Shakespeare and Homer

Shakespeare’s homage to Homer and even Chaucer could be related to today’s Hollywood (even though Shakespeare doesn’t sell out). He took a very famous work of literature and adapted it into a screen play. He took creative license and created and original story line through a classic story.
One of the aspects of the original that I missed during the adaptation was the gods of Olympus. During the Iliad they were a very strong influencing force throughout the epic poem. It would have been nice to see how Shakespeare would have adapted the gods into his play.
It was nice to see Shakespeare’s version of Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde. During Act 5 iii, when Hector was departing to war this scene mirrors Book 22 of the Iliad. In the Iliad he was being persuaded by his parents. The scene is very emotional and very intense. In the play Hector is being asked by many people and it is not as intense.
There were things that I would have liked to have seen in the play from the original but that being said I still enjoyed it.

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One Response to Shakespeare and Homer

  1. Paying attention to Shakespeare’s relation to his sources yields insights all the time. It’s worth thinking about WHY the gods play no part in Troilus and Cressida. Do we see any evidence that divine guidance is available to the characters as Shakespeare reimagines them? They may have been able to call on the gods for help in Homer. What would their chances be here?

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