previous next
[1] Now beside their ships all the other chieftains of the host of the Achaeans were slumbering the whole night through, overcome of soft sleep, but Agamemnon, son of Atreus, shepherd of the host, was not holden of sweet sleep, so many things debated he in mind. [5] Even as when the lord of fair-haired Hera lighteneth, what time he maketh ready either a mighty rain unspeakable or hail or snow, when the snow-flakes sprinkle the fields, or haply the wide mouth of bitter war; even so often did Agamemnon groan from the deep of his breast, [10] and his heart trembled within him. So often as he gazed toward the Trojan plain, he marvelled at the many fires that burned before the face of Ilios, and at the sound of flutes and pipes, and the din of men; but whensoever he looked toward the ships and the host of the Achaeans, [15] then many were the hairs that he pulled from his head by the very roots in appeal to Zeus that is above, and in his noble heart he groaned mightily. And this plan seemed to his mind the best, to go first of all to Nestor, son of Neleus, if so be he might contrive with him some goodly device [20] that should be for the warding off of evil from the Danaan host. So he sate him up and did on his tunic about his breast, and beneath his shining feet bound his fair sandals, and thereafter clad him in the tawny skin of a lion, fiery and great, a skin that reached his feet; and he grasped his spear. [25] And even in like manner was Menelaus holden of trembling fear—for on his eyelids too sleep settled not down—lest aught should befall the Argives who for his sake had come to Troy over the wide waters of the sea, pondering in their hearts fierce war. With a leopard's skin first he covered his broad shoulders, a dappled fell, [30] and lifted up and set upon his head a helmet of bronze, and grasped a spear in his stout hand. Then he went his way to rouse his brother, that ruled mightily over all the Argives, and was honoured of the folk even as a god. Him he found putting about his shoulders his fair armour [35] by the stern of his ship, and welcome was he to him as he came. To him first spake Menelaus, good at the war-cry:“Wherefore, my brother, art thou thus arming? Wilt thou be rousing some man of thy comrades to spy upon the Trojans? Nay, sorely am I afraid lest none should undertake for thee this task, [40] to go forth alone and spy upon the foemen, through the immortal night; right hardy of heart must that man be.”

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 United States License.

An XML version of this text is available for download, with the additional restriction that you offer Perseus any modifications you make. Perseus provides credit for all accepted changes, storing new additions in a versioning system.

hide Places (automatically extracted)

View a map of the most frequently mentioned places in this document.

Download Pleiades ancient places geospacial dataset for this text.

hide References (5 total)
  • Commentary references to this page (1):
    • Walter Leaf, Commentary on the Iliad (1900), 23.65
  • Cross-references to this page (1):
    • Raphael Kühner, Bernhard Gerth, Ausführliche Grammatik der griechischen Sprache, KG 3.5.2
  • Cross-references in general dictionaries to this page (1):
  • Cross-references in text-specific dictionaries to this page (2):
hide Display Preferences
Greek Display:
Arabic Display:
View by Default:
Browse Bar: