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Chapter 4. Phílos
The same custom is reported by Xenophon:
We might also recall here, in the Christian period, the “kiss” (phílēma, Lat. osculum), as the sign of recognition which Christ and his disciples, and later the members of the first communities, exchanged. In more recent times, the kiss is the gesture which dedicates the knight in the ceremony of accolade, and even today it marks the reception of a dignitary into an order of chivalry, at the time of the delivery of the insignia.
From the fact that she is taken away in the required form, the young girl given by her father whom the young husband introduces into his own home is bound to this family group by conventions as well as by ties of affection: the conditions under which her father has given her make her in some way into a pledge of a philótēs concluded between two men, at the same time as she acquires, once installed in her new home, the status of phílē ákoitis, a wife (cf. Il. 9, 397).
Here we have an allusion to the relationship which unites phílos and aidō̂s (see above) in a particular application: the clothes have at one and the same time an intimate relation with the user (they are the clothes which protect his modesty) and also with respect to society. “These clothes which are phíla to you” is here, too, a transposition to things of phílos which is properly applied to persons.
The sorrow of Achilles is that of a phílos, and the feeling of having lost his hetaîros makes him put aside all desire for food. Later, when the elders again press him to take food, Achilles exclaims again, with a significant repetition of the epithet, but this time replacing the “throat” by the “heart.”
Used with ē̂tor ‘heart’ or with laimós ‘throat’, in the circumstances where everything reminds Achilles of his lost friend, phílos retains its full sense, both institutional and sentimental. There is simply a transference of the epithet, a bold use with laimós (of which it is the only example), but quite frequent with ē̂tor, which applies to a part of the body the expression appropriate to a person.