The Odyssey Part 1 Study Questions

Who wrote the Odyssey
Homer wrote the Odyssey

When was the story composed
The story was compossed around 800 BC

What kind of Poem is the Odyssey?
The Odyssey is an epic.

What are some characteristics of an epic poem?
Characteristics of an epic are, Opens in the midst of the story, The setting is vast covering many regions of the world and universe. Begins with the statement of the theme. It uses epithets

What kind of hero does this kind of poem always have?
The poem always has a brave hero

What are the characteristics of a brave hero
The characteristics of a brave hero are wisdom, truth, beauty

What war had Odysseus recently help to win?
Odysseus helped win the Trojan war

How long did the war last?
The ware lasted ten years

Give two reasons the Gods were angry at Odysseus at the beginning of his journey?
He doesn’t follow their directions, he is causing too much destruction

Which of the gods is Odysseus’s primary enemy?
Odysseues enemy is Poseidon

How long does it take Odysseus to reach home after the war?
It takes Odysseus 10 years to get home.

Where is Odysseus’s home?
Odysseus’s home is on the island of Ithaca

How does he feel about his home?
He loves his home and thinks it is beautiful

To whom does Odysseus tell his stories about his adventures?
He tells his stories to Nausicaa and the Phaeacians

What reputation does Odysseus have among men?
He has the reputation of being home-sick

Describe the battle with the Cicones. Where did it take place?
The battle of the Cicones took place in Ismara, but they get over thrown because they got drunk and were disrespectful.

Who were the Lotus eaters?
They were a group of men who lived on an island that eat Lotus.

Why were the Lotus Eaters dangerous to Odysseus and his men?
They gave Odysseus and his men fruit that made them forget about their homes and made the want to stay

What kind of men were the Cyclops
The Cyclops were large man like creatures and instead of two eyes had only one

What is the name of the Cyclops that Odysseus meets?
The name of the Cyclops is Polyphemus

Who is this Cyclops father?
The Cylops father is Poseidon

How many men does Odysseus take with him to the Cyclops cave?
Odysseus took 12 men to the cave.

How many men return with Odysseus to the ship after going to the cave
Only 8 men return with Odysseus

What do the men find in the Cyclops cave when they first enter?
They find wine, cheese, rams, and goats

How does the cyclops keep intruders out at night?
He put a big boulder in the entrance

What does the Cyclops do to several of Odysseus’s men?
He eats them

When the Cyclops asks Odysseus where his ships are what does Odysseus tell him? Why?
He tells him the ship was destroyed in a sea wreck so that Cyclops will not go out and destroy their ship

Why doesn’t Odysseus kill the Cyclops when he first meets him?
He doesn’t kill him because the Cyclops is too strong and he would not succeed

How does Odysseus injure the Cyclops?
He jabs it in the eye with a spear made from a timber and sharpened by his men

Why does he choose this way to injure the Cyclops?
Because he knew the Cyclops would move the stone away from the opening while looking for them and they would be able to escape

How many men does it take to injure the Cyclops?
It took 5 men

What false names does Odysseus give the cyclops Polyphemus?
no man or nobody depending on the translation

WHY IS THIS A CLEVER NAME?
When Cyclops tells what has happened to him and his friends ask who did it to him he can only say “no one”.

Why must Odysseus think of a clever way to leave the cave?
He and his men are not strong enough to move the stone covering the door.

How do Odysseus and his men escape the Cyclops Polyphemus?
After blinding him, they wait for him to try and find them They know he will open the door of the cave and try to catch them as they leave. They hide under his sheep as they go through the door.

What mistake does Odysseus make after escaping the Cyclops Polyphemus?
He finally tells the Cyclops his real name.

What does this tell us about Odysseus?
He is foolish

What curse does the Cyclops Polyphemus make against Odysseus
He calls upon Poseidon to make Odysseus get lost at sea

Who is Aeolus?
The ruler of the winds

What gift does Aeolus give Odysseus?
A gift of each of the four winds to help get Odysseus back to Ithaca

How was the gift wrapped?
in a bag

What terrible event makes this gift a curse?
when they are almost home Odysseus men open the gift thinking it contains treasure. The winds blow them all back to Aiolia, where Aeolus refused to provide any further help.

Where does the ship go after almost reaching Ithaca
Back to Aiolia where they had just left

Why does Aeolus refuse to help a second time?
He says that Odysseus has been cursed by the Gods

Who are the Laestrygonians?
A race of giant cannibals that live in the city of Telepylus on an island that appears to be roughly shaped like a horseshoe (or…

How many ships does Odyessus have after encountering the the Laestrygonians
one

who is Circe?
A minor goddess of music

What is the name of the island that Circe lives on?
The island of Aeaea

What does Circe transform some of Odysseus’s MEN INTO?
Swine (pigs)

What does Circe tell Odysseus he must do before he can reach home
She tells Odysseus he must visit the underworld of Hades

What is the Land of the Dead called
The Land of the Dead is called the Underworld

Who is Elpenor?
He is the youngest man of Odysseys group to survive the Laestrygonians

Why is he unhappy
Because he was left dead in Circe’s den

What favor does Elpenor ask of Odysseus?
he asks for a proper burial

Which of Odysseus’s relatives has died since he left home?
The relative that has died is his mom

what are the names of Odysseus’s wife and son?
Penelope is his wife and Telemachus is his son

WHo does Odysseus come to the Land of the Dead to see?
to speak to the dead prophet named Teiresias,

Describe Tiresias?
was a blind prophet of Thebes, famous for clairvoyance and for being transformed into a woman for seven years.

What does Odysseus give tiresias to drink
Odysseus sacrifices a black lamb and lets Tiresias drink its blood

What does this man prophesy will happen to Odysseus and his men? What does he warn them not to do
He prophesies death would come out of the sea, and not to kill the cattle

What does he warn Odysseus not to do?
Not to touch the flocks of the Sun god Helios when he reaches land of Thrynacia.

What does this man say is happening at Odysseus’ home?
He told him about Penelope’s suitors and how they are trying to marry his wife.

Who are the Sirens? why are they alluring
They were sea nymphs, sailors passing by them got enchanted and had to stay

Why are they a danger to Odysseus and his men? Is he successful
The Sirens lure men to their death on the rocks by their enchanting singing.

Who warns Odysseus of the danger of the Sirens?
Circe warns Odysseus of the dangers

What does Odysseus do to keep himself and his crew safe?
They put wax in their ears so they can’t hear the sirens.

What is the first reaction of the men when they near Scylla and Charybdis
The men were very scared

Describe scylla and charbdis
Scylla was a six-headed beast with three rows of sharp teeth in each head. Charbdis was a dangerous and deadly whirlpool

Why does Odysseus not tell his men about Scylla
Odysseus did not want to agitate his men and he didn’t want them to go below deck for fear that Scylla might destroy them all.

What does Odysseus do that is against Circe’s instructions about Scylla

How many men does Odysseus lose to Scylla?
Six

What does Odysseus say is the saddest sight he has ever seen?
when he lost his men to Scylla

What is the sun god’s name
Helios

Who talks odysseus’s men into killing the sun god’s cattle
Eurylochus

Where was Odysseus when this happened?
Odysseus was sleeping when this happens

What does Zeus do to the ship as punishment? How many men are left alive
destroying Odysseus’s ship and killing his men, Only Odysseus

How does Odysseus keep from being Swallowed by Charbdis
He hung from a plant above her until his mast came back up and floated away

How does Odysseus get Ogygia, Who lives there?
He sailed, Calypso