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The tradition is post-Homeric. Thetis, knowing that the Trojan war would be fatal to her son, sent him to the court of Lycomedes (cf. 155 n.), where he was disguised as a maiden and lived among the king's daughters. The Greeks sent messengers to fetch him, who were told by Lucomedes that he was not there, but were allowed to search the palace. Ulysses, having first placed in the vestibule presents for the maidens with a shield and spear among them, caused an alarm to be sounded, and Achilles was known by seizing the weapons (Hyginus 96). Statius in his Achilleis (ii. 166-209) makes the alarm terminate Achilles' momentary hesitation caused by seeing the reflection of himself in woman's dress in the shield, and imitates the simile of a tamed lion cub returning to its wild nature, which is employed by Aesch. Ag.717-34. Cf. Hor. C. I. viii. 13-6.
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