The Odyssey by Homer is an epic poem about the adventures that Odysseus goes through on his journey back home after the trojan war. Odysseus is portrayed as a hero throughout the story, leading his comrades and saving his family from the suitors. While this is happening, Odysseus can be seen to exemplify hubris and kleos; greek terms one of which means excessive pride and the other respect and honor. The Odyssey also covers xenia; the hospitality and respect that goes mutually from a guest to a host, as an important topic in which the gods are involved heavily in. With all this in mind, Odysseus can be seen as more of an antagonist in contrast to what some may think. Odysseus shows hubris and disregards xenia multiple times throughout the tale, …show more content…
When Odysseus and his crew flee from Polyphemus after blinding him, Odysseus “[yells] back with another burst of anger, ‘Cyclops–if any man on the face of the earth should ask you who blinded you, shamed you so–say Odysseus, raider of cities, he gouged out your eye, Laertes’ son who makes his home in Ithaca!’” (Homer, 9.558-562). When Odysseus is said to yell with a “burst of anger”, this indicates that he isn't in his usual state of mind, he is riled up and blinded by emotions which can cause someone to not think before they say act. This is unheroic of Odysseus because of how irresponsible it is to give his information out on a whim, especially with a crew of men that he needs to lead, he needs to set a good example. Some may argue that Odysseus shared his information because of kleos which can show how heroic he is for defeating a cyclops, however, instead of gaining kleos, he became an enemy of Poseidon, the father of Polyphemus. Because of this, Odysseus is always faced with wrath from Poseidon which renders his journey back nearly impossible, which shows that he doesn't think of the consequences ahead of time and acts in the heat of the moment. Another example of Odysseus’ hubris can be seen in Book 12 when they encounter Scylla, a six-headed monster. Although Circe warns him ahead of time of Scylla and is given advice on how …show more content…
The suitors have plagued his house, overstaying their visit and taking advantage of the xenia that Penelope and Telemechas prove. Odysseus is infuriated, and as a response to this, “He’s killed the suitors, swaggering young brutes who plagued his house, wolfed his cattle down, rode roughshod over his son!” (Homer, 23.8-10). When confronted with the suitors, Odysseus’ only response is to slaughter them all, showing how ruthless and irresponsible he is. Although some may argue that Odysseus’ response to this is reasonable because of what the suitors have done to his palace and family, Odysseus’ response is exaggerated and unjust. Instead of killing all of the suitors, Odysseus could’ve jailed them or make them pay a fee, however he slaughters all of them brutally. An important addition to this is that the suitors are all of nobility and have high social status, which can cause Odysseus lots of complications when dealing with the aftermath of the massacre. He could lose his title as king, his kleos, or even his kingdom could go against him because of his killing of all of the suitors. This shows how unheroic he is, acting on his emotions and not taking into consideration the consequences of his
Click here to unlock this and over one million essaysShow More
The suitors, who wished to marry Penelope, arrogantly refused to leave Odysseus’ house, act as proper guests, or even treat Telemachus, Odysseus’ son, with the proper respect. They believed nothing would ever happen to them, since they believed Odysseus to be dead, and that Telemachus would never be man enough to stand against them. However, their brashness and arrogance came back to bite them when Odysseus returned and refused to allow any of the suitors to survive his wrath. Homer’s sharp disapproval of hubris in the Odyssey seems to contradict the pride shown in the Iliad. Achilles arrogantly refuses to fight when his pride is wounded, so much so that he prays for the Greeks to start losing.
The suitors in Odysseus’ house made him very vengeful after all that they did. The suitors will finally pay after all that they have done. Odysseus is finally home and can now do to them what they deserve: “Your last hour has come. You die in blood” (22. 40). Odysseus is not one to be messed with and the suitors did just that.
These suitors plan to kill Odysseus if they see him. Odysseus expecting this poses as a beggar and sneaks into the suitors contest disguised he is allowed to attempt the challenge he completes it first try before turning the bow on the the men watching and with the help of Telemachus the cowherd and swineherd successfully kills all the suitors.(22.1-129) Odysseus is outnumbered one to a hundred but with his love for Penelope driving him forward to complete this final trial.
For the suitors had ruined all of Ithaca and disrespected the beggars. When Odysseus completed a challenging task that none of his suitors could accomplish, he killed all of his suitors. " Odysseus' arrow caught under his chin and passed through his throat. All the suitors were so unfriendly that Odysseus killed them all. They ruined his house and tried to separate his wife from him.
Throughout the Odyssey, it has become clear that Odysseus has a lot of weaknesses especially ones that revolve around his behavior which causes the life of others at times. The Odyssey is a long and complex epic poem that tells the story of a legendary hero named Odysseus. Odysseus is the King of Ithaca, a small island in Greece, and he is known especially for his quick-thinking, courage, cunning and resourcefulness. The Odyssey begins after the end of the Trojan War, in which Odyseeus played a key role as a warrior and strategist. After the war, Odysseus is on adventure to return back to his home back in Ithaca to his wife, Penelope, and his son Telemachus.
In the epic, The Odyssey, written by Homer, the main character, Odysseus, spends 10 brutal years trying to find a way back home to Ithica after the Trojan War. Throughout his journey he is met with multiple obstacles including losing every one of his crew members. Although he faces physical monsters, I believe that his biggest enemy is his pride. Many believe that Odysseus’ best quality is how honorable he is, but I believe his honor is often mistaken for his hubris. This is very evident in book 9 when Odysseus and his crew are on the island of Cyclops.
This problematic display of curiosity from the epic hero leads him to taunt and insult the imposing one eyed giant saying “‘So, Cyclops, no weak coward it was whose crew you bent to devour there in your vaulted cave…you shameless cannibal…”(9, 531-34) “That made the rage of the monster boil over” (9,537) With Odysseus’s arrogance, would be his fall. This significant detail foreshadows the karma later delivered. Odysseus blinds the cyclops, and in a fit of pride and adrenaline, reveals who he is saying, “‘Cyclops– if any man on the face of the earth should ask you who blinded you, shamed you so–say Odysseus…”(9,558-60) With this outburst of information, the giant called out to poseidon fortelling he will “never reaches home. Or if he’s fated to see his people once again and reach his well-built house…let him come home late and a broken man-all shipmates lost”(9,589-94) Odysseus has now been cursed foreshadowing his future.
There are others such as myself who agree with Odysseus' actions. Mostly everyone that was present at the castle deserved the punishment they received because they were ruining Odysseus' life with propaganda and rumors. There were a select few that might not have deserved such a harsh punishment as the rest. Odysseus felt that he had to punish the suitors for their disrespect and disloyalty to his home and his family. The punishment was for all the suitors to be slaughtered.
Xenia, in Ancient Greece, is defined as the idea of hospitality, a topic of much importance. In the epic poem, The Odyssey, Odysseus and his crew rely majorly on courtesy from those involved in the encounters. However, hospitality was not always delivered throughout his journey, a crime with the severity of being punished by the gods. Odysseus encountered two types of lacking hospitality, purposeful, such as on Polyphemus’ Island and the suitors upon Odysseus’ return, which often ended in violence, or trickery, like with the Lotus Eaters and Circe’s Island.
Because in the beginning he was impulsive and arrogant, he set himself up for a journey of miseries, and in this quote he asks the gods to release him from those miseries. He has never asked that before and always thought he was better than the gods themselves. After being humbled, put in rags, and put through many hardships, Odysseus finds that he is not the most important being and becomes more humble because of this. When the suitors are trying to win Penelope’s heart they are tasked to string Odysseus’s bow and shoot it through axes. Odysseus waits for most of the suitors to attempt to string
Culture changes over time, and although Odysseus exhibits some timeless characteristics of a hero such as bravery and determination, he misleads his crew, depends on divine help, and does not demonstrate mercy. These are qualities Ancient Greeks would have seen as admirable, but they would not be viewed in the same light today. To begin, Odysseus is unmerciful to anyone that has wronged him. He kills all of the suitors in the hall, “Spattered and caked in blood like a mountain lion,” (Fitzgerald 22. 450) he did not leave any survivors. After he does this, he orders Telemachus to kill all of the servants that have been
Another quote is “He reached out and grabbed 2 of my friends… then he smashed them on the floor dead” (Homer 39). This shows that the cyclops does not care about hospitality and xenia because Odysseus was being nice to him by not running away after eating his food. Another example of bad Xenia is when the suitors showed very bad xenia to Penelope and Telemachus and
At various times throughout the story, mainly through the trials, Odysseus made many decisions and forced his crew to go through many potentially lethal situations without preparing his own crew, or situations that were just a waste of time. This then leads to not only all of his crew being killed but the creation of many bad relationships. The first example of Odysseus mistreating his crew is when he and his crew went through the trails, “No more. Come, / let me tell you about the voyage fraught with hardship / Zeus inflicted on me, homeward bound from Troy...” 9.42-44.
Homer delivers very universal themes, such as loyalty is respected, but the epic also provides meaningful themes that are not as recognizable. The Odyssey is very focused on leadership and courage, as it centers on a hero's journey. There are many parts in the epic where Homer explains the actions of an admirable leader. In the Odyssey, Odysseus exemplifies the true meaning of being a leader through courage in the face of danger, which is shown by Circe, the Sirens, and the suitors. One might wonder why it takes Odysseus ten years to return to his homeland after he has achieved victory for Ithaca in the Trojan War.