Odyssey Books 19-24
Odyssey Books 19-24 CLCV 207
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This 10 page Class Notes was uploaded by Hannah Millirons on Wednesday September 21, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to CLCV 207 at College of William and Mary taught by Jessica Stevens in Fall 2016. Since its upload, it has received 22 views. For similar materials see Greek Civilization in Classical Studies at College of William and Mary.
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Date Created: 09/21/16
Hannah Millirons Greek Civilization September 20, 2016 Odyssey Book 19 Odysseus and Athena planned how they would kill the suitors. Odysseus tells Telemachus to help him put away all of his weapons. Telemachus notices how bright it is in the room and detects a divine presence among them. Odysseus tells Telemachus not to worry about it and sends him to bed. Penelope waits in her room for Odysseus, who she thinks is a beggar. Melantho sees Odysseus and yells at him. Odysseus replies and asks if she is yelling at him because he is dirty and poor and says that he hasn’t always been poor, hinting at his true identity. He tells her she should be more grateful for what she has because she may lose it one day. Penelope yells at Melantho for being mean to the beggar. Penelope asks the beggar who he is and where he is from and says that she has been waiting so long for Odysseus, but is ready to marry a suitor so she can leave Telemachus. Odysseus comes up with an elaborate story about how he is from Crete and his name is Aethon. He says that he fought in Troy and that Odysseus and his men stayed at his house for a little while. Penelope is skeptical and asks him questions to prove he actually did take care of Odysseus. He comes up with an elaborate story about what he wore and what he and his men were like when they supposedly stayed with him. He also says that Odysseus will come back soon. Penelope half way believes him and offers him a bath and place to stay for the night. He declines the bath unless an old woman gives it to him and Penelope tells Eurycleia to wash his feet. Eurycleia sees a resemblance between him and Odysseus and becomes overwhelmed with emotion, but Odysseus assures her that everyone else thinks that too, but that he really is just a beggar. Then Odysseus panics because he remembers that he has an unmistakable scar on his leg and he can’t let her see it because then his true identity will be revealed. Eurycleia feels the mark and she once again is overcome with emotion. Odysseus makes her promise that she won’t tell anyone that it is really him. Penelope starts talking to Odysseus again and asks if she should stay with Telemachus or if she should marry whichever suitor is best for her. Then she tells him about a dream she had and asks him to interpret its meaning. Odysseus gives her his answer and she still isn’t satisfied so she asks for even more explanation. Odysseus says that it means all of the suitors will certainly die. Penelope decides that she will call all of it off by holding a contest where each suitor has to use Odysseus’s old bow and shoot an arrow through 12 axes. The winner will get her hand in marriage. He tells her that Odysseus will be there and show all of them up in order to keep his wife. Penelope is still skeptical about Odysseus coming home and just goes to sleep. Hannah Millirons Greek Civilization September 20, 2016 Odyssey Book 20 Odysseus goes to bed on the porch outside. He is having a hard time sleeping and sees some of the maids sneaking off to go sleep with some of the suitors. He debated on killing all of them right then and there or just letting them go until the next day, which he chooses the latter. Athena comes to Odysseus and asks him why he is so worked up and tells him to just let it go because if he stays up all night thinking about it, he will be tired and weak the next day when he needs his strength the most. Athena granted him sleep and while he was asleep, Penelope woke up and started to cry because she is wishing for death. Odysseus was sure that she already knew it was him and not a beggar, so he prayed to Zeus to give him a sign that he was meant to be home. Zeus sends down a thunderclap to answer Odysseus’s prayers. A maid hears the thunderclap and knows it must be an omen from Zeus and asks him to make the suitors leave Odysseus’s home and to make all of them die. Telemachus goes to the porch to check on the beggar and makes sure that he was taken care of by the maids. He then tells the maid to get the house ready and prepare a big feast for the day since it is a special occasion. Melanthios comes to Odysseus and makes fun of him for being a beggar and Odysseus ignores him. Then Philoetius talks to the beggar and says that he strongly resembles Odysseus. He also mentions how outraged he is by the suitors’ behavior. He asks Eumaeus and Philoetius if they would stand by Odysseus’s side and fight with him against the suitors if it ever came down to it and they both say yes. Meanwhile, the suitors are planning to kill Telemachus. Amphinomus, one of the suitors, says that it probably isn’t a good idea and they should just focus on eating. Telemachus brings the beggar to his end of the table and feeds him. He tells Odysseus that he will protect him from their rude comments and won’t let them hurt him. Antinous tells all of the other suitors that even though they may not like it, they should listen to Telemachus since they are in his house. Everyone is carrying on about their business and Athena doesn’t like this, so she decides to stir the pot. She wanted Odysseus to get mad enough to fight, so she makes the most arrogant suitor, named Ctessipus, stand up and speak. He sarcastically says that it is good that the beggar got served the same portions as the other suitors and offers him a “gift.” The suitor holds up an ox’s hoof and throws it at Odysseus, who dodges it. Telemachus starts going off on Ctessipus and says that he is lucky he missed because Telemachus would have killed him if he hit him. Another suitor, Agelaus, stands up and defends Telemachus, saying that how he acted was justified and that nobody else deserves to react angrily towards him. He tells Telemachus that he should stop delaying his mother’s marriage because it is certain Odysseus is not coming home so Penelope should be prepared to marry the best suitor. Telemachus says that he isn’t putting off Penelope’s marriage. All of the suitors laugh at him because they know this isn’t true. Theoclymenus, a seer, tells everyone that all of them will die and that the porch will be crowded with ghosts waiting to do to the underworld. The suitors laugh at him too and tell him he should leave because he must be crazy. He assures them that he isn’t crazy and that he will leave whenever he pleases. In order to get a rise out of him, the suitors tell Telemachus that he keeps terrible company, but Telemachus ignores them. Hannah Millirons Greek Civilization September 20, 2016 Odyssey Book 21 Athena convinces Penelope to take Odysseus’s bow and put it in front of the suitors. Odysseus received the bow and its accessories as a gift. She starts to cry because it brings back memories of her husband whom she misses very much. Penelope then tells the suitors the rules of the contest: whoever is able to shoot an arrow through all 12 axes will get Penelope as his prize. Eumaeus begins to cry, along with the suitors, and Antinous yells at them all to stop crying because they will just make Penelope even more sad than she already is. Then he says that the contest will separate the men from the boys and that anyone who can’t handle it should leave. Telemachus tries to string the bow to prove that he is as manly as whoever the winner will be, but it takes him four tries to get it. On the fourth try, the beggar signals him to stop. Telemachus tells the suitors to come up and give it a shot. Antinous says they should shoot from left to right and everyone agrees with him. The first suitor fails and gives it to the next person to string because he feels that the bow messed him up, not acknowledging his own weakness. Antinous tells him that it is actually his lack of strength and then tells Melanthius to start a fire and bring some lard so they can grease the bow, so he does. After everyone goes, Antinous and Eurymachus are the only two men left in the contest. The beggar sees Philoetius and Eumaeus leaving the hall and asks them if he were to show up, would they be on Odysseus’s side or the suitors side when it all came down to it. Both of them say that they would be on Odysseus’s side. Then the beggar reveals that he is actually Odysseus and says that he knows they are the only two that are truly loyal to him. He says that if he ends up winning the fight with the help of the gods, he will take care of them for the rest of their lives. Then he shows them his scar to prove his identity. All three of them hug and rejoice and then Odysseus says they have to go back inside so nobody gets suspicious. He tells Eumaeus that he has to give the bow to Odysseus and tells Philoetius that he has to lock everybody inside. Eurymachus can’t get the bow strung and says they will all be laughed at for not being able to string Odysseus’s bow. Antinous says that won’t happen and says that he can’t string it today because it is a holiday for Apollo, who is the archer god. He tells Eurymachus that they should just leave everything as it is, eat and drink, and then come back tomorrow. Odysseus, still disguised as the beggar to the suitors, says that he wants to try shooting the bow. Antinous says that he doesn’t deserve the chance to string it and throws numerous insults at him. Penelope yells at Antinous for not giving him a chance just because he is a beggar and says he has no chance of marrying her if he actually is able to string it. Eurymachus says that they aren’t worried about him marrying he, but they are worried about him showing them up. Penelope tells them to let the beggar have a chance. Telemachus comes back at her and tells her to be quiet and go take care of her housework in her room where she belongs because this is men’s business, so she does. Eumaeus tries to bring Odysseus the bow, but gets yelled at, so he stops. Telemachus defend him and tells him to keep going. Eumaeus gives Odysseus the bow and tells Eurycleia to lock all of the women in their rooms. Philoetius locks everyone in while Odysseus starts looking over the bow. Many of the suitors make smart comments towards him. Odysseus shoots the bow through all of the axes. He tells Telemachus that he hasn’t been a terrible guest and that they should prepare to give the suitors what is coming to them. Hannah Millirons Greek Civilization September 20, 2016 Odyssey Book 22 Odysseus’s true identity was revealed to the suitors once he made the shot and took off his raggedy clothes. He aimed at Antinous and shot him in the neck. There was an uproar once the suitors saw Antinous on the ground bleeding and they ran down the hall looking for weapons, which weren’t there. They underestimate him and don’t realize that this was all planned. Odysseus says that they are getting their payback for thinking that he wouldn’t come home and for trying to take his wife while destroying his house in the process. The suitors look for a way to escape, but there isn’t one. Eurymachus tries to plead for mercy from Odysseus and says that he has killed the ring leader, so why punish everyone else? They will pay him back for everything they have taken. Odysseus doesn’t put up with this though and says that even if every suitor gave everything they owned, it still wouldn’t stop him from killing them. Eurymachus says that they have to fight back against Odysseus or they will all die. He charges at Odysseus and Odysseus shoots him in the chest. Amphinomus rushed at him too and Telemachus kills him with his sword. Telemachus goes and gets armor for Odysseus, Eumaeus, Philoetius, and himself. Odysseus picks off the suitors one by one until Telemachus gets back. Eumaeus covers the back door so nobody can escape and Agelaus plans to take him down so they can run for help. Melanthius tells him it won’t work and that he will go get armor from the same room Telemachus did. Melanthius got shields and weapons and gave them to the suitors. Odysseus knows this won’t be easy when he sees them suiting up. Telemachus tells Eumaeus to close the door to the weapon room and see who is behind this: one of the women or Melanthius. Eumaeus sees Melanthius going to get more weapons and tells Odysseus. Odysseus tells Eumaeus to tie him up and torture him, so Philoetius goes with him and they do. Eumaeus says to Melanthius that now he really will be on watch, making fun of him being tied and hoisted up into the air. Athena, disguised as Mentor, comes to help Odysseus and the suitors see him getting help. The suitors tell Mentor not to help Odysseus because they will kill him and his family and take all of his things once they kill Odysseus and his men. Athena/Mentor yells at Odysseus for not being as tough as he was in the Trojan war and says that he needs to man up and not hold anything back. Agelaus, one of the only suitors left, starts coming up with a game plan and says they can win since there is only three others on Odysseus’s side. They tried to attack Odysseus and his crew, but Athena messed up their ability to shoot straight. Odysseus tells his men that they must fight back now, so they do and they each kill one. The other suitors get together and attack again. Athena make their shots go wrong again, but two of them nick Telemachus and Eumaeus. Odysseus and his men once again kill six more. The rest of the suitors run down the hall, away from Odysseus and his men, who are now chasing them. As they are running, Odysseus, Telemachus, Eumaeus, and Philoetius are picking off men left and right as they run down the hallway. Some of the suitors start begging Odysseus for their lives, but he is ruthless and keeps killing until there are only two left. Telemachus says that Phemius and Medon are loyal and Odysseus spares them. Odysseus tells Medon and Phemius to go sit in the yard while he finishes what he started. All of the suitors inside are dead. Odysseus tells Telemachus to go get Eurycleia so that he can tell her something. Eurycleia sees all of the dead bodies and Odysseus tells her that she can be happy, but she can’t show it because it would be disrespectful to the dead (as if killing all of them wasn’t disrespectful.) Odysseus tells Eurycleia to tell him all of the maids who have dishonored him. She says that she will, but wants to get Penelope first. Odysseus not to wake her up yet and to bring him all of the disloyal maids. As she is getting the women, Odysseus tells Telemachus to carry all of the dead bodies out of the house and then get the women to help him clean the entire house. Then he says to torture them for sleeping with the suitors and then kill them. They all clean and then go outside, where Telemachus hangs nooses around their necks. Then they butcher Melanthius and feed him to the dogs. Odysseus tells Eurycleia to bring him sulfur and fire so he can fumigate his house to get the smell out. Then bring Penelope and all of the other women downstairs. Eurycleia offers to bring him clean clothes first and he says no. Then the women come down and praise Odysseus. Hannah Millirons Greek Civilization September 20, 2016 Odyssey Book 23 Eurycleia tells Penelope that Odysseus is finally home and that he has killed all of the suitors so she doesn’t have to deal with them anymore. Penelope tells her she is crazy because she doesn’t believe her. Eurycleia assures her that he has come home and Penelope asks her to tell exactly how he killed all of them. Eurycleia says she didn’t see it happen and didn’t ask, but tells what she heard and saw after they were all dead. Penelope tells her not to brag about it yet because one of the gods must have helped and says that it was someone else and not Odysseus. Eurycleia tells her about how she saw the scar on his leg. Penelope finally goes down stairs and sees Odysseus for herself. She sits across from him for a long time in silence. Telemachus asks why she is holding back and says that nobody else would ignore him like that. She says she is so in awe that she can’t speak and that if it really is him, he will be able to prove it. Odysseus tells Telemachus to let Penelope come talk to him out in the hallway alone. Telemachus and Odysseus talk about a plan for what to do about covering up what happened with the suitors. Odysseus says they should all clean themselves up and then they can sing and dance and have a party. When people walk by, they’ll think it’s a wedding and word won’t spread before they can escape to somewhere else. They all did this and the passersby think that Penelope is marrying a random suitor. Odysseus takes a bath and Athena makes him look even more handsome so he could talk to Penelope. Odysseus tells Penelope that she has a cold heart because no other woman would care less than it seems like she does. She tells Eurycleia to bring his bed out in order to test him (it can’t be moved because it is attached to a tree.) He says that nobody but a god could move it because nobody would be strong enough to do it. He describes how he built it and Penelope finally sees that it really is him. She cries and hugs and kisses him because she is so happy. She tells him not to be mad at her for not showing affection as soon as she saw him. She says she acted this way because she was afraid an imposter would come and try to take his place. But now she knows it really is Odysseus since he knew the secret about the bed. Odysseus tells her that they aren’t out of the clear yet, but they can just worry about it in the morning. Penelope tells him that he can come to bed with her whenever he wants, but he should first tell her what their obstacle is. He asks why she wants to know and then tells her the story. He says that Tiresias told him to find people that have never heard of the sea, don’t use salt, and have never seen a ship. He says once he finds someone who fits these qualities, he has to make a sacrifice to Poseidon and then he can go home. If he does this, he will die a peaceful, painless death once he has had a full life. Penelope says that this isn’t bad news because he will have a peaceful death. Odysseus tells her that he is going to visit his father in the morning since he has had a lot of suffering because of Odysseus. Word will spread fast that he killed all the suitors, so none of the women in the house should speak to anyone or go outside. So Odysseus, Telemachus, Eumaeus, and Philoetius set off on their journey. Hannah Millirons Greek Civilization September 20, 2016 Odyssey Book 24 Hermes leads all of the ghosts of the suitors to the underworld. Achilles and Agamemnon start talking about their war stories from the Trojan War. Agamemnon is still bitter about how his unfaithful wife killed him. When those two see the suitors' ghosts entering, Agamemnon asks why all of them are there. Amphimedon, one of the suitors, explains what just happened to them and says that everything is Penelope’s fault. Agamemnon is happy for Odysseus since Penelope was faithful to him after all that time. Meanwhile, Odysseus goes Laertes's fields. He sends Telemachus, Eumaeus, and Philoetius up to the farmhouse to make food for all of them. Odysseus finds his father alone. He is scraggly and is digging up a plant. He decides to test his father to make sure that he still has his back. He says he looks bad and pretends to think he is a slave. Then he says he is trying to find out about his old friend, who happens to be Odysseus. Laertes says he is in the right place, but he isn’t there. Then he asks how long has it been since he has seen Odysseus. He thinks that he is dead. Then Laertes asks who he is; Odysseus says that his name is Eperitus and it has been 5 years since he has seen him. Laertes gets visibly upset and Odysseus reveals his true identity. Laertes asks him to prove it and he shows the scar and tells stories from his childhood. They hug and go back to Laertes’s house where Eumaeus, Phoetius, and Telemachus are making dinner. Laertes cleans himself up and Athena makes him look young and strong again. Dolius greets Odysseus and they all eat together. Meanwhile, in town, the rumor about the killings in Odysseus's house has spread all around town and people started taking their loved ones and burying them. Eupeithes, Antinous’s father, says that the citizens must act against Odysseus now before it’s too late. Medon tells them that he had help from a god, so it isn’t all his fault. Athena and Zeus are talking about whether they should let them fight it out or if they should intervene. Zeus says that since Athena wanted this to happen in the first place, then they should just let it be and Odysseus should be king of Ithaca. Once they finish eating, Odysseus says that someone should look outside to see if the suitors’ loved ones are coming. They see the mob of them getting closer and get themselves ready to fight. Athena gave Laertes strength to fight and he kills Eupeithes. Odysseus and the other men charge at the mob to kill them, but Athena stops it all. The mob members run for their lives. Zeus tells Odysseus to restrain himself and stop fighting for good.