Sometimes, characters from mythology spic tales are more influential than a person could expect. Different things in the world are influenced by the names of the Greek and Roman gods. The most common example of this is the names of the week and month. Would you like to hear about Odysseus and his journey? Have you heard his name? And Odysseus is called to adventure when he was? Why did Odysseus go on the adventure? Who does Odysseus tell his adventures to? Let’s begin and explore this whole journey of Odysseus.
1. Who was Odysseus?
He was the legendary Greek hero in the works of an Ancient Greek author named Homer, who worked during the late 8th century BC. Odysseus is the character in the poem Iliad and the protagonist in the Odyssey. However, just like the protagonist Odysseus, his creator, and author Homer is also considered as a myth and a cultural manifestation. (See Examples of famous acrostic poems)
2. How was Odysseus?
According to Dares the Phrygia (a priest of Hephaestus, as per Homer), Odysseus was a crafty, cheerful, wise, and eloquent man of medium height. He was the son of Laertes and Anticlea after whom he became the king of the island of Ithaca. He was living a happy life with his beautiful wife Penelope and son Telemachus. (See How are Frankenstein and Prometheus Alike?)
3. Odysseus is called to Adventure When He was?
Odysseus was living in his home in Ithaca when the mythical Trojan War took place, and he had to leave his home to join the Greek war effort. The war broke out when Paris (Alexander), a nobleman, took Helen of Sparta from her husband Menelaus, the king of Sparta. Paris was the son of King Priam and Queen Hecuba of Troy. Odysseus was one of the suitors of Helena (Helen) and was summoned to be a part of the war to bring back Helena. It was the reason why Odysseus was called to adventure, and it took him 10 years to return to his homeland. (See What is The Cask of Amontillado All About?)
4. When did the Trojan War End?Image by VIVIANE MONCONDUIT from Pixabay
The war ended with bloodshed for several years and no success in killing Paris, the abductor, it was prophesied that he could be killed only with the bow of the Heracles that was with Philoctetes in Lemnos. The task to bring the bow was given to Odysseus and Diomedes. They succeeded in bringing it after retrieving the injured Philoctetes. Philoctetes then healed and accompanied them to the war where he shot and killed Paris. (See Troy Movie Explanation)
5. Why did Odysseus go on the Adventure?
So, Odysseus is called to adventure when he started his journey back home. After 10 years when the war ended, Odysseus set off with his men for his home. Ithaca was on the western shore of Greece and the journey from Troy to Ithaca was not long enough, but it took him 10 years to return home. For Odysseus, his journey to home converted into an adventure, on which he never intended to go. But due to some doings and wrongdoings of his men, his few hundred miles journey home was turned into thousands of miles of sea adventure. Must see What are Mythological Wolf Creatures?
6. What happened after He set off?
Odysseus is called to adventure when he set off with his 12 ships and several men from the land of Troy. They came across the land of the Cicones, an ancient tribe that fought alongside them in the Trojan War. Instead of moving ahead, they decided to raid the land which in turn made the gods angry. Because of this, his ships were driven off the course by storms. (See What is Ideal Tragic Hero?)
7. Where did the Wind take them?
The winds were so strong that the ships were taken to the island named the Land of the Lotus Eaters where some of his men ate the lotuses and were hypnotized to stay on the island. After several attempts, Odysseus convinced them to leave with him, but they were taken to the island of Cyclopes. It was the land of giants with only one eye.
Again, Odysseus is called to adventure when he and his men were captured by one Cyclops named Polyphemus who ate several of the men of Odysseus. After a discussion over wine, Cyclops slept and Odysseus along with his followers ignited the wooden stake, burned it, and blinded the sleeping Cyclops, and they fled. (See Shipwrecks In The Ocean)
8. What did Aeolus do to Him?Image by Iván Tamás from Pixabay
Polyphemus was the son of Aeolus, the ruler of the winds. He complained to his father and asked him to take revenge on Odysseus. After this, Aeolus gave a bag of winds to Odysseus as a gift that will take him back to Ithaca. However, the bag does not have the west wind which was essential to take the ship to western Greece. One night the crew opened the bag thinking it was filled with gold, but unfortunately, the winds in the bag blew out and took the ships all the way back from where they started their journey. Must read about the origin of an Ogre.
9. What Happened after it?
Odysseus pleaded again to Aeolus, but misfortune hit them again when they entered the land of the cannibalistic Laestrygonians who ate most of his men and destroyed his ships. Fortunately, the ship of Odysseus escaped with as many as men possible.
After that, they came across Circe, the Goddess of the Witches, who were all knowledgeable about the herbs and potions. She fed half of his men cheese and wine and transformed them into swine (short-legged omnivorous animals). Odysseus is called to adventure when he leaves this island.
Odysseus was being helped by Hermes, the messenger of gods. He gave him a drug named moly that could resist the magic of Circe. Moreover, instead of letting him go, Circe fell in love with him and kept him along with his crew on her island for 1 year where they feasted and drank. (See Are Ghosts Real?)
10. How Odysseus came to know about His Household during his Journey?
After a year when Odysseus left for Ithaca, he was guided by Circe. Following her instructions, they crossed the ocean and reached the western edge of the harbor of the world where he sacrificed to the dead and summoned the spirits. There he met the spirit of his mother who died during the years of war awaiting him, and she told him about the greedy suitors of Penelope. (See Which are the 66 books of the Bible, in the same order as listed in the book?)
11. Did They Reach Ithaca after this?
No. After meeting the spirits, Odysseus returned to the island of Circe where she gave further instructions about the upcoming hurdles and their solutions. Following her instructions, they avoided the land of the Sirens, and they came across a six-headed monster Scylla and her counterpart Charybdis, a whirlpool. Circe told them to silently row between those two monsters without waking them up, but Scylla woke up, grabbed the ship, and ate some of Odysseus’s men. (See Where do Ogres Live?)
12. What happened on the Islands of Thrinacia?Image by Olle August from Pixabay
Then, Odysseus is called to adventure when he escaped Scylla, and his ship arrived at the island of Thrinacia, which was again an island of gods. Circe and Tiresias, the blind prophet of Thebes, warned them not to touch the sacred cattle of the Sun god. However, the men of Odysseus again ignored the warning and hunted the cattle which angered the Sun God Helios. He demanded Zeus, the god of sky and thunder, to punish those men of Odysseus. As a result, the ship got caught in a thunderstorm and all the men drowned except Odysseus. Check out Who is the Strongest God of Destruction?
13. What could have Happened Next?
You would be surprised to know that getting out of all these problems already extended his journey by 3 years, but the worst is yet to come when the thunderstorm washed the island of Ogygia where there lived Calypso, a nymph. She was impressed by Odysseus and compels him to be his lover. He could escape only after Hermes told the nymph to release Odysseus, which happened 7 years later. It was the last hurdle in his journey back home. (See What is the Outcome of Beowulf’s Battle with Grendel?)
14. Who does Odysseus tell his Adventures to?
Leaving the island of Ogygia, he was shipwrecked, rescued, and befriended by the Phaeacians, people from the region of Phaeacia. These were the people whom Odysseus told about his journey and why Odysseus is called to adventure when he leaves Troy. Listening to his story, the Phaeacians decided to help him, in which King Alcinous supported them. One night when Odysseus was asleep, they left him on a hidden harbor in Ithaca. (See Who is the Tallest Dwarf in LOTR?)
15. Did Odysseus Reach his Home?
Waking up the next morning he found himself on his land, he started heading towards his home where on his way he met his former slave Eumaeus and Telemachus, his son who was returning from Sparta (search journey to find his father). They disguised him as a wandering beggar and took him home where only his dog Argos recognized him.
He passed the test set up by his wife Penelope for her suitors and then revealed his identity. Though Penelope refused to accept his identity because she feared he might be some Greek god disguised as Odysseus. However, a tricky test has succeeded him in making her believe in his identity.
So, now you know that Odysseus is called to adventure when he was returning to Ithaca after the Trojan War from Troy. And who does Odysseus tell his adventures to? Hope you got the answers. It is time to ask your friends why did Odysseus go on the adventure? (See What is the Central Idea of The Way to Rainy Mountain?)