The Odyssey: Books 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13 Test + Essay Qs

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Book 8 Summary
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The next day, Alcinous calls an assembly of his Phaeacian counselors. Athena, back from Athens, ensures attendance by spreading word that the topic of discussion will be the godlike visitor who recently appeared on the island. At the assembly, Alcinous proposes providing a ship for his visitor so that the man can return to his homeland. The measure is approved, and Alcinous invites the counselors to his palace for a feast and celebration of games in honor of his guest. There, a blind bard named Demodocus sings of the quarrel between Odysseus and Achilles at Troy. Everyone listens with pleasure except Odysseus, who weeps at the painful memories that the story recalls. The king notices Odysseus’s grief and ends the feast so that the games can begin. The games include the standard lineup of boxing, wrestling, racing, and throwing of the discus. At one point, Odysseus is asked to participate. Still overcome by his many hardships, he declines. One of the young athletes, Broadsea, then insults him, which goads his pride to action. Odysseus easily wins the discus toss and then challenges the Phaeacian athletes to any other form of competition they choose. The discussion becomes heated, but Alcinous diffuses the situation by insisting that Odysseus join them in another feast, at which the Phaeacian youth entertain him and prove their preeminence in song and dance. Demodocus performs again, this time a light song about a tryst between Ares and Aphrodite. Afterward, Alcinous and each of the young Phaeacian men, including Broadsea, give Odysseus gifts to take with him on his journey home. At dinner that night, Odysseus asks Demodocus to sing of the Trojan horse and the sack of Troy, but as he listens to the accomplished minstrel he again breaks down. King Alcinous again notices and stops the music. He asks Odysseus at last to tell him who he is, where he is from, and where he is going.
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8 1. Discuss Athena’s appearance at the opening of Book 8.
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Athena urges the citizens to learn about Odysseus’ journey home, disguised as Alcinous’ herald. She made Odysseus appear taller and more massive so the Phaeacians would be more kind and respectful, in hopes of helping Odysseus have an easier return home.
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8 2. Why must people learn about this “stranger?”
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The people were curious about the stranger. They were gazing in wonder at the seasoned man of war, as well as his tall and broad appearance. It is also part of xenia to welcome a stranger. The people need to like Odysseus because that is is only way to get home.
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8 3. Are there formulaic passages in Book 8? Where? Why?
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Yes, there are. When each event is explained (the footrace, wrestling, jumping, discus, and boxing) they are each explained in the same way, ending with who won the race. This adds emphasis on the races and makes them seem long and important.
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8 4. Why does Homer include a bard?
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The bard, Demodocus, is included because he has such great gifts. He is able to sing the songs of fighting heroes. This made Odysseus emotional and is a customary action for guests. He is also blind like Homer! (Kind of like a story inside a story. Everyone respects the bard and is is treated well: served food/wine, nice chair. He is portraying himself nicely!)
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8 5. Why is Odysseus ashamed?
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Odysseys is crying because of this bad memory. (The struggle between Odysseus and Achilles) He does not want to be seen crying. Only Alcinous sees him.
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8 6. Why does Alcinous suggest games?
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He feels bad that Odysseus is crying, so wants to change the subject. He also wants to make sure Odysseus can report to his homeland how the Phaeacians excel at boxing, wrestling, jumping, and speed of foot.
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8 7. What kind of competitor is Odysseus? Why?
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He wants to get revenge and will never settle for being the “losing” one or the “lower ranked” one (lots of pride). When Broadsea exclaims that Odysseus is unathletic, Odysseus calls him a reckless fool and then throws the discus the farthest. He has a competitive nature and is used to having to fight others. (At war, Poseidon, Calypso, etc.) He is good at all challenges except running.
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8 8. Why does the bard sing of Ares & Aphrodite?
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Alcinous wants to change the subject from the fighting. He understands Odysseus, but wants to show Odysseus a new Phaeacian skill: footwork, song, and dance. It is also a pretty, classic, and emotional piece. Also, there are affairs are in Odysseus’ life. (Calpyso and Penelope: is she loyal?)
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8 9. Why does he sing of Troy? What effect does this have?
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He sings a song about the Trojan War horse. Odysseus begins to cry again.
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8 10. What was the “cliff hanger?” Why was it used?
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Alcinous asks for Odysseus’ own war story and asks what is upsetting him about the song. This is a cliffhanger because the reader has been trying to deduce Odysseus’ past for the entire book. The cliff hanger adds suspense, and the reader knows that some important information is about to be disclosed.
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8 10. Describe Laodamas.
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He is cocky; confident. He challenges Odysseus and is the king’s son. He wins the boxing.
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8 11. Motifs in book 8?
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Disguises: Athena Xenia: everyone rallies to welcome Odysseus, try to prove Phaeacians worth, make the herald feel welcome Storytelling: bard tells stories
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8 12. Is Odysseus too prideful or is his pride justified? Does he effectively check his pride?
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No, he is NOT TOO PRIDEFUL. He keeps it in check and still is polite even though this is his personality. He thanks Nausicaa for saving his life. He says, “Even at home I’ll pray to you as a deathless goddess all my days to come. You saved my life, dear girl.” Page 206 Also, he is forgiving of Broadsea. Page 204: “Tactful Odysseus answered him in kind: “And a warm farewell to you, too, my friend…May the gods grant you good fortune – may you never miss this sword, this gift you give with such salutes. You’ve made amends in full.” He tells King Alcinous, “…you boasted Phaecia’s dancers are the best – they prove your point – I watch and I’m amazed!” page 203 It is justified because it is due to all his successes that he has pride. The Phaeacians were not displaying xenia when they challenged him. TOO MUCH PRIDE: “Arrogant. Cocky; he should be more grateful of all the help he is receiving. He also requests all his own songs.
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Book 9 Summary
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Reluctantly, Odysseus tells the Phaeacians the sorry tale of his wanderings. From Troy, the winds sweep him and his men to Ismarus, city of the Cicones. The men plunder the land and, carried away by greed, stay until the reinforced ranks of the Cicones turn on them and attack. Odysseus and his crew finally escape, having lost six men per ship. A storm sent by Zeus sweeps them along for nine days before bringing them to the land of the Lotus-eaters, where the natives give some of Odysseus’s men the intoxicating fruit of the lotus. As soon as they eat this fruit, they lose all thoughts of home and long for nothing more than to stay there eating more fruit. Only by dragging his men back to the ship and locking them up can Odysseus get them off the island. Odysseus and his men then sail through the murky night to the land of the Cyclopes, a rough and uncivilized race of one-eyed giants. After making a meal of wild goats captured on an island offshore, they cross to the mainland. There they immediately come upon a cave full of sheep and crates of milk and cheese. The men advise Odysseus to snatch some of the food and hurry off, but, to his and his crew’s detriment, he decides to linger. The cave’s inhabitant soon returns—it is the Cyclops Polyphemus, the son of Poseidon. Polyphemus makes a show of hospitality at first, but he soon turns hostile. He devours two of Odysseus’s men on the spot and imprisons Odysseus and the rest in his cave for future meals. Odysseus wants to take his sword to Polyphemus right then, but he knows that only Polyphemus is strong enough to move the rock that he has placed across the door of his cave. Odysseus thus devises and executes a plan. The next day, while Polyphemus is outside pasturing his sheep, Odysseus finds a wooden staff in the cave and hardens it in the fire. When Polyphemus returns, Odysseus gets him drunk on wine that he brought along from the ship. Feeling jovial, Polyphemus asks Odysseus his name. Odysseus replies that his name is “Nobody” (9.410). As soon as Polyphemus collapses with intoxication, Odysseus and a select group of his men drive the red-hot staff into his eye. Polyphemus wakes with a shriek, and his neighbors come to see what is wrong, but they leave as soon as he calls out, “Nobody’s killing me” (9.455). When morning comes, Odysseus and his men escape from the cave, unseen by the blind Polyphemus, by clinging to the bellies of the monster’s sheep as they go out to graze. Safe on board their ships and with Polyphemus’s flock on board as well, Odysseus calls to land and reveals his true identity. With his former prisoners now out of reach, the blind giant lifts up a prayer to his father, Poseidon, calling for vengeance on Odysseus.
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9 1. How does Odysseus identify himself?
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He identifies himself as Odysseus, son of Laertes, from Ithaca.
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9 2. Cicones
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Ismarus was the Cicones’ stronghold. The Cicones broke down Odysseus’ army and beat them down (took 6 people from Odysseus’ ships). They were fierce people. However, Odysseus wanted to invade the Cicones and steal their supplies to begin with.
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9 3. Lotus Eaters
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Reached this land on the 10th day. They gave Odysseus Lotus (mellow fruit and flower) to taste. Anyone who ate the lotus lost all desire to return (wanted to stay with the Lotus Eaters) Odysseus, however, forced his crew to come back and not eat the Lotus.
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9 4. Cyclops Describe the Cyclop’s appearance and behavior.
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High and mighty, lawless brutes. A giant’s lair – never mixed with others. A monster built like no mortal.
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9 What guest gift does Odysseus offer Cyclops? Why?
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Wine so he gets drunk.
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9 Discuss the imagery in the middle of page 218.
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Large flat rocks loaded with drying cheeses…split into three groups…vessels, pails and hammered buckets he used for milking
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9 What is significant about Cyclops’ behavior in line 280+?
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He was busy doing his work, but once he had finished all his chores, he immediately asked “Strangers! Who are you?” He is curious and angry.
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9 What lie does Odysseus tell?
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Says his name is Nobody
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9 Check imagery at the bottom of page 220.
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“…their brains gushed out all over, soaked the floor – and ripping them limb from limb to fix his meal Cyclops stuffed his enormous gut with human flesh. Page 215, 218: 218: Description of Cyclops cave/setting: “…the large flat racks loaded with drying cheeses, the folds crowded with young lambs and kids, split into three groups – here the spring born, here mid-yearlings, here the fresh suck
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9 What name does Odysseus tell Cyclops?
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He says his name is ‘Nobody’. This is his second trick to Odysseus (first is giving him the wine) His third lie is that his ship was destroyed upon impact on the island so they were “stuck on the island”. Otherwise, Cyclops would destroy it.
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9 What guest gift does Cyclops promise Odysseus?
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Odysseus asks Polythemus for a guest gift. (wine)This works out because then the Cyclops’ gift: His gift: “Nobody last of all his friends – I’ll eat the others first!” At the end, Polythemus promises a bad journey home from Odysseus, or when he reaches home – he will not reach his land pleasantly.
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9 Find a simile and be able to discuss imagery on page 223.
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“Its crackling roots blazed and hissed – as a blacksmith plunges a glowing ax or adze in an ice-cold bath and the metal screeches steam and its temper hardens…”
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9 What plan does Odysseus use to escape?
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He used the flock of well-fed rams with thick fleece.
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9 Discuss Odysseus’ behavior as they are leaving on the ship. What results?
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He is relentless in taunting the Cyclops. This hurts the crew, because the Cyclops throws boulders down at them which makes the waves rocky and the surf rough.
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9 Proof: Odysseys was at fault, not Polyphemus
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He taunted him at the end. Book 10: Even the king realizes that Odysseus has been cursed
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9 Proof: Polyphemus was at fault, not Odysseus
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‘Stranger, he grumbled back from his brutal heart,; you must be a fool, stranger, or come from nowhere, telling me to fear the gods or avoid their wrath! He was the one who aggravated Odysseus in the first place. Did not follow xenia – no guest gift. He majorly offends the Gods – page 220 (does not like Zeus)
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Book 10 Summary
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The Achaeans sail from the land of the Cyclopes to the home of Aeolus, ruler of the winds. Aeolus presents Odysseus with a bag containing all of the winds, and he stirs up a westerly wind to guide Odysseus and his crew home. Within ten days, they are in sight of Ithaca, but Odysseus’s shipmates, who think that Aeolus has secretly given Odysseus a fortune in gold and silver, tear the bag open. The winds escape and stir up a storm that brings Odysseus and his men back to Aeolia. This time, however, Aeolus refuses to help them, certain that the gods hate Odysseus and wish to do him harm. Lacking wind, the Achaeans row to the land of the Laestrygonians, a race of powerful giants whose king, Antiphates, and unnamed queen turn Odysseus’s scouts into dinner. Odysseus and his remaining men flee toward their ships, but the Laestrygonians pelt the ships with boulders and sink them as they sit in the harbor. Only Odysseus’s ship escapes. From there, Odysseus and his men travel to Aeaea, home of the beautiful witch-goddess Circe. Circe drugs a band of Odysseus’s men and turns them into pigs. When Odysseus goes to rescue them, Hermes approaches him in the form of a young man. He tells Odysseus to eat an herb called moly to protect himself from Circe’s drug and then lunge at her when she tries to strike him with her sword. Odysseus follows Hermes’ instructions, overpowering Circe and forcing her to change his men back to their human forms. Odysseus soon becomes Circe’s lover, and he and his men live with her in luxury for a year. When his men finally persuade him to continue the voyage homeward, Odysseus asks Circe for the way back to Ithaca. She replies he must sail to Hades, the realm of the dead, to speak with the spirit of Tiresias, a blind prophet who will tell him how to get home. The next morning, Odysseus rouses his men for the imminent departure. He discovers, however, that the youngest man in his crew, Elpenor, had gotten drunk the previous night, slept on the roof, and, when he heard the men shouting and marching in the morning, fell from the roof and broke his neck. Odysseus explains to his men the course that they must take, which they are displeased to learn is rather meandering.
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10 1. The home of Aeolus: Who is he?
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Aeolus is Hippotas’ son. He is a king of Aeolian island with 12 children.
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10 What gift does he give Odysseus?
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He gives Odysseus a sack with skin of a full-grown ox to bind the winds inside.
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10 How does Odysseus lose that gift?
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His crewmates were jealous of all the plunder (gold, silver, loot) that Odysseus was taking home from Troy. They thought Aeolus favorited Odysseus and peaked inside the sack, jealous and greedy. This shows that there is a lack of trust within the crew. All the winds burst out and swept the boat back to sea. They go back to try to get another gift from him but King Aeolus says no.
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10 2. The land of the Laestrygonians: Describe them.
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They are a craggy people. They are a people of opposites. King, queen, daughter. Odysseus was selfish because he anchored his ship so only he can leave in a hurry. He also sends 2 of his crewmates to investigate instead of going himself.
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10 What do they do?
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They welcome them inside; however the giant-like men attack everyone, throw rocks, and eats some men.
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10 Imagery Laestrygonians
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“They speared the crews like fish and whisked them home to make their grisly meal.”
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10 What is significant about the place Odysseus anchored his ship?
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He brought his ship to a port without a sound as a god eased her into a harbor safe and sung…” He could easily access his ship here.
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10 3. Describe Circe’s palace as it appears on page 237. What surrounds it?
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“Built of dressed stone on a cleared raise of land. Mountain wolves and lions were roaming round the grounds – she’s bewitched them herself, she gave them magic drugs.”
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10 4. What does Circe do to the men?
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She invited them all inside when they hailed her, mixed them a potion with drugs to erase any memories of home and then struck them with her wand to turn them into pigs. However, they still think like men, but in a pig body!
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10 5. Who is Eurylochus?
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He is the leader of one of the groups. He stays outside of palace, suspicious of a trap, and is not turned into a pig. He tries to persuade Odysseus to leave now.
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10 6. How does Hermes help Odysseus? What is moly? What does Hermes tell Odysseus to do when he confronts Circe?
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Hermes instructs Odysseus on what to do upon entering Circe’s palace. He gives him moly (white flower with black root), a magic herb that would make Circe’s potion malfunction. He tells Odysseus to have Circe swear to never harm himself, but he should not refuse the goddess’ offer to sleep together after she makes her promise.
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10 7. What happens at the bottom of page 242? How is this a transformation?
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She transformed all the crew members back into men again. They were younger than ever, taller, more handsome, and filled with with emotion.
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10 8. How long do they spend with Circe? What happens at the top of page 245?
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They spend a year with Circe. At the top of 245, Odysseus realizes it is time to finally return home.
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10 9. Circe sends Odysseus to Hades with very specific instructions. What does she tell him to do? Why does he go?
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He is to travel to the House of Death to see Persephone, there to comfort/consult the ghost of Tiresias, seer of Thebes. He goes because in order to be granted passage home from Circe, he has to do this.
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10 10. Who is Elpenor? What happened to him?
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He is a young member on the crew. He fell to his death from a roof after he strayed from Circe’s palace, wanting cool air. He was sodden with wine and forgot to use the ladder when dawn came. They were supposed to give him a proper burial, but they did not!
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10 11. (ESSAY QUESTION) Who does Circe remind you of?
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1) Calypso; because they both hold Odysseus captive in a seductive manner. They both are nymphs and actually have the same epithet. (“nymph with lovely braids”). They both give Odysseus food and drink (xenia). They both do not refuse them to leave; they let them go. Odysseys falls in love with both of them. Odysseus is careful around both of them (makes Circe promise to not use tricks on him, does not believe Calypso and thinks it is trickery when she releases him) Hermes makes her change them back into men; Hermes makes Capyso release Odysseus. Calpyso gives Odysseus directions, Circe makes Odysseus and his crew go to see the dead. 2) Helen: both magical and beautiful 3) She is different because the men are scared of her powers, unlike weak female characters like Penelope and Nausicaa.
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10 12. Why did they stay for so long?
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They were enjoying the xenia. They wanted rest… sort of procrastinating going back. They knew it was safe at the palace. Some crew members want to leave, but Odysseus does not. This is the opposite from with the Lotus Eaters, when Odysseus is the one who wants to leave. But, it was really with magic! When Circe walked into the room, he was swayed to stay. When he was alone with his crew, he did not have as great a passion to leave. (Nymphs are enchanting, but always dangerous)
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Book 11 Summary
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Odysseus travels to the River of Ocean in the land of the Cimmerians. There he pours libations and performs sacrifices as Circe earlier instructs him to do to attract the souls of the dead. The first to appear is that of Elpenor, the crewman who broke his neck falling from Circe’s roof. He begs Odysseus to return to Circe’s island and give his body a proper burial. Odysseus then speaks with the Theban prophet Tiresias, who reveals that Poseidon is punishing the Achaeans for blinding his son Polyphemus. He foretells Odysseus’s fate—that he will return home, reclaim his wife and palace from the wretched suitors, and then make another trip to a distant land to appease Poseidon. He warns Odysseus not to touch the flocks of the Sun when he reaches the land of Thrinacia; otherwise, he won’t return home without suffering much more hardship and losing all of his crew. When Tiresias departs, Odysseus calls other spirits toward him. He speaks with his mother, Anticleia, who updates him on the affairs of Ithaca and relates how she died of grief waiting for his return. He then meets the spirits of various famous men and heroes and hears the stories of their lives and deaths. Odysseus now cuts short the tale and asks his Phaeacian hosts to allow him to sleep, but the king and queen urge him to continue, asking if he met any of the Greeks who fell at Troy in Hades. He relates his encounters there: he meets Agamemnon, who tells him of his murder at the hands of his wife, Clytemnestra. Next he meets Achilles, who asks about his son, Neoptolemus. Odysseus then tries to speak with Ajax, an Achaean who killed himself after he lost a contest with Odysseus over the arms of Achilles, but Ajax refuses to speak and slips away. He sees Heracles, King Minos, the hunter Orion, and others. He witnesses the punishment of Sisyphus, struggling eternally to push a boulder over a hill only to have it roll back down whenever it reaches the top. He then sees Tantalus, agonized by hunger and thirst. Tantalus sits in a pool of water overhung by bunches of grapes, but whenever he reaches for the grapes, they rise out of grasp, and whenever he bends down to drink, the water sinks out of reach. Odysseus soon finds himself mobbed by souls wishing to ask about their relatives in the world above. He becomes frightened, runs back to his ship, and immediately sails away.
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LIST 6 PEOPLE FROM KINGDOM OF THE DEAD (and EXPLAIN THEM)
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Elpenor Agamemnon Anticleia Achilles Ajax Tiresias (EAAAAT)
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11 Be able to identify important people from Land of the Dead including Elpenor, Agamemnon, Anticleia, Achilles, Ajax, Tiresias, etc.
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Elpenor: The deceased crewmate that died after he fell off a ladder, drunk at Circe’s palace. Here, we see that Odysseus cares about his crew. He promises him that he will be remembered and that his story will be told. Agamemnon: Greek king, Menelaus’ brother. His wife betrayed him. He is Atreus’ son. He has a son, Aegisthus. Anticleia: Odysseus’ mother, who died of grief, longing for him Achilles: Greek war hero, son of Peleus, greatest of the Achaeans. He wanted to know the news of his prince son. Odysseus tells him that his son had many heroic actions at the end of the war. He says he would rather be the lowest of the lowest lving than in the land of the dead. Ajax: Greek hero/warrior, son of Telamon. He killed himself after he lost a contest with Odysseus over the arms of Achilles. He still holds a grudge against Odysseus because he was awarded a prize and Ajax was not, so he killed himself. Tiresias: The blind prophet whose help Odysseus seeks in the Underworld. Gives prophecy that his journey home will be really difficult and that most of the crew will probably die if they eat the cattle of Helios.
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11 2. How does Anticleia, Odysseus’ mother, die? What does she say about Laertes?
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She dies of grief longing for her son at war. Laertes (Odysseus’ father) keeps to his farm, never goes into town, and is of old age. His grief grows as he longs for Odysseus’ return. She tells him to remember everything he has seen so he can tell his wife when he returns to Ithaca.
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11 3.) Tiresias tells Odysseus that his crew will die and never make it home if they do what?
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He foretells Odysseus’s fate—that he will return home, reclaim his wife and palace from the wretched suitors, and then make another trip to a distant land to appease Poseidon. He warns Odysseus not to touch the flocks of the Sun when he reaches the land of Thrinacia; otherwise, he won’t return home without suffering much more hardship and losing all of his crew.
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11 4.) What does Agamemnon have to say about women?
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He is angry at his wife, Clytemnestra, who betrayed him. He calls her “treacherous queen” and a bad name. He thinks that women are deadly and bestial. He murdered Clytemnestra. However, he says that Penelope is not like other cruel women, and that Odysseus should not worry. But, Odysseus should also sneak into Ithaca and “see what is going on” before barging in and expect Penelope to love him.
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11 5.) Why does Odysseus rush back to his ship and leave quickly?
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The dead came surging around him, thousands of them raising unearthly cries – asking Odysseus about their alive family members. Odysseus was terrorized and panicked that Queen Persephone might send up a monstrous head. He rushed to his ship.
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Book 12 Summary
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Odysseus returns to Aeaea, where he buries Elpenor and spends one last night with Circe. She describes the obstacles that he will face on his voyage home and tells him how to negotiate them. As he sets sail, Odysseus passes Circe’s counsel on to his men. They approach the island of the lovely Sirens, and Odysseus, as instructed by Circe, plugs his men’s ears with beeswax and has them bind him to the mast of the ship. He alone hears their song flowing forth from the island, promising to reveal the future. The Sirens’ song is so seductive that Odysseus begs to be released from his fetters, but his faithful men only bind him tighter. Once they have passed the Sirens’ island, Odysseus and his men must navigate the straits between Scylla and Charybdis. Scylla is a six-headed monster who, when ships pass, swallows one sailor for each head. Charybdis is an enormous whirlpool that threatens to swallow the entire ship. As instructed by Circe, Odysseus holds his course tight against the cliffs of Scylla’s lair. As he and his men stare at Charybdis on the other side of the strait, the heads of Scylla swoop down and gobble up six of the sailors. Odysseus next comes to Thrinacia, the island of the Sun. He wants to avoid it entirely, but the outspoken Eurylochus persuades him to let his beleaguered crew rest there. A storm keeps them beached for a month, and at first the crew is content to survive on its provisions in the ship. When these run out, however, Eurylochus persuades the other crew members to disobey Odysseus and slaughter the cattle of the Sun. They do so one afternoon as Odysseus sleeps; when the Sun finds out, he asks Zeus to punish Odysseus and his men. Shortly after the Achaeans set sail from Thrinacia, Zeus kicks up another storm, which destroys the ship and sends the entire crew to its death beneath the waves. As had been predicted, only Odysseus survives, and he just barely. The storm sweeps him all the way back to Charybdis, which he narrowly escapes for the second time. Afloat on the broken timbers of his ship, he eventually reaches Ogygia, Calypso’s island. Odysseus here breaks from his story, stating to the Phaeacians that he sees no reason to repeat to them his account of his experience on Ogygia.
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12 How does Circe treat them after they return to bury Elpenor?
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Very nicely. She feels their pain and knows that they have been through a lot. She stocks their boat with food and sends them off with a nice wind.
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12 Be able to describe in detail the Sirens, Scylla, and Charybdis
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Sirens: Creatures who spellbind any man alive. They sing high, thrilling songs that transfix men! Scylla: A grisly monster who lives in a yawning cave. No one could look at her with any joy. She has 12 dangling legs, 6 swaying necks, a hideous head, each with a triple row of fangs. She snatches men with her heads (6 at a time). Charybdis: A monster that 3x a day gulps down dark water and then 3x a day vomits it up. who creates a whirlpool that sucks whole ships down into the sea three times a day.`
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12 How does Odysseus deal with each monster?
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Sirens: Puts beeswax in crewmates ears, Odysseus is tied up on the ship (He wants to hear it for pride, and they need someone able to hear)rtyu Scylla: She snatched 6 men from ship Charybdis: Sail past at top speed
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12 How does he escape the Sirens?
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He escapes them by putting beeswax in crewmates ears so they cannot hear the singing. Odysseus is tied up on the ship so he can listen but not leave the ship.
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12 When he has to choose between Scylla and Charybdis, which does he choose? WHY?
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He chooses to focus on Charybdis, according to Circe’s advice. This is because Scylla is an immortal and can NOT be avoided. He just just let her take 6 of his men.
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12 What does Eurylochus do in this book?
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Eurylochus convinces Odysseus to let the crew stay and rest/eat on the Island of the Sun.
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12 Why do they eat the cattle?
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Men convince to stop and rest on the island. He makes them promise not to eat the cattle. The storm prevents them from sailing again for one month. They run out of food. Odysseus goes inland to pray, and he rests. The crew decides to eat the cattle because they think it is weak to die from starvation and say that later they will make a temple for Helios.
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12 What happens after the men eat the cattle of Helios?
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After the men eat the cattle of Helios, Helios is enraged. They flee the island after 7 days, but are punished at sea by Zeus when their ship is destroyed. Odysseus, at sea, is rescued by Calypso. “It’s between Scylla and Charybdis.” = this means the lesser of two evils, or it’s between a rock and a hard place!”
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Book 13 Summary
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The account of his wanderings now finished, Odysseus looks forward to leaving Scheria. The next day, Alcinous loads his gifts on board the ship that will carry Odysseus to Ithaca. Odysseus sets sail as soon as the sun goes down. He sleeps the whole night, while the Phaeacian crew commands the ship. He remains asleep even when the ship lands the next morning. The crew gently carries him and his gifts to shore and then sails for home. When Poseidon spots Odysseus in Ithaca, he becomes enraged at the Phaeacians for assisting his nemesis. He complains to Zeus, who allows him to punish the Phaeacians. Just as their ship is pulling into harbor at Scheria, the prophecy mentioned at the end of Book 8 is fulfilled: the ship suddenly turns to stone and sinks to the bottom of the sea. The onlookers ashore immediately recognize the consummation of the prophecy and resolve to abandon their custom of helping wayward travelers. Back in Ithaca, Odysseus wakes to find a country that he doesn’t recognize, for Athena has shrouded it in mist to conceal its true form while she plans his next move. At first, he curses the Phaeacians, whom he thinks have duped him and left him in some unknown land. But Athena, disguised as a shepherd, meets him and tells him that he is indeed in Ithaca. With characteristic cunning, Odysseus acts to conceal his identity from her until she reveals hers. Delighted by Odysseus’s tricks, Athena announces that it is time for Odysseus to use his wits to punish the suitors. She tells him to hide out in the hut of his swineherd, Eumaeus. She informs him that Telemachus has gone in search of news of him and gives him the appearance of an old vagabond so that no one will recognize him.
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13 1. Find 2 Homeric similes
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Page 287, “As a man aches for his evening meal when all day long his brace of wine-dark oxen have dragged the bolted plowshare down a fallow field…” Odysseus’ homesickness to a man working on a field. Page 289, “And the ship like a four-horse team careering down the plain, all breaking as one with the whiplash cracking smartly…” The ship is being compared to a horse and carriage.
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13 2. Find foreshadowing that the gods will be mentioned soon
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Page 289, “At the harbor’s head a branching olive stands with a welcome cave nearby it…” Olive branch = Athena Page 289, Poseidon and Zeus’ conversation – Zeus tells Poseidon that he can do whatever he wants, and he takes this offer! Poseidon was angry because his son was blinded and Odysseus has tons of goods, plus the Phaeacians give him even more welcome gifts! (He then hides these gifts) Page 290, “The cave has two ways in, one facing the North Wind, a pathway down for mortals; the other, facing the South, belongs to the gods, no man may go that way…”
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13 3. Athena’s disguise
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A young man, a shepherd boy, yet elegant too, with all the gifts that grace the sons of kings, with a well-cut cloak falling in folds across her shoulders, sandals under her shining feet, a hunting spear in hand. Then, she shows herself to him as a woman.
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13 4. Odysseus’ disguise
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His first ‘disguise’ is as a fugitive from Crete. As a fugitive, he lied that he killed Idomeneus’ son, Orsilochus. Then, as an old man: in squalid rags, ripped and filthy, a staff and beggar’s sack, wrinkled skin. This is to his benefit so people will give him help.
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13 5. Odysseus’ lie (and Athena’s reaction)
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He lied that he was from Crete, a fugitive, and did not know where he was. (He did not want to make a big deal of coming home) Athena tells him he has mastered the art of intrigue, and she adores the fact that he is good at this.
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13 6. Athena’s advice: Where should Odysseus go?
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He should go to the swineherd first (Eumaeus), who is loyal. He is to talk to him and ask him all he knows.
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13 7. Where Athena now needs to go?
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To Sparta, to call Telemachus home. (He journeyed to Lacedaemon rolling hills to see Menelaus)
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13 8. What was Tiresias last piece of advice for Odysseus?
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Make peace with Poseidon! He told Odysseus that Poseidon would make it hard for him since he blinded the Cyclops. He says he may still reach home if only he has the power to curb the wild desire in himself. He says he will come home a broken man – to a world of pain. He tells him his sign: When another traveller falls in with him, he should make a sacrifice to Poseidon (a ram, a bull, and a boar) and then to journey home.
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Essay Question 1: Who is more at fault – Odysseus or his crew?
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ODYSSEUS MORE AT FAULT: He is hubris. He makes Cyclops angry when he taunts him. He does not do the work himself at times – sends two shipmates to find out who lives on the Laestrygonian island. CREW MORE AT FAULT: Release the winds. They also eat the cattle in book 12- they are not as headstrong. They all go in to hail Circe and her singing (except Eurylochus) Odysseus basically saves his crew from Circe by convincing her to turn them back into men. They do not listen to Odysseus when he tells them to not eat the Lotus. ALSO, he is just doing his job as a captain. Book 13: His crew leaves him; they went homebound to Sidon – not checking up on Odysseus and making sure he was okay.
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Essay Question 2: Xenia books 8-13
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Book 8: Alcinous and the Phaecians have a feast for Odysseus; host sporting events in his honor. The bard also sings him songs. Arete also gives him an elegant chest and a golden cup. He is bathed in a hot, steaming, bath. Odysseus cuts a strip of meat for Demodocus (the singer) Book 9: On the Cyclops’s island, he introduces himself and his crew and asks for a gift Book 10: On the Aeolian island, they feasted well and slept well at the palace. King Aeolus gives them a sack, binding the winds inside to calm them. Also, on the Laestrygonian land, King Antiphates and his wife prepare a “welcome” Circe welcomes them and they have a splendid meal. They are bathed and served later once Odysseus befriends Circe. Book 12: Circe serves them food and wine and provides details on what to do when they encounter the monsters. Book 13: King Alcinous gives Odysseus gifts once his story is over
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Essay Question 3: Role of women books 8-13
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Book 8: Women do not compete in the sporting games (weak) Book 10: Circe is powerful, and lures the men with her singing; then turns them into pigs. (Like Calypso!) (strong) Book 11: Odysseus respects his mother. (Strong) Agamemnon hates women and is angry at his wife, who cheated on him, Clytemnestra. He murdered Clytemnestra. (weak) However, he says that Penelope is not like other cruel women, and that Odysseus should not worry. But, Odysseus should also sneak into Ithaca and “see what is going on” before barging in and expect Penelope to love him. ALSO, a grand array of women appeared to Odysseus in the land of the dead. (strong) Book 12: Scylla, Sirens, and Charybdis are all women but deadly monsters. (strong) Book 13: Athena provides helpful, practical advice. (strong)
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Essay Question 4: Disguises books 8-13
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Book 8: Athena disguises Odysseus to make him look taller/massive so the Phaeacians would be kind/respectful to him Book 13: Odysseus awoke after being on the ship, but Athena changes his appearance and made him not know the land of Ithaca. Athena appeaered to him as a young man, then goes back into a woman. Athena will disguise Odysseus as an old man and send him to the pigs while she calls Telemachus home Lacedaemon.
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Essay Question 5: Hubris books 8-13
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Book 8: In response to Broadsea, who thinks Odysseus is unathletic, he throws the heaviest discus very far and says he can win every event Book 9: Leaving the Cyclops, Odysseus calls back and taunts him At Circe’s Palace, he also thinks Eurylochus is stupid and follows his own plan.
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Format
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MULTIPLE CHOICE SHORT ANSWER PASSAGE – LABEL DEVICES – IMAGERY, HOMERIC SIMILES, (CYCLOPS PASSAGE) FORMULAIC PASSAGE: STUFF HAPPENS AND IT KEEPS REPEATING

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