Analysis Of Athena In The Odyssey English Literature Essay Free Essay

After ten old ages, the Trojan War is over and the Achaeans head place. Some heroes of the war, like Nestor, come place rapidly to happen things reasonably much as they left them. Others, like Agamemnon, arrive place to happen things well changed. Still others, like Menelaus, wander around for a clip but finally return place safely. Odysseus, on the other manus, has been holding no terminal of problem acquiring place. As the narrative opens, we find ourselves in the 10th twelvemonth since the terminal of the war, a full 20 old ages since Odysseus foremost left his place and married woman Penelope to sail off for Troy with the remainder of the Achaean forces. Since so Telemachus, the boy of Odysseus has grown up without a male parent wondering if he will of all time come place.

Imagine, if you will, that you are in a universe that is non of your ain. Hear you can walk freely in any signifier you want. Every word you speak and every action you take can impact the lives of 1000000s and be them everything. But if you can convey those people together, and prosecute them in the trial of their lives you would hold been the savior and defender of those people. This is the function of Athena in Homer ‘s heroic poem “ The Odyssey ” . In this essay I will analyse Athena ‘s major function of protection and counsel throughout the heroic poem, and how her usage of camouflage and transmutation affects their motive and picks in the heroic poem verse form.

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Athena the goddess of wisdom and scheme, a form shifter of many signifiers, and girl of Metis and Zeus, plays as important function throughout “ The Odyssey. While she does on occasion judge human actions, the dominant function she plays is to offer challenge and protection to both Odysseus and Telemachus. The goddess Athena becomes their main defender, and she is rarely far off from Odysseus or his boy. Throughout the heroic poem Athena instills assurance into Telemachus and AIDSs him in his travels and journey into manhood. She continually helps Odysseus, giving him advice and practical aid. Athena ‘s function is non merely that of assisting Odysseus and Telemachus ; she besides helps in their development as characters, learning them forbearance, humbleness, and restraint. From her first act of aid to her concluding peacemaking, she is mostly responsible for the development and decision of the secret plan.

Telemachus ‘ reveries before run intoing Athena for the first clip: “ aˆ¦sitting among the suers, bosom obsessed with heartache. He could about see his magnificent male parent, hereaˆ¦ ” ( B1: L134-136 ) . Turning up without his male parent Odysseus, the lone cognition Telemachus knows of him are merely the narratives told to him by his consorts. With all the suers rolling freely through the great halls of his male parent ‘s castle, trailing after his female parent Penelope ‘s manus in matrimony, Prince Telemachus is left hopeless to halt them. Athena uses her great accomplishments of scheme and wisdom to rapidly happen a manner to animate our hero Telemachus to travel to happen his male parent. She shape displacements into Odysseus ‘ old friend Mentes, and predicts that Odysseus is still alive and that he will shortly return to Ithaca. “ Take my words to bosom. At daybreak summon the islands Godheads to full assembly, give your orders to all and name the Gods to witnessaˆ¦ canvas in pursuit of intelligence of your long- lost male parent, ” Athena declared ( B1: L315-325 ) . With these words of encouragement, Athena uses her camouflage to act upon the prince to happen his male parent. If it non for Athena, Telemachus might hold taken his male parent for dead and encouraged his female parent to get married one of her suitors.A The journey is besides of import because the journey of Telemachus plays an of import portion of him going a adult male on his ain.

When Telemachus reaches Nestor ‘s land, Lord Nestor tells Telemachus the narrative of his male parent after the war and what happened to Agamemnon. As Menelaus set canvas for Greece instantly after the war, Agamemnon decided to wait a twenty-four hours and go on giving on the shores of Troy. Nestor went with Menelaus, while Odysseus stayed with Agamemnon, and since so Nestor has heard no intelligence of Odysseus. He adds that he has heard that suers have taken over the prince ‘s house in Ithaca and that he hopes that Telemachus will accomplish the fame his male parent one time had in Ithaca in defence of his male parent. Suddenly as the old male monarch finished his narrative Athena “ winged off in an bird of Jove ‘s signifier and flight ” ( B3: L410 ) . Nestor, astonished, prayed that Athena will demo Telemachus the kindness that she showed Odysseus “ Dear boy- ne’er fear you ‘ll be a coward or defenseless, non if at your immature age the Gods will guard you so. Of all who dwell on Olympus, this was none but sheaˆ¦ ” ( B3: L415-424 ) . Homer chose this minute to demo that Athena is genuinely with the male child and his journey to happen his male parent and protect his household. Athena would rapidly go a major portion of Telemachus and his journey to happen intelligence of his male parent.

Athena non merely used her power of camouflage and transmutation to animate Telemachus nevertheless, she besides brought together many people to assist in his journey, and kept those people strong through all the uncertainty they had for the heroes success. Before Telemachus even set canvas from his place, Athena disguised herself as the prince and brought sailor to his ship: “ Gather beside our ship at nightfall- Be there ” ( B2: L425 ) . Athena brings hope to those who need it the most. Once she learns of her boy departure, Penelope cries at the idea of losing her boy Telemachus to the suer ‘s secret plan of ambuscade against her boy. Athena rapidly thinks of one more manner to assist Penelope, by going a apparition of Iphthime, sister of Penelope: “ Courage! Do n’t be overwhelmed by all your direst frights. He travels with such an bodyguard, one that others would pray to stand beside them ” ( B4: L928-930 ) . Later on, Penelope weeps once more but Athena made certain to take attention of her: ” ‘Daughter of Icarius, wise Penelope, be of good cheer, and allow non things distress your heart’aˆ¦ until bright-eyed Athena cast sweet sleep upon her palpebras ” ( B16: L451 ) . Athena shows great attention for the chief heroes of “ The Odyssey ” and protects those who are excessively weak to be on their ain. A quality of an heroic poem hero is to protect the weak, goddess or non, she proves over and over once more that she is a true hero and a defender of the people.

Athena offers non merely protection, but gifts to her followings. In “ The Odyssey ” Athena brings together the accomplishments of adult females: “ For as the Phaeacian work forces are skilled above all others in rushing a fleet ship upon the sea, so are the adult females cunning workers at the loom, for Athena has given to them above all others skill in just handicraft, and an understanding bosom ” ( B7: L110 ) . Athena ‘s bosom is pure and it is through her deity that she grants the power and will to be strong. Before Telemachus grows weary of travel during his journey to happen his male parent Athena urges him to head firm place to protect his female parent: “ Telemachus, do non good to roll longer far from your place, go forthing behind you your wealth and work forces in your house so impudent, that they divide and devour all your ownerships, and you shall hold gone on a bootless journey. Nay, rouse with all velocity Menelaus, good at the war-cry, to direct you on your manner, that you may happen your baronial female parent still in her place ” ( B15: L9-15 ) .

Athena tickers over Telemachus like he was her ain kid directing him on the right air current for his journey place: “ And bright-eyed Athena sent them a favourable air current, blowing strongly through the sky, that, rushing fleetly, the ship might carry through her manner over the salt H2O of the sea ” ( B13: L292 ) . It is with Athena ‘s Godhead powers and approvals both Telemachus and Odysseus are reunited as male parent and boy. Athena genuinely believes in Telemachus and his people, and brings them closer together with her approvals of strength and wisdom against the many tests the Gods have put between him, every bit good as Odysseus and his journey place.

Athena acts non merely as an inspiration but as a defender to our heroes in “ The Odyssey ” . She continually AIDSs Odysseus, giving him advice and practical aid. In the climactic scene of the slaughter of the suers, she really deflects arms aimed at him losing their grade wholly ( B22: L 268-270 ) . Although her character as a virgin goddess does non let for a relationship with Odysseus, Athena does keep him in great esteem and fondness. They treat each other as peers, as when he recalls her kindness to him at Troy, and when she praises him for his craft actions. She has a love for Odysseus and his household that merely a God can hold for their followings.

Athena has remained one of the most normally alluded to goddesses from mythology and she represents the civilised and rational side of war and hardship. She is normally thought of as a goddess of peace and plentifulness, contrary to many of the Gods around her. She preferred to settle struggle through speculation and merely went to war when it was necessary. After the slaughter of the suers, the households of the suers army paths Odysseus to Laertes ‘ house as they have lunch together. Athena, disguised once more as Mentor, decides to set a halt to the force: “ And Athena handed down her treaties of peace between both sides for all the old ages to come ” ( B24: L599-601 ) . Athena makes the Ithacans forget the slaughter of their kids and acknowledge Odysseus as male monarch. Peace is therefore restored.

Athena is the caretaker of Odysseus and Telemachus.A It is with her aid Odysseus can go a stronger, nobler Homeric hero. Telemachus on the other manus, becomes a adult male by stepping Forth on his journey to happen his male parent. Without her push he would non hold had the bravery to step out of the protection of the castle and into the wild sea where his journey leads him. Who knows what might hold happened to Odysseus and his household had Athena non provided the great aid that she did.A In many ways, Athena demonstrates several qualities of a hero ; strength, wisdom, bravery, and the power to take. With her godly powers of camouflage and scheme, she is the defender of our heroes in “ The Odyssey ” .

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