Odysseus Study Guide Terms

Laertes
Odysseus’ father who left when he was young, but was reunited with Odysseus at the end of the Epic
Teiresias
Blind prophet in Hades who told Odysseus what would happen when he and his men arrived at Thrinacia and warned him not to touch the cattle of the Sun-god
Ithaca
Home of Odysseus and his main motivation throughout the Epic
Troy
Land where the Trojan War took place and the starting point of Odysseus’ journey home
Laestrygonians
Giant cannibals who dropped stones and destroyed 11 out of 12 ships in Odysseus’ fleet while he was journeying towards Aeaea
Hermes
Messenger god who guides Odysseus up the mountain Circe’s castle and gives him an herb, moly, to prevent Circe’s spell from working
Alcinous
King of the Phaeacians who housed and aided Odysseus in exchange for his story
Poseidon
God of the Sea who disliked Odysseus and prolonged his journey home
Circe
Sorcerous goddess who was the lover of Odysseus and turned half of his men into swine; kept him on her island for a year before releasing him
Polyphemus
Cyclops who was tricked and blinded by Odysseus (Nohbdy) after consuming 6 of his 12 best men
Athene
Goddess who watched over and protected Odysseus
Helen
Queen of Troy
Eurymachus
Rival of Telemachus and one of the “Leader Suitors”
Scylla
6-headed, 12-footed, female, grey, monster-like rock creature that barks like a dog and eats anything near it; consumed 6 of Odysseus men
Aeolus
God of the wind who aided Odysseus by giving him the west wind
Elpenor
Drunken man of Odysseus who fell of Circe’s castle and was seen by Odysseus in the Land of the Dead
Swine
The animal Circe turned some of Odysseus’ men into
Cicones
People who were tortured and plundered by Odysseus and his crew; got their revenge by killing half of his crew
Ino
Goddess who gives Odysseus a veil that protects him during a storm
Sirens
Dangerous women who lured sailors to their deaths by singing
Calypso
Sea nymph who held Odysseus for 7 years
Menelaus
King of Troy and host of Telemachus
Homer
Blind author of the Odyssey
Telemachus
Son of Odysseus who aided him in battle against the suitors
Unfaithful Servants
Those who were unfaithful to Odysseus’ family and sided with the suitors after the constant abuse from them
Hades
Land of the Dead were Teiresias was found
Trojan War
War from which Odysseus spends 20 years returning from
Odysseus
Main character in the Odyssey with a character flaw of pride
Argos
Odysseus’ loyal dog who died shortly after seeing Odysseus return from his 20 year journey’
Charybdis
Whirlpool that swallowed everything around it 3 times a day every 8 hours
Helios
Sun-god who owned the cattle on Thrinacia
Antinous
Leader of the suitors who taunted and attacked Odysseus, who was disguised as a beggar, with a stool
Zeus
King god who conflicted with Odysseus and sent a lightning bolt which destroyed his ship and crew
Lotus
Anyone who ate this flower became forgetful and lost their desire for home
Eumaus
Odysseus’ swineherd who took him in when Odysseus was disguised as a beggar
Penelope
Odysseus’ wife who remained faithful and hopeful of Odysseus’ return
Beggar Disguise
Disguise given by Athena to hide Odysseus identity when he returned to Ithaca
Odysseus/Penelope’s Secret
The location of their bedroom; home was built around a tree
Shroud Weaving
How Penelope delayed having to choose a suitor for years
Archery Competition
Decided who Penelope chose as her new husband
Nausicaa
Young daughter of Alcinous who is tall and beautiful as a goddess
Moly
Herb with black roots and a white blossom given to Odysseus by Hermes
Cronus
Father of Zeus
Nestor
King of Pylos; the Gerenian Charioteer visited by Telemachus