Comparing Homer And Virgil 's ' The Odyssey ' Essay

Comparing Homer And Virgil 's ' The Odyssey ' Essay

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Homer and Virgil were two poets that came from differing societies. Homer, a Greek poet, is most famous for his epic poem The Odyssey. It tells the story of the hero Odysseus’ journey back to back to his homeland of Ithaca after 10 years abroad. He is in a race against time to oust the suitors of his wife Penelope from his court. The Aeneid tells the tale of Aeneas, who is a hero of the Trojan war that is traveling to Italy after the conflict has ended in order to establish a new empire. Aeneas and Odysseus were actually on opposite sides of each other during the Trojan war. Both Aeneas and Odysseus would have been considered heroes to their respective kingdoms, but that is not where their similarities end. There are many facets of the two protagonists that could be considered synonymous. However, there are differences between the two that can be seen as well.
The first major similarity that our two heroes share is the aid that they received on their journeys. Both Odysseus and Aeneas received help from the gods. In the case of Odysseus, his main ally was Athena, the god of wisdom. She aided him in a multitude of manners throughout his quest to return home. One such instance would be during the time when he first returned home to Ithaca. Homer writes, “throwing filthy rags on his back like any slave, he slipped into the enemy’s city, roamed its streets— all disguised, a totally different man, a beggar, hardly the figure he cut among Achaea’s ships. That’s how Odysseus infiltrated Troy” (Odyssey). At this point in the story, Athena has disguised Odysseus as a lowly beggar so he is able to walk about the streets of Ithaca unnoticed. This allows him to reach his court and make contact with his son Telemachus so they ...


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...he rule of Augustus. Many Roman citizens were feeling uneasy about the new rule as many of their previous freedoms had been revoked. As a result, Virgil wrote the Aeneid in such a manner to praise the new ruling party, and also to ease the mind of his fellow citizens. Throughout the story, Aeneas is often caught daydreaming about the grandeur of the society that he is going to help rebuild. He repeatedly reminds himself that his destiny is the most important thing, and that if he doesn’t follow through then there will be no glorious empire. Not only that, but Aeneas is also part of Augustus’ bloodline. Therefore, all of the qualities exhibited by Aeneas would naturally be exhibited by Augustus. This would have most likely put the Roman citizens at ease because Aeneas exhibits many positive qualities of a model Roman citizen, such as his devotion to his duties.

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