Briseis - Greek Mythology Link
Achilles' reaction to Agamemnon taking Briseis from him with a few other instances in the text, indicate that the relationship Achilles and. We could claim that Briseis and Achilles had a romantic relationship because she outrightly admits to expecting to be his wife; however we also. Briseis and Achilles relationship is seen as a tragic love story as however the war ends, it will never end well for their relationship because they.
Fall of a City The romance between Achilles and Briseis is almost a given in any media depiction of the Iliad, however it has little and questionable textual evidence to support it. In addition to setting some problematic ideas about romance and relationships in general.
THE TROJAN WAR: Task 2 - Briseis in 'Troy'
The story of Briseis is simple: While Agamemnon kept another woman Chryseis, from Thebe, until her father Chryses begs for his daughter back. Agamemnon sends him out of the Greek camp in response which prompts Chryses to call upon the god Apollo to unleash a plague. Achilles suggests that Agamemnon should give back Chryseis in order to prevent all their men from dying, which leads to an argument that culminates in Agamemnon seizing Briseis and Achilles withdrawing from the battle, as well as calling upon his mother Thetis to petition Zeus to impose suffering upon the Greeks for good measure.
Briseis is then kept as a slave of Agamemnon, only to be returned to Achilles after Patroclus dies in battle.
We have some textual evidence that can interpreted as Briseis loving Achilles. Thus, it is clear that there is a distinct imbalance of power in their relationship which makes any assertion of romance problematic.
Wherefore I wail for you in your death and know no ceasing, for you were ever kind. Those scenes did not exist in the Iliad. Briseis is obviously vulnerable, stuck in a camp full of hostile men and in a position where she has no power over her own life. Thus, putting on a stiff upper lip and marrying Achilles is more or less her best option excluding somehow winning her freedom.
Briseis, Slave of Achilles
The reasons for why she wishes to marry Achilles is not exposed but presuming that she does so out of budding affection for her captor and in this case: His rejection of Briseis and these gifts are meant to denote a shift in his worldview, that what he valued before has lost its meaning. Hence, Ajax the Elder is confused as to why Achilles refuses the compensation of 7 women for the single snatched Briseis Homer, Iliad 9.
My point is the Abduction is Love trope has added romantic significance to the figure of Briseis when textually the Iliad provides little to no evidence to support it.
The trope itself is problematic since Stockholm syndrome actually exists as well as that to portray women as falling in love with their kidnappers is both callous and presumptuous that women secretly desire their captors, therefore portraying kidnapping as fine when done in the name of love.
Achilles in Troy calls Briseis not his captive, but his guest after she sleeps with him, while Achilles, Patroclus and Briseis participate in a three-way romantic relationship in Troy: My quarrel is not with you but with Agamemnonwho sent you here to fetch the girl Briseis. I shall count on them to be my witnesses before the happy gods, before mankind, before the brutal king himself, if the Achaeans ever need me again to save them from disaster.
Thus began the wrath of Achilleswho henceforth refused to fight, and instead amused himself with the cithara in his tent. But a short time With those words he gave her up to the heralds, who made their way back to Agamemnon 's tent.
Briseis, who followed them to her second captivity unwilling and unhappy, is said to have later reproached her lover the readiness with which she was delivered to the heralds, without even a farewell kiss.
Briseis-Achilles Romance? It’s Complicated.
And while she was away, she wrote to him saying that his wrath was not deep enough: Agamemnon at odds with heaven But whereas Achilles ' wrath was, in the eyes of Briseis, not strong enough, in those of the Achaean army it meant disaster. For Achilles ' mother Thetis obtained of Zeus the promise to teach Agamemnon a lesson for the outrage her son had suffered, by letting the army be defeated, for a while, by the Trojans.
Briseis untouched Yet it was not before the military situation had considerably deteriorated that Agamemnon tried to appease Achilles ' wrath so that he would fight again, by offering him the seven tripods, the seven women, the seven cities, and many other gifts which included Briseis, whom Agamemnon swore he had not touched, an oath that never has been openly questioned and that also Briseis took: I swear that the Mycenaean has shared no couch with me Gifts rejected But Achilles ' considered Agamemnon 's gifts hateful, since the king, being Menelaus ' brother, had done to him what Paris had done to Menelausand it was just this kind of outrage the Achaeans had come to avenge at Troy.
Was it not for Helen 's sake? Do they then alone of mortal men love their wives, these sons of Atreus?
No, for he who is a true man loves his own and cherishes her, as I too loved Briseis with all my heart. But when his dear friend died in battle, then Achillesnurturing a grief that was greater than his wrath, came to life again.
He then called a council and, without asking anything, officially ended his feud with Agamemnon. The king in turn, acknowledging that he himself had been the one whom the gods blinded, declared that he was ready to make amends and pay Achilles the compensation of the seven tripods, the seven women, the seven cities, and all other magnificent gifts which included Briseis. Yet Achilleswho now had his mind in the battlefield, replied that Agamemnon could produce the gifts or keep them at his convenience.
And regarding Briseis, he uttered these thoughtless words: I only wish that Artemis had killed her Briseis' farewell to Achilles Briseis remained with Achilles until his death, which soon came in the shape of an arrow shot by Paris.