Penelope And The Suitors Analysis

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The “Brave” Journey Home Greek mythology has had a profound impact on the world of literature and art. Tales that were created to explain natural phenomena and to teach moral lessons have gone way beyond their original purpose. For example, the story of Queen Penelope and King Odysseus is the tale that depicts the importance of loyalty. Penelope is the wife of Odysseus and the mother of their son Telemachus. At this point in time Odysseus has been gone for 20 years and is trying to make his way back to Ithaca, the country of which they rule. While Odysseus attempts getting back to his family, his wife Penelope has been left in control of the country. In the painting Penelope and the Suitors, John William Waterhouse uses the depiction…show more content…
The mood of Penelope and the Suitors can be described as anarchic, which demonstrates the idea that the suitors are out of control due to the vacancy of the king, Odysseus. The scene of the painting shows Penelope being bombarded by suitors who someday hope to be her husband. While the suitors continue to beg for her attention, Penelope ignores them and remains working on her tapestry instead of resolving her issues with them. She continues to work on her tapestry as if they are not even there. Penelope’s servants also ignore the suitors, as if they were told not to make contact in any way for fear they might do something wrong. The painting sends a message completely opposite from the message sent by the poem, leading on that Penelope doesn’t deserve as much credit as she thinks she…show more content…
Despite the similarities in their usage of different arts, the painting and poem illustrate two completely different themes. In the poem, Penelope is sarcastic when saying that “they will call [Odysseus] brave”, meaning that she feels she should get the praise instead of Odysseus for keeping everything under control. Conversely, the painting shows a country engulfed in complete mayhem, suitors out of control, ineffective servants, and a distraught
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