With these words Hektor passed through the gates, and his brother Alexander with him, both eager for the fray. As when heaven sends a breeze to sailors who have long looked for one in vain, and have labored at their oars at sea [pontos] till they are faint with toil, even so welcome was the sight of these two heroes to the Trojans.
Thereon Alexander killed Menesthios the son of Areithoos; he lived in Ame, and was son of Areithoos the Mace-man, and of Phylomedousa. Hektor threw a spear at Eioneus and struck him dead with a wound in the neck under the bronze rim of his helmet. Glaukos, moreover, son of Hippolokhos, leader of the Lycians, in hard hand-to-hand fight smote Iphinoos son of Dexios on the shoulder, as he was springing on to his chariot behind his fleet mares; so he fell to earth from the car, and there was no life left in him.
When, therefore, Athena saw these men making havoc of the Argives, she darted down to Ilion
from the summits of Olympus
, and Apollo, who was looking on from Pergamos
, went out to meet her; for he wanted the Trojans to be victorious. The pair met by the oak tree, and King Apollo son of Zeus was first to speak. "What would you have said he, "daughter of great Zeus, that your proud spirit has sent you hither from Olympus
? Have you no pity upon the Trojans, and would you incline the scales of victory in favor of the Danaans? Let me persuade you - for it will be better thus - stay the combat for to-day, but let them renew the fight hereafter till they compass the doom of Ilion
, since you goddesses have made up your minds to destroy the city."
And Athena answered, "So be it, Far-Darter; it was in this mind that I came down from Olympus
to the Trojans and Achaeans. Tell me, then, how do you propose to end this present fighting?"
Apollo, son of Zeus, replied, "Let us incite great Hektor to challenge some one of the Danaans in single combat; on this the Achaeans will be shamed into finding a man who will fight him."
Athena assented, and Helenos son of Priam divined the counsel of the gods; he therefore went up to Hektor and said, "Hektor son of Priam, peer of gods in counsel, I am your brother, let me then persuade you. Bid the other Trojans and Achaeans all of them take their seats, and challenge the best man among the Achaeans to meet you in single combat. I have heard the voice of the ever-living gods, and the hour of your doom is not yet come."
Hektor was glad when he heard this saying, and went in among the Trojans, grasping his spear by the middle to hold them back, and they all sat down. Agamemnon also bade the Achaeans be seated. But Athena and Apollo, in the likeness of vultures, perched on father Zeus' high oak tree, proud of their men; and the ranks sat close ranged together, bristling with shield and helmet and spear. As when the rising west wind furs the face of the sea [pontos] and the waters grow dark beneath it, so sat the companies of Trojans and Achaeans upon the plain. And Hektor spoke thus:-
"Hear me, Trojans and Achaeans, that I may speak even as I am minded; Zeus on his high throne has brought our oaths and covenants to nothing, and foreshadows ill for both of us, till you either take the towers of Troy
, or are yourselves vanquished at your ships. The princes of the Achaeans are here present in the midst of you;