The Wrath of Poseidon in Odyssey Essay

The Wrath of Poseidon in Odyssey Essay

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Throughout the Odyssey, the struggles of Odysseus are revealed to the reader through the well written epic. His journey is very difficult and he is haunted with the loss of his entire crew and seemingly impossible task of getting home to his family. While journeying homewards, Odysseus makes the mistake of harming the Cyclops, who happens to be Poseidon's son. Poseidon is so angry at Odysseus for the harm he inflicted on the Cyclops, that through the influence of all powerful Zeus, he punishes Odysseus along with his other children, the Phaeacians, who can be seen to parallel as well as contrast with the Cyclops.
When he first sets out on his journey, Odysseus is setting out for war and by the time that war is over, he wants nothing more than to get his men home safe and see his wife and young son. This wish, however, is delayed, mainly because Poseidon has made it his personal mission to prevent Odysseus from ever returning home to Ithaca. All this was due to Odysseus’s poor treatment of Poseidon's son, the Cyclops. On his way home from the war, Odysseus sails into the island of the Cyclops and tries to find food and shelter for his crew. It becomes apparent to Odysseus that this society that the Cyclops lives in what resembles “the Golden Age, in which the earth yields its fruit continually without toil and yet … they seem wholly uncivilized; they live isolated.”(346 Hernandez). Because of this, when the crew and Odysseus stumble upon the Cyclops's cave, they proceed to steal food and linger in the large cavern. When the Cyclops comes back to find the thieves, he blocks them into the cave and eats a few of the men.
This goes on for a few days, until many of the men are dead and Odysseus is fed up with being trapped. H...


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Fagles, Robert. The Odyssey. New York: Viking, 1996. Print.
Frangoulidis, Stavros . "Polyphemus' Prayer to Poseidon: Hom. "Od." 9,528-535." Quaderni Urbinati di Cultura Classica 43.1 (1993): 45-49. JSTOR. Web. 6 Nov. 2011. .
Hernández, Pura. "Back in the Cave of the Cyclops." The American Journal of Philology 121.3 (2000): 345-366. JSTOR. Web. 14 Nov. 2011.
Rose, Gilbert. "The Unfriendly Phaeacians." Transactions and Proceedings of the American Philological Association 100 (1969): 389-406. JSTOR. Web. 6 Nov. 2011.
Segal, Charles. "Divine Justice in the Odyssey: Poseidon, Cyclops, and Helios." The American Journal of Philology 113.4 (1992): 489-518. JSTOR. Web. 6 Nov. 2011.

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