Whomsoever he met that was a chieftain or man of note, to his side would he come and with gentle words seek to restrain him, saying:
“Good Sir, it beseems not to seek to affright thee as if thou were a coward, but do thou thyself sit thee down, and make the rest of thy people to sit. For thou knowest not yet clearly what is the mind of the son of Atreus; now he does but make trial, whereas soon he will smite the sons of the Achaeans. Did we not all hear what he spake in the council?
Beware lest waxing wroth he work mischief to the sons of the Achaeans. Proud is the heart of kings, fostered of heaven; for their honour is from Zeus, and Zeus, god of counsel, loveth them.”
But whatsoever man of the people he saw, and found brawling, him would he smite with his staff; and chide with words, saying,
“Fellow, sit thou still, and hearken to the words of others that are better men than thou; whereas thou art unwarlike and a weakling, neither to be counted in war nor in counsel. In no wise shall we Achaeans all be kings here. No good thing is a multitude of lords; let there be one lord,
one king, to whom the son of crooked-counselling Cronos hath vouchsafed the sceptre and judgments, that he may take counsel for his people.”
Thus masterfully did he range through the host, and they hasted back to the place of gathering from their ships and huts with noise, as when a wave of the loud-resounding sea
thundereth on the long beach, and the deep roareth.
Now the others sate them down and were stayed in their places, only there still kept chattering on Thersites of measureless speech, whose mind was full of great store of disorderly words, wherewith to utter revilings against the kings, idly, and in no orderly wise,
but whatsoever he deemed would raise a laugh among the Argives. Evil-favoured was he beyond all men that came to Ilios: he was bandy-legged and lame in the one foot, and his two shoulders were rounded, stooping together over his chest, and above them his head was warped, and a scant stubble grew thereon.
Hateful was he to Achilles above all, and to Odysseus, for it was they twain that he was wont to revile; but now again with shrill cries he uttered abuse against goodly Agamemnon. With him were the Achaeans exceeding wroth, and had indignation in their hearts.