Trends in Classics
Journal of Classical Studies
Ed. by Montanari, Franco / Rengakos, Antonios
Editorial Board: Bernabé Pajares, Alberto / Billerbeck, Margarethe / Calame, Claude / Grethlein, Jonas / Hardie, Philip R. / Harrison, Stephen J. / Hinds, Stephen / Hunter, Richard / Kraus, Christina S. / Mastromarco, Giuseppe / Nagy, Gregory / Papanghelis, Theodore D. / Picone, Giusto / Raaflaub, Kurt / Whitmarsh, Tim / Zimmermann, Bernhard
Abstract: This paper discusses how wedding performances permeate Homeric discourse with a focus on the “Teichoskopia” section of the Iliad (3.146-244). In Iliad 3 Priam’s inquiries to Helen about the leaders of the Achaean army at the tenth year of the war are puzzling and have been viewed by many critics as anachronistic in the light of the narrative time of the poem. While most scholarship has focused on Helen, this paper analyzes Priam’s speech acts from the perspective of traditional poetic genres. The common themes of eikasia and makarismos typically found in wedding poetry are prevalent throughout Priam’s speech acts. Such an interpretation seeks to put this scene in the context of oral poetics while illuminating further the associations evoked regarding Helen’s position in the context of the tradition of Helen’s suitors in epic poetry.