By Allan Ingram;Michelle Faubert

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The truth is a very simple one, but the grasping of it is inhibited by problems of scale. By the end of Gulliver’s Travels the scrutiny needed is less straightforward, and a magnifying glass an insufficiently subtle implement for conducting it. Perspective, however, continues to work both ways. Captain Mendez is clearly correct in his suspicions of Gulliver’s travels. He has only this odd man and his odd scraps of an account to go on. He is not a physician, still less a mad-doctor. Gulliver, equally, is correct: he bears the scars, and Captain Mendez is a Yahoo.

12. Sander L. Gilman, Health and Illness: Images of Difference, London: Reaktion Books, 1995, p. 12. 13. See Tina Stern, ‘The Language of Illness: Three First-Person Accounts of Depression’, in Crossing Borders: Studies in the Literary Imagination, vol. XXXVI, No. 2, autumn 2003, ed. Allan Ingram, Atlanta: Georgia State University. 14. Gilman, Health and Illness, pp. 11–12. 15. Gilman, Health and Illness, p. 31. 16. John Haslam, Observations on Insanity, with Practical Remarks on the Disease and an Account of the Morbid Appearances on Dissection, London: F.

If Book XXIV sees the legitimate conclusion to proper heroic battle rage, it also, with great delicacy and with a minimum of divine intervention, brings about the resolution of Achilles’ insanity. The ‘Exploits of Achilles’, as Pope calls them in a footnote,25 begin early in Book XX. From the outset they are motivated by both a specific and a general purpose, each of which is utilised by Pope in terms of developing the insanity of the hero. The specific is the quest for Hector, in vengeance and retribution for the death of Patroclus: While thus the Gods in various League engage, Achilles glow’d with more than mortal Rage: Hector he sought; in search of Hector turn’d His Eyes around, for Hector only burn’d; And burst like Light’ning thro’ the Ranks, and vow’d To glut the God of Battles with his Blood.

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