So spake he, and the well-greaved Achaeans waxed glad, for that the great-souled son of Peleus
renounced his wrath. And among them spake the king of men, Agamemnon, even from the place where he sat, not standing forth in their midst:1
“My friends, Danaan warriors, squires of Ares, meet is it to give ear to him that standeth to speak,
nor is it seemly to break in upon his words; grievous were that even for one well-skilled. And amid the uproar of many how should a man either hear or speak? —hampered is he then, clear-voiced talker though he be. To the son of Peleus will I declare my mind, but do ye other Argives give heed, and mark well my words each man of you.
Full often have the Achaeans spoken unto me this word, and were ever fain to chide me; howbeit it is not I that am at fault, but Zeus and Fate and Erinys, that walketh in darkness, seeing that in the midst of the place of gathering they cast upon my soul fierce blindness on that day, when of mine own arrogance I took from Achilles his prize.
But what could I do? It is God that bringeth all things to their issue. Eldest daughter of Zeus is Ate that blindeth all—a power fraught with bane; delicate are her feet, for it is not upon the ground that she fareth, but she walketh over the heads of men, bringing men to harm, and this one or that she ensnareth.
Aye, and on a time she blinded Zeus, albeit men say that he is the greatest among men and gods; yet even him Hera, that was but a woman, beguiled in her craftiness on the day when Alcmene in fair-crowned Thebe was to bring forth the mighty Heracles.
Zeus verily spake vauntingly among all the gods: ‘Hearken unto me, all ye gods and goddesses, that I may speak what the heart in my breast biddeth me. This day shall Eileithyia, the goddess of childbirth, bring to the light a man that shall be the lord of all them that dwell round about,
even one of the race of those men who are of me by blood.’ But with crafty mind the queenly Hera spake unto him:‘Thou wilt play the cheat, and not bring thy word to fulfillment. Nay, come, Olympian, swear me now a mighty oath that in very truth that man shall be lord of all them that dwell round about,
whoso this day shall fall between a woman's feet, even one of those men who are of the blood of thy stock.’ So spake she; howbeit Zeus in no wise marked her craftiness, but sware a great oath, and therewithal was blinded sore.