This expertly aimed spear casts a shadow as it flies through the air, and its reach is far. Surprising then that it fails to hit the target, deflected by a strong shield.
See also the bestellar reviews, complete with rich quote-mosaics, of Adam Nicolson’s magnificent Why Homer Matters, and Christopher Logue’s War Music, a muscular rendition of several books of the Iliad.
‘First of the two Alexandros let go his spear far-shadowing
and struck the shield of Atreus’ son on its perfect circle
nor did the bronze point break its way through, but the spearhead bent
in the strong shield.’
Source: Homer, The Iliad of Homer, trans. Richmond Lattimore (Chicago: Chicago UP, 1961 (1951)), book 3, p. 109