Ancient Narratives

Hera’s Machinations: Unraveling the Masterful Manipulation in the Iliad

Hera in the Iliad: A Master of Ploys and ManipulationIn the epic poem, the Iliad, one cannot overlook the role of Hera, the powerful queen of the gods. Known for her beauty and intelligence, Hera’s actions often have a significant impact on the events of the Trojan War.

This article will delve into the cunning ploys executed by Hera to influence the outcomes of battles and her motivations behind them, shedding light on the inner workings of the gods’ involvement in the war.

1) Hera in the Iliad

– In the Iliad, Hera is portrayed as a powerful and influential goddess. – As the wife of Zeus, the king of the gods, Hera holds a position of authority.

– She often uses her divine powers and cunning to sway the course of battles and events. Hera’s ploys and their impact on the Greeks vs Trojans:

1.1.1 Hera’s schemes to favor the Greeks:

– Hera’s desire to see the Greeks prevail over the Trojans leads her to implement a variety of strategic ploys.

– She uses her charm and persuasive abilities to manipulate Zeus, her husband, into supporting the Greeks. – By convincing Zeus to withdraw from the battlefield temporarily, Hera indirectly helps the Greeks gain an upper hand against the Trojans.

– Hera’s actions are motivated by her disdain for the Trojans and her desire to see their city destroyed. 1.1.2 Hera’s influence on the gods and goddesses:

– Hera’s power goes beyond mere manipulation of Zeus; she also exerts influence over other gods and goddesses.

– She often persuades gods aligned with the Trojans to question their loyalty, thereby weakening the Trojan cause. – Hera’s ability to sway the deities demonstrates her astute understanding of human and divine psychology.

– By exploiting the gods’ personal grudges and insecurities, Hera successfully turns the tide in favor of the Greeks. 2) Hera’s Jealousy and Its Consequences

Hera’s jealousy and the consequences for the Greeks and Trojans:

2.1 Background of Hera and Paris’s Choice:

– Hera’s jealousy is rooted in the story of the Judgment of Paris, where Paris, a Trojan prince, chose Aphrodite as the most beautiful goddess instead of Hera.

– This choice wounded Hera’s ego and intensified her bitterness towards the Trojan people. 2.2 Aphrodite’s offer and Hera’s jealousy:

– Hera’s jealousy leads her to constantly challenge Aphrodite, the goddess of love and beauty.

– Hera cannot bear the thought of Aphrodite being cherished and worshiped by mortals more than herself. – By inciting conflict between Aphrodite and other gods, Hera creates distractions that weaken the Trojans’ defenses.


Through her cunning and manipulation, Hera plays a critical role in the outcome of the Trojan War in the Iliad. Her ploys and actions, driven by her jealousy towards the Trojans and her desire to favor the Greeks, shape the course of battles and influence the gods and mortals alike.

Understanding Hera’s motivations and tactics provides valuable insight into the complex worldview of ancient Greek mythology and sheds light on the destructive power of envy. Hera’s Influence: Breaking the Truce and Setting the Stage for Pandarus’s Arrow

3) Hera’s Influence and the Break of Truce

– Despite the ongoing war between the Greeks and the Trojans, there were occasional truces for the exchange of bodies and burial rites.

– Hera, still fueled by her animosity towards the Trojans, seized an opportunity to disrupt one such truce. – With her cunning and persuasive skills, she convinced Zeus to send a deceptive dream to Agamemnon, the leader of the Greeks.

– In the dream, Zeus urged Agamemnon to go against the truce and launch a surprise attack on the Trojans. – Hera’s plan succeeded, and the truce was broken, rekindling the flames of conflict on the battlefield.

3.2 Subtopic: Hera’s Plan and Pandarus’s Arrow

– After the truce was broken, the reignited battle needed a spark to tip the scales in favor of the Greeks. – Hera’s keen eye saw an opportunity through Pandarus, a skillful archer fighting for the Trojans.

– She approached Pandarus and lured him with promises of great honor and glory if he were to shoot an arrow at Menelaus, the Greek warrior who had recently proposed a ceasefire. – Pandarus succumbed to Hera’s temptations, and as the Trojans clashed with the Greeks, he took aim at Menelaus and released the fateful arrow.

– The arrow, guided by Hera’s divine influence, wounded Menelaus, further fueling the fury of both sides and amplifying the bloodshed on the battlefield. Hera’s Revenge: Ares’s Betrayal and Diomedes’s Heroic Stand

4) Hera’s Revenge and Ares’s Betrayal

– Hera’s thirst for revenge extended beyond the mortal realm.

She sought to humiliate and punish not only the Trojans but also the gods who aligned with them. – One of the gods who came under Hera’s scrutiny was Ares, the god of war who sided with the Trojans.

– Disgusted by Ares’s allegiance, Hera orchestrated an elaborate plan to expose his true colors and teach him a lesson. – She convinced the Greek warrior Diomedes, known for his bravery and skill in battle, to confront and challenge Ares directly.

4.2 Subtopic: Diomedes versus Ares

– Encouraged by Hera, Diomedes faced Ares on the battlefield, fueled by divine strength and the knowledge that Hera was watching over him. – Diomedes unleashed his fury upon Ares, striking him with a mighty spear and wounding him grievously.

– Ares, stunned by Diomedes’s audacity and Hera’s betrayal, retreated to Olympus, nursing his wounds and leaving the Trojans with significantly diminished divine protection. – This turn of events further undermined the morale of the already beleaguered Trojans and tipped the scales in favor of the Greeks.


Hera’s influential presence in the Iliad cannot be ignored. Her cunning ploys and manipulations not only disrupted truces and sparked new conflicts but also exacted revenge on gods like Ares, who dared to support the enemy.

Through her actions, Hera revealed the lengths she would go to favor the Greeks and secure their victory in the Trojan War. As the epic poem unfolds, it becomes clear that Hera’s motivations and strategies have a profound impact on the outcome of the battles and the fates of both mortals and gods.

Hera’s Constant Struggles: From Poseidon’s Involvement to Defying Zeus

5) Hera’s Attempt and Poseidon’s Involvement

– In her quest to aid the Greeks, Hera sought the assistance of Poseidon, the god of the sea, in swaying the outcome of the war. – Understanding the significance of Poseidon’s power in the battle, Hera approached him with a proposal to align their forces against the Trojans.

– Poseidon, intrigued by Hera’s cunning and eager to contribute to the Greek cause, agreed to join forces with her. – This partnership between Hera and Poseidon added another formidable deity to the Greeks’ side, further tipping the scales in their favor.

5.2 Subtopic: Zeus’s Order and Hera and Athena’s Defiance

– Despite Hera’s efforts and the alliance with Poseidon, Zeus, the king of the gods, ordered the gods to remain neutral in the conflict between the Greeks and Trojans. – This decree from Zeus, while intended to maintain balance and fairness, did not sit well with Hera and Athena, the goddess of wisdom and war.

– Hera, driven by her desire to support the Greeks, devised a plan to defy Zeus’s order and help the Greeks without arousing his suspicion. – She persuaded Athena to accompany Diomedes, the courageous Greek warrior, to the battlefield, providing him divine guidance and protection.

Hera’s Deception: Distractions for Zeus and Her Inner Jealousy

6) Hera’s Deception and Zeus’s Distraction

– Hera’s devious nature extended beyond her external efforts to aid the Greeks. She also employed her cunning to deceive Zeus himself.

– Aware that Zeus’s infatuations occasionally caused him to lose focus, Hera devised ploys to distract him and divert his attention from the war. – One such instance involved Hera seducing Zeus, alluring him with her beauty and charm, while the Greeks suffered losses on the battlefield.

– This deception allowed the Greeks to regroup and mount strategic offensives against the Trojans, benefiting from Zeus’s diverted attention. 6.2 Subtopic: Pleasure vs Plots and Hera’s Jealousy

– Beyond her strategic deceptions, it is important to recognize the underlying motives that drive Hera’s actions.

– Jealousy is a significant driving force for Hera, particularly when it comes to her relationships with other female goddesses. – As the queen of the gods, Hera cannot bear the thought of being overshadowed or surpassed by other goddesses, especially Aphrodite, who possesses divine beauty and allure.

– Hera’s plots and manipulations often stem from her envy and desire to assert her superiority over Aphrodite and other goddesses. – Her attempts to deceive and distract Zeus serve a dual purpose: to aid the Greeks and to satiate her own jealous desires.


Hera’s struggles and relentless efforts to bend the outcomes of the Trojan War to favor the Greeks are woven throughout the tapestry of the Iliad. From seeking alliances with powerful gods such as Poseidon to defying Zeus’s orders and diverting his attention, her ploys and deceptions shape the narrative.

However, beneath her facade of strategizing and manipulation lies Hera’s deep-seated jealousy, perpetuated by her fear of being eclipsed by other goddesses. Understanding the complexities of Hera’s character and motivations adds depth and richness to the epic, illuminating how the actions of gods can influence the course of human affairs.

Hera’s Accusation and the Plea of Achilles: Unraveling Zeus’s Plans

7) Hera’s Accusation and Achilles’s Plea

– The tensions among the gods reach a boiling point when Hera, fueled by her grudge against the Trojans, accuses Zeus of favoring the city of Troy. – Hera’s accusations arise from her perception that Zeus’s plans and interventions indirectly benefit the Trojans.

– Seeking justice, Achilles, the mighty Greek warrior, pleads with Zeus to clarify his intentions and ensure fairness in the war. 7.2 Subtopic: Zeus’s Plans and Hera’s Ignorance

– Despite Hera’s accusations, Zeus reveals his true intentions and sets the record straight.

– Zeus explains that his plans are propelled by the unfolding of destiny, rather than favoritism towards the Trojans. – The god of gods further reveals that the downfall of Troy is inevitable, as decreed by fate.

– Hera, blinded by her own biases and grudges, had failed to recognize that Zeus’s actions were in alignment with the forces that controlled the destinies of mortals and gods. Hera’s Grudge and Greek Victory: Seeking Solutions and the Return of Helen

8) Hera’s Grudge and its Impact on the Greek Victory

– Hera’s deep-rooted grudge against the Trojans and her eagerness to see their defeat heavily influences her actions in the war.

– Her determination to achieve a Greek victory leads her to devise strategic ploys aimed at weakening the Trojan defenses. – Hera’s grudge against the Trojans becomes a driving force, urging her to go to great lengths to fulfill her desires.

8.2 Subtopic: Solutions of Hera and the Return of Helen

– Hera regularly consults with other gods, seeking their support and guidance in her quest for a Greek victory. – One of her proposed solutions involves manipulating events that would lead to the return of Helen, the woman whose abduction led to the Trojan War.

– By ensuring Helen’s return to the Greek camp, Hera aims to reinvigorate Greek morale and dishearten the Trojans, sowing discord and weakening their resolve. – Hera’s strategic thinking and determination to see the Greek cause triumph over the Trojans contribute to the eventual downfall of Troy.


Hera’s unyielding grudge against the Trojans and her relentless pursuit of a Greek victory shape her actions and decisions throughout the Iliad. Her accusations against Zeus expose her deep-rooted biases, but Zeus’s revelations of his true intentions highlight the role of destiny in determining the fate of Troy.

Hera’s grudge drives her to seek solutions and manipulate events, leading to strategic maneuvers that ultimately contribute to the Greek victory. Understanding the driving forces behind Hera’s actions provides valuable insight into the complexities of divine intervention in the Trojan War and sheds light on the profound impact of personal grudges and desires on the course of history.

Hera’s influence in the Iliad is undeniable, as her ploys and grudges shape the course of the Trojan War. From Hera’s cunning manipulation of Zeus to her defiance of his orders, her actions driven by jealousy and desire for Greek victory have a profound impact on the war’s outcomes.

Hera’s deceptions, alliances, and strategic thinking highlight the complexities of divine intervention and the power of personal motivations. Through her character, we are reminded that even gods are susceptible to envy and the consequences it can have on history.

The Iliad serves as a powerful reminder that personal grudges can shape destiny, leaving us to ponder the lasting impacts of our own motivations and actions.

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