Marks, J. 2008. Zeus in the Odyssey. Hellenic Studies Series 31. Washington, DC: Center for Hellenic Studies. http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:hul.ebook:CHS_Marks.Zeus_in_the_Odyssey.2008.
The plan of Zeus
οὐλομένην ἣ μυρί’ Ἀχαιοῖς ἄλγε’ ἔθηκεν,
πολλὰς δ’ ἰφθίμους ψυχὰς ᾌδι προίαψεν
ἡρώων, αὐτοὺς δὲ ἑλώρια τεῦχε κύνεσσιν
οἰωνοῖσί τε πᾶσι, Διὸς δ’ ἐτελείετο βουλή,
ἐξ οὗ δὴ τὰ πρῶτα διαστήτην ἐρίσαντε,
Ἀτρείδης τε ἄναξ ἀνδρῶν καὶ δῖος Ἀχιλλεύς.
Wrath: sing it, goddess, wrath of Peleus’ son Achilleus,
destructive, which myriad woes on Achaians placed,
and many strong souls to Hades did send,
heroes’ souls, and the men themselves made plunder for dogs
and for birds a banquet, and a plan of Zeus was reaching fulfillment
from when first they stood apart caught up in strife,
the son of Atreus ruler of men and godly Achilleus.
The association of Zeus’ plan with the main plot line here in the proem is, unsurprisingly, predictive: as the Iliad proceeds, the god engineers and maintains the momentum of the Trojan offensive that gives force to Achilleus’ wrath, decides the fates of the major characters, and resolves conflicts that impede dramatic closure.
Text and subtext in an oral medium
Homeric vs. non-Homeric and the “facts” of ancient Greek myth
Zeus and narrative choices in the story of Odysseus
Method and theory