Family A Tough Bond To Break

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Family: A tough Bond to Break

Many wise pholosophers say that only 7 stories exist in the world as we know it. The struggle of good versus evil, finding true love, and the rise and fall of important people have been written about since the discovery of pen and paper. One theme that stands out in Homer’s epic, The Odyssey, is the desperation to keep a family together. Odysseus, Telemacus, and Penelope all suffer hardships trying to keep the tight bond their family has, as close as possible.

Odysseus is determined he will return to his wife and newborn son after the war of Troy was won. Many trials and tribulations are presented to Odysseus on his journey home. Polyphemus, the Cyclops, tries to detain the hero from returning to his home of Ithaca. Poseidon’s son failed and ended up being blinded (Milch p. 29). Odysseus was also tempted by Calypso. The nymph-goddess offered to make him immortal if he would just stay with her on the island for ever. Odysseus refused and started his epic journey to Ithaca once again. Odysseus is told to visit Teiresias in Hades to find a way to make it back to Penelope and Telemacus. He must venture to the land of the dead (Rieu p 160). The only important thing in Odysseus’ life is returning to his family in Ithaca.

Having the same feelings his father possesses, Telemacus’ only desires are to keep his mother from marrying one of the many suitors and acquiring knowledge of his father. He must do this because he knows that if his father is dead, he must return to Ithica to fight the suitors alone (and eventually be killed). His other choice is to stay away from Ithica all together and lose the respect of his people and do harm to his fathers name. To do this, Telemacus sets out on a journey of his own. He first decides to visit his fathers friend, Nestor, first (Rieu, p. 30-44). Nestor tells of his fathers great deeds. After leaving Nestors palace, Telemacus visits Menelaus. He is visiting these great men to find out about his father. Since Telemacus was only an infant when his father set out to fight at Troy, he really does not remember him. By hearing stories about the great acts his father committed, he feels that he knows him better. This brings new feelings about is father.
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