeased by restoration of Briseis, 89-113

b) Agamemnon assents and enumerates the gifts he will offer, 114-61

c) Nestor names the three ambassadors who are to visit Achilles, 162-72

d) The banquet, and final directions to the ambassadors, 173-81

V. The Embassy Scene at the tent of Achilles, 182-655

a) The welcome by Achilles and the feast, 182-221

b) Speech of Odysseus, stating Agamemnon's offer, 222-306

c) Great speech by Achilles, rejecting the offer, 307-429

d) Appeal of Phoenix, including the allegory of the prayers and the episode of Meleager, 430-605

Phoenix uses the myth of Meleager as a paradeigm, as an example for Achilles.

e) Answer of Achilles to Phoenix, 606-22a

f) Appeal of Ajax, 622b-42

g) Answer of Achilles to Ajax, and return of ambassadors, 643-57

h) Night in the tent of Achilles, 658-68

VI. Report of the ambassadors, 669-713 (end)

a) Agamemnon's question, 669-75

b) Odysseus' answer, 675-92

c) Diomedess council, 693-713 (end)

Return to Iliad Analysis Table of Contents

Return to Monmouth College Classics Dept. Home Page