Homer begins the odyssey with the

Synopsis Exposition A mosaic depicting Odysseusfrom the villa of La OlmedaPedrosa de la VegaSpain, late 4th-5th centuries AD The Odyssey begins after the end of the ten-year Trojan War the subject of the Iliadand Odysseus has still not returned home from the war because he angered the god, Poseidon. Odysseus' son Telemachus is about 20 years old and is sharing his absent father's house on the island of Ithaca with his mother Penelope and a crowd of boisterous young men, "the Suitors", whose aim is to persuade Penelope to marry one of them, all the while reveling in Odysseus' palace and eating up his wealth. Odysseus' protectress, the goddess Athenarequests to Zeusking of the godsto finally allow Odysseus to return home when Odysseus' enemy, the god of the sea Poseidonis absent from Mount Olympus to accept a sacrifice in Ethiopia.

Homer begins the odyssey with the

SparkNotes: The Odyssey: Books 1–2

These claims are not considered authentic today and were by no means universally accepted in the ancient world. Ancient accounts of Homer Many traditions circulated in the ancient world concerning Homer, most of which are lost. Modern scholarly consensus is that they have no value as history.

The writings on the top and right side are scholia. The study of Homer is one of the oldest topics in scholarship, dating back to antiquity. The aims of Homeric studies have changed over the course of the millennia. Ancient Greek scholars first sought to establish a canonical text of the poems and to explicate points that were difficult whether linguistically or culturally.

Homer begins the odyssey with the

This theory found very wide scholarly acceptance. Most scholars, although disagreeing on other questions about the genesis of the poems, agree that the Iliad and the Odyssey were not produced by the same author, based on "the many differences of narrative manner, theology, ethics, vocabulary, and geographical perspective, and by the apparently imitative character of certain passages of the Odyssey in relation to the Iliad.

The explanations suggested by modern scholars tend to mirror their position on the overall Homeric question. Nagy interprets it as "he who fits the song together".

West has advanced both possible Greek and Phoenician etymologies. Some contemporary scholars think the destruction of Troy VIIa circa BC was the origin of the myth of the Trojan War, others that the poem was inspired by multiple similar sieges that took place over the centuries.

For instance, his heroes use bronze weapons, characteristic of the Bronze Age rather than the later Iron Age during which the poems were composed; yet they are cremated an Iron Age practice rather than buried as they were in the Bronze Age. Homeric Greek shows features of multiple regional Greek dialects and periods, but is fundamentally based on Ionic Greekin keeping with the tradition that Homer was from Ionia.

Linguistic analysis suggests that the Iliad was composed slightly before the Odyssey, and that Homeric formulae preserve older features than other parts of the poems.

These habits aid the extemporizing bard, and are characteristic of oral poetry. For instance, the main words of a Homeric sentence are generally placed towards the beginning, whereas literate poets like Virgil or Milton use longer and more complicated syntactical structures.

Homer then expands on these ideas in subsequent clauses; this technique is called parataxis. He noted that Homer often, when describing frequently recurring activities such as eating, praying, fighting and dressing, used blocks of set phrases in sequence that were then elaborated by the poet.

Parry and Lord noted that these conventions are found in many other cultures. C, B, A has been observed in the Homeric epics. Opinion differs as to whether these occurrences are a conscious artistic device, a mnemonic aid or a spontaneous feature of human storytelling.

Some scholars believe that they were dictated by the poet; Albert Lord noted that, in the process of dictating, the Balkan bards he recorded revised and extended their lays.

Some scholars hypothesize that a similar process occurred when the Homeric poems were first written. These divisions probably date from before BC, and may have been made by Homer. After the establishment of the Library of AlexandriaHomeric scholars such as Zenodotus of Ephesus, Aristophanes of Byzantium and in particular Aristarchus of Samothrace helped establish a canonical text.

Others, such as Martin West or T. Allen fall somewhere between these two extremes.Please note Episode 5 of Homer’s Odyssey begins Wednesday August 15th on Ballycastle Beach Co. Derry and Episode 6 on Thursday August 16th on Narin Beach Co.


From the SparkNotes Blog

Both episodes will be read by the actress Jaye Griffiths. After an invocation to the Muse of poetry, the epic begins in medias res ("in the middle of things").

Odysseus has been gone from Ithaca for about 20 years — the first 10 spent fighting the Trojan War, the last 10 trying to get home. Meanwhile, Odysseus' wife, Penelope, tries to fend off over The Odyssey was likely composed about five hundred years after these events.


In the interim, countless bards had worked over the stories. What we see (or hear) in Homer, is not a depiction of history but a world created out of legend, folk tales, at least one poet's imagination, and a little bit of history. Odyssey, epic poem in 24 books traditionally attributed to the ancient Greek poet Homer.

The poem is the story of Odysseus, king of Ithaca, who wanders for 10 years (although the action of the poem covers only the final six weeks) trying to get home after the Trojan War. A summary of Books 1–2 in Homer's The Odyssey. Learn exactly what happened in this chapter, scene, or section of The Odyssey and what it means.

Perfect for acing essays, tests, and quizzes, as well as for writing lesson plans. Homer (/ ˈ h oʊ m ər /; Greek: Ὅμηρος [hómɛːros], Hómēros) is the legendary author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, two epic poems that are the central works of ancient Greek literature.

The Iliad is set during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy by a coalition of Greek kingdoms.

The Odyssey by Homer. Search eText, Read Online, Study, Discuss.