The Odyssey Part 1

The Illiad Prequel to the Odyssey
Who wrote the Odyssey? Homer
Who fought in the Trojan War? The people of Troy v.s an alliance of Greek kings
What caused the Trojan War? The Greeks attacked Troy to avenge the insult suffered by Menelaus when his wife, Helen, ran off with Paris.
Menelaus King of Sparta, wife (Helen) left him, really bitter
Helen of Troy The worlds most beautiful woman, left her husband for Paris
Paris Young Prince of Troy, lover of Helen
Agamemnon Menelaus’s brother, leader of the Greek army, murdered by his wife when he returned from Troy
How did the Greeks attack Troy? Sailed across the Aegan sea on 1000 ships
Who won the Trojan War? The Greeks
What made Odysseus different from other heroes? He had flaws, he as in trouble, relateable, not respected by people despite being a great warrior
Penelope Odysseus’s wife, strong female character
Telemachus Odysseus’s son, still a toddler when Odysseus left
Was Odysseus eager to go to war? No, he pretended to be insane.
What was Odysseus’s clever plan that lead to the downfall of Troy? Build an enormous wooden horse and hide soldiers in his belly, sneak in the gates.
Were Odysseus and his men civilized? No, they were primitive & raided villages.
What are Odysseus and his family trying to find? The right relationships with one and other, their places in life
Mythic Traditional stories, rooted in a particular culture, that usually explains a belief, ritual or phenomenon
The role of the gods in The Odyssey An alter ego, reflection of a hero’s best/worst qualities, controlling all things, always there
Who is homer? No one really knows, possibly a blind poet/minstrels from Chios
Homeric/Epic Similes Comparing heroic or epic events to simple and easily understandable everyday events
Greeks are also called…. Achaeans or Argives
Aeaea Home of Circe, the enchantress and goddess
Alcinous King of Phaeacia, Odysseus tells the story of adventures to Alcinous’s court
Calypso Beautiful nymph goddess who keeps Odysseus on her island for 7 years
Charybdis Female monster who sucks in water 3 times a day to form a deadly whirlpool
Cicones People living on the southwestern coast of Thrace who battled Odysseus and his men on their journey
Circe Enchantress and goddess who turns Odysseus’s men into swine
Erebus Dark area of the underworld where the dead reside
Eurylochus A member of Odysseus’s loyal crew
Lotus Eaters People who feed Odysseus’s men lotus plants to make them forget Ithaca
Phaeacia Island kingdom ruled by King Alcinous. The Phaeacians are shipbuilders and traders.
Polyphemus Son of the sea God Poseidon and blinded by Odysseus. Polyphemus is a cyclops, one of a race of brutish one-eyed giants, the Cyclopes, who live solitary lives as shepards
Scylla Female monster with six serpent heads, each having a triple row of fangs.
Sirens Sea nymphs whose beautiful and mysterious music lures sailors to steer their ships toward dangerous rocks
Teiresias Famous blind prophet from the city of Thebes. Odysseus meets him in the land of the dead.
Thrinakia Island where the sun god Helios keeps his cattle.
Antinous One of Penelope’s main suitors, and arrogant and mean young noble from Ithaca
Eumaeus Swineherd , one of Odysseus’s loyal servants
Eurycleia Odysseus’s old nurse
Eurymachus Suitor of Penelope
Eurynome Penelope’s housekeeper
Philoeteus Cowherd, one of Odysseus’s loyal servants
Apollo God of poetry,music,prophecy,medicine, and archery
Athena Favorite daughter of Zeus, the great goddess of wisdom as well as peace. She favored the Greeks during the Trojan War. She is often called Pallas Athena.
Cronus Titan who ruled the universe until Zeus overthrew him.
Helios Sun God
Hephaestus God of metalworking
Hermes Messenger God
Poseidon God of the sea, brother of Zeus. Poseidon is called earth shaker because he is believed to cause earthquakes. He is an enemy of Odysseus.
Zeus The most powerful God. His home is on Olympus.
How many years was Odysseus a prisoner of Calypso? 7
Who was sent by Zeus to get Odysseus off Calypso’s island? Hermes the wayfinder
Which God has a special interest in Odysseus and convinces Zeus to let him off the island? Athena
Describe Calypsos island. Beautiful, mocks Odysseus’s despair, breathtaking, birds and flowers all around
How does Calypso deceive Odysseus? She tells him it was her idea to let him off the island.
Which God destroys Odysseus’s raft after he departs the isle of Calypso? Poseidon
Where does Odysseus wash up? Scheria
Did Odysseus enjoy his time on the island? No, he cried every day because he missed his wife and home.
Who is Odysseus found by? The daughter of Alcinous, the king of the Phaecians
How do Greeks treat their guests? Like they were god sent. They are treated with great courtesy before they are asked why they are there.
What does Odysseus ask the minstrel to sing about? Troy
Who is Odysseus’s father? Laertes
Where is the location of Ithaca? What is the island like? Northwest, high elevation, rocky shores, off the coast of Greece
Where and who did Odysseus’s crew plunder? Ismaros- the cicones
Did Odysseus’ men take his advice? No. They continued to feast and drink on the cicones food.
What are the consequences of the crews greed? They are slaughtered by the cicones Calvary.
How many benches were left empty on every ship? 6.
How many days did they have to dock onshore because of zeus’s storm? 2
Where does the current take the ship on the tenth day, after nine day of rough seas? The land of the lotus eaters.
How many men eat the lotus flower? 3
What does the lotus flower do? Makes you loose sense of time, crave the flower, lose will do to anything
What does Odysseus do with the 3 men who ate the flowers? Ties them to the ship and sails away.
Who is Polyphemus’ father? Poseidon
What kind of animal does Polyphemus keep? Sheep and Rams
Where does Odysseus go after they leave Polyphemus’ island? Aeolia, home of the wind King Aeolus
What gift does Aeolus give Odysseus? The winds in a stormy bag
Why does Odysseus get sent back to Aeolia? Members of his crew open the bag, thinking it is treasure.
What happens on the island of the Laestrygonians? The giant cannibals eat most of his crew and destroy all of his ships but one.
Where does Circe live? Aeaea
Who leads the party of men to Circe’s house? Eurylochus
What happens after the crew approaches Circe? She prepares them a meal with a poison that makes them not want to go home, then turns them all into pigs
What Greek religious law did Circe violate? Xenia
How does Hermes aid Odysseus in defeating Circe? He gives him a plant that repels her power.
How does Circe react after being faced by Odysseus? She surrenders and asks them to stay with her for many seasons.
What does Circe command Odysseus to do in order to leave the island? Go to the underworld and his prophecy told by Teiresias
What does Teiresias predict? He prophesies that Poseidon will be very mad at Odysseus, but he can avoid his blows if they go through a certain strait, but they must resist temptation. When they go to the island of Thrinakia they must not kill the cattle of Helios. If they don’t, they will get home safely, but if they do the crew and ship will be destroyed. Odysseus will be alone for many years until he finally comes home to see his house in disarray. He must kill all the men that are courting Penelope, then travel inland on foot with an oar until someone asks if the oar is a winnowing fan. When the question is asked he must make a sacrifice to Poseidon of a ram, a bull, and a boar then kill 100 cattle and sacrifice them to various gods. If Odysseus completes these tasks he will die happy of old age.
How do Odysseus and his crew avoid being killed by the sirens? The crew plugs their ears with beeswax and Odysseus ties himself to the mast.
Describe Scylla. 12 tentacle legs, 6 heads, 3 rows of teeth, always kills 6 people, sits on the side of the cliff
Describe Charybdis. Sea monster that sits under the water and sucks it in 3 times a day then spews it out, no survival rate
What monster does Circe advise they steer towards and why? Scylla, because only 6 men will be killed.
Where do Helios and his cattle live? Thrinakia
What does Homer compare the men being killed by Scylla to? Reeling in a fish.
Where does Odysseus’ ship land after passing through the strait? Thrinakia
What prevents the crew from leaving Helios’ island? Southward winds
How long is the crew stranded, and what about this causes them to kill the cattle? They are stranded for a month and their food supply decreases, so they’re super hungry
How does Eurylochus justify killing the cattle? By sacrificing one to Helios and promising to build a temple in his honor
How does Helios react to the death of his cattle? He calls to Zeus to punish the crew and threatens to bring the sun to the underworld
How does Homer open the story? By a prequel that details what is going to happen, a prayer to the muses
What happens in books 1-4 of the Odyssey? Telemachus is searching the Mediterranean for his father who has not returned from the Trojan war.

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