Odysseus's Heroic Attributes

920 Words2 Pages

The epic poem The Odyssey, written by Homer, centers around the main protagonist Odysseus and his long journey back home. Odysseus, the king of Ithaca, returns home after defeating the Trojans in a ten year war. On his way back, he angers Poseidon, god of the sea, by blinding his son, Polyphemus the Cyclops. Due to Odysseus’ actions, Poseidon refuses to let Odysseus reach home, and Odysseus and his crew are forced to go through a series of obstacles throughout the epic. Through this adversity, Odysseus must show his heroic attributions in order to survive. Homer portrays Odysseus as a hero by giving him characteristics such as: craftiness, loyalty, and bravery. In situations where brute force has failed, Odysseus uses his craftiness to create a plan and escape a difficult situation. Without his cleverness, Odysseus would not be able to survive. An example of Odysseus’ inventiveness is demonstrated in the following quote: My moment was at hand, and i went forward holding an ivy bowl of my dark drink, looking up, saying: ‘Cyclops try some wine. Here’s liquor to wash down your scraps of men.’ (Homer pg. 991, lines 294-298) When Odysseus and his men realized they were trapped inside the cave, Odysseus was smart enough to realize that they would be trapped forever by the Cyclops boulder if they killed him. Not only is Odysseus smart enough to create a plan of escape by getting the Cyclops drunk but also stays calm and collected to trick the Cyclops into drinking the wine without arousing suspicion. As a result, they stab the Cyclops, blinding him. To hide his identity as king of Ithaca and to trick the neighboring Cyclops he gives a false name by saying, “My name is Nohbody: mother, father, and friends, / everyone calls... ... middle of paper ... ...t, erect along the mast, lashed to the mast, and if I shout and beg to be untied, take more turns of the rope to muffle me.’ (Homer, lines 685-698) Odysseus orders his men to tie him up to the mast of the ship, so he can be the only one getting tortured by the Sirens’ song. Circe foretells that Odysseus and his men will die, in an effort to sacrifice himself for the crew, he tells his crew to tie him up. This daring moves is another reason why he is parted from the other characters, as a hero. These heroic element expresses Odysseus as a hero for some people. The others may argue that Odysseus is not a hero because he lost crew members when he reached back home in Ithaca. But with the help of certain characteristics readers highly disregard that he lost all of them. Through the usage of craftiness, loyalty, and bravery, Homer depicts Odysseus as a true hero.

In this essay, the author

  • Analyzes how odysseus is ready to attack the suitors without showing mercy towards them. he slaughtered the men one-by-one due to his bravery.
  • Analyzes how homer's epic poem the odyssey centers around odysseus and his long journey back home.
Show More

More about Odysseus's Heroic Attributes

Open Document