The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours

  Nagy, Gregory. 2013. The Ancient Greek Hero in 24 Hours. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2013. Abridged edition 2019.

Hour 6. Patroklos as the other self of Achilles

The meaning of therapōn

6§1. The key word for this hour is therapōn, ‘attendant; ritual substitute’. And the key passage comes from a climactic moment in the Iliad when Achilles, while praying that Zeus should preserve Patroklos from harm, uses the word therapōn in referring to his nearest and dearest friend:

Hour 6 Text A

|233 “King Zeus,” he [= Achilles] cried out, “lord of Dodona, god of the Pelasgoi, who dwells afar, |234 you who hold stormy Dodona in your sway, where the Selloi, |235 your seers, dwell around you with their feet unwashed and their beds made upon the ground – |236 just as you heard what I was saying when I prayed to you before, |237 and did me honor by sending disaster on the Achaean people, |238 so also now grant me the fulfillment of yet a further prayer, and it is this: |239 I shall stay here at my assembly [agōn] of ships, |240 but I shall send my comrade [hetairos] into battle at the head of many Myrmidons, |241 sending him to fight. Send forth, O all-seeing Zeus, a radiance [kudos] to go before him; |242 make bold the heart inside his chest so that Hector |243 may find out whether he [Patroklos] knows how to fight alone, |244 [Patroklos,] my attendant [ therapōn ], or whether his hands can only then be so invincible |245 with their fury when I myself enter the war struggle of Arēs. |246 Afterwards when he [= Patroklos] has chased away from the ships the attack and the cry of battle, |247 grant that he may return unharmed to the swift ships, |248 with his armor and his comrades [hetairoi], fighters in close combat.” |249 Thus did he [Achilles] pray, and Zeus the Planner heard his prayer. |250 Part of it he did indeed grant {146|147} him – but the other part he refused. |251 He granted that Patroklos should thrust back war and battle from the ships, |252 yes, he granted that. But he refused to let him come safely [ex-apo-ne-e-sthai] out of the fight.
Iliad XVI 233-252 [1]

Patroklos as therapōn

6§2. As we read here at verse 244 of Iliad XVI, Achilles refers to Patroklos as his own personal therapōn. I will argue that we see in this context the oldest recoverable meaning of the word therapōn, and that the future events of the narrative will prove this meaning to be true.
6§3. As the master Narrator affirms in this context, the wording of Achilles is mistaken when he expresses his own fond hopes for Patroklos. The future events of the epic will show that Patroklos cannot fight alone, cannot defeat Hector alone, and can succeed only if he fights together with Achilles. Once Patroklos fights alone, he will die. And it is in this telling context, at Iliad XVI 244, that the wording of Achilles refers to Patroklos as his personal therapōn. So, what does it mean, for Patroklos to be the personal therapōn of Achilles? As we will now see, it means that Patroklos is doomed to die as the other self of Achilles.
6§4. As we notice in other contexts as well, Patroklos is the personal therapōn of Achilles (for example, at Iliad XVI 165, 653; XVII 164, 388; XVIII 152). And, in each one of these contexts, therapōn is conventionally translated as ‘attendant’. So, what does it mean in particular, that the hero Patroklos serves as the ‘attendant’ of the hero Achilles? As we have seen already from a variety of additional contexts where the relationship of these two heroes is described, Patroklos is the nearest and dearest comrade of Achilles. Also, Patroklos is subservient to Achilles and to no one else. For example, Achilles orders Patroklos to mix and to pour wine (IX 202-204), and Patroklos complies (IX 205 ἐπεπείθετο); {147|148} also, Patroklos serves the hero Achilles by preparing a meal for the hero and his guests, performing most of the tasks required for the preparation, especially the task of cooking the meat that will be served (IX 206-215). Helping Patroklos perform these tasks is another comrade of Achilles, named Automedon (IX 209). This Automedon, as we will see, is an understudy of Patroklos: at a later point in the narrative, after Patroklos is already dead, Automedon will be described as a therapōn of Achilles (XXIV 573).
6§5. More needs to be said about the occasion when Patroklos helps prepare a meal for Achilles and his guests. As the host on this occasion, Achilles assumes a primary role by actually slicing the meat before it is cooked (Iliad IX 209) and then distributing for his guests the sliced portions after they are cooked (IX 217), while Patroklos is left with the secondary role of distributing portions of bread that he places into baskets (IX 216-217). After Patroklos is dead, Automedon takes his place in the secondary role of distributing bread in baskets on another occasion when Achilles acts as host (XXIV 625-626), while Achilles retains his primary role of distributing the meat (XXIV 626). As we will see later, this role of Automedon is relevant to his service as a therapōn of Achilles (XXIV 573).
6§6. From what we have seen so far, then, Patroklos as therapōn of Achilles is the nearest and dearest comrade of that primary hero in the Iliad. As the personal therapōn of Achilles, Patroklos is a secondary hero, and he attends Achilles just as other therapontes who are secondary heroes will attend Achilles after Patroklos dies. A simpler way of saying it, as we will soon see, is that Patroklos cares for Achilles. For the moment, though, I continue to use the conventional translation for therapōn as ‘attendant’. But there is more to it, much more.
6§7. The main question comes down to this: how does the conventional definition of therapōn as ‘attendant’ square with that other definition that I gave at the start, ‘ritual substitute’? (Both these definitions of therapōn are given in the Core Vocabulary.) My answer is that both meanings apply. Patroklos is the ‘attendant’ of Achilles on the surface, but he is his ‘ritual substitute’ in the deeper meaning of the master Narrative.

Anatolian origins of the word therapōn

6§8. I now turn to the prehistory of the word therapōn, seeking to show that it had once meant ‘ritual substitute’ and that it had been borrowed into the Greek language from Anatolian languages of Indo-European origin. The borrowing {148|149} must have happened sometime in the later part of the second millennium BCE, during which period the two major Indo-European languages of Anatolia were Hittite and Luvian. The major political power in Anatolia at that time was the Hittite Empire. Accordingly, I will use the term “Hittite” as a shorthand way of referring to the relevant linguistic evidence.
6§9. In Hittite ritual texts dating from roughly 1350 to 1250 BCE, we find these two relevant words: tarpanalli- (or tarpalli-) and tarpašša-. [2] As Nadia van Brock has shown, these words were used as synonyms, and both meant ‘ritual substitute’. [3]
6§10. Such a meaning, ‘ritual substitute’, must be understood in the context of an Anatolian ritual of purification that expels pollution from the person to be purified and transfers it into a person or an animal or an object that serves as a ritual substitute; the act of transferring pollution into the victim serving as ritual substitute may be accomplished either by destroying or by banishing the victim, who or which is identified as another self, un autre soi-même. [4] According to the logic of this Hittite ritual of substitution, the identification of the self with the victim serving as the other self can take on a wide variety of forms: the victims range from humans to animals to figurines to ceramic vessels. [5]
6§11. The mentality of identifying with your victim operates on homological principles. In the case of animal victims designated by the word tarpalli-, for example, one ritual text specifies that bulls are to be killed as ritual substitutes for men, while cows are to be killed as substitutes for women. [6] There are other examples of homologies based primarily on gender. In another ritual text involving the word tarpalli-, bulls and rams and other male animals are killed as ritual substitutes for the king, while corresponding female animals are killed for the queen. [7] And there are cases of tighter homologies. In yet another ritual text involving the word tarpalli-, for example, it is specified that the {149|150} victims who are designated as ritual substitutes for the king include men as well as bulls and rams. [8] Further, there are other cases as well where humans are being designated as ritual substitutes. [9]
6§12. The range of victims that are designated as ritual substitutes, extending all the way to humans, indicates that the victim of the ritual substitution, as the other self, can be identified as closely as possible with the human self – even if the ritual substitute and the human self may not be all that close to each other when they are viewed from outside the world of ritual. [10] What makes the substitute in ritual seem so intimately close to you is that he or she or it must die for you. Here I find it relevant to quote, from a Hittite text about royal ritual substitution, a most explicit formulation expressed in dialogic format:

Hour 6 Text B. From a Hittite tablet.

And for you [= the divinity], here are these ritual substitutes [tarpalliuš] | … And may they die, but I will not die.
Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi XXIV 5 I lines 15-16 [11]
6§13. I draw special attention to these and other cases of ritual substitution where the person to be purified is a king. In such cases, as van Brock argues, the ritual of substitution is “périodique,” ideally annual; and it is a common idea, as we can see from a survey of myths and rituals around the world, that the king is an incarnation of the body politic, of society itself, which needs to be renewed periodically by being purified of pollution. [12]
6§14. As we consider the relevant evidence from the Near East, a well-known model of periodic renewal is the festival of the Babylonian New Year, centering on the sacrificial killing of a goat, and it is nowadays {150|151} generally agreed that the Hittite rituals of substitution derive at least in part from the Babylonian rituals that marked this festival; [13] a related practice, attested in texts stemming from the neo-Assyrian empire of the first millennium BCE, is the periodic appointing and subsequent killing of substitute kings. Especially relevant are the correspondences of the kings Asarhaddon (680-669 BCE) and Assurbanipal (668-627 BCE). [14] Still another related practice is the ritual of the scapegoat described in the Hebrew Bible, Leviticus 16:8, where a designated goat (who is the tragos pempomenos of the Greek Septuagint and the caper emissarius of the Latin Vulgate) is not killed but expelled into the wasteland – hence the word scapegoat; this periodic expulsion, as is well known, figures as a climactic moment in the rituals and sacred narratives of the Jewish Day of Atonement.
6§15. Since Hittite is an Indo-European language, no matter how deeply it is influenced by Near Eastern civilizations, we may also compare the relevant evidence of Hittite ritual formulations that are cognate with wording found in other Indo-European languages. A case in point is the Latin adjective sōns / sontis, meaning ‘guilty’, which is cognate with

[1] the Greek participle ōn / ontos (ὤν / ὄντος) of the verb meaning ‘to be’ as in esti (ἐστι) ‘is’

and with

[2] the corresponding Hittite participle ašān that likewise means ‘to be’, as in ešzi, ‘is’.
6§16. In the Plague Prayers of King Muršilis II, dating from the second half of the fourteenth century BCE, it is prescribed that the king is to utter a “confessional” formula, ašān-at, iyanun-at, ‘it is true, I did it’ (Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi XIV 8, in the second prayer); this formula is cognate with the formula implicit in Latin sōns, where the meaning ‘guilty’ is to be understood in {151|152} the legal sense of ‘declared guilty’ or, to say it even more legalistically, ‘found guilty’. [15] So also in the “confessional” formula of the Hittite king, the guilty party must declare that he really ‘is’ the guilty one, that he really is ‘it’. [16] Similarly in the children’s game of tag, the formula ‘you’re it’ indicates by way of the verb ‘to be’ the identity of who will be ‘it’.
6§17. A moment ago, I said that the ritual substitute can seem intimately close to you because he or she or it must die for you, and I gave the example of the formula used by the Hittite king for saying that the tarpalli-, ‘ritual substitute’, will die for him so that he may live. But there are two sides to this formula. The intimate closeness is matched by an alienating distance, marked by pollution, separating the king from his substitute. I draw attention here to a most telling example. In one particular ritual text (Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi XXIV 5 + IX 13 I lines 19-26), where the word tarpalli-, ‘ritual substitute’, applies to a prisoner, this ritual substitute is anointed with royal oil, crowned with a diadem, and dressed in the regalia of the king; then this tarpalli- is expelled from the king’s territory and sent back home to his own territory, so that he takes home with him the pollution that had been intimately associated with the king. [17] I stress here the intimacy of the actual transfer of pollution, even if the pollution itself is alienating. In another ritual text (Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi XVI 1 I line 10), it is specified that the king is to take off the royal clothing that he wears so that the prisoner who serves as his ritual substitute may now put on this same clothing. [18]
6§18. In the two examples we have just seen, the ritual substitute is expelled and does not die for the king, but the basic fact remains: the king and the body politic get rid of the pollution by getting rid of the ritual substitute. Let me restate the fact by using the English word eliminate, derived from a most telling Latin word, ē-līmin-āre, ‘take outside the boundary [līmen]’. So, the king and the body politic eliminate the pollution by eliminating the ritual substitute. A remarkable parallel is the case of the goat that gets expelled into the wasteland on the Jewish Day of Atonement, instead of getting killed like the sacrificial goat of the Babylonian New Year.
6§19. Rituals of elimination, that is, of expelling a polluted person or animal or thing, are in fact homologous with rituals of killing. For example, when an {152|153} animal is designated as a ritual substitute for the king in Hittite texts, we may expect two alternative outcomes: in some rituals, the animal victim is killed and its body is burned, [19] but in other rituals the victim is instead expelled. [20] And I think that there existed a parallel set of two alternative outcomes when a human was designated as a ritual substitute. That is, I think we may expect that human substitutes could be not only expelled but also killed in rituals dating from the Hittite era, just as substitute kings could be killed in rituals dating from a later era represented by neo-Assyrian texts. Granted, the testimony of the existing Hittite ritual texts is opaque concerning the actual killing of humans in contexts of ritual substitution, but the fact remains that there are clear examples of killings of humans in other Hittite ritual contexts. [21]
6§20. Throughout this analysis I have refrained from using the term “human sacrifice,” since some readers will view the word “sacrifice” too narrowly by thinking only of the killing and subsequent dismembering and cooking and eating of animal victims. If we allowed, however, for a broadening of this word “sacrifice” to include the killing and subsequent burning of animal victims, which as we have seen is an option in the case of animal victims of ritual substitution, then the term “human sacrifice” could still apply in the case of human victims of ritual substitution.
6§21. That said, I bring to a close my analysis of the relevant Hittite evidence by offering this summary, following the earlier formulation by van Brock: the mentality of substitution rituals requires that someone who is notionally close to the king must die or be in some other way eliminated so as to preserve the king. [22]

Early Greek uses of the words therapōn, theraps, therapeuein

6§22. I now turn to the corresponding evidence in Greek. The Hittite words tarpanalli-/ tarpalli- and tarpašša-, as van Brock has argued, were borrowed by the Greek language sometime in the second millennium BCE, and the corresponding Greek words were therapōn (θεράπων) and theraps (θέραψ), both of which can be translated as ‘attendant’. [23] Like the two Hittite words tarpanalli- /{153|154} tarpalli- and tarpašša-, the two Greek words therapōn and theraps were once synonyms, as is evident from the fact that the verb therapeuein is attested as a functional derivative of the noun therapōn in Homeric diction. We can see this functional derivation at work when we look at the context of Odyssey xiii 265, where this verb therapeuein means ‘be a therapōn’ even though it is formally derived not from the noun therapōn but from the noun theraps, which is absent from Homeric diction. [24] We find attestations of theraps only rarely, as in Ion of Chios F 27 ed. West; Euripides Ion 94, Suppliants 762. In the fragment from Ion of Chios, the plural form therapes refers to attendants who serve wine at a symposium; in the Ion of Euripides, the same plural form refers to the priests of Apollo at Delphi who serve as attendants of the god as they approach the streams of the spring Kastalia; and, in the Suppliants of Euripides, therapes again refers to attendants – in this case, the hero Adrastos is asking the Messenger whether therapes have removed the corpses of the fallen dead.
6§23. So, how do we explain the meaning of the Hittite words tarpanalli- and tarpašša– as ‘ritual substitute’ when we compare the meaning of the borrowed Greek words therapōn (θεράπων) and theraps (θέραψ) as ‘attendant’? Here I return to my formulation summarizing the role of Patroklos as the personal attendant of Achilles:

Patroklos as therapōn of Achilles is the nearest and dearest comrade of that primary hero in the Iliad. As the personal therapōn of Achilles, Patroklos is a secondary hero, and he attends Achilles just as other therapontes who are secondary heroes will attend Achilles after Patroklos dies.

The therapōn as charioteer

6§24. Building on this formulation, I will now explore another aspect of the service of Patroklos as the personal therapōn of Achilles in the Iliad: Patroklos serves as the personal charioteer or hēniokhos of Achilles (ἡνίοχος XXIII 280). The role of Patroklos as the charioteer of Achilles is specially highlighted in Il – {154|155} iad XVII (475-478), where Automedon describes Patroklos as the best of all charioteers by virtue of driving the chariot of Achilles. Automedon, as we have already noted, is described as the therapōn of Achilles (XXIV 573; also XVI 865). And, as we will now see, Automedon is also a charioteer, just as Patroklos is a charioteer.
6§25. The wording used by Automedon in Iliad XVII (475-478) in describing Patroklos as the best of all charioteers is most relevant to his own role as a charioteer. At the moment of this description in Iliad XVII, Patroklos is of course already dead. He died in Iliad XVI, getting killed in place of Achilles. And, back then in Iliad XVI, it was Automedon who had served as the charioteer of Patroklos. To appreciate this role of Automedon as charioteer of Patroklos, I now review what happened in Iliad XVI when Patroklos had died fighting Hector.
6§26. The setting for the death of Patroklos in Iliad XVI is a classic chariot fight. The fight starts when Patroklos leaps out of his chariot:

Hour 6 Text C

Then Patroklos, from one side, leapt from his chariot, hitting the ground.
Iliad XVI 733 [25]

In a moment, Hector will leap out from his own chariot. Before that happens, however, Patroklos picks up a rock and throws it at Kebriones, the charioteer of Hector, hitting Kebriones on the forehead and smashing his skull (Iliad XVI 734-754). And then, just as Patroklos had leapt out of his chariot, Hector too leaps out of his own chariot:

Hour 6 Text D

Then Hector, from the other side, leapt from his chariot, hitting the ground.
Iliad XVI 755 [26]

Patroklos and Hector proceed to fight one-on-one in mortal combat on the ground – a combat that is ultimately won by Hector (XVI 756-863). {155|156}

6§27. In this chariot fight that happened back in Iliad XVI, I highlight the fact that it is Automedon who serves as chariot driver for Patroklos. And, at this moment, it is Patroklos and not Achilles who is the chariot fighter, since it is Automedon and not Patroklos who is the chariot driver. In preparation for this chariot fight between Patroklos and Hector, it is Automedon, serving as chariot driver for Patroklos, who yokes the horses of Achilles to the chariot (XVI 145-154).
6§28. Like Patroklos, as we have already noted, Automedon is described in the Iliad as a therapōn of Achilles (XVI 865, XXIV 573). Also, in another Iliadic passage, Automedon and a comrade named Alkimos are described as therapontes of Achilles (XXIV 573). That passage goes on to say that Achilles honors these two comrades, Automedon and Alkimos, more than anyone else – now that Patroklos is dead (XXIV 575). And, in still further Iliadic passages, we see that one of the functions of these two honored therapontes of Achilles is the unyoking of horses or mules (at XXIV 576) as well as the yoking of horses (at XIX 392-393, where Automedon and Alkimos are yoking for Achilles his horses). So also, as we have just seen, Automedon yokes for Patroklos the horses of Achilles (at XVI 145-154).
6§29. After the death of Patroklos, when Achilles finally rejoins the Achaeans in battle, his chariot is now driven by Automedon (XIX 395-399). As we have seen, however, Automedon had at an earlier point served as chariot driver for the hero Patroklos when that hero took the place of Achilles in war (XVI 145-154). And here I note a most telling detail about that earlier point in the narrative of the Iliad: after Patroklos is killed by Hector, the chariot driver Automedon says that he now wants to become a chariot fighter, but he cannot fight the Trojans while he is still driving the chariot (XVII 463-465). So, he asks another comrade, Alkimedon, to take his place as a chariot driver in order that he, Automedon, may now become a chariot fighter:

Hour 6 Text E

But you [= Alkimedon], take this whip and these splendid reins, | take them, while I [= Automedon] step off [apobainein] from the chariot, so that I may fight.
Iliad XVII 479-480 [27]

And, sure enough, Alkimedon quickly leaps into the chariot, landing on the {156|157} chariot platform (XVII 481 ἐπορούσας) and taking hold of the whip and the reins (XVII 482), while Automedon leaps out of the chariot, that is, he leaps off the chariot platform (XVII 483 ἀπόρουσε) and lands on the ground, where he can then start fighting. [28] So, we see here a functioning dyadic relationship between Automedon as a chariot fighter and Alkimedon as a chariot driver, both of whom are secondary substitutes for the primary substitute Patroklos, the premier chariot driver who became a chariot fighter for Achilles and who thus died for him as his therapōn, as his personal ritual substitute. [29]

6§30. I conclude, then, that the relationship of the chariot fighter to the chariot driver who substitutes for him is parallel to the relationship of a hero like Achilles to a hero like Patroklos, who is his therapōn. So, now we see, on the basis of evidence from the narrative traditions of Homeric poetry, that Patroklos as the therapōn of Achilles does in fact serve as his substitute. In the end, the chariot driver in this case dies in place of the chariot fighter: that is, the chariot driver takes the hit, as it were, for the chariot fighter. But now that we see how Patroklos is a substitute of Achilles, the question remains: how is he not only a substitute but a ritual substitute? We must now examine more closely how the actual concept of a ritual substitute, as attested in Anatolian ritual texts, was translated into the ancient Greek song culture.

The therapōn as a ritual substitute

6§31. For analyzing the concept of ritual substitute as attested in the Greek evidence, an ideal starting point is a climactic passage I already quoted as Text B in Hour 4. This passage, taken from Iliad XVI, marks the moment when the warrior hero Patroklos is killed in battle: at this moment, the hero is visualized as atalantos Arēi, ‘equal [atalantos] to Arēs’ (verse 784). Here in Hour 6 we will see how and why this description marks Patroklos as a ritual substitute for Achilles as the main hero of the Iliad.
6§32. To begin, I find it most relevant to consider some basic facts about {157|158} the use of the word therapōn in the plural. The plural form is therapontes. In the Iliad, warriors are conventionally called the therapontes of Arēs as the god of war (II 110, VI 67, XV 733, XIX 78). [30] The first example we saw was in Hour 1 Text C (Iliad XIX 78). With this fact in mind, I will now make an argument that I epitomize in the following formulation:

When a warrior is killed in war, he becomes a therapōn or ‘ritual substitute’ who dies for Arēs by becoming identical to the war god at the moment of death; then, after death, the warrior is eligible to become a cult hero who serves as a sacralized ‘attendant’ of the war god. [31]
6§33. We may expect that Achilles, as an epic warrior, is a therapōn or ‘ritual substitute’ of Arēs by virtue of becoming identical to the war god at the moment of death. But there is a complication: in the Iliad, such a relationship between Achilles and Arēs is expressed only by way of an intermediary, who is Patroklos. And there is a further complication: Patroklos as an epic warrior is described not as the therapōn of Arēs but rather as the therapōn of Achilles, and, as such, Patroklos is not only that hero’s ‘attendant’ but also his ‘ritual substitute’, since he actually dies for Achilles. In view of these two complications, I will argue that Achilles in the Iliad dies only indirectly as the therapōn of Arēs through the intermediacy of Patroklos, who dies in this epic as the therapōn of Achilles.
6§34. Here I come back to Iliad XVI 233-248, which was Text A in this hour: there we saw that Patroklos qualifies as therapōn of Achilles only so long as he stays within his limits as the recessive equivalent of the dominant hero. Now I will take this formulation one step further: once Patroklos is on his own, he becomes a therapōn of Arēs and dies in place of Achilles. [32]
6§35. We may expect that Achilles, as an epic warrior, qualifies as īsos Arēi, ‘equal [īsos] to Arēs’, just like Patroklos. This description suits Achilles in the Iliad – but it applies to him only vicariously by way of Patroklos, who takes upon himself the role of a ritual substitute for Achilles. As we saw in Text B of Hour 5, Iliad XVI 784, Patroklos is called atalantos Arēi, ‘equal to Arēs’, at the moment {158|159} when he is killed in war. And, as we will now see, Patroklos is actually called īsos Arēi, ‘equal to Arēs’, at the moment when the story of his fatal impersonation of Achilles begins:

Hour 6 Text F

|599 He [Nestor] was seen and noted by swift-footed radiant Achilles, |600 who was standing on the spacious stern of his ship, |601 watching the sheer pain [ponos] and tearful struggle of the fight. |602 Then, all of a sudden, he called to his comrade [hetairos] Patroklos, |603 calling from the ship, and he [Patroklos] from inside the shelter heard him [Achilles], |604 and he [Patroklos] came out, equal [īsos] to Arēs, and here, I see it, was the beginning of his doom. |605 He [Patroklos], mighty son of Menoitios, was the first to speak, and he said [to Achilles]: |606 “Why, Achilles, do you call me? what need do you have for me?”
Iliad XI 599-606 [33]

Here Homeric poetry declares explicitly that the application of the epithet ‘equal [īsos] to Arēs’ will doom Patroklos to death. [34]

6§36. Besides being equated with Arēs, however, we saw that Patroklos is also being equated with Apollo. It happens in both Texts A and B of Hour 5, when Patroklos is called daimoni īsos, ‘equal to a daimōn’ (XVI 705 and 786). As we saw from the contexts of those passages, the daimōn or ‘superhuman force’ there is the god Apollo himself. [35] So, in those contexts, Patroklos is ‘equal’ to Apollo, though his identification with that god is not fully spelled out, since the word daimōn partly masks the identity of the god.
6§37. As one who is equal to Apollo at the moment of his death, Patroklos participates in a specialized god-hero relationship. By being equal to Arēs at the moment of his death, on the other hand, Patroklos participates in a generic god-hero relationship that is typical of heroes who are warriors. [36] In identifying with both Arēs and Apollo, Patroklos is experiencing something that will later be experi- {159|160} enced by Achilles himself, who will also be identifying with both Arēs and Apollo at the moment of his own heroic death, though his death scene is not directly pictured in the Iliad. Rather, the death scene of Achilles is pictured directly in the epic Cycle. In Hour 5 Text D, I already quoted a plot-summary of this death scene, and I now quote it here again:

Hour 6 Text G = Hour 5 Text D

|7 Achilles, while routing the Trojans and |8 rushing to the citadel, is killed by Paris and Apollo. |9 When a heated battle starts over the corpse, |10 Ajax picks it up and carries it off to the ships while |11 Odysseus fights off the Trojans.
plot-summary by Proclus of the Aithiopis by Arctinus of Miletus p. 106 lines 7-11
6§38. This plot-summary does not indicate whether Arēs is understood to be the generalized ritual antagonist of Achilles. All it indicates is that Apollo is the specialized ritual antagonist of that hero. But there is no reason for us to expect an explicit role of Arēs in the death scene of Achilles. After all, there is no explicit role of this war god in the death scene of Patroklos as narrated in the Iliad.
6§39. A generic warrior, as we have noted, is called a therapōn of Arēs. Generically, then, heroes as warriors die for Arēs. More specifically, however, a special hero will die for his special divine antagonist.
6§40. Generically, Achilles would qualify as a therapōn of Arēs; specifically, however, he is a therapōn of Apollo, because it is Apollo who will kill him by way of Paris, just as Apollo kills Patroklos by way of Hector. And, while the therapōn of Apollo must be Achilles, the therapōn of Achilles must be, as we have seen, Patroklos.
6§41. Patroklos must die for Achilles, who must die for Apollo. The death of Patroklos is caused by Arēs generically but it is brought to fulfillment by Apollo personally.
6§42. I return here to the moment when Patroklos dies. At that moment, as we saw in Texts A and B of Hour 5, he is called daimoni īsos, ‘equal to a daimōn’ (XVI 705 and 786). In this context, it is clear that the daimōn is Apollo, as we can see from the related context of Text C, featuring the expression pros daimona, ‘face-to-face with the daimōn’ (XVII 98, also 104). [37] {160|161}

Arēs as divine antagonist of Patroklos and Achilles

6§43. So, there is no doubt about it, the god Apollo is the direct and specific cause of the deaths of both Patroklos and Achilles. Nevertheless, it is essential to keep in mind that the god Arēs is the indirect and generic cause of these deaths. And we see a trace of this indirect and generic causality when we read that Patroklos is atalantos Arēi, ‘equal to Arēs’, at the moment of his death in the Iliad (XVI 784). So also Achilles himself, in his climactic moments of rage, is described as īsos Arēi, ‘equal to Arēs’, in the Iliad (XX 46). Thus Achilles as well as Patroklos is programmed, as it were, to die a martial death that is caused at least generically by Arēs.
6§44. In this light, we need to consider more closely the identity of the god Arēs. Yes, he is the god of war, but he is also, more specifically, the god of martial fury. [38] In war, a warrior who is possessed by the god Arēs experiences this kind of martial fury, which is typically bestial. The Greek word for martial fury is lussa, meaning ‘wolfish rage’. [39] Comparable is the Old Norse concept berserkr and the Old Irish concept of ríastrad, ‘warp spasm’ or ‘distortion’. [40] To experience such a martial rage or warp spasm or distortion is to be beside oneself, and to be beside oneself is to be possessed – possessed by Arēs.
6§45. In the Iliad, as we will now see, such a state of possession is expressed by way of the word lussa, ‘wolfish rage’. From here on, I will transliterate this word in its latinized form lyssa, since some readers will be more familiar with the spelling lykos for the Greek word meaning ‘wolf’ (the more consistent spelling would be lukos). [41] In the Iliad, a prime example of lyssa is the description of Hector, when he gets into a state of martial fury, as a ‘rabid dog’, a lyssētēr kuōn (κύνα λυσσητῆρα VIII 299). [42] When Hector experiences such a state, lyssa literally enters his body and pervades it completely (IX 239). After Hector kills Patroklos and puts on the armor of Achilles that Patroklos had been wearing, Zeus seals Hector into the armor and then Arēs himself literally enters him (δῦ {161|162} δέ μιν Ἄρης XVII 210), thus possessing him completely. So, when Achilles finally kills Hector in Iliad XXII, he is in effect killing the embodiment of Arēs the war god. Conversely, Achilles himself is possessed by lyssa in his most intense moments of martial rage in the Iliad (XXI 542). Hector in his own right is described as both atalantos Arēi, ‘equal to Arēs’ (VIII 215, XVII 72), and as īsos Arēi, ‘equal to Arēs’ (XI 295, XIII 802).
6§46. In the case of Achilles, these examples of martial fury are relevant to the second of the three characteristics of the hero that we considered in Hour 1, namely, that the hero is “extreme” both positively and, on special occasions, negatively. Achilles is extreme mostly in a positive sense, since he is ‘best’ in many categories and since he is even the ‘best of the Achaeans’ in the Homeric Iliad. Occasionally, however, he is extreme in a negative sense, as in his moments of martial fury. [43]

The therapeutic function of the therapōn

6§47. I return here to the ritual background of the word therapōn. So far, we have seen that it was borrowed into the Greek language from Anatolian languages, sometime in the 2nd millennium BCE. The corresponding word in those Anatolian languages meant ‘ritual substitute’. Someone who is notionally close to the king, as we have also seen, may have to die in place of the king. But there is more to it than that. Such a death, I argue, has the effect of healing society by way of healing the king, who is viewed as the embodiment of society, of the body politic. (On the king as the embodiment of the body politic, I refer back to §13 in this hour.)
6§48. What I describe here for the first time as a healing is an act of purifying the king and his people from impurities, from pollution. If the king is polluted, then society is polluted. That is why the pollution of the king has to be transferred to a ritual substitute who will be eliminated in place of the king and will thus remove the royal pollution while also removing the pollution of society. This principle of purification has been described by van Brock as the transfer of evil, “le transfert du mal.” [44] Evil must be passed on, to a sacrificial victim. {162|163}
6§49. In Greek visual art, I must now add, the dead hero Patroklos can be represented as a sacrificial ram, who is shown with his throat slit open and with blood streaming from the gaping wound: such a picture is painted on an Attic vase executed by the “Triptolemos Painter,” dated around 480 BCE. [45] Similarly in Hittite rituals of substitution, as we have seen, rams can be sacrificed in place of kings.
6§50. The meaning of the Greek word therapōn as ritual substitute and the function of such a therapōn as a healer helps explain why the related Greek word therapeuein means not only ‘be a therapōn’, as we have seen at Odyssey xiii 265, but also ‘heal, cure’; we still see such a meaning embedded in the English-language borrowings therapy and therapeutic. But before I cite some contexts where the ancient Greek word therapeuein means ‘heal, cure’, I must return once again to that passage at Odyssey xiii 265 where therapeuein means ‘be a therapōn’, since I have yet to explain the context.
6§51. There are three passages where the word therapeuein seems at first sight to have nothing to do with a meaning such as ‘heal, cure’. I start with Odyssey xiii 265, the passage we are considering right now. Here the first-person narrator of a “Cretan tale” says that he was unwilling to ‘be a therapōn’, therapeuein, for the over-king of Crete, Idomeneus, preferring instead to be the leader of his own comrades. The next passage is at Homeric Hymn to Apollo 390, where the god Apollo selects a group of Cretans to serve as his attendants, therapeuein, at his shrine in Delphi. Finally, the third passage is at Hesiod Works and Days 135, where the prototypical humans who represent the second generation of humankind are said to be unwilling to serve as attendants, therapeuein, to the gods; and, as we read in the next verse, these sacrilegious early humans are likewise unwilling to perform sacrifices to the gods at their altars (Works and Days 136). [46]
6§52. As we consider these three passages showing early attestations of the word therapeuein, the first one of the three is not decisive in establishing the overall meaning of this word, since the story of the upstart Cretan who refused to serve as therapōn to the over-king of Crete has no attested parallels. Still, it is safe to say that the social position of the therapōn in this story cannot be too different from the social position of Patroklos himself, who is subservient to {163|164} Achilles by virtue of serving as that hero’s therapōn. [47] But the second and the third attestations are in fact decisive: in these two cases, therapeuein refers to the service that needs to be rendered to gods by humans who are designated as the gods’ attendants. As we are about to see, the contexts of therapeuein in these two cases can help explain later attestations of the verb therapeuein in the sense of ‘heal, cure’.
6§53. In speaking of later attestations, I have in mind evidence dating from the fifth century and thereafter. In this later era, therapeuein in the sense of ‘heal, cure’ can refer specifically to the procedure of healing a body by removing some form of sickness or, more basically, to the procedure of maintaining the well-being of the body. To maintain the well-being of the body is to keep it healthy – that is, keeping it sound and immune from any sickness. [48] More generally, therapeuein can refer simply to ‘taking care of’ or ‘caring for’ another person (an example is Lysias 24.6, with reference to a situation where the elderly are being cared for by their children). Such a general meaning ‘take care of, care for’ helps explain the specific meaning of ‘heal, cure’: we may compare the use in English of the expressions ‘take care of’ or ‘care for’ with reference to the care that patients receive from their physicians. It is also relevant here to mention the derivation of the English word cure from the Latin cūra, meaning ‘care’.
6§54. So, how are such contexts relevant to the sacral meaning of therapōn as a ritual substitute? Here I turn to the sacral contexts of therapeuein in the sense of ‘take care of, care for’. In these contexts, I argue, the body that is being cared for and kept sound by those who are attending it is either (1) the notional body of a god or (2) the actual body of a cult hero. This sacred body, I further argue, can lend its sacredness to anything that makes contact with it, such as a temple or shrine or any other kind of sacred enclosure. In the case of gods, the sacred power of the sacred body can extend to a sacred simulacrum of the body, such as a sacred statue or picture or any other object that stands for the body of the god. There are many different attestations of therapeuein where the object of the verb is whatever sacred thing or place is attended by the attendants who care for it. Here are three shining examples: {164|165}

[1] An Attic inscription dating from the fifth century BCE (Inscriptiones Graecae I3 1-2 138.17) speaks of the need for therapeuein, ‘taking care of’, the temenos, ‘sacred precinct’, of the god Apollo ‘in the most beautiful way possible’ ([το̄ τε]μένο̄ς το̄ Ἀπόλλο̄νο[ς ἐπιμελέσθο̄ν, ὅπο̄ς ἂν κάλλισ]τα θεραπεύε̄ται).
[2] A Cretan inscription dating from the second century BCE (Inscriptiones Creticae III:2 1.5) speaks of the need for therapeuein, ‘taking care of’, archaic statues of divinities (τὰ ἀρχαῖα [ἀ]γάλματα θαραπεύσαντες). [49]
[3] In the Ion of Euripides (110-111), dating from the late fifth century BCE, the young hero Ion speaks of his service of therapeuein, ‘taking care of’, the temple of Apollo at Delphi (τοὺς θρέψαντας | Φοίβου ναοὺς θεραπεύω).
6§55. It is in the light of such attestations of the verb therapeuein that we can understand the earlier attestations of the noun therapōn in combination with the genitive case of names of gods like Apollo, the Muses, Arēs, and so on. [50]
6§56. By now we can see that therapeuein in the sense of ‘maintain the well-being of, take care of, care for’ and in the special sense of ‘heal, cure’ is in fact related to the idea of a ritual substitute who maintains the well-being of someone superior whom he serves by standing ready to die for that special someone. That is the therapeutic function, as it were, of the therapōn. Earlier on, I noted the English-language borrowings therapy and therapeutic. Now I note a semantic parallel in the use of the Greek word pharmakon, which means ‘drug used for healing’ or, more generally, ‘drug used for medication or for poisoning’, and we see the more specific meaning ‘drug used for healing’ embedded in the English-language borrowings pharmacy and pharmaceutical. The meaning of this word pharmakon as ‘drug used for healing’ helps explain the related meaning of a related Greek word. That word is pharmakos (as attested in Hipponax F 9.1 and F 10.2 ed. West), which can be translated as ‘scapegoat’, that is, someone who takes the blame for a pollution that afflicts a whole society. [51] Here again we see at work the principle of a transfer of evil, comparable to what we saw in the case of the Hittite ritual substitutes. {165|166}

Patroklos as the other self of Achilles

6§57. Having said this much about the word therapōn, I turn to another word that is closely linked to the idea of Patroklos as the ritual substitute of Achilles. This other word is philos, meaning ‘friend’ as a noun and ‘near and dear’ or ‘belonging to the self’ as an adjective. By contrast with my lengthy investigation of the relevance of the word therapōn to Patroklos, I can confine myself here to the shortest of formulations about the parallel relevance of the word philos, since I have already analyzed this word at some length in Hour 2. [52] Here, then, is my formulation, compressed into a single nested paragraph:

Patroklos as the personal therapōn of Achilles is thereby also the nearest and dearest of all the comrades of Achilles. This closeness is measured in terms of the word philos in the sense of being ‘near and dear’ to someone. Achilles considers Patroklos to be the most philos, ‘near and dear’, of them all. Or, if we were to express this idea in terms of the noun philos, meaning ‘friend’, instead of using the adjective philos, meaning ‘near and dear’, we would say that Patroklos is the very best friend of Achilles. This word philos defines identity by way of measuring how much you can identify with someone else: the more you love someone, the more you identify with this special someone – and the closer you get to your own self.
6§58. This is why Patroklos is truly the other self or alter ego of Achilles. In the Life of Pythagoras tradition, the wise man is asked the question ‘what is a friend [philos]?’ and answers that a philos is allos egō, ‘another I’ (scholia for Iliad XVIII 82). This terminology helps explain the use of the pseudo-scientific Latin term alter ego in translations of the works of Freud into English.

Ramifications of the idea of another self

6§59. Such an idea of Patroklos as the other self of Achilles is parallel to the idea of twinning. This parallelism helps explain other {166|167} features of Achilles and Patroklos that they share, such as the power to heal. [53] The therapeutic powers of Achilles and Patroklos can be analyzed in this light. [54]
6§60. The therapeutic function of caring for someone as a patient in mythical contexts of healing can be linked with the emotional function of caring for someone who is philos in these same contexts. That is because therapeuein in the emotional sense of ‘care for’ is linked with philos in the sense of ‘near and dear’; [55] and, further, therapōn in the sense of ‘ritual substitute’ is linked with philos in the sense of ‘belonging to the self’. [56]
6§61. As the other self who is ready to die for the self that is Achilles, Patroklos achieves an unsurpassed level of intimacy with the greatest hero of the Homeric Iliad. This intimacy is sacral, thus transcending even sexual intimacy. But this sacred intimacy has an uncanny other side to it, which is a kind of sacred alienation. As we saw in the case of the Hittite prisoner, about to be expelled into an alien realm, he must wear the clothing of the king, thus becoming ritually intimate with the body of the king. So too Patroklos wears the armor of Achilles when he dies, and he wears something else that is even more intimately connected with his best friend. Patroklos wears also the epic identity of Achilles, as expressed by the epithets they share. These heroic epithets, such as the ones that makes them both ‘equal to Arēs’, will predestine both of them to live the same way and to die the same way. [57]

Simone Weil on sacrificial substitution

6§62. Simone Weil (1909-1943) thought that evil happens when the suffering of one person is passed on to another person. The mentality is this: I want you to suffer exactly the way I have suffered. The problem is, everyone suffers differently. So, the transfer of suffering does not make things better. It makes things worse. And that is evil. So, evil itself is the transfer of suffering. In French, it is {167|168} “le transfert du mal,” as we saw at §48 in this hour. To stop this chain of evil, an existential hero must refuse to transfer the suffering to the next person. And so the hero must absorb the suffering. For that to happen, however, the hero will have to die for the next person in line and for everyone else who is in line. Such a death can be described as an act of sacrificial substitution.
6§63. In her essay “Human Personality” (1943, p. 74 via Miles 1986), Weil says: “When harm is done to a man, real evil enters into him; not merely pain and suffering, but the actual horror of evil. Just as men have the power of transmitting good to one another, so they have the power to transmit evil.” In “Void and Compensation” (published 1947, p. 217 via Miles), Weil says: “The wish to see others suffer exactly what we are suffering. It is because of this that, except in periods of social instability, the spite of those in misfortune is directed against their fellows. That is a factor making for social stability.” We read in the same work (p. 217 again): “The tendency to spread the suffering beyond ourselves. If through excessive weakness we can neither call forth pity nor do harm to others, we attack what the universe itself represents for us. Then every good or beautiful thing is like an insult.”
6§64. If we apply here the thinking of Weil, we may think of Patroklos as a hero who refuses to pass on the suffering to the next person. He absorbs the suffering and dies in the act of doing so. He short-circuits evil.
6§65. Such a way of thinking about Patroklos may lead us to a rethinking of this hero’s status as the one person who is highest in the ascending scale of affection felt by the hero Achilles. {168|169}


[ back ] 1. |233 Ζεῦ ἄνα Δωδωναῖε Πελασγικὲ τηλόθι ναίων |234 Δωδώνης μεδέων δυσχειμέρου, ἀμφὶ δὲ Σελλοὶ |235 σοὶ ναίουσ’ ὑποφῆται ἀνιπτόποδες χαμαιεῦναι, |236 ἠμὲν δή ποτ’ ἐμὸν ἔπος ἔκλυες εὐξαμένοιο, |237 τίμησας μὲν ἐμέ, μέγα δ’ ἴψαο λαὸν Ἀχαιῶν, |238 ἠδ’ ἔτι καὶ νῦν μοι τόδ’ ἐπικρήηνον ἐέλδωρ· |239 αὐτὸς μὲν γὰρ ἐγὼ μενέω νηῶν ἐν ἀγῶνι, |240 ἀλλ’ ἕταρον πέμπω πολέσιν μετὰ Μυρμιδόνεσσι |241 μάρνασθαι· τῷ κῦδος ἅμα πρόες εὐρύοπα Ζεῦ, |242 θάρσυνον δέ οἱ ἦτορ ἐνὶ φρεσίν, ὄφρα καὶ Ἕκτωρ |243 εἴσεται ἤ ῥα καὶ οἶος ἐπίστηται πολεμίζειν |244 ἡμέτερος θεράπων, ἦ οἱ τότε χεῖρες ἄαπτοι |245 μαίνονθ’, ὁππότ’ ἐγώ περ ἴω μετὰ μῶλον Ἄρηος. |246 αὐτὰρ ἐπεί κ’ ἀπὸ ναῦφι μάχην ἐνοπήν τε δίηται, |247 ἀσκηθής μοι ἔπειτα θοὰς ἐπὶ νῆας ἵκοιτο |248 τεύχεσί τε ξὺν πᾶσι καὶ ἀγχεμάχοις ἑτάροισιν. |249 Ὣς ἔφατ’ εὐχόμενος, τοῦ δ’ ἔκλυε μητίετα Ζεύς. |250 τῷ δ’ ἕτερον μὲν ἔδωκε πατήρ, ἕτερον δ’ ἀνένευσε· |251 νηῶν μέν οἱ ἀπώσασθαι πόλεμόν τε μάχην τε |252 δῶκε, σόον δ’ ἀνένευσε μάχης ἐξαπονέεσθαι.
[ back ] 2. For more on the dating of these Hittite ritual texts, see Kümmel 1967:188. For a survey of attestations, see Tischler 1993:207-212.
[ back ] 3. Van Brock 1959:117, with special reference to the Hittite ritual text Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi IV 6 (tarpašša– at Recto line 11, tarpalli- at Recto line 28; see also Verso line 14); Nagy 2008a:55.
[ back ] 4. Van Brock 1959:119; Nagy 2008a:55. In the myth of Ullikummi, this megalithic monster is described as a tarpanalli- of the weather-god Teshub, who ultimately destroys him: Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi XXXIII 96 + I 8 (also XXXIII 95 + IV 14; also XXXIII 106 + III 35). In such contexts, the word is conventionally translated as ‘rival’: see Tischler 1993:209-210.
[ back ] 5. Kümmel 1967:131, 150.
[ back ] 6. Van Brock 1959:121, with reference to Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi IX 129 I lines 5-9. For the principle of analogical substitution in general, see Kümmel 1967:22.
[ back ] 7. Van Brock 1959:120-121, with reference to Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi VII 10.
[ back ] 8. Van Brock 1959:123-125, with reference to Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi XXIV 5 + IX 13.
[ back ] 9. Van Brock 1959:123; see also especially Kümmel 1967:20 and 121-122, with reference to the mention of a female tarpašša- in Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi IV 6 I line 11.
[ back ] 10. For a variety of further examples taken from Hittite ritual texts, see Lowenstam 1981:127-130.
[ back ] 11. nu-wa-at-ta ku-u-uš [tar-pa]-al-li-uš [ | ] … nu-wa ku-u-uš ak-kán-du am-mu-uk-ma-w[a le]-e ak-mi. Commentary by van Brock 1959:123; also Kümmel 1967:25. At lines 10-16 of this same ritual text, Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi XXIV 5 I, we see that a bull is to be driven to a place where it is killed and its body is burned, while the moon god is invoked to witness with his own divine eyes the smoke that rises up to the heavens from the burning body; see also Kümmel p. 37.
[ back ] 12. Van Brock 1959:125. Kümmel 1967:194-195 cautions against anachronistic formulations, but there is no doubt that the ritual purification of the Hittite king extends to a homologous purification of his royal subjects. In the ritual text Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi XV 1 I lines 19-20 and 39, for example, it is made clear that the removal of pollution extends from the king to the whole army and to the whole land of Ḫatti; commentary by Kümmel p. 120.
[ back ] 13. Kümmel 1967:189, 193-194, 196-197.
[ back ] 14. Kümmel 1967:169-187. He emphasizes how little textual evidence has been preserved, considering the pervasiveness of the custom of ritual substitution in Near Eastern civilizations (p. 191). The period of the substitute king’s tenure can be measured in units of time, such as one hundred days (pp. 176-177, 179). See also Parpola 1983 Excursus pp. xxii-xxxii.
[ back ] 15. Watkins 1995:167-168.
[ back ] 16. Watkins 1967.
[ back ] 17. Text and commentary by Van Brock 1959:123; see also Kümmel 1967:27-32.
[ back ] 18. Commentary by Kümmel 1967:118.
[ back ] 19. Keilschrifturkunden aus Boghazköi VII 10 II; see Kümmel 1967:131.
[ back ] 20. Keilschrifttexte aus Boghazköi XV 1 I; see Kümmel 1967:115.
[ back ] 21. Kümmel 1967:150-168; at p. 147 he leaves the door ajar for the possibility that a human tarpanalli- could in fact be ritually killed.
[ back ] 22. Van Brock 1959:125-126.
[ back ] 23. Van Brock 1959:125-126.
[ back ] 24. Van Brock 1961:118n1, 120n3. We would have expected the denominative verb of therapōn to be *theraponeuein, just as the denominative verb of, say, hēgemōn is hēgemoneuein. So, the fact that therapeuein in the sense of ‘be a therapōn’ functions as the denominative verb of therapōn proves that this noun therapōn was once a synonym of theraps. Tischler 1993:210 explains theraps as a back-formation from therapeuein, but I find such an explanation counterintuitive.
[ back ] 25. Πάτροκλος δ’ ἑτέρωθεν ἀφ’ ἵππων ἆλτο χαμᾶζε.
[ back ] 26. Ἕκτωρ δ’ αὖθ’ ἑτέρωθεν ἀφ’ ἵππων ἆλτο χαμᾶζε.
[ back ] 27. ἀλλὰ σὺ μὲν μάστιγα καὶ ἡνία σιγαλόεντα | δέξαι, ἐγὼ δ’ ἵππων ἀποβήσομαι, ὄφρα μάχωμαι.
[ back ] 28. The wording that expresses here the complementarity of the chariot fighter and the chariot driver can be found elsewhere as well in the Iliad, as at V 218-238. Here we see Aeneas urging Pandaros to leap into the chariot of Aeneas (V 221) so that Pandaros may act as the chariot driver while Aeneas acts as the chariot fighter by leaping out of his chariot and fighting on the ground (226-227). Pandaros refuses, saying that he prefers to fight on the ground (V 238) and telling Aeneas to continue driving his own horses, since they would not get used to a new charioteer (V 230-237). As the narrative proceeds, it becomes clear that the choice made by Pandaros proves to be fatal.
[ back ] 29. For more on the multiformity of the figures Alkimedon (/Alkimos) and Automedon as therapontes, see Sinos 1980:38n6.
[ back ] 30. BA 295 = 17§5.
[ back ] 31. A longer version of this formulation is presented in BA 293-295 = 17§§5-6. I have already noted that the charioteer Alkimos is described as a therapōn of Achilles (Iliad XXIV 573); now I add that Alkimos is also described as an ozos Arēos ‘attendant of Arēs’ (XXIV 474 ὄζος ῎Αρηος); see BA 295 = 17§5n8 on ozos as a synonym of therapōn.
[ back ] 32. Sinos 1980:46-54; BA 292-293 = 17§4.
[ back ] 33. |599 τὸν δὲ ἰδὼν ἐνόησε ποδάρκης δῖος Ἀχιλλεύς· |600 ἑστήκει γὰρ ἐπὶ πρυμνῇ μεγακήτεϊ νηῒ |601 εἰσορόων πόνον αἰπὺν ἰῶκά τε δακρυόεσσαν. |602 αἶψα δ’ ἑταῖρον ἑὸν Πατροκλῆα προσέειπε |603 φθεγξάμενος παρὰ νηός· ὃ δὲ κλισίηθεν ἀκούσας |604 ἔκμολεν ἶσος Ἄρηϊ, κακοῦ δ’ ἄρα οἱ πέλεν ἀρχή. |605 τὸν πρότερος προσέειπε Μενοιτίου ἄλκιμος υἱός· |606 τίπτέ με κικλήσκεις Ἀχιλεῦ; τί δέ σε χρεὼ ἐμεῖο;
[ back ] 34. BA 32-34 = 2§8; 293-295 = 17§5.
[ back ] 35. BA 293 = 17§5.
[ back ] 36. BA 307 = 18§9.
[ back ] 37. BA 63 = 4§6n1.
[ back ] 38. EH §110.
[ back ] 39. Lincoln 1975.
[ back ] 40. For a comparison of the Old Norse and Old Irish concepts, see Sjoestedt 1940:86. See also Henry 1982. For the translation of Old Irish ríastrad as ‘warp spasm’, see Kinsella 1969. For a lively description of ‘warp spasm’, see Rees and Rees 1961:248-249.
[ back ] 41. Starting at line 815 of the drama Herakles by Euripides, the personification of madness, Lyssa, enters the dramatic space, now that the evil hero Lykos is has been killed by Hēraklēs. Now Lyssa will possess Hēraklēs and bring about his madness. At line 865 Lyssa refers to her own wolfish rage, lyssa (see also lines 879, 888, 1024).
[ back ] 42. At line 934 in the Herakles of Euripides, Hēraklēs is rabidly foaming at the mouth while he is possessed by the “wolfish rage,” lyssa, of Lyssa.
[ back ] 43. BA 321 = 20§5.
[ back ] 44. Van Brock 1959:129.
[ back ] 45. This painting, along with another related painting, is analyzed by Tarenzi 2005.
[ back ] 46. Commentary in BA 151-152 = 9§§2-3.
[ back ] 47. Lowenstam 1981:136-140 has argued persuasively that the upstart Cretan in the story told by the disguised Odysseus in Odyssey xiii is a narrative stand-in for the Cretan hero Meriones, who refuses to “take the hit,” as it were, for the over-king of the Cretans, Idomeneus. On the comparative evidence of Celtic narratives concerning the idea of a “recessive” chariot driver who “takes the hit” for a “dominant” chariot fighter, see J. F. Nagy 1997b:199-232.
[ back ] 48. Van Brock 1961:123-127 collects examples.
[ back ] 49. This example and the previous one are cited by van Brock 1961:122-123.
[ back ] 50. BA 295 = 17§6; van Brock 1961:115-117 surveys the various attested combinations of therapōn with the name of a god in the genitive case. I note with interest the attestation of the dual form theraponte with reference to the twin sons of Poseidon, who are Pelias and Neleus, described as attendants of the god Zeus himself (θεράποντε Odyssey xi 255).
[ back ] 51. I refer here again to the analysis of Kümmel 1967:193.
[ back ] 52. I repeat here the references to my earlier work: BA 82-83 = 5§27; 102-111 = 6§§12-22; see also the work of Sinos 1980.
[ back ] 53. Here I refer to an essay of mine on twins, written some years ago and to be published in a book edited by Kimberley Patton, forthcoming. In that essay, I argued that Achilles and Patroklos are figured as a dyadic pair that resembles in some ways the dyadic pair represented by the “Divine Twins,” the Dioskouroi. For important comparative evidence in Celtic traditions, see J. F. Nagy 1997b:199-232.
[ back ] 54. In the essay I just mentioned in the previous note, I connect my arguments with those of Douglas Frame in an essay to be published in the same book edited by Kimberley Patton.
[ back ] 55. On the meaning of philos as ‘near and dear’, derived from phi in the sense of ‘near’, see GM 203n7, with further references.
[ back ] 56. BA 103-106 = 6§§13-16.
[ back ] 57. These words here in Hour 6 are taken from my essay on twins, to which I referred earlier. In that essay, I added one more sentence: And the sameness of their shared life and death can be seen as an uncanny mix of intimacy and alienation that only twins will ever truly understand.