Relationship between agamemnon menelaus

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relationship between agamemnon menelaus

Agamemnon was the son of King Atreus and Queen Aerope of Mycenae and was considered the leader, or commander-in-chief, of the Greeks during the Trojan. Menelaus - King of Sparta; the younger brother of Agamemnon. with the gods' quibbles, calling attention to the unclear nature of the gods' relationship to Fate. In Greek mythology, Agamemnon was a king of Mycenae, the son of King Atreus and Queen Aerope of Mycenae, the brother of Menelaus, the husband of.

In a lengthy speech, Menelaus offers an interesting account of the origins of the Trojan War: Agamemnon at first was eager to be leader of the expedition, and distinguished himself mainly in the social-networking and open-handed hospitality by which he brought the coalition together Having acquired the position of leader, he suddenly changed his ways and became arrogant, inaccessible and inac- tive on behalf of the army Why must you watch over my affairs?

Is this not the work of a shame- less man? Because my own desire provoked me. I am not your slave. My argument posits that it preserves or reflects old tradition in its depiction of the Atreidae, and it matters little to this argument whether the play was given its final form by Euripides or by another; I hope to show, however, that its depiction of the brothers has several parallels in the Euripidean corpus and perhaps also in Sophocles.

What a sad and confused expression you had, if you would not lead the thousand ships and fill the plain of Priam with spears! What way out can I discover?

Earlier in the play, Agamemnon himself had recalled a similar incident, describing how Menelaus interfered with his decision to disband the army after the prophecy of Calchas.

The intervention is described decidedly not as a consultation but as an act of rhetorical persuasion Then my brother, bringing every kind of argument, persuaded me to dare terrible deeds. Evidently the brothers disagree not only on the course of action to be taken now, but on the very facts of what has hap- pened earlier.

How does this scene characterize the brothers and their relationship? Agamemnon obtained command of the expedition because his political skill and social clout, along with a measure of personal ambition, made him best qualified to assemble the Achaean coalition. He lacks, however, the 30 Or, more likely, each distorts his account for rhetorical effect: In times of difficulty he asks the advice of Menelaus, and some- times follows it.

None of this is reconcilable with the Iliadic depiction of the Atreidae, but fits perfectly with the situation briefly sketched in our Odyssean passage. In fact, the situations have some striking similarities: In both, the brothers disagree in a matter affecting the fate of the Achaean host, whether it is their safe departure from or their safe arrival at Troy. In both, Agamemnon has heard about some divine wrath Artemis or Athena and has decided on a course of action.

This play evidently featured a quarrel between the brothers, probably in the first episode. The few remaining fragments suggest that they quarreled over whether to set out on a new expedition against Troy 31 So after their reconciliation Agamemnon asks his brother what can be done to forestall a betrayal by Calchas or Odysseus, and Menelaus offers positive advice with regard to the former: Calchas can be easily assassinated Blaiklock; Lawrence; Ryzman; Griffin Go where you wish.

I will not perish for the sake of your Helen. Sparta belongs to you: I will govern Mycenae by my own right. Menelaus is eager to go to or from TroyAgamem- non is reluctant; Menelaus attempts to take command of the situation, and Agamemnon resists.

There are fragments of an unidentified tragedian that have suggested to some a rendition of the quarrel of the Atreidae about the 33 Cf.

Menelaus - Wikipedia

You, then, stay here in the land of Ida, gather the flocks of Olympus and make sacrifice. The sacrifice mentioned is presumably that with which Agamemnon hopes to assuage the wrath of Athena. If reconstructions of the latter two are reliable, then it can be said that in each of these three plays a quarrel between the Atre- idae took place in the first episode.

Preiser84, n. As Rosivachnotes, in his demand that Ajax not be buried Menelaus seems at times to claim command of the army on an equal footing with his brother. Agamemnon shows clear affinities with the Agamemnon of the Iliad, so uncompromising in Book 1 but soon persuaded to a more flexible attitude by Nestor in Book 9; so here in the Ajax he is persuaded by Odysseus to yield.

Similarly, in each case it would appear that the quarrel of the Atreidae served little purpose except as a device to introduce the dramatic situ- ation. In the Nostoi, by contrast, the quarrel appeared early in the narra- tive, like the quarrel of Iliad Book 1, and must have been used by the poet to introduce his two most important characters, the basic dramatic situation, and any number of important themes for his work.

This again suggests that, with regard to the narrative and thematic function of the quarrel, the later epic may reflect a broader tradition that the tragedians had access to. As noted above, it presents a very different view of the Atreidae. Heathargues rather that the quarrel offered an occasion for Telephus to make his first appearance and to speak in defense of the Trojans. Nevertheless, if the alternative view of the brothers can be traced back as an established tradi- tion already in the Odyssey and the Epic Cycle, we might expect to see some signs of this even within the Iliad.

On the level of formula, Willcock argues that the traditional epithets of Menelaus seem to emphasize his prowess as a warrior, whereas the Menelaus of the Iliad does not distinguish himself in this realm. While the Iliad never shows the Atreidae actually quarreling, two of their three meetings feature an argument of sorts, albeit one in which Agamemnon is decidedly dominant while Menelaus offers no resistance: In Book 6, Agamemnon reproaches Menelaus when the latter is about to spare Achilles should not be confused by potential political challenges from another quarter.

The poet, evidently because he had a gentler view of the Trojans than his predecessors, used these formulas in a more restricted fashion, namely only as a feature of Achaean speech about the Trojans; this left something of a gap in the formulaic repertoire with which the poet himself describes them.

Similary, at Iliad 5. Or did you meet with the best treatment in your home from the Trojans? It occurs again at Il. But it is you, oh great shameless one, we follow, so that you may be pleased, winning honor for Menelaus, and for you, dog-face, from the Trojans.

But this you do not notice, nor care for. Does the use of such a phrase highlight the separation of the brothers? Edwards87 on Il.

relationship between agamemnon menelaus

Interestingly, the phrase under discussion appears in an interpolated verse at 9. In the case of 7. Similarly, in the line that follows we can see something semantically akin to 5. Hainsworthon Similarly, in Book 23, when Achilles proposes various athletic contests to the Achaeans, he addresses himself to the Achaeans once with the same line used by Nestor in Book 7 Yet there are two very interesting cases in which the singular vocative is not so obviously to be preferred.

The first example is from Book 7: After a difficult day of fighting and the defeat of Paris and Hector in duels with Menelaus and Ajax respectively, the Trojans hold an assembly: Which son of Atreus?

Do we understand that Agamemnon is meant, since it is at his ship that the Achaeans are assembled, or Menelaus, since his wife and possessions are at issue, or Agamemnon again, since he is the true leader of the Achaean coalition?

Line is clearly formulaic, being equivalent to 7. It is Agamemnon who is addressed; yet this remains genuinely ambiguous for some moments after the speech introduction, and perhaps until the Achaean response. After a moment of awk- ward silence, Diomedes offers a rousing and contemptuous refusal that meets with general acclamation from the Achaeans.

Menelaus does not speak, and indeed never appears in the episode. The decision laid before the Achaeans by Idaios is precisely the type of decision that the Atreidae appear to have traditionally quarreled over, namely whether to stay or to go, whether to pursue the expedition or cut their losses, whether Helen is worth it after all.

In the ambiguity as to which of the Atreidae is to respond to the present proposal, or in the confusion as to why one rather than both is addressed, and perhaps in the moment of awkward silence before Diomedes speaks, the poet may well be playing with the expectations of an audience familiar with such traditions. My second example is from Book One. First, the Achaeans generally, urging acceptance of the ransom and reverence for the priest Only then does Agamemnon speak, not with ratification of their view but with indignant refusal.

Menelaus does not speak at all, and indeed does not appear anywhere in Book 1. Various explanations have been offered for the fact that mnemosyne 67 22 sammons Chryses addresses his plea to the entire Achaean community;60 the fact that even his specific appeal is made not to Agamemnon alone, but to the Atre- idae as a team, seems never to have been explained. There is a divine wrath affecting the whole of the army, to which Agamemnon responds in a particular way, and he is challenged by an adversary who threatens to present the case to an assembly of the Achaeans or actually does so.

What do these various stories imply about the characterization of the brothers and their relationship? We have on the one hand an iras- cible and aggressive Menelaus who is ever bent on immediate action, obvi- ously with the relentless aim of recovering Helen or bringing her home, hence reversing the disgrace he incurred with her elopement.

Thus misfortune hounded successive generations of the House of Atreusuntil atoned by Orestes in a court of justice held jointly by humans and gods. Trojan War Agamemnon gathered the reluctant Greek forces to sail for Troy. Preparing to depart from Ancient Greece, which was a port in Boeotia, Agamemnon's army incurred the wrath of the goddess Artemis. There are several reasons throughout myth for such wrath: Misfortunes, including a plague and a lack of wind, prevented the army from sailing.

Finally, the prophet Calchas announced that the wrath of the goddess could only be propitiated by the sacrifice of Agamemnon's daughter Iphigenia. Achilles ' surrender of Briseis to Agamemnon, from the House of the Tragic Poet in Pompeiifresco, 1st century AD, now in the Naples National Archaeological Museum Classical dramatizations differ on how willing either father or daughter was to this fate; some include such trickery as claiming she was to be married to Achillesbut Agamemnon did eventually sacrifice Iphigenia.

Her death appeased Artemis, and the Greek army set out for Troy. Several alternatives to the human sacrifice have been presented in Greek mythology. Other sources, such as Iphigenia at Aulissay that Agamemnon was prepared to kill his daughter, but that Artemis accepted a deer in her place, and whisked her away to Tauris in the Crimean Peninsula.

relationship between agamemnon menelaus

Hesiod said she became the goddess Hecate. Agamemnon was the commander-in-chief of the Greeks during the Trojan War. During the fighting, Agamemnon killed Antiphus and fifteen other Trojan soldiers, according to one source. Even before his "aristea," Agamemnon was considered to be one of the three best warriors on the Greek side as proven when Hector challenges any champion of the Greek side to fight him in Book 7, and Agamemnon along with Diomedes and Big Aias is one of the three most wished for to face him out of the nine strongest Greek warriors who volunteered.

And after they reconciled, even Achilles admits in Book 23 that Agamemnon is "the best in strength and in throwing the spear. The Iliad tells the story about the quarrel between Agamemnon and Achilles in the final year of the war.

Following one of the Achaean Army's raids, Chryseisdaughter of Chrysesone of Apollo's priests, was taken as a war prize by Agamemnon. Chryses pleaded with Agamemnon to free his daughter but was met with little success.

Chryses then prayed to Apollo for the safe return of his daughter, which Apollo responded to by unleashing a plague over the Achaean Army.

After learning from the Prophet Calchas that the plague could be dispelled by returning Chryseis to her father, Agamemnon reluctantly agreed but first berated Calchas for previously forcing Agamemnon to sacrifice his daughter, Iphigenia and released his prize. However, as compensation for his lost prize, Agamemnon demanded a new prize. As a result, Agamemnon stole an attractive slave called Briseisone of the spoils of war, from Achilles.

Agamemnon, having realized Achilles's importance in winning the war against the Trojan Army, sent ambassadors begging for Achilles to return, offering him riches and the hand of his daughter in marriage, but Achilles refused, only being spurred back into action when his closest friend, Patroclus, was killed in battle.

"Bird Signs"/Debate on the War- Troy [Director's Cut] HD

Although not the equal of Achilles in bravery, Agamemnon was a representative of "kingly authority".