Arete definition philosophy

Why is Arete important?

Arete is an ancient Greek word meaning excellence or virtue. The arete of something is the highest quality state it can reach. Using arete as a principle for living life means that you are focused on the quality of everything you do and experience. When most people think of virtue, they look at moral virtue.

What is Arete in the Iliad?

In his epic poem the Iliad , Homer defines excellence in men and women. To have honor a man must be courageous in battle. Throughout the Iliad there are many stories about brave warriors fighting in great battles. Nestor spoke of great men in his speech to Agamemnon and Achilles (II, 1.306-19).

What is Arete and what role does it play in the story of the Trojan War?

The war reached a standstill, until Odysseus came up with an idea. Achilles represents the idea of Arete , being an “invincible” man and heroic warrior, seemingly without weakness.

In what ways did Odysseus embody the Greek idea of Arete?

In the Odyssey, Penelope has arete , because she is the best wife that a woman can be. But Achilles in the Iliad also has arete , because he is the best warrior that a man can be. Odysseus has arete because he is so clever, and thinks up effective plots. Athletes have arete when they win the foot-race.

What does an Arete look like?

An arête is a thin, crest of rock left after two adjacent glaciers have worn a steep ridge into the rock. A horn results when glaciers erode three or more arêtes, usually forming a sharp-edged peak. Cirques are concave, circular basins carved by the base of a glacier as it erodes the landscape.

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Who is the goddess of virtue?


What is the Greek word of virtue?

Virtue is a general term that translates the Greek word aretê. Sometimes aretê is also translated as excellence. Many objects, natural or artificial, have their particular aretê or kind of excellence.

Did Helen love Paris?

Helen was already married to King Menelaus of Sparta (a fact Aphrodite neglected to mention), so Paris had to raid Menelaus’s house to steal Helen from him – according to some accounts, she fell in love with Paris and left willingly. When Paris took her to Troy, Menelaus invoked this oath.

Is Troy a true story?

Most historians now agree that ancient Troy was to be found at Hisarlik. Troy was real . Evidence of fire, and the discovery of a small number of arrowheads in the archaeological layer of Hisarlik that corresponds in date to the period of Homer’s Trojan War, may even hint at warfare.

How did Helen of Troy die?

According to a variant of the story, Helen , in widowhood, was driven out by her stepsons and fled to Rhodes, where she was hanged by the Rhodian queen Polyxo in revenge for the death of her husband, Tlepolemus, in the Trojan War.

What was Homer’s ideal of excellence?

Homer defines excellence as a specific group of characteristics vital to heroism in his time. The ideal man, in Homer’s eyes, must not fear the death of his men in battle and must have the courage to stand up to opposing forces. A strategic mind is essential for outwitting the enemy.

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How does this passage from the Iliad reflect the Greek value of areté or reaching your highest human potential?

Greek value of areté or “virtue”: being the best you can be” or ” reaching your highest human potential ” (Sayre 47). The lesson of the Iliad is that when Achilles sulks in his tent, he is behaving badly, not practicing areté , not being the best he can be. Priam, too, represents the value of areté .

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