What Makes an Epic Hero in Homer´s The Odyssey Essay

What Makes an Epic Hero in Homer´s The Odyssey Essay

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A Greek epic hero is the main character of an epic poem that is typically strong and uses his or her strength to battle monsters throughout a long lasting journey. “The Odyssey” written by Homer is an epic poem about a captain who leads a group of soldiers back to their homeland of Ithaca. Odysseus is considered an epic hero because he travels to various lands, fights monsters, and the Gods interfere with the human world to make his journey more difficult.
One of the traits that make Odysseus an epic hero is that he travels to many far-off lands. For example, during the beginning of their travels they sailed to the land of the Cyclopes (Homer line 109). This is where Odysseus used his wit to outsmart the Cyclopes into thinking he and his crew are survivors of a shipwreck (Homer line 228-231). Odysseus and his men also made their way to the Land of the Dead in order to consult the blind prophet, Tiresias. While Odysseus was speaking to him, Tiresias told him his prophecy which included danger and the “Destruction of the ship and crew”, (Homer line 645-646). Saying this inferred that Odysseus’s path would be harmed in some form. Later on, as the crew was sailing, they came near an island in which Sirens lived. The Sirens sing a song that is so beautiful all sailors are tempted to leap into the ocean and drown (Homer line 690-693). Lastly on his list of travels, was the island Thrinacia where the Sun God shelters his cattle. The different places Odysseus visits are one factor in how he is an epic hero, another attribute that is equally relevant would be the many monsters that he encounters and fights.
Furthermore, throughout this epic poem Odysseus and his men fight many battles against dangerous creatures and beasts. At the star...


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...ew was told not to consume the cattle or they would feel the wrath of Helios. However, they ate the cows anyway (Homer line 884-893). When Helios found out what had been done, he asked Zeus for revenge against the ship crew. In agreement, Zeus strikes a lightning bolt against their ship (Homer line 948-949). Having the hate of the Gods against him made Odysseus’s journey very difficult.
In conclusion, there are many aspects to being considered an epic poem hero. Odysseus is a prime example of one because he travels to many lands throughout his quest back to Ithaca. Also, in this epic, he fights many monsters and has to face the wrath of chosen Gods that make his journey more difficult. Therefore, Odysseus is considered an epic hero because he travels to various lands, fights monsters, and the Gods interfere with the human world to make his journey more difficult.

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