A marvelous description of the helots’ tightly held, flexible and impregnable shield wall, like the scales of a fish, or here, as the strakes of a ship’s hull, hermetically sealed with caulking.
‘The columns tightened.
The rim of each man’s shield
Overlapped the face of his neighbour’s shield
Like clinkered hulls – as shipwrights call them when they lay
Strake over strake, caulked against the seas.’
Source: Christopher Logue, War Music: An account of Books 1-4 and 16-19 of Homer’s Iliad, London: Faber and Faber, 2001, p. 146