Response of Iliad
This paper is a response paper to one of the speeches in Iliad. The speech in consideration was made by Nestor when he tries to quell the tension between Agamemnon and Achilles. Nestor tells Agamemnon and Achilles off and urges them not to quarrel again.
Nestor uses different elements to persuade his audience. Some of these include appeals and elements of a classical structure. He appeals to their logic by informing them that he has associated with other men who are greater than them yet they listened to him. In this, he tries to let them know that they do not have a moral authority of not listening to him. He further uses Lapiths and informs Agamemnon and Achilles that he took his advice and was victorious in his war with Centaurs. In this, Nestor is also appealing to their emotions by making them know that if they do not listen to him and continue fighting, then they are likely to lose. He persuades them to desist from the anger that makes them quarrel since they are likely not to benefit from the anger.
Nestor’s speech is organized in a structure including introduction, narration, proof, refutation and conclusion. In the introduction, he informs them of the reaction of the Trojans if they realized the dissension among the Greeks. He uses this introduction to capture the attention of his audience. Nestor repeats his narration several times to his audience. He tells them how he has interacted with men who are better than them yet they were able to listen to him. He repeats the narration to emphasize his point so that Agamemnon and Achilles can stop quarrelling. The main aim of the speech is in the proof or the recommendation. This is a plea that Nestor makes to his audience. He urges them to heed his advice so that they can be successful just like Lapiths was. He calls for a cessation of anger and reconciliation between Agamemnon and Achilles. He uses this to persuade them.
Much as Nestor’s use of stories of parallels to convince Agamemnon and Achilles is appreciated, the manner in which he brings his point home leaves a lot to be desired. The irony is that Nestor acts as a transmitter of memories because he tells tales of the past to the present generation. In his tales to Agamemnon and Achilles he urges them not to fight yet there are instances when he has advised Lapiths when he was fighting. This is a sign of irony in his words and deeds.
In conclusion, Nestor’s speech in Iliad is very structured and informative in a way that can easily persuade his audience into action. The logic of his speech is mainly tied to his character. Since he was one of the oldest people in Greece at that time, he was considered to be very wise and therefore people were expected to take his advice. Apart from repetitions, Nestor’s speech is also full of sound and other devices. This helps in driving his point home to his audience.
Homer. Iliad. 1846.