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The Wounded Hero

Non-Fatal Injury in Homer’s Iliad


Tamara Neal

This book is an investigation of non-fatal injury and bloodspill in Homer’s Iliad and demonstrates the crucial significance of these motifs in the epic. They are shown to be fundamental to defining heroic status and a powerful means for developing the narrative and thematic structures of the poem. The study offers a nuanced definition of the nature of mortality and immortality and shows how the motifs of injury and bloodspill explicate the plot of the poem and its ethical values. This work is the first to examine these motifs in a systematic and comprehensive investigation. Focusing exclusively on the Iliad, the book sheds new light on ideals of heroic conduct.
Contents: The Significance of Non-fatal Injury – Wounding Episodes Demonstrate Achaean Superiority – The Narrative Function of Trojan Injury – Wounded Gods – Blood and Bloodspill – Blood, Bloodspill, and the Wounds of Achilles.