The Odyssey: The Success Of Odysseus As A Hero

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As seen throughout The Odyssey, a hero is perceived as a person who achieves great success never before seen and whose legacy lives beyond their years. Since The Odyssey was written around the eighth century BCE, the people that we view as heros in present day tend to embody different traits than the heroes of that time. Even though the word, “hero” does not have one specific definition, a hero is generally categorized as someone who is idolized for their bravery and does anything necessary to defend their people. Although Odysseus embodies the Homeric ideals of heroism in that he accomplishes triumphs that others have not, his successes are the product of divine intervention and his actions were primarily selfish; therefore, he is not a true …show more content…

Many spoke positively about Odysseus, highlighting only his admirable traits. Although most victories of Odysseus did have a positive outcome, Odysseus acted by whatever means necessary to achieve his successes. In book twelve, Odysseus encountered the challenge of the sirens. No man had ever heard the song of the sirens and lived to speak of it. Odysseus was determined to be the first, and only man to ever make it through alive, “.. Yet she urges that I alone should listen to their song (XII.193-194)”. Odysseus ordered his men to plug their ears with beeswax and to tie him to the mast as tight as they possibly could. Odysseus and his crew did manage to successfully pass the sirens, making Odysseus the only man to ever hear the wondrous call of the sirens. By refusing to plug his own ears, Odysseus unnecessarily put himself above all of his …show more content…

When challenged during his excursion, Odysseus was prepared to give up any of his men if it meant saving himself. While he was absent for twenty years, Penelope did everything that she could to remain faithful to her husband. Penelope was unsure if her husband was even alive, but felt that moving on to a different man would not be just. While Penelope was at the palace awaiting Odysseus’ return, Odysseus was at Aeaea with Kirke. Odysseus was off living his life without thinking of how his actions could affect his wife. In book eleven, Odysseus is instructed by Kirke to go to the underworld to talk to Tiresias. When he arrives, one of the first people he spoke with was his mother, Anticlea. She goes on to inform her son that she died of grief waiting for him to return home. Odysseus only ever thought about how he would be affected by this prolonged journey and never about the lives of those who cared about him, such as his wife and his

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