The Odyssey

Good Essays
The ancient Greeks have brought upon numerous ideas, inventions, and stories to the world. Greek mythology influences modern day literature and life. The Odyssey is an epic poem written by Homer, which tells the story of Odysseus's journey home after the Trojan War. Odysseus does not achieve his goal of reaching home so easily; monsters and gods come in his way and hinder him. The Odyssey expresses Greek values of hospitality from the customs of Ithaca, humility from Odysseus’s reform, and loyalty from Odysseus’s family.
The Greek value of hospitality is exhibited in The Odyssey by Odysseus and Penelope. Odysseus and his hungry men entered an unfamiliar cave, which was home to the Cyclops. Once the Cyclops saw the men he asked why they are there, and in Odysseus's explanation he mentions “It was our luck to come here; here we stand beholden for your help, or any gifts you give-as custom is it to honor strangers” (line 194). Odysseus is tried to convince the cyclops to let him and his men live by using the Greek value of hospitality. He wants the Cyclops to view him as a guest, not food. To Odysseus it was second nature to help out a guest or person in need. While Penelope was speaking to the suitors she noted “Here is a poor man come, a wanderer, driven by want to beg his bread, and everyone in hall gave bits, to cram his bag” (line 1116). She shamed Antinous for not helping the man, because in Ithaca its is accustomed to provide the hungry and poor with food. The fact that Antinous “threw a stool” at Odysseus, and “banged his shoulder” appalled Penelope. The thought of doing such a thing was unheard of to Penelope since hospitality is a part of her way of life along with all other Greeks. The people of Ithaca from The Odyssey a...

... middle of paper ...

... master finally made it home. While Odysseus was gone, the suitors in Ithaca wanted to take over, but Penelope and Telemachus persevered. Most of Ithaca have lost hope for Odysseus but still “Penelope does not believe that Odysseus is dead (Father and Son).” Penelope has not yet given up on Odysseus. She has remained loyal to him and did not let the suitors take over Ithaca. She stood up for her husband that she has not word of for 20 years. Her strong loyalty allowed Odysseus to rule his kingdom once again when he arrived home.
In the Odyssey the people of Ithaca are accustomed to hospitality. In Odysseus’s lengthy journey home he learns to maintain modesty. Odysseus’s family never give up on him throughout his entire 20 year journey, and they kept Ithaca for him when he came back. The Greek values of hospitality, humility, and loyalty are conveyed in The Odyssey.
Get Access