About the Iliad. And the Greek song culture


All the wistful beauty of sorrow for a life cut short comes back to life in song, and that song of the hero’s mother extends into a song that becomes the Iliad itself (…) For the culture of the Greeks was, and still is, a song culture. For them, to weep is to sing a lament, and the sorrow, in all its natural reality of physically crying and sobbing, is not at all incompatible with the art of the song: it flows into it.

Gregory Nagy, The Ancient Greek Hero (course).