He said this to pay a compliment to the son of Peleus, and Achilles answered, "Antilokhos, you shall not have given me praise [ainos] to no purpose; I shall give you an additional half talent of gold." He then gave the half talent to Antilokhos, who received it gladly.
Then the son of Peleus brought out to the assembly [agôn] the spear, helmet, and shield that had been borne by Sarpedon, and were taken from him by Patroklos. He stood up and said among the Argives, "We bid two champions put on their armor, take their keen blades, and make trial of one another in the presence of the multitude; whichever of them can first wound the flesh of the other, cut through his armor, and draw blood, to him will I give this goodly Thracian sword inlaid with silver, which I took from Asteropaios, but the armor let both hold in partnership, and I will give each of them a hearty meal in my own tent."
Forthwith uprose great Ajax the son of Telamon, as also mighty Diomedes son of Tydeus. When they had put on their armor each on his own side of the ring, they both went into the middle eager to engage, and with fire flashing from their eyes. The Achaeans marveled as they beheld them, and when the two were now close up with one another, thrice did they spring forward and thrice try to strike each other in close combat. Ajax pierced Diomedes' round shield, but did not draw blood, for the cuirass beneath the shield protected him; thereon the son of Tydeus from over his huge shield kept aiming continually at Ajax's neck with the point of his spear, and the Achaeans alarmed for his safety bade them leave off fighting and divide the prize between them. Achilles then gave the great sword to the son of Tydeus, with its scabbard, and the leathern belt with which to hang it.
Achilles next offered the massive iron quoit which mighty Eetion had erewhile been used to hurl, until Achilles had slain him and carried it off in his ships along with other spoils. He stood up and said among the Argives, "Stand forward, you who would essay this contest [athlon]. He who wins it will have a store of iron that will last him five years as they go rolling round, and if his fair fields lie far from a town his shepherd or ploughman will not have to make a journey to buy iron, for he will have a stock of it on his own premises."
Then uprose the two mighty men Polypoites and Leonteus, with Ajax son of Telamon and noble Epeios. They stood up one after the other and Epeios took the quoit, whirled it, and flung it from him, which set all the Achaeans laughing. After him threw Leonteus of the race of Ares. Ajax son of Telamon threw third, and sent the quoit beyond any mark [sêma] that had been made yet, but when mighty Polypoites took the quoit he hurled it as though it had been a stockman's stick which he sends flying about among his cattle when he is driving them, so far did his throw out-distance those of the others in the contest [agôn]. All who saw it roared approval, and his comrades carried the prize [athlon] for him and set it on board his ship.
Achilles next offered a prize of iron for archery - ten double-edged axes and ten with single eddies: he set up a ship's mast, some way off upon the sands, and with a fine string tied a pigeon to it by the foot; this was what they were to aim at.
"Whoever," he said, "can hit the pigeon shall have all the axes and take them away with him; he who hits the string without hitting the bird will have taken a worse aim and shall have the single-edged axes."
Then uprose King Teucer, and Meriones the stalwart squire [therapôn] of Idomeneus rose also, They cast lots in a bronze helmet and the lot of Teucer fell first. He let fly with his arrow forthwith, but he did not promise hecatombs of firstling lambs to King Apollo, and missed his bird, for Apollo foiled his aim; but he hit the string with which the bird was tied, near its foot; the arrow cut the string clean through so that it hung down towards the ground, while the bird flew up into the sky, and the Achaeans shouted approval. Meriones, who had his arrow ready while Teucer was aiming, snatched the bow out of his hand, and at once promised that he would sacrifice a hecatomb of firstling lambs to Apollo lord of the bow; then espying the pigeon high up under the clouds, he hit her in the middle of the wing as she was circling upwards; the arrow went clean through the wing and fixed itself in the ground at Meriones' feet, but the bird perched on the ship's mast hanging her head and with all her feathers drooping; the life went out of her, and she fell heavily from the mast. Meriones, therefore, took all ten double-edged axes, while Teucer bore off the single-edged ones to his ships.