Homer's epic The Iliad takes place in the ninth year of a ten year war between the Trojans and the Achaeans. This great war places Hector (of the Trojans) and Achilles (of the Achaeans) in direct conflict as the are the best warriors in their respective communities and therefor responsible for inspiration and leadership of their people. Relentless and bold during combat their great skill in battle makes them heroes in the eyes of their peers. As hero's both Achilles and Hector share characteristics generally associated with any man of distinguished valor such as bravery, honor and worth. Alike also in attempts to overstep their bounds, both men are ruled by fate through the mercy of the gods. Despite similarities as great warrior heroes, the pair differ immensely in personal inspiration as illustrated best by examining the motivation for each to fight. The reasons for joining the battle, namely passion for Achilles and duty for Hector, highlight the central distinction in char!
acters. Achilles is ruled by his uncontrollable passions as seen in his rage and proud headstrong ways, whereas Hector is motivated by duty and honor proving him to be a noble levelheaded leader. These characteristics in Hector prove him to acts out of obligation and he doesn't question the worth of dying with honor as opposed to dying a coward as Achilles does. This ultimately makes Achilles the greater hero as his questioning and experiences bring him to an understanding of the balance and order of the gods and community.
The most obvious similarity in Achilles and Hector is the position they retain in their communities, that of the greatest warrior. As strong leaders a likeness can be drawn between the qualities which render them suitable for their positions of leadership. Present in both is the essential audacity needed in someone that has control over the fate of others (the armies). In the case of Achilles this boldness is observedfirs…