DISCUSSION: The quotation has to be read in context. The goddess has told Agamemnon that only a sacrifice will bring winds (lines 45-46). So even though Agamemnon says “if” (a sufficient condition), he means ‘only’ (a necessary condition).
Agamemnon could save his daughter. But if he truly wants victory, he must kill her.
- Agamemnon doesn’t want to evade battle. He wants to win his battle.
- Close, but Agamemnon is saying it’s okay to desire his daughter’s death. He already thinks it’s okay to desire victory.
- CORRECT. The goddess did say that only a sacrifice could get him to battle. So Agamemnon argues he is allowed to wish his daughter dead.
- Not quite. Agamemnon determined the sacrifice would bring victory, based on what Artemis told him. He didn’t figure it out alone.
- The goddess didn’t order Agamemnon to kill his daughter. She said that the sacrifice was the only way to make the winds blow. But Agamemnon did have a choice. He could simply have given up on winning the battle.
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