Gods and Immortals
Characters from The Song of Achilles
The goddess of love and beauty, mother of Aeneas, and champion of the Trojans. She particularly favored Paris, and in Book 3 of the Iliad she intervened to save him from Menelaus.
The god of light and music, and a champion of the Trojans. He was responsible for sending the plague down upon the Greek army in Book 1 of the Iliad, and was instrumental in the deaths of both Achilles and Patroclus.
Twin sister to Apollo, the goddess of the hunt, the moon, and virginity. Angry at the bloodshed the Trojan war would cause, she stopped the winds from blowing, stranding the Greek fleet at Aulis. After the sacrifice of Iphigenia, she was appeased and the winds returned.
The powerful goddess of wisdom, weaving and war arts. She was a fierce supporter of her beloved Greeks against the Trojans, and a particular guardian of the wily Odysseus. She appears often in both the Iliad and Odyssey.
The only “good” centaur, known as a teacher of heroes (Jason, Aesculapius and Achilles), as well as the inventor of medicine and surgery. Click here to see Chiron featured as a “Myth of the Week.”
Queen of the gods, and sister-wife of Zeus. Like Athena, she championed the Greeks, and hated the Trojans. In Vergil’s Aeneid, she is the principal antagonist, constantly harassing the Trojan hero Aeneas after Troy has fallen.
The god of the river Scamander near Troy, and another champion of the Trojans. His famous battle with Achilles is told in Book 22 of the Iliad.
A sea-nymph and shape-changer, mother of Achilles. The fates had prophesied that her son would be greater than his father. This frightened the god Zeus (who had previously desired her), and so he made sure to marry her to a mortal, in order to limit the power of her son. In post-Homeric versions of the story she tries a number of ways to make Achilles immortal, including dipping him by his ankle in the river Styx and holding him in a fire to burn away his mortality.
King of the gods, and father of many famous heroes, including Heracles and Perseus.
Reviews“A startlingly original work of art by an incredibly talented new novelist... a book I could not put down.” Ann Patchett, author of the Orange Prize-winning Bel Canto
- XO ORPHEUS is out!
- Home from Iceland
- News on Galatea, Guardian Chat, and more
- New Short Story, inspired by Pygmalion myth
- Exciting shortlist news! Mass Book and UK Independent Bookseller Awards
- Update: India
- Signed copies of The Song of Achilles–Year Round!
- Reflections on 2012, traveling and the Orange Prize
- In Praise of Literary Adaptations
- My Year in Reading