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Period One, Three and Five Study Guide
Addendum (Thu)
Essay Questions (You must answer 3 of the following essay questions. You may bring in an
index card with information you plan to use on the essay. However, you will not be allowed
to use it until you have begun work on your essays.)
How is the portrayal of the priests and seers in the film Troy different from how they are treated
in the actual story?
2. In the film Troy, they choose not to include the gods from the actual Trojan War story. In your
opinion, are the gods necessary to the story?
3. Describe some of the opportunities that the Trojans had to end the war peacefully, and why they
4. The film Troy eliminates a lot of characters from the story. In your opinion, which characters
should have been included, and explain why the story is more interesting with them.
Who is the main character of The Iliad? Is it Achilles or Hector? Explain your decision.
6. Several characters in the film Troy are portrayed differently from their book personalities. Do
these changes work, or do they ruin the story?
How do the characteristics of a Greek hero differ from those of a modern hero?
8. During our reading of The Iliad, we skipped a few chapters. Choose one of these chapters, and
explain whether or not the chapter should have been covered.
9. During the Trojan War, Hector was the commander for the Trojan side. If you had been in
Hector’s position, what things would you have done differently?
10. Themes are the fundamental and often universal ideas explored in a literary work. What are a few
themes that take place throughout Homer’s The Iliad? List a few that you believe contribute to
the story and explain their significance, and how these themes impacted the characters.
11. If you were Achilles, would you choose the lifestyle of war and fame, or being safe with your
family? Why?
12. If you had the option to bathe your child in The Styx river (as Thetis does to Achilles), would you
do it? Why or why not?
13. Achilles & Patroclus have an interesting relationship. Explain the differences between their
relationship in The Iliad and Troy.
14. When Agamemnon finally apologizes to Achilles, he still refuses to return to the fighting. Do you
feel that Achilles made a mistake, or do you think that he is in the right for refusing to fight for
15. How would the war have been different if someone other than Achilles had killed Hector?
16. How do the roles of the female characters impact the story? Are their roles similar to the men or
different? How?
The Trojan War
1. What is the first book in the Epic Cycle of the Trojan War?
The Cypria (It describes how the war began all the way through the first 9 years.)
2. Which goddess receives the Golden Apple from Paris?
3. Why does Hera want Troy to be destroyed?
Because Paris, the prince of Troy, did not give her the Golden Apple.
4. Who is Achilles’ mother and father?
Thetis and Peleus.
Who does Paris use to lure Achilles into a trap?
Polyxena – She and Achilles had a relationship.
Homer’s Iliad
1. Why does Agamemnon not like Calchas?
Because Calchas was a seer of the gods, who always seemed to be giving him bad
2. What is the name of the river next to Troy?
Scamander. Incidentally, Scamander is a river god, and he actually winds up
fighting Achilles at one point.
3. The Iliad begins with what event?
The fight between Achilles and Agamemnon over Briseis and Chryseis.
4. Which Greek god inflicted a plague on the Greek camp?
Apollo. He did it because Agamemnon was rude to his priest.
Why did Achilles have a conflict with Agamemnon?
Because he used him as a lure for his daughter when they were on Aulis.
Additionally, because Achilles challenged him when Agamemnon wanted a
replacement for Chryseis.
6. Why does Achilles go to his mother for help after the fight with Agamemnon?
Because Athena told him he was not allowed to kill Agamemnon. He knew his
mother had some influence with Zeus and could help him get revenge.
Who is Achilles’ closest friend?
8. Why didn’t Zeus want to help Thetis when she requested his assistance?
Because he knew it would anger his wife, Hera.
9. What happens when Agamemnon tries to inspire the Greek army by using reverse-psychology?
It fails horribly as the entire Greek army prepares to sail home.
10. Why does Menelaus accept Paris’ challenge to a duel?
Because Paris is the one who stole his wife, Helen.
11. What happens at the end of the duel between Menelaus and Paris?
Menelaus is dragging Paris back to the Greek army, when Aphrodite flies in and
takes Paris away to safety.
12. What happened after the duel between Paris and Menelaus?
Athena convinces a Trojan, Pandarus, to shoot an arrow at Menelaus. When
Menelaus is injured by the arrow, this ends the truce.
13. Which character has a chapter where they defeat two Trojan heroes and two Greek gods?
14. Which god refuses to fight Diomedes?
Apollo. He says that fighting a mortal is beneath him.
15. Which god prevented Patroclus from climbing over the walls of Troy?
16. What happens when Odysseus and Diomedes capture Dolon?
Odysseus promises not to harm him, but Diomedes executes him.
17. Who duels Hector and fights him to a draw?
Ajax – They fight until it becomes dark.
18. How did Achilles lose his armor?
He lent it to Patroclus, who was killed by Hector. Hector stripped the armor from
the body.
19. How many times does Achilles chase Hector around Troy?
Three times, but four is also acceptable, as they stop the chase during the fourth lap.
20. What does Achilles do with Hector’s body after he kills him?
He hooks the body to the back of his chariot, and drags his corpse around Troy.
21. The story of The Iliad ends with what event?
The funeral of Hector, breaker of horses.
Wolfgang Peterson’s Troy
1. How is the relationship between Helen and Menelaus different in the movie?
In the film, Helen was in an arranged marriage with Menelaus, and became the
Queen of Sparta. In the book, she chooses Menelaus and he becomes King of Sparta
by marrying her.
2. What did Achilles say to Hector just before their duel started?
There can be no negotiation between men and lions.
3. Roles in the film:
Achilles – Brad Pitt
Agamemnon – Brian Cox
Hector – Eric Bana
Odysseus – Sean Bean
Paris – Orlando Bloom
Priam – Peter O’Toole
Terms & Vocabulary Words
Achaea (place) – This word is generally used as a substitute for Greeks in the Iliad. However, it is
specifically the area north on the Peloponnesian peninsula.
Anguish (noun) – Great sadness.
Antagonist (noun) – In a story, this is the character or thing which is an obstacle to the protagonist of
the story.
Argives (noun) – A name of often used to refer to Greeks. Specifically, it represents people from the
province of Argos.
Battalion (noun) – In general use, it refers to a large group of soldiers. (You do NOT need to remember
the modern definition, but it is….) in modern terms it is a group of Companies. Approx. 500 men.
Brazen (adj.) – Bold or daring.
Carrion (noun) – Rotting flesh.
Chariot (noun) – During the Ancient period, many armies still used horse or donkey drawn carriages
into battle. These were called chariots.
Comedy (noun) – In ancient terminology, a story where the characters overcome their flaws. (Happy
Craven (adj.) – Cowardly.
Danaans (noun) – Another name for the Greeks.
Dauntless (adj.) – Brave.
Demigod (noun) – Some mythological characters who are the children of gods and mortals are
considered more divine than human. The biggest example of this is Heracles.
Deus Ex Machina (noun) – An unexpected force or character that resolves a seemingly impossible
Dowry (noun) – In arranged marriages, when a man married a woman, he often received money from
the parents, this money was called the dowry.
Embark (verb) – To board a ship.
Epic Cycle (noun) – The Epic Cycle are the stories that summarize the entirety of the Trojan War and its
aftermath. Only two of the books survive, Homer’s The Iliad and The Odyssey. The books include the
- The Cypria – This is the prelude to the Trojan War and includes all of the events which lead up
to and cause it. It also includes the first 9 years of the war.
- The Iliad – You read this.
- The Aethiopis – Reinforcements arrive for the Trojans. Their allies include the Amazons and
the Ethiopians. The leaders are killed by Achilles, and the story ends with his death.
- Iliou Persis (Little Iliad) – This is the story of the end of the war, including the theft of the
statue of Athena, arrival of Achilles’ son and Philocetes, and the Trojan Horse.
- The Nostoi (Returns) – This is the story of the aftermath of the Trojan War and the return of
all of the Greek heroes except Odysseus.
- The Odyssey – This is about the 10 year journey of Odysseus as he tries to return home.
- The Telogony – The story of Odysseus’ son, Telegonous.
Feud (noun) – A long-lasting hatred/fight between two groups.
Flaunt (verb) – To show off something.
Gargantuan (adj.) – Massive in size.
Grapple (verb) – To grab someone, usually while fighting.
Hamartia (noun) – The tragic flaw of a character.
Hecatomb (noun) – A sacrifice of oxen to the gods.
Hecuba (person) – The Queen of Troy and the mother of Hector, Paris and Deiphobus.
Homer (person) – The supposed creator of The Iliad. He probably existed around the year 700, nearly
500 years after the actual Trojan War.
Hoplite (noun) – A common Greek warrior bearing a shield and a spear. The word is derived from the
name of the shield, the Hopla.
Hubris (noun) – Excessive pride. In a Greek story, the character’s hubris often leads to their downfall.
Ignominious (adj.) – Shameful. Causing great embarrassment.
Inexorable (adj.) – Unstoppable.
Mount Ida (place) – A mountain just outside of Troy.
Myrmidons (noun) – The soldiers loyal to Achilles.
Plunder (verb) – To steal.
Polydamus (person) – A Trojan warrior who urges them to be cautious and not underestimate the
Prologue (noun) – The introduction or background to a story.
Protagonist (noun) – The main character in the story. The plot usually revolves around their
Olympus (place) – A mountain in Greece. It was believed to be the home of the gods.
Oracle (noun) – A person who could commune with the gods and see the future.
Raze (verb) – To destroy or demolish.
Ruse (noun) – A deception.
Stalwart (adj.) – A word used to describe someone who is loyal and steadfast.
Sword of Troy (noun) – A magical sword invented for the film Troy, which does NOT actually appear in
the story.
Thwart (verb) – To prevent someone from doing something.
Trojan Horse (noun) – This is the ruse used to finally break into Troy. The idea is largely credited to
Odysseus. The story of the Trojan Horse appears in the Little Iliad (which is a lost book).
Vault (verb) – To leap.