The Ancient World (HUM 124 - UNC Asheville)/Texts/Odyssey/Book 9

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Summary[edit | edit source]

Odysseus starts the story by introducing himself, and telling where he is from. He says he's going to tell us about the trouble Zeus has caused him on his journey. On the way home from Troy Zeus first made a blast of wind push him to the Ciccone's in Ismarus. Then his men start drinking wine and killing animals, resulting in the cicones overpowering the Greeks and killing some of their men. Then Zeus sends a storm which takes them off track for 9 days before they get to the land of the lotus-eaters. Some of his men eat the lotus and no longer want to go home. Odysseus drags them on the boat anyways. Him and his men then sail through the night and end up on the land of the cyclopes. Him and his men eat some of the wild goats living on the island before coming across a cave on the mainland full of cheese and pens crammed full of lambs. His men tell him to hurry and grab some but instead of hurrying he stays a little too long.

They ate inside the cave and made a fire. The cyclopes, Polyphemus, son of Poseidon, lives in that cave. He returns to his cave while Odysseus and his men are still in there. He doesn't see them at first as he is doing his chores but soon does. He soon became angry after Odysseus told him Poseidon had shipwrecked him. The cyclopes then proceeded to eat two of his men. Odysseus wants to kill the cyclops but knows only he is strong enough to move the boulder he put in front of the cave. the cyclopes leaves the next morning to do his chores and when he comes back Odysseus gets him drunk, after he passes out Odysseus and his men drive a stake through the cyclops eye leaving him blind. They escape the next day by holding onto the sheep as the cyclopes let them out to graze. When him and his men get back to the ship and start to sail back to the other island, Odysseus yells back and the cyclops and tells him his name. The cyclopes then calls to his father, Poseidon, for vengeance on Odysseus. They then set sail the next day, grieving for their lost men but glad to be alive.

Characters[edit | edit source]

Odysseus - Laertes and Anticleias son, Husband to Penelope and father to his children. Known for many clever tricks and lies. Fam extends to heaven but he lives in Ithaca. Protagonist. He is trying to get home from troy but finding it very difficult.

Alcinous - ruler of the Phaiacians in the island of Scheria.

Calypso - the daughter of the Titan Atlas, a nymph of the island of Ogygia. She entertained Odysseus and made him stay there with her for seven years, but she could not convince/make him stay forever, even by promising him immortality.

Circe - the trickster, nymph, daughter of the sun god Helios, banished to the island of Aiaia.

Zeus - King of Gods and men. Has also made it hard for Odysseus to get home. Odysseus starts book 9 off by saying "Let me tell you all the trouble Zeus has caused me".

Maron - the son of Euanthes, who lived inside the shady grove on ismarus.

Poseidon - God of the sea. Antagonist. Constantly trying to stop Odysseus from getting home. Mad that he blinded his son.

Polyphemus - Cyclopes, son of Poseidon also the antagonist. Cyclopes that killed some of Odysseus' men, resulting in Odysseus stabbing him in the eye and blinding him.

Ancient Word View[edit | edit source]

They were fighting with swords as weapons

"Make laws for his wife and children"

Showing up to different islands and just taking their things and eating their food and animals. "We took their wives and shared their riches among us" pg. 241

The men are out fighting and being strong and killing the monsters, leaving their wife and children at home.