The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 162 pages of information about The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy.

’Achilles still lay in his hut, moaning in his grief, and the servants raised loud lamentations outside the hut.  The day wore on and the battle went on and Hector strove against Aias and his brother.  Then the figure of a goddess appeared before Achilles as he lay on the ground.  “Rouse thee, Achilles,” she said, “or Hector will drag into Troy the body of thy friend, Patroklos."’

’Said Achilles, “Goddess Iris, how may I go into the battle since the Trojans hold the armour that should protect me?"’

[Illustration]

’Said Iris, the Messenger of the gods, “Go down to the wall as thou art and show thyself to the men of Troy, and it may be that they will shrink back on seeing thee and hearing thy voice, and so give those who defend the body of Patroklos a breathing-spell."’

’So she said and departed.  Then Achilles arose and went down to the wall that had been built around the ships.  He stood upon the wall and shouted across the trench, and friends and foes saw him and heard his voice.  Around his head a flame of fire arose such as was never seen before around the head of a mortal man.  And seeing the flame of fire around his head and hearing his terrible voice the Trojans were affrighted and stood still.  Then the Greeks took up the body of Patroklos and laid it on a litter and bore it out of the battle.’

XVI

Now Thetis, the mother of Achilles, went to Olympus where the gods have their dwellings and to the house of Hephaistos, the smith of the gods.  That house shone above all the houses on Olympus because Hephaistos himself had made it of shining bronze.  And inside the house there were wonders—­handmaidens that were not living but that were made out of gold and made with such wondrous skill that they waited upon Hephaistos and served and helped him as though they were living maids.’

’Hephaistos was lame and crooked of foot and went limping.  He and Thetis were friends from of old time, for, when his mother would have forsaken him because of his crooked foot, Thetis and her sister reared him within one of the Ocean’s caves and it was while he was with them that he began to work in metals.  So the lame god was pleased to see Thetis in his dwelling and he welcomed her and clasped her hand and asked of her what she would have him do for her.’

’Then Thetis, weeping, told him of her son Achilles, how he had lost his dear friend and how he was moved to go into the battle to fight with Hector, and how he was without armour to protect his life, seeing that the armour that the gods had once given his father was now in the hands of his foe.  And Thetis besought Hephaistos to make new armour for her son that he might go into the battle.’

’She no sooner finished speaking than Hephaistos went to his work-bench and set his bellows—­twenty were there—­working.  And the twenty bellows blew into the crucibles and made bright and hot fires.  Then Hephaistos threw into the fires bronze and tin and silver and gold.  He set on the anvil-stand a great anvil, and took in one hand his hammer and in the other hand his tongs.’

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The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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