The themes driving the epic poem "The Iliad" by Homer are war, family life and the shortness of human life. This is essentially a story extolling the virtues of war; although it demonstrates the death and sacrifices people must make to partake in battle, it also celebrates the glory inherent in leaving behind family and going off to fight.
"The Iliad" primarily follows Agamemnon, the leader of the Achaean forces in ancient Greece. The Achaeans battle the Trojans and the Greek Gods inevitably become intertwined with the conflict. Family members are captured and sometimes killed, but this is treated as part of the nature of violent conflict.