Patroclus –
dearest joy of my heart, my harrowed, broken heart!
I left you alive that day I left these shelters,
now I come back to find you fallen, captain of armies!
So grief gives way to grief, my life one endless sorrow!
The husband to whom my father and noble mother gave me,
I saw him torn by the sharp bronze before our city,
and my three brothers – a single mother bore us:
my brothers, how I loved you! –
you all went down to death on the same day…
But you, Patroclus, you would not let me weep,
not when the swift Achilles cut my husband down,
not when he plundered the lordly Mynes’ city –
not even weep! No, again and again you vowed
you’d make me godlike Achilles’ lawful, wedded wife,
you would sail me west in your warships, home to Phthia
and there with the Myrmidons hold my marriage feast.
So now I mourn your death – I will never stop –
you were always kind.

– Homer

The Iliad, Book 19, lines 338-356. Briseis speaks for the only time in The Iliad. She clearly had a close relationship with Patroclus, whose great kindness she pays a touching tribute to. Standing over the dead Greek warrior’s body, she reveals that he vowed to make her the wife of godlike (simile) Achilles. He also comforted her when her husband and three brothers whom she loved were cut down in war. Behind the ferocious warrior, there was a gentle heart.