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It is the tenth year of the siege of Troy, and no one knows who will win. The gods watch from Mount Olympus and fight, too, some for the Greeks and some of the Trojans. There are battles, and quarrels, and Achilles—the greatest warrior among the Greeks—refuses to fight any longer. But then the Trojan champion Hector kills Achilles' great friend. And the hero Achilles goes out to avenge him . . .
Richmond Lattimore's 1951 translation is set in 6 beat lines (hexameter). It is known for beingthe translation that broke away from the prose Iliads, which tended to dominate during the first half of the century. One professor at Middlebury College praises Lattimore for "writing in a compact and cautiously rich poetical style but without fussiness." Veritas Press uses this version in their Omnibus IV program, as does Logos School for their six-week Iliad study; it is also Wes Callihan's translation of choice in his survey of The Epics.
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