Telemacheia: Story of the development of an adolescent becoming a basileus
that year spun out by the gods when he should reach his home,. Ithaca—though not even .. If only that Odysseus sported with these suitors, a blood wedding, a how tall and handsome I see you now—be brave, you too, so men to come will . Odysseus also known by the Latin variant Ulysses (US: /juːˈlɪsiːz/, UK: /ˈjuː lɪsiːz/; . When Helen is abducted, Menelaus calls upon the other suitors to honour . Next Odysseus meets the spirit of his own mother, who had died of grief . The British group Cream recorded the song "Tales of Brave Ulysses" in During the prolonged absence of Odysseus, the SUITORS OF PENELOPE began One day Odysseus landed in Ithaca, and while he stayed at Eumaeus 1's hut, he met his son "So the cowards want to creep into the brave man's bed?.
In different ways, both the length and the quantity of elaborate speech frames draw out the tension Odysseus feels between openness with Penelope and circumspection towards her.
It also depicts the emotions of Penelope, who feels a corresponding tension that is openly displayed to both Odysseus and the audience between believing what the stranger tells her about her absent husband and remaining skeptical. The similarity and yet the difference between the responses of husband and wife as they confront these tensions give this conversation its tone and its impact.
- Homer: The Odyssey
- Chapter 2. One-on-one Conversations (Odysseus and Penelope)
The conversation between Penelope and Odysseus opens with the usual formalities between host and guest, which comprise the first three turns of the conversation. In his second speech the fourth turnOdysseus finally identifies himself to Penelope, or pretends to. Like the other three speeches in the conversation up to now, this is introduced by the most common reply formula for his character. As she listened her tears ran and her body was melted, as the snow melts along the high places of the mountains when the West Wind has piled it there, but the South Wind melts it, and as it melts the rivers run full flood.
It was even so that her beautiful cheeks were streaming tears, as Penelope wept for her man, who was sitting there by her side.
The wily wife: why Homer's patient, faithful Penelope is more cunning than Odysseus
But Odysseus in his heart had pity for his wife as she mourned him, but his eyes stayed, as if they were made of horn or iron, steady under his lids. He hid his tears and deceived her.
But when she had taken her fill of tearful lamentation, then she answered him once again and spoke and addressed him: His pity shows that he does feel some tug in the direction of openness with Penelope, but his calm behavior continues the deception that his words have begun.
Both characters feel a desire for true information about Odysseus, but they respond in very different ways to that desire. Our passage depicts that difference, and makes it one of the things the conversation as a whole is about. The first verse after the speech contains no direct references to the preceding speech, which is unusual at the start of a multi-verse passage following direct speech.
In fact, it does not provide any essential information about the situation or the reactions of the characters. This passage describes the emotions of both Penelope and Odysseus using comparisons. In addition, the wife and the husband have very different emotions that are described with two distinct images. These two comparisons, in a sense, emphasize the division that exists at this point between the lonely, sorrowing queen and her disguised husband, who is sad also but conceals his grief.
This gulf, however, contrasts movingly with the physical nearness of the two: Finally, after the very different reactions of the two are described, a couplet focusing on Penelope introduces her next speech Just as Penelope openly displays her grief, here she clearly identifies her question as a test. Of course Odysseus is able to pass Once again, Penelope is overcome with emotiondescribed in a passage that could be replaced by a single-verse reply formula with no loss of narrative clarity.
This passage forms an instructive pair with The language in the two passages displays a number of similarities, but But when she had taken her pleasure of tearful lamentation, then once again she spoke to him and gave him an answer: Verse is very similar to verse In the earlier passage, two comparisons precede The similes greatly expand the moment at which Penelope first hears news of Odysseus from her husband himself, giving that event prominence and heightened poignancy.
The second similein particular, draws Odysseus into the first scene, which increases its impact by including both husband and wife and also by portraying their very different reactions to the same event. The focus inon the other hand, is only on Penelope. This verse, which appears in two other reunion scenes in the poem, [ 31 ] has a somewhat ironic effect here since the signs that Penelope believes she recognizes do not represent what she thinks they do.
This is the last time that a passage between two speeches in this conversation betrays any unusual emotion from Penelope. Speech introductions for her in the remainder of Book 19 are all single verse reply formulas, as were those in the first part of her conversation with Odysseus. Once she has mastered herself enough to be circumspect about what the stranger tells her, the emotional drama of the conversation largely dissipates. This has been interpreted by some scholars as a sign that Penelope sub- or unconsciously recognizes Odysseus.
She is therefore naturally inclined to think of him in connection with the stranger who has brought her news of him. In addition, she may have noticed at some level that the stranger addresses her as her own husband might have done, and not as the suitors do, strengthening any affinity she is inclined to see between the stranger and her husband.
If she does recognize Odysseus, on the other hand, both the earlier focus on the strength of her desire for news of him and the eagerness of Odysseus to prevent Eurycleia from revealing his identity to her make no sense. Penelope essentially disappears from the story while Eurycleia bathes Odysseus and the story of his scar is told.
The second section of her conversation with Odysseus is much briefer than the first section, at five turns; similarly, it has a lower emotional tone, although it contains some notable images and ideas. This part of the conversation contains one group reply formula and four single-verse reply introductions, without any elaboration of the kind that appears after some of the speeches in the first and longer part of the conversation.
Although there is only one, this vocative, like the three in the first part of the conversation, occurs in a significant context. Penelope, now quite her own mistress, does not directly answer his request, but instead announces that she is going to bed and offers the stranger a bed in the palace as well She leaves the room, and both the conversation and this book of the poem end. These are some of the very matters have attracted the most scholarly attention: For the most part, where both are present, one is speaking to the suitors and the other is listening.
Once the suitors have been killed in Book 22, Odysseus sends Eurycleia to Penelope to tell her what has been happening, setting in train the fulfillment of the recognition and reunion of the two.
The wily wife: why Homer's patient, faithful Penelope is more cunning than Odysseus
The conversation between Eurycleia and Penelope, although not as intensely gripping for the audience as the various conversations between Odysseus and Penelope, displays both unusual length eight turns and an elaborate speech frame at the point in the conversation when Penelope reacts to a report that Odysseus is present in the palace.
Hence, this conversation contributes to the overall program of elaboration and elongation that so strongly marks the reunion of Odysseus and Penelope. Although the nurse is laughing, Penelope shows no emotion in response to this report. She immediately answers Eurycleia with skepticism and even abuses the old nurse for telling lies Come, dear nurse, and give me a true account of the matter, whether he really has come back to his house, as you tell me, to lay his hands on the shameless suitors, though he was only one, and they were always lying in wait, in a body.
This is an entirely reasonable question under the circumstances and one that might have been asked by any observer, regardless of their personal involvement in the situation. This consistent strategy seems pointless if the narrator also means us to understand that Penelope actually has recognized Odysseus already.
Penelope and Odysseus ii: Penelope excuses herself by saying that she is astounded by the news, and tells him that if the beggar is really Odysseus, they will recognize one another. In fact, Telemachus acts as a sort of conversational buffer between the husband and wife during this three-way conversation. Telemachus is involved in every turn, either as speaker or addressee; his parents directly address only him and not one another. Telemachus addresses Penelope, and she replies; then Odysseus responds to what Telemachus said, and there are two more turns between Telemachus and Odysseus.
Nevertheless, Odysseus and Penelope speak to each other, in the sense that although they address Telemachus at the literal level with vocatives, for examplethe substance of what they say is directed at each other more than at him.
However, the satisfaction of seeing the husband and wife alone together, with no third person to smooth things over between them, is still to come.
Before this conversation takes place, Odysseus orders that the household should pretend that a wedding is in progress, and he is bathed by Eurycleia It contains three successive multi-verse speech frames ; ;which is unique in the Homeric epics: Here, each of three succeeding speech frames is longer than the last, drawing out the episode more and more as its climax approaches. Moreover, the first two expanded speech frames focus on the emotional responses of Odysseus and Penelope respectively to what is said to them.
In the third expanded passage, the famous simile at The speech frames, in fact, parallel the progress of the episode. They focus our attention on each character alternately, and finally on both together at the point when they have recognized and accepted each other.
This dramatizes the last moments of the enduring tension between frankness and concealment that both husband and wife have spent so much time and energy to control so that they can reach the moment when each feels able to be candid and let go of skepticism and concealments.
Each of these expansions can be appreciated by itself, but as a group, they work together to contribute to the simultaneous slowing and crescendo effects which so effectively dramatize the end of the conflict between concealment and openness.
SUITORS OF PENELOPE - Greek Mythology Link
Not only is the crescendo effect in this conversation more elaborate than in other conversations we have seen, but earlier conversations lead up to it in an elongated, extended crescendo effect that spans the last third of the poem.
This crescendo itself emphasizes the strength that each has to have to manage this tension by emphasizing how long and how much the tension has affected them both. Odysseus, beautified by Athena as well as bathed by Eurycleia, sits down with Penelope She, unlike Telemachus in Book 16, makes no response at all to the newly transformed man who has appeared before her.
Here, for the first time in Book 23, Odysseus directly addresses Penelope, and like Telemachus did earlier, he criticizes her for remaining aloof from him when no other wife would do so Apparently her Odyssean capacity for distrust is amusing and praiseworthy when he is in disguise and so is also practicing a kind of concealmentbut annoying when he has resumed his usual appearance and is expecting her as well as himself to lay aside her skepticism.
At the end of his speech, he asks for a bed to be laid for him.
Odysseus, as well as the audience, wants Penelope to be ready to accept him at the same time as he is ready to be accepted, but at no time does she show as clearly as she does here that she is a match for him in her capacity to master an impulse to be open in order to conceal or misrepresent herself. She replies by directing Eurycleia to make up a bed for Odysseus outside his bedroom The introduction to this remark is the normal reply formula for Penelope ; only after the speech does the narrator explicitly state that her speech was a test.
Put the firm bed here outside for him, and cover it over with fleeces and blankets, and with shining coverlets.
In sum, this couplet describes the intentions of Penelope, the emotion of Odysseus, and the relationship that exists between them as this relationship is being re-established. In the third turn of eight in their conversation, the angry Odysseus now proves his identity to Penelope by describing at length the process by which he built their bed.BRAVE - 'The Prize'
This story is structured with ring composition that repeats the central story: Her happy reaction here corresponds to the anger of Odysseus after her speech about the bed. Back comes the lion to his lair, and hideous carnage falls upon them all. But Odysseus returned and no one of them escaped the palace alive. Penelope says that no one was dealt, because of the Trojan Wara heavier blow than her. For during the time her husband was away, she, not knowing whether he was dead or alive, passed her days in continuous mourning, founding relief only in tears or sleep.
Some could reasonably tell her that Odysseus was not the only man who never returned from Troyand she could find the argument perfectly wise. And yet, when she retired upstairs to her room, she would weep again for her beloved husband. How Odysseus won and lost Penelope Odysseus joined the alliance against Troy reluctantly, for this man did not dream of war and adventures, but instead of a quiet life at home. Some would say that the gods planned it all, and that mortals have no choice against their will.
And they may be right: In any case, Odysseus and Penelope had lived in Ithaca several years and Telemachus was just a babe, when King Agamemnon 's agent Palamedes came to the island and destroyed their family life by outwitting Odysseusand forcing him to comply with the oath he himself had invented and join the alliance that was being formed in order to sail to Troy and demand, by persuasion or by force, the restoration of Helen and the property stolen by the seducer Paris when he, guided by Aphroditevisited Sparta.
Palamedes did his duty, and Odysseus was bound to comply. Nevertheless, Odysseus held him responsible for having to leave country, wife, and child, and for that reason he plotted against Palamedesand had him stoned to death by the army as a traitor when they were fighting at Troy.
This war, which was not a minor one but instead a huge catastrophe which provoked the ruin, not only of the Trojan house, but also of many states in Hellas, lasted ten years. Euripides, Daughters of Troy And she even offered him immortality to tempt him to stay, but Odysseuslonging to see the day of his return home, refused the life of a god.
Such was the love of this man for his wife. As time went by, however, and all the survivors of the war except Odysseus had reached their homes while minstrels were already singing about the war as belonging to the past, some started to believe that he would never return. And when they thought that Queen Penelope had been left a widow, which was not an extraordinary thought, considering that so many years had passed and neither Odysseus nor his army had returned, they presented themselves at the palace, asking her to choose the one whom she considered the best suited to be her new husband.
However, they did not wait for her answer in their own houses, but instead they gradually turned into an arrogant and insolent mob, imposing themselves and consuming Odysseus ' estate for their own sustenance.
In this manner, they spent their time slaughtering the sheep and fatted cattle belonging to the palace in order to provide their great parties with food. This was the life they led at Odysseus ' home, and with such a crowd filling the palace, there was always an uproar at those times, and since they had a remarkable appetite for banquets and feasts, complete ruin could be feared.
That is why Telemachus said: And that is why Telemachus proposed them to feast themselves elsewhere, giving them formal notice to quit his palace in front of the Ithacan assembly. For Telemachus saw these young men who pestered his mother with unwanted attentions and wasted his wealth as a disease and an outrage to decency. And it was her, they argued, who had forced them to act as they did. For she had fooled them during three years with The Shroud of Laertes, saying that she would marry once she had finished this piece of work.
But she, deceiving everybody, unravelled by night what she wove by day, and so, they reasoned, in order to avoid to be fooled again, they would have to stay and undermine the palace's finances until she decided to abandon her reluctant attitude.
These were the means by which the SUITORS expected to force Penelope to make a choice, and by letting Telemachus suffer and see his wealth consumed, they hoped that he would persuade his mother to marry one of them. But not always those who act unjustly are aware of the consequences that come with their deeds, in particular when they are guided by the enthusiasm and the ambition of youth. For there are many who risk their own skins in situations which they deem to be quite innocent, but that unexpectedly become their ruin.
For later, when Odysseus returned, and unleashing his wrath provoked a blood bath not leaving one single suitor alive, they protested and even revolted, but now, while their darling children abused Odysseus ' household, they sat in abject silence, not daring to condemn the outrage.
And since nobody among those who counted for the SUITORS, condemned or admonished them, they dared to push their luck even further, declaring that if Odysseus would suddenly appear he would meet an ugly end, which means that from thoughtless SUITORS they were turning into rebels and instigators of rebellion.
This is how things which are relatively small, looking as if they were childish pranks, fall, step by step, out of proportion. But then it has been said of Discord that she has in the beginning an insignificant appearance, reaching soon heaven with her head while having her feet still on the ground. For one thing is to be the suitor of a widow, another to be an unwanted suitor, and yet another to think about making the woman a widow in case her husband proved to be alive after all.
And once the SUITORS started thinking this last thought, it was not difficult for them to go even further and plot, although in vain, against the life of Telemachusfearing that he would return from his trip to Pylos and Sparta with for them unwelcome news about his father.
For being persuaded that Odysseus was dead, they did not pay court to the widow in the regular way, but instead sat in his palace eating up his livelihood by consuming large amounts of meat and wine. However, some among them did not feel ready to carry on this murderous plan, and they adjourned their decision in this matter. And while the servant took a place near TelemachusOdysseuslimping along with the aid of a staff and looking like a distressful beggar, went round collecting scraps from the SUITORS.
They say that it was the goddess Athena who inspired him to go round the table, so that he would learn to distinguish the good from the bad among the SUITORS. And yet, they say, this did not mean that any of them would be saved from destruction and death. For it was a delusion to think, he explained, that father and brothers would stand by them, and he added: For not without bloodshed, will the wooers and he part one from the other once he is under his own roof.