The Iliad of Homer eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 499 pages of information about The Iliad of Homer.
With martial ardor, Menelaus seized
And took alive Adrastus.  As it chanced
A thicket his affrighted steeds detain’d
Their feet entangling; they with restive force
At its extremity snapp’d short the pole, 50
And to the city, whither others fled,
Fled also.  From his chariot headlong hurl’d,
Adrastus press’d the plain fast by his wheel. 
Flew Menelaus, and his quivering spear
Shook over him; he, life imploring, clasp’d 55
Importunate his knees, and thus exclaim’d. 
Oh, son of Atreus, let me live! accept
Illustrious ransom!  In my father’s house
Is wealth abundant, gold, and brass, and steel
Of truest temper, which he will impart 60
Till he have gratified thine utmost wish,
Inform’d that I am captive in your fleet. 
He said, and Menelaus by his words
Vanquish’d, him soon had to the fleet dismiss’d
Given to his train in charge, but swift and stern 65
Approaching, Agamemnon interposed. 
Now, brother, whence this milkiness of mind,
These scruples about blood?  Thy Trojan friends
Have doubtless much obliged thee.  Die the race! 
May none escape us! neither he who flies, 70
Nor even the infant in his mother’s womb
Unconscious.  Perish universal Troy
Unpitied, till her place be found no more![5]
So saying, his brother’s mind the Hero turn’d,
Advising him aright; he with his hand 75
Thrust back Adrastus, and himself, the King,
His bowels pierced.  Supine Adrastus fell,
And Agamemnon, with his foot the corse
Impressing firm, pluck’d forth his ashen spear. 
Then Nestor, raising high his voice, exclaim’d. 80
Friends, Heroes, Grecians, ministers of Mars! 
Let none, desirous of the spoil, his time
Devote to plunder now; now slay your foes,
And strip them when the field shall be your own.[6]
He said, and all took courage at his word. 85
Then had the Trojans enter’d Troy again
By the heroic Grecians foul repulsed,
So was their spirit daunted, but the son
Of Priam, Helenus, an augur far
Excelling all, at Hector’s side his speech 90
To him and to AEneas thus address’d. 
Hector, and thou, AEneas, since on you
The Lycians chiefly and ourselves depend,
For that in difficult emprize ye show
Most courage; give best counsel; stand yourselves, 95
And, visiting all quarters, cause to stand
Before the city-gates our scatter’d troops,
Ere yet the fugitives within the arms
Be slaughter’d of their wives, the scorn of Greece. 
When thus ye shall have rallied every band 100
And roused their courage, weary though we be,
Yet since necessity commands, even here
Will we give battle to the host of Greece. 
But, Hector! to the city thou depart;
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The Iliad of Homer from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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