Faithlife Sermons


Illustration  •  Submitted
0 ratings
· 1 view
Notes & Transcripts

To this lighthearted relish for robbery and slaughter the Achaeans add and unabashed mendacity.  Odysseus can hardly speak without lying, or act without treachery.  Having captured the Trojan scout Dolon, he and Diomed promise him life if he will give them the information they require; he does, and they kill him.  It is true that the other Achaeans do not quite equal Odysseus in dishonesty, but not because they would not; they envy and admire him, and look up to him as a model character; the poet who pictures him considers him a hero in every respect even the goddess Athena praises him for his lying, and counts this among the special charms for which she loves him.  “Cunning must he be and knavish,” she tells him, smiling and stroking him with her hand, “who would go beyond thee in all manner of guile, aye, though it were a god that met thee.  Bold man, crafty in counsel, insatiate in deceit, not even in thine own land, it seems, wast thou to cease from guile, and deceitful tales, which thou lovest from the bottom of thine heart.”

The Story of Civilization II, The Life of Greece, by Will Durant, page 49

Related Media
Related Illustrations