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Literary Allusions

Building background knowledge to identify common biblical, mythological, arthurian, and fairy tale allusions

Jenna Gardner

on 24 August 2010

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Transcript of Literary Allusions

Narcissus was a handsome man, whose beauty was so great that all girls loved him, but he had no interest. Even the fairest nymph, Echo, did not move him. Hera had punished to use her tongue except to repeat what was said to her, “You will always have the last word, but no power to speak first.” Echo could not tell Narcissus that she loved him. She could follow him but not tell him how she felt. He broke her heart and continued on his cruel way. However, the prayers of who he wounded came true: “May he who loves not others love himself.” The great goddess Nemesis, righteous anger, condemned him to fall in love with himself. One day, when Narcissus bent down over a river, he saw his reflection and fell in love with it. He did not want to leave it. He pinned away, leaning perpetually over his reflection, with Echo watching until he died. The beautiful flower Narcissus sprang up after his death. PROMETHEUS was the Titan god of forethought and crafty counsel who was entrusted with the task of molding mankind out of clay. His attempts to better the lives of his creation brought him into direct conflict with Zeus. Firstly he tricked the gods out of the best portion of the sacrificial feast, acquiring the meat for the feasting of man. Then, when Zeus withheld fire, he stole it from heaven and delivered it to mortal kind hidden inside a fennel-stalk. As punishment for these rebellious acts, Zeus ordered the creation of Pandora (the first woman) as a means to deliver misfortune into the house of man, or as a way to cheat mankind of the company of the good spirits. Prometheus meanwhile, was arrested and bound to a stake on Mount Kaukasos where an eagle was set to feed upon his ever-regenerating liver (or, some say, heart). Generations later the great hero Hercules came along and released the old Titan from his torture.

While Prometheus was bound on Mount Kaukasos a heifer (cow) who talked like a young woman visited him. He recognized her as Inachus’ daughter, IO. He learned that Zeus' romantic attentions had angered Hera who had reduced her to this condition of a wandering starving beast continually plagued by a gad-fly. Prometheus tried to comfort her, but more wandering lat ahead. To Ionian Sea and the Bosphorus, Ford of the Cow, is named after her. Upon reaching the Nile, Zeus would restored her to her human form. She bore him a son named Epaphus and lived forever. Her descendant would be Hercules, who later freed Prometheus. Jason was a hero and prince, whose uncle Pelias had usurped his kingdom. Pelias told Jason that he would gladly give up the kingdom as long as Jason brought back the Golden Fleece, which Phrixus, a family relative had given to King Aeetes of Corinth. From then on, Jason agreed to go on a quest to retrieve the Golden Fleece and also recruited some the biggest Greek heroes at the time such as Hercules, Castor, Pollux, Peleus, and many other brave Greek men. Jason’s crew was named the Argonauts and sailed on the ship Argo on their journey. Jason not only recruited great Greek heroes but also gained favor of many Greek gods.

Hera instinctively knowing that Jason would face an arduous task to complete before receiving the Golden Fleece begged Aphrodite to help him. Aphrodite touched by her sympathy asked her son Cupid to make King Aeetes daughter, Medea fall in love with Jason. Medea was a very powerful woman gifted in magic and was the key to Jason getting the Golden Fleece. In order to get the Golden Fleece Jason had to accomplish impossible tasks and Medea aided him and then helped him steal the Golden Fleece from its protector, a great serpent.

In some tales Medea is guilty of killing her own brother and chopping him into little bits that she dropped behind the Argo to slow the pursuing ships of her father.
Narcissus (Echo) Prometheus (Io) Golden Fleece (Jason & Medea) Orpheus the son of a Muse and Thracian Prince was the greatest singer and musician. No one or thing could resist his music and his wife, Eurydice was no exception. However their marriage ended quickly when Eurydice was killed by a viper at their wedding. Orpheus was so devastated that he was determined to go to the underworld and bring his wife back.

Orpheus so charmed Hades and Persephone that the God of the Underworld agreed to let Eurydice to come back to earth; however he was to promise that he will not look back at her until they all back on earth. He agreed to this deal immediately. He had temptation throughout the way back to earth, but he knew that his wife was following close by. Since he was first, he stepped into the daylight before Eurydice and in a state of joy, he looked back to give his hand out to his lady. However she was still in the darkness and she was pulled back into the underworld. Eurydice’s last word to her husband was, “Farewell.” Orpheus desperately ran after his wife but he is not allowed a second chance back into the dark world. From then on Orpheus walked around Thrace playing his lyre for that was the only thing he had left. He encountered upon a group of Maenads and they attacked the musician by tearing him limb from limb. They finally pulled off his head and threw it into the river. Orpheus’s head soon traveled down to the Lesbian shore where the Muses found it and buried it. Shortly after his limbs were gathered and placed in a tomb at the bottom of Mt Olympus, and up to this day it is said that the nightingales sing more sweetly than any other place.
Orpheus & Eurydice Daedalus was the architect that made Labyrinth for the Minotaur. He also showed Ariadne how Thesus could escape from his creation. King Minos knew that when the Athenians escaped the only way that was possible was if the creator, Daedalus, helped them. Minos was angry with Daedalus so he put him and his son Icarus on an island prison. While there, Daedalus came up with the idea to make wings through feathers that birds had dropped upon the island and wax to escape through the sky. He informed his son Icarus that he would need to be careful not to go to close to the sun or his wings would melt and he would fall. However, like most youths, he did not listen and when they finally took off Icarus felt so empowered he soared higher and higher. Not listening to his father he eventually got to close to the sun and the wax of his wings melted and he dropped into the sea. Daedalus & Icarus Psyche was a mortal so beautiful that the goddess Aphrodite became envious of the praise she received, so she turned to her son, Cupid (Love) directing him to shoot his arrow of love to make Psyche fall in love with the most filthy and dreadful man on Earth. However, as soon as Cupid laid eyes on Psyche, he fell madly in love. Psyche continued to remain unmarried, so her father went to the Oracle at Delphi. He was told to dress her for her funeral and leave her on a rocky summit for a winged serpent to take her as his bride. Psyche felt that this was the consequence from Heaven for her beauty. Psych is magically transported by a wind to a marvelous mansion that was now her home. Throughout the day she was treated with luxury. Still she couldn’t see anyone but only heard the voices. Her husband visited her at night and she never saw him. She had no idea that he was the god Cupid. When her Psyche’s sister’s finally were allowed to visit her they poisoned her mind telling her that she was really married to a monster who while kind now would someday destroy her. They convinced her to steal into his room at night with a dagger and light to kill him. Stealing in with a light she saw how beautiful he was, she bent dropped the dagger bent over and some oil from the lamp splashed on him. Startled awake, he flew away telling Psyche that “Love cannot live where there is no trust.”

Psyche went to Aphrodite to seek her help. Aphrodite put her through many trials. The final one resulted in Psyche being put into the deadly sleep from a box of beauty brought back from Persephone in the Underworld. Cupid roused her with his arrow and took her to Olympus where she ate ambrosia to become immortal.
Psyche & Cupid A talented, young sculptor named Pygmalion, was a woman-hater who resolved never to marry. Pygmalion felt the only perfect woman was the one he could sculpt. He eventually sculpted a woman so perfect to him that he feel in love with her and begin to try and treat her as if she were alive, but her lifelessness filled him with despair.

Pygmalion had approached the shrine of Aphrodite and asked for a woman just like his statue. Aphrodite replied with a better solution and brought to life Pygmalion’s statue. Amazed at the sight, Pygmalion kissed her, caressed her, and held her in his arms. He named his love and wife Galatea.
Pygmalion & Galatea Daphne was a wood nymph, who refused all her handsome and eligible young men who tried to woo her. One day, Daphne decided to go to the woods, and Apollo saw her and instantly fell in love. He began following her but she started running away. He sent his voice to her saying, “do not fear, stop and find out who I am, no rude rustic or shepherd. I am the lord of Delphi, and I love you. “ Running Daphne saw father’s river and yelled out for help. Suddenly, she felt numbness throughout her body and her feet seemed rooted in the earth. In no time, she was entirely covered in bark and leaves. She was saved from Apollo’s designs and changed into a laurel tree. Apollo in wears laurel leaves in his hair to show his feelings for her and because Daphne bested Apollo all victors are given laurel leave wreathes to celebrate their win. Daphne & Apollo King Acrisius of Argos learning from the Oracle of Delphi that his daughter Danae would have a son that would kill him locked her away, but Zues feel in love with her and visited her as a golden shower. She began pregnant and bore Perseus. Acrisius discovered this and had a great chest made and put both his daughter and his grandson inside and had them taken out to the sea and cast into the water. Danae and Perseus were saved by a fisherman, Dictys, and his wife. Later Danae caught the eye of King Polydectes. At their engagement party Perseus had no gift and he feel fr Polydectes trap and set off on a quest for the head of the gorgon Medusa. With the help of Hermes and Athena he is able to defeat Medusa, a monster that will turn you to stone if you look her in the face. With her head secured, he headed home. On his journey he comes upon the lovely maiden, Andromeda, who is on the verge of being fed to a serpent because the gods were trying to punish her mother for boasting that she was more beautiful than the daughters of Nereus, the sea-god. He falls in love with her and saves her from the monster with Medusa’s head. He and Andromeda marry and he returns home to find his mother in hiding because she has refused to marry Poldectes. Perseus finds out that the king is holding a banquet in the palace for all his men. He saw this as his opportunity, so he went to the palace and when he walked in and had everyone’s attention he pulled out Medusa’s head and everyone turned into stone. Dictys became king of the island and Perseus and his mother along with Andromeda decided to go back to Greece and see if Acrisius has softened up over the years. However, when they got there they found out that Acrisius has been driven away from the city, and no one knew where he was. During that time the King of Larissa was holding a great athlete competition, which Perseus took part in. When it came for his turn for the discus-throwing he missed and the heavy missile landed amongst the spectators. However, Acrisius was there to visit the king and the discus struck him and killed him on impact. So the oracle was proven to be right again and with the death of Acrisius all their troubles came to an end and Perseus and Andromeda lived happily ever after. Perseus When King Aegeus of Athens came to Troezen, King Pittheus (son of Pelops ) made him drunk and caused him to lie with his daughter Aethra. A child was then conceived, but of uncertain father, since on the same night also Poseidon loved her. On leaving for Athens, Aegeus, who ignored that the god had been with the woman, told Aethra that if she gave birth to a male child, she should rear him without telling who his father was. He then left a sword and sandals under a rock, saying that when his son could roll away the rock and take them up, she would send him to Athens. Aethra, not knowing herself who the father of her child was, did as instructed, and when Theseus was grown up, she showed him the rock, and he, pushing it away, took the sandals and the sword, and left for Athens.
At this time, the Athenians, who had been at war with King Minos of Crete, were forced by him to send every year seven youths and seven young women as a tribute to the Minotaur. Theseus was numbered among those who were to be sent as the third tribute to the beast. But when he came to Crete, Minos’ daughter Ariadne fell in love with him, and having obtained the secret to the Labyrinth from its constructor Daedalus, she disclosed the way out to Theseus. In the last part of the Labyrinth, Theseus found the Minotaur and killed him, and since he had been instructed by Ariadne, who had offered to help him if he would agree to carry her away to Athens and have her to wife, he found his way out. They both fled from Crete, but on arriving to Naxos (one of the Cyclades islands) Theseus deserted her.
Theseus had agreed with his father that he, when approaching Athens on his return from Crete, would spread white sails on his ship. But this detail he forgot, and Aegeus, seeing from the Acropolis the ship with a black sail, thought that his son had died, and in despair cast himself down and perished.
On his father's death, Theseus was declared successor to the throne of Athens. But the fifty sons of Pallas (the Pallantides), nobles of Attica, would not accept it, and they went to war. It was a certain Leos, who reported to Theseus the designs of the Pallantides and the ambush they had prepared against him. Theseus then fell suddenly upon the party lying in ambush, and slew them all. After the violent repression of the revolting faction, Theseus married Phaedra (also daughter of Minos ) with whom he retired to Troezen in voluntary exile.
Theseus also fought against the Amazons and took Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons and daughter of the god of war Ares, captive. She bore Theseus a son, named Hippolytus, and was eventually cast aside in favor of a more appealing bride.
Theseus Hercules a great hero was the son of Zeus and Alcmena the wife of the general Amphitryon. Hera, who was jealous and wanted to kill Hercules, let two snakes into the boys’ cribs one night after their mother had put them to sleep. Hercules’s half-brother, Iphicles, cried out causing the mother to wake up and calling for her husband. When the parents entered they found Hercules laughing and holding a snake in each hand with a limp body.

Hercules became a great hero and won the hand of Princess Megara. He and his lovely wife had three sons, but Hera still had enormous jealously for Hercules and sent madness upon him. When Hercules was under this madness he killed two older sons and then his wife and last son. Soon after, Hercules got out of the madness and saw what he had done but didn’t realize it was his fault at first. Once he saw that his family has all died by his hands, he wanted to end his life too for he felt he had no reason to be alive for his actions. At that moment, his friend, Theseus stopped Hercules. Hercules agreed to Theseus’s proposal and followed him back to Athens. Theseus urged Hercules to go to the oracle. The priestess told Hercules that he needed to be purified and for that to happen he must travel to his cousin Eurystheus, King of Mycenae and do everything demanded of him.
Eurystheus was a very clever man and gave him incredibly difficult challenges -- “the Labors of Hercules.”
Kill the lion of Nemea
Kill the Hydra, a creature with nine heads.
Capture the stag with horns of gold alive.
Capture a boar of Mt. Erymanthus
Clean the Augean stables in one day
Drive away the Stymphalian birds which were a plague to the citizens of Stymphalus
Steal the lovely savage bull that Poseidon had given to Minos
Capture the man-eating mares of King Diomedes of Thrace
Bring back the girdle of Hippolyta, Queen of the Amazons
Bring back the cattle of Geryon, a monster with three bodies located on Erythia
Bring back Golden Apples of the Hesperides
Go to the underworld and capture Cerberus, the three-headed dog, and bring him up from Hades.
Hercules King Laius is told that his son is fated to kill him. So he orders for Oedipus to be bound at his feet, taken to the mountain, and be killed. But his mother, Jacosta, could not just stand by and let that happen. So she took him and gave him to a wandering shepherd. This man took Oedipus to go live in another kingdom. Well when Oedipus became a man he went a journey to gain his own kingdom. He came across the almighty sphinx so to say. Now in order to get past the sphinx you had to answer one question. And if you got this question wrong you would be eaten. So the sphinx asked Oedipus, “What creature walks on 4 feet in the morning, 2 at noon, and 3 in the evening?” He answered, “Man. In childhood one crawls on hands and feet. In manhood he walks erect, and in old age he helps himself with a staff.” That was the correct answer so the sphinx killed herself and all the Thebans were saved. Oedipus was made king and married the dead king’s wife, Jacosta. Oedipus had two sons and two daughters with his wife Jacosta but then a plague hit. So he sent his brother in law Creon to Delphi to find out how to rid their city of it. The blind prophet Teiresias said that it would leave if King Laius’ killer was killed. Now everyone thought that was impossible since they all thought that Laius was killed by robbers. Well the shepherd came to Oedipus and told him the true story of where he was from and who his birth parents really were. Oedipus was part of the five people that had murdered King Laius. He remembered God said to him that he would kill his father, marry his mother, and have children that men would shudder to look upon. Well this sent Jacosta over the edge. She went insane and killed herself. Soon after Oedipus ran and gauged his eyes out so that he did not have to look upon the disastrous situation he caused. He then wanders the land led by his daughter Antigone. Oedipus After King Oedipus was exiled from the city of Thebes, his younger son Eteocles claimed that the kingship belonged to him, exiling his older brother Polyneices. Polyneices then attacked Thebes with a massive army, but neither son won because they killed each other in battle. The new Theban king, Creon, declares that Eteocles will be buried and honored as a hero while Polyneices' body will rot away and be eaten by dogs in disgrace; the penalty for trying to bury the body is death. Hearing this news, an angry Antigone insists that her brother's body must be buried so that his spirit can rest in peace, in spite of the cautious advice of her younger sister, Ismene. Antigone goes to the battlefield in front of Thebes, pouring sand over Polyneices' body and performing burial rites. She is captured after coming out of hiding when some guards try to brush off the dust, and Antigone is brought to Creon. He imprisons both Antigone and Ismene as an accomplice, declaring that they shall be executed. Soon after, Creon's son Haemon pleads for Antigone's release because he is engaged to marry her. An angry Haemon runs away, hurt that his father has treated him like this. Then Creon changes his mind, deciding to execute only Antigone since Ismene's innocence is clear, and the older sister is thus sent outside of Thebes to starve to death in a cave. While Antigone is suffering this unfortunate fate, the blind prophet Teiresias warns Creon that the gods are very angry that he has refused burial for Polyneices, since the very same dogs and birds that eat his flesh are later used for sacrifices. As a result, Creon's son will die in punishment, he declares. Mocking Teiresias, Creon does not listen to this advice, saying that Teiresias just wants to scare him. However, he finally agrees to bury the slain man after the Theban citizens reminds him that Teiresias has never been wrong about anything. Now worried about his son, Creon washes Polyneices' body, performs burial rites, and cremates the body's remains. Then he goes to free Antigone from the cave where she is imprisoned, but it is too late to avoid tragedy: she and Haemon have killed themselves. A broken man, Creon returns to the palace only to learn that his wife Eurydice has also commited suicide after learning about her son's death. Creon is led away by his citizens, wishing for the release from suffering that only death can give him. Antigone The war started from a fight between the goddesses Athena, Hera and Aphrodite, after Eris, the goddess of strife and discord, gave them a golden apple, sometimes known as the Apple of Discord, marked "for the fairest". Zeus sent the goddesses to Paris, who judged that Aphrodite, as the "fairest", should receive the apple. In exchange, Aphrodite made Helen, the most beautiful of all women and wife of Menelaus, fall in love with Paris, who took her to Troy. Agamemnon, king of Mycenae and the brother of Helen's husband Menelaus, led an expedition of troops to Troy. In order to get the gods to send a wind for all the ships of the Greek city states to leave, he had to sacrifice his daughter to the gods. He did so and once at Troy, he fought outside of the city for ten years because of Paris' insult. The great warrior of Sparta was Achilles. His mother had dipped him in the River Styx to make him invulnerable. He was set to fight with Paris’ older brother Hector, and he succeeded. Achilles then took the dead body of Hector and tied him to he back of his carriage and dragged the dead body around until his skin peeled off. Achilles himself was finally killed in his only vulernable spot his Achillas heel (where his mother held him as she dipped him) by Paris' arrow.

As a trick created by Odysseus, the Greeks pretended to pull back from the fight. They left a great wooden horse. The Trojans thinking it was an offering took it inside the city walls -- hence the saying, "Beware of Greeks bearing gifts." The Trojans partied and the Greeks sunk out from their hiding place in the wooden horse to slaughter the Trojans.

Paris was killed. Helen was taken back to Sparta by her husband Menelaus. Agamemnon returned with Cassandra, the Princess of Troy. Cassandra beloved by Apollo, who she spurned, was given the gift of prophesy, but was cursed to tell the future and have no one believe her.
The Trojan War Midas was the King of Phrygia, the land of roses. Silenus, who was always intoxicated, strayed into the rose garden in his palace. He had strayed away from Bacchus, also known as Dionysus. Midas returned him back to Bacchus, and he was so happy to have him back that he told Midas that he would grant any wish that he made. Midas wished that whatever he touched would turn into gold. He had the "golden touch." Midas couldn’t see then how the wish he had made was very foolish. When he went to eat his next meal all his food turned to gold as soon as he touched it. His daugher ran to him and when he touched her, she too turned to gold. Midas returned to Bacchus and asked him to undo his wish. Bacchus told him to go and wash in the river Pactolus and he would lose his gift.

After this Apollo changed Midas ears in those of a donkey for his stupidity. He was chosen as an umpire in a musical contest between Pan and Apollo. Midas decided to choose Pan over Apollo, which was very dangerous considering how powerful Apollo was. Midas hid his ears under a cap that only his servant saw. His servant swore never to tell of the donkey ears given to him by Apollo. When the secret became too much for the servant to bear he dug a hole in the in a field in whispered,” King Midas has donkey ears.” In the spring when the reeds grew they whispered the buried words when the wind blew.
Midas Bacchus, also known as Dionysus, was the son Zeus and Semele. Semele wished to see Zeus in all his glory, but he knew no mortal would survive seeing him like that. Because he loved her so much he returned to Semele as she wished, and she died. Zeus saved the child she was about to give birth to and hid the child in his side. Hera was so jealous of Bacchus that she struck him with madness and made him wander the earth. Rhea cured him, and then Bacchus went on to teach people cultivation of the vine. Bacchus is known as the God of Vine. Bacchus Tantalus caused a curse to fall upon his family the House of Atreus when he cooked his own son and fed it to the Gods so that he could accuse them of cannibalism. Agamemnon was one of his descendants and after he returned from the Trojan War with his concubine Cassandra he was killed by his wife and her lover. It is believed that Clytemnestra was the one who killed him by herself out of anger for him sacrificing his daughter for the winds to get to Troy. Their two children Electra and Orestes lived only because Orestes had been sent to live with his cousin Pylades. As Orestes grew he was aware that he must avenge his father’s death and so must kill his mother as well. Orestes returned with his cousin Pylades to Electra and there plan was to fool the queen into thinking that Orestes had died and to get inside the house to kill her. When Electra and Pylades knocked on the door and the Queen answered and let them in then Electra waited. Then a slave ran out screaming that Orestes was alive and Clytemnestra immediately knew why Orestes had come. She was determined to defend herself with an axe and when he reached her after killing Aegisthus, she decided to remind him that she was his mother. Orestes questioned if it was just to kill his mother and Pylades assured him that she must die and so Orestes killed her. Guilt of matricide, Orestes was haunted with horrible images and so he became a wanderer until he was sent by Apollo to Athena so that he could ask for forgiveness. With the many years of suffering his guilt was faded and so he was forgiven and his family’s curse was lifted. The Orestia Leda was the wife of King Tyndareus. She was so beautiful that Zeus fill in love with her and seduced/attacked her while in the form of a swan. From this coupling with Zeus she conceive Helen, who was to become Helen of Troy -- the face that luanched a thousand ships. Leda and the Swan In the beginning there were no women on earth only men. Prometheus the Titan, who created man took away all knowledge from them and locked it in a box to keep them from unhappiness born of knowing too much. He gave the box to his brother Epimetheus to take care of and told him that it should never be opened. Prometheus then stole fire from Olympus to give it to mankind. Zeus thus decides to create a woman, to punish men, because he is angry with Prometheus and his love for man. The woman Zeus created was Pandora, which means “the gift of all” because she was given something by all the Gods that made her beautiful and very dangerous at the same time. Zeus gave Pandora to Epimetheus as a wife. Pandora noticed the jar her husband has, but he told her that she was never to open the box. Her curiosity got the best of her one day and she lifted the lid and all the evils in the box were released, she tried to close the jar but it was too late. One good thing that was placed in the box that managed to get out was hope. Pandora (and her box)
Odysseus is still alive. He has travelled to the Land of the Lotus Eaters, his has battled with Polyphemus the Cyclops, he has had a love affair with the witch-goddess Circe, he has been tempted by the deadly Sirens who he listens to while tied to the ship mast to prevent him from swimming towards them and doom, he has journed into Hades to consult the prophet Tiresias, and he has fought with the sea monster Scylla. Finally the beautiful nymph Calypso, possessed by love for him, imprisoned him on her island, Ogygia. Through all of this he longs to return to his wife and son, but he has no ship or crew to help him escape. On Mount Olympus, Zeus sends Hermes to rescue Odysseus from Calypso. Hermes persuades Calypso to let Odysseus build a ship and leave. Poseidon has harbored a bitter grudge against Odysseus since the hero blinded his son, the Cyclops Polyphemus, earlier in his travels. Athena intervenes to save Odysseus from Poseidon’s wrath, and the beleaguered king lands at Scheria, home of the Phaeacians. The Phaeacians return Odysseus to Ithaca, where he seeks out the hut of his faithful swineherd, Eumaeus. Though Athena has disguised Odysseus as a beggar, Eumaeus warmly receives and nourishes him in the hut. He soon encounters Telemachus. Odysseus and Telemachus devise a plan to massacre the suitors and regain control of Ithaca.
When Odysseus arrives at the palace the next day, still disguised as a beggar, he endures abuse and insults from the suitors. The only person who recognizes him is his old nurse, Eurycleia, but she swears not to disclose his secret. Penelope takes an interest in this strange beggar, suspecting that he might be her long-lost husband. Quite crafty herself, Penelope organizes an archery contest the following day and promises to marry any man who can string Odysseus’s great bow and fire an arrow through a row of twelve axes—a feat that only Odysseus has ever been able to accomplish. At the contest, each suitor tries to string the bow and fails. Odysseus steps up to the bow and, with little effort, fires an arrow through all twelve axes. He then turns the bow on the suitors. He and Telemachus, assisted by a few faithful servants, kill every last suitor.
Away at the Trojan War for 10 years, Odysseus takes another ten years to get home. A large and rowdy mob of suitors who have overrun Odysseus’s palace and pillaged his land continue to court his wife, Penelope. She has remained faithful to Odysseus. Prince Telemachus, Odysseus’s son, wants desperately to throw them out but does not have the confidence or experience to fight them. Odysseus & The Odyssey In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. On the first day God separated the light from the darkness and called the light “day” and the darkness “night”. The second day God created an expanse to separate water from water which he called “sky”. The third day God created land with vegetation and called the waters around it “seas”. The fourth day God decided that there should be lights in the sky to govern night and day and created the “sun” and the “moon”. On the fifth day God created birds and fish to inhabit the waters and the earth and God blessed them saying “be fruitful and increase in numbers” so that they will fill the earth. The sixth day God made livestock, creatures that move along the ground and wild animals to inhabit the earth. God also created man in his own image and allowed man to rule over all the other animals and was given all the seed-bearing plants and fruit-bearing trees as food. God then observed everything that he had created and saw that it was good. On the seventh day God had finished the work he had been doing and blessed the day and it made it holy because he rested on that day. Creation When God created Adam, God gave him the responsibility of naming each animal and plant. After a while of this Adam soon became depressed as he found that every animal had a mate while he did not. The Lord saw this and decided that he should give Adam a suitable helper and put Adam into a deep sleep. Then while Adam was asleep God took one of his ribs and created a woman named Eve. Now the Lord had told both Adam and Eve that everything in the Garden was theirs except for the tree in the middle - the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil. Adam and Eve obeyed the Lord until one day Eve and Adam ate from the tree due to a serpent’s temptation. Upon eating the fruit they realized they were naked and hide due to their shame. When the Lord found out what they had done he cursed the serpent, the man, and the woman and banished them from the Garden. Adam & Eve & the serpant makes three Adam and Eve had two sons named Cain and Abel and each son was assigned to a different job; Cain worked the fields while Abel took care of the flocks. When the time came for Cain and Abel to make sacrifices to the Lord, Abel always made sure to bring the best portions of the first born in his flock while Cain just brought random fruit. Now when the Lord looked down on their sacrifices, Abel would receive God’s favor while Cain would not. This made Cain jealous to the point where he killed Abel in the fields. For this the Lord cursed Cain to forever wander the earth and the ground would no longer bear crops for him. However the Lord placed a mark upon him, the mark of Cain, as a warning that if anyone were to kill him that person would suffer vengeance seven times over. Cain & Abel A Philistine named Goliath challenged the Israelites. He fought everyone who dared to cause a threat. One day, Jesse’s son, David, went to the battlefield to give his army brothers food. He heard rumors about a giant threatening the Israelites. David, being naïve decides to face Goliath. David becomes angered when Goliath insults God. Because of this the Lord helps David in defeating the giant. He threw a rock at Goliath using a sling shot. Even though David was small, his faith with God helped him to win against the big giant.

Eventually David became King of Israel and one night looking out his window he saw the beautiful Bathsheba bathing in the moonlight. She was married to one of his generals and in order to take her as his wife he sent Uriah her husband to the front lines, so he would be killed. God punished him for this act by not allowing him to build his great temple; however, Solomon his son with Bathsheba did build the Temple and became one of the wisest rulers of Israel. David During the time that Moses was born Pharaoh ruled that every Hebrew boy would be killed. Moses however escaped such punishment when his mother made him a basket for him to float down the river in. One of the Pharaoh’s daughters happened to see him and raised him as if he were her own. Years later when Moses had grown up he went out to see the other Hebrews. While he was out there he saw an Egyptian beat a Hebrew and Moses, enraged, killed the Egyptian. He was so upset with himself that he fled to Midian where God talked to him through a burning bush telling him that he is sending Moses back to Egypt to free his people. So Moses went back to Egypt , however, since Pharaoh’s heart was so cold God sent several plagues until he finally let the Hebrews go after the plague that killed each first born male. The Hebrews left, but Pharaoh chased after them. Moses, with God's help, parted the Red Sea. They escaped and the pursuing Egyptians were drowned. Moses Abraham and Sarah had waited for many years to have a child. When Abraham's sone Isaac was born they were over joyed, but once Issac was a boy God came to Abraham and told him that if he truly loved God and was obedient, he would sacrifice Isaac. He and Isaac acended a mountain. Abraham tied up Issac and was about to sacrifice him, when an angel stayed his hand, and God let him know that he had proven his loyalty and would not have to lose his child. Instead that sacrificed and animal caught in the brambles. Abraham & Isaac Now there was a time when the whole world had one language and common speech. And there came a time when people began to gather in one area and during that time they decided to build a tower tall enough to reach the heavens. When the Lord saw the tower he decided that since they could achieve something like this, nothing would be impossible for them. In order to remedy this problem the Lord confused their languages and the people eventually became scattered all over the earth again. Tower of Babel God told Jonah to go to the city of Nineveh. He was there to announce to the people that God wasn’t happy with them. Jonah was scared so he ran away. Jonah boarded a ship which caused a storm to come. The sailors found out that Jonah ran away from God and threw him off the ship. The Lord then sent a great fish to eat Jonah. Inside the stomach, "the belly of the beast", Jonah asked for forgiveness. The Lord heard his prayers so he let Jonah free. Jonah & the Whale Samson, and Israelite, was the strongest man of his time. The Philistine's were enemies of the Israelites. Delilah, who was Samson's pagan lover, was offered a bribe by Philistine’s leaders to find out the source of Samson's strength, so it could be neutralized. Delilah agreed and she begin to work on Samson asking many times the source of his strength. Samson would always lie to appease her pleading. After accusing him of not trusting her, he gave in and told her that his strength came from his long hair. When he was sleeping, his lover tied him up and shaved his hair off. He was captured by the Philistine's who blinded him and chained him up. They thought that his strength was shorn with his locks, but as his hair grew back, so did his strength. Blind and chained, he placed himself between two supports and brought down the Philistine's temples killing their leaders. Samson & Delilah Solomon, the son of David and Bathsheba, the builder of the Temple, was considered the wisest of all men. One day, two women went to King Solomon to solve a problem about their child. They both shared a house and both just had a baby. One of their babies had died and replaced it with the others. Both of the women claimed that the live baby was theirs. King Solomon’s solution was to divide the baby in half. The real mother told the king that she would give up the baby as long as he didn’t kill the baby. This is how Solomon knew who the real mother was. Solomon One day, Satan appeared before the Lord. He claimed that God’s most loyal followers only loved him because of all the gifts they received from him. God disagreed, and so they entered into a bet. They tested one of God’s most loyal followers, Job. Job was a very wealthy man with many children. He had a good heart and praised the Lord. Satan tested him by taking away everything from him; his children, servants, and cattle. Job was cursed with bad boils and other ills. Even when everything was taken away from him, Job never once blamed God. Because of his faith, God restored all that he lost. Job Joseph was the son of Jacob and was loved by his father far more than any of his other brothers. Jacob showed Joseph his favor by giving him a richly ornamented and colorful robe that would anger his brothers to absolute no end. At one point Joseph’s brothers became so envious that they sold him to the Egyptians, shredded his robe and soaked it in blood so that their father would believe that Joseph was dead.

Joseph was a slave in Egypt, but due to his ability to interpret dreams he came to the Pharaoh's notice when he was in jail. Joseph rose to become the second most powerful man in Egypt, and saved Egypt from a coming drought. Eventually his brothers seeking food came to Egypt. After testing them and seeing how they protected their youngest brother Benjamin, Joseph forgave them and the family was reunited. Joseph and his coat of many colors The final battle between God and Satan. John the apostle prophesied that the battle was coming. At the end, the Antichrist and his followers were overthrown and defeated. Armageddon became a symbol between the forces of good and evil. Armageddon Daniel always prayed to his God three times a day. The Persian king was pleased with Daniel and the king’s officials were jealous and tried to find a way to get rid of Daniel. So they had the king pass a law saying that you can no longer worship or pray to anyone except the King. One day the King’s officials found Daniel praying to God and went to tell the King. When the king found out he had no choice but to have Daniel thrown into the lion's den. The next day, the king asked Daniel if his god was able to save him from the lions. Daniel replied saying, “Yes, he sent me an angel that protected me from the lions." The king was glad that Daniel wasn’t hurt and said that those men which had accused Daniel, along with their wives and children be cast into the den of lions. After that King Darius issued a new decree that all people everywhere should honor and fear the God that Daniel served so faithfully. Daniel & the Lion's Den Elijah was a prophet known for going against King Ahab whose Phoenician wife stray the Jewish Kingdom by the introduction of the idol Baal. To punish Ahab, Elijah laid a curse upon the kingdom. He said, "As the Lord lives, the God of Israel who I serve, there will be no dew or rain except at my bidding" (I Kings 17:1). Just as Elijah has foretold the country experience severe drought meanwhile Elijah was hiding in Wadi Cherith as God has told him. At last three years have passed and Obadiah who was sent by Ahab founds Elijah. On one hand Obadiah hesitates to turn in Elijah to the king due to the effect of the curse but on the hand he was at the mercy of King Ahab. Elijah after being commanded by God sought out Ahab and challenges the 450 Baal’s priests at the top of Mt. Carmel. The priests and Elijah sacrifice a bull and call on their god to answer. The priests didn’t get a sign while Elijah’s God burns the bull. Despite killing all 450 Baal’s priests there were no change in the kingdom. When Elijah returns to the desert he meets his successor, Elisha. Elisha parted a river for him and Elijah to cross when the time was near for Elijah to leave Earth. Elisha asked for his spirit. Elijah was taken to heaven in a fiery chariot, drawn by fiery horses. Elijah (Elisha) Jezebel was a Queen of Israel and the wife of King Ahab. She influenced her husband to turn against his belief in the God of Israel. As Queen of Israel, she ruled 850 pagan priests and methodically worked to turn Israel against the belief in the One True God. She was determined that the entire nation would worship Baal, the pagan God of Fertility. She believed that the king and queen should own anything they wanted and she went to any means, even murder, to get what she wanted and she managed to influence her husband to do the same. She sets out to kill the prophets of God, but the Prophet Elijah went up against the pagan prophets and killed them. Jezebel vowed to kill him. Elijah promised terrible deaths for King Ahab and Queen Jezebel for causing Israel to sin. Ahab asked for forgiveness before the Lord and was spared, but Jezebel did not and met her death by being thrown out of a window to the dogs. Jezebel They were two cities in the bible that were destroyed by God, due to the many sins they inhabitants committed. According to the bible, God arrives are the plains of Mamre with 2 angels, who appeared as regular men. They received shelter and hospitality at Abraham and Sarah's house. He later reveals that he must destroy Sodom and Gomorrah because they were a city full of sin. Abraham asks God that if he could find 50 righteous men; could he spare the city? God told him that if he can find 20 or even 10 righteous men, he would spare the city. The angels proceed to Sodom and Gomorrah, and are received by Abraham's righteous nephew Lot. The people in the city start to complain why Lot won’t let them see the guest he has. Instead of giving them up, he offers his 2 virgin daughters in their place. The people refuse and later get angry. The angels strike them blind. God gives Lot and his family an order to leave the city with all their belongings, and to not look back as they leave for they will get a cruel punishment. Sodom and Gomorrah are destroyed by fire and brimstone. As they ran away, Lot's wife looks back in curiosity, and becomes a pillar of salt. Sodom and Gomorrah Long ago, God sent an angel to Israel, to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to Joseph, a carpenter. The angel told Mary that by God's power, she would conceive and bear a son. When Joseph learned that she was pregnant, an angel instructed him to marry her. Joseph took her to Bethlehem to register for a poll. While there, Mary gave birth to Jesus. She laid him in a manger (stall), because there was no room at the inn. Shepherds visited Jesus in Bethlehem. Later, wise men, following a star in the night sky over the place where Jesus was born, brought gifts to Jesus. King Herod who heard the prophesy that Jesus would be King of the Jews, asked the wise men to return and tell him where Jesus was, but the wise men went home another way to prevent Herod from finding him. So Herod sent soldiers to kill all the male children in Israel. Warned by an angel, Joseph took his family to Egypt. After Herod died, they returned to Israel and raised Jesus in a town called Nazareth. Birth of Jesus Once there was a man who had two sons. One day the younger son demanded his share of his inheritance and so the father divided the property between them. The younger son went off to a distant country where he squandered his property in reckless living. A severe famine arose in the country and he begins to be in need. He comes to his senses and decides to return home and throw himself at his father’s mercy. When he returns home however, his father embraces him and barely gives him an opportunity to express his repentance. The son says to him, “Father, I have sinned against heaven and before you. I am no longer worthy to be called your son.” His father on the other hand begins to celebrate his return by killing a fatted calf. The older brother becomes jealous at the special treatment of his brother. The father then says to him, “Son you are always with me, and all that is mine is yours. But we must celebrate because this brother of yours was dead and has come to life; he was lost and now has been found.” Parable of the Prodigal Son Lazarus and his two sisters, Mary and Martha, were friends of Jesus. When Lazarus had fallen ill, his sisters sent a message to Jesus, "Lord, the one you love is sick." When Jesus heard the news, he waited two more days before going to Lazarus' hometown of Bethany. Jesus knew that he would do a miracle for God's glory and, therefore, he was not in a hurry.
When Jesus arrived in Bethany, Lazarus had already been dead and in the tomb for four days. When Martha discovered that Jesus was on his way, she went out to meet him and told him “Lord, if you had been here, my brother would not have died."
Jesus told Martha, "Your brother will rise again." Martha had thought that he was talking about the final resurrection of the dead.
Then Jesus said to her: "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die."
Martha then went and told Mary that Jesus wanted to see her. The town of Bethany was not far from Jerusalem where the Jewish leaders were plotting against Jesus.
When Mary met Jesus she was grieving over her brother's death. The Jews with her were also weeping and mourning. Deeply moved by their grief, Jesus wept with them.
Jesus then went to the tomb of Lazarus with Mary, Martha and the rest of the mourners. There he asked them to remove the stone that covered the hillside burial place. Jesus looked up to heaven and prayed to his Father, closing with these words: "Lazarus, come out!" When Lazarus came out of the tomb, Jesus told the people to remove his grave clothes.
Lazarus When Jesus Christ opens the seven seals on a scroll that was given to him by God, the horsemen appear when the first four seals are broken; the Bible predicts that their coming will herald the Apocalypse.
The first rider, carrying a bow and wearing a crown, would set off with his white horse to conquer. He was said to be the leader of the horsemen.
Then I saw when the Lamb broke one of the seven seals, and I heard one of the four living creatures saying as with a voice of thunder, "Come and See."
I looked, and behold, a white horse, and he who sat on it had a bow; and a crown was given to him, and he went out conquering and to conquer.
The second horseman was colored red like the blood spilled on a battlefield. This horseman represented war, and the rider carried a sword. He was said to bring war wherever he goes.
When He broke the second seal, I heard the second living creature saying, "Come and See."
And another, a red horse, went out; and to him who sat on it, it was granted to take peace from the earth, and that men would slay one another; and a great sword was given to him.
The third horseman was colored black to represent barren fields. The rider spread famine and unfair trade throughout the world. He carries a set of scales.
And when he had opened the third seal, I heard the third beast say, “Come and see.” And I beheld, and lo a black horse; and he that sat on him had a pair of balances in his hand.
And I heard a voice in the midst of the four beasts say,” A measure of wheat for a penny, and three measures of barley for a penny; and see thou hurt not the oil and the wine.”
The fourth horseman rides a pale horse and represents pestilence and death.
And when he had opened the fourth seal, I heard the voice of the fourth beast say, “Come and see.”
And I looked, and behold a pale horse: and his name that sat on him was Death, and Hell followed with him. And power was given unto them over the fourth part of the earth, to kill with sword, and with hunger, and with death, and with the beasts of the earth.
The Four Horsemen
of the Apocalypse John the Baptist was the cousin of Jesus and his birth heralded the arrival of Jesus. John the Baptist was the preacher and when King Herod married his late brother's wife, Herodias, and John the Baptist preached against this act. Herod's wife was offended and had John incarcerated. Herodias wanted him murdered, but Herod would not as he knew John was a righteous man. Herodias' daughter was very beautiful and dancing before her step-father/ uncle he was so enraptured by her dance that he promised her anything, even if it was half his kingdom. Salome asked her mother Herodias what she should request and Herodias told her to demand the head of John the Baptist on a silver platter. She did and Herod reluctantly gave her what she asked. John the Baptist The Last Supper was the last time that Jesus and the twelve disciples ate before Jesus' crucifixtion. At that dinner, Jesus commanded his followers drink wine and eat bread in remembrance of him. At the last supper the cup from which Jesus drank took on a significance in Christian belief as the Holy Chalice/ Holy Grail. He told Peter that he would be the rock on which his church was built, and that Peter would deny him three times before the cock crowed and that one of his disciples would betray him. The Last Supper Judas Iscariot was the disciple who betrayed Jesus to the Pharisees and Roman troops. Judas was paid 30 pieces of silver, and to show the soldiers who to arrest he kissed Jesus -- a kiss of betrayal, the Judas kiss. Later despairing over what he had done, he hung himself from a cypress tree. Judas Jesus was arrested in Gethsemane following the Last Supper with the twelve Apostles, and forced to stand trial before the Sanhedrin, Pontius Pilate, and Herod Antipas, before being handed over for crucifixion. After being flogged, Jesus was mocked by Roman soldiers as the "King of the Jews", clothed in a purple robe, crowned with thorns, beaten and spat on. Jesus then had to make his way to the place of his crucifixion. Once at Golgotha, Jesus was stripped and nailed to the beam and hung between two convicted thieves. According to Mark's Gospel, he endured the torment for some six hours, from the third hour until his death at the ninth hour. The soldiers affixed a sign above his head stating "King of the Jews,” divided his garments and cast lots for his seamless robe, and offered him wine mixed with gall to drink, before eventually piercing his side with a spear to be certain that he had died.
On the evening of the Crucifixion Joseph of Arimathea, asked for Jesus’ body. Jesus was the placed in a tomb. Women, or in some gospels Mary Magdalene alone, visit the tomb and are told that Christ has risen and are instructed to go and teach this to the male disciples. Jesus then makes appearances to his disciples and then ascends into heaven.
Crucifixion & Resurrection Tomas is one of the disciples that doubted the reappearance of Jesus witnessed by the other eleven disciples. He said he would not believe until he put his hand through the wound in Christ's ribs and fingers through the nail wounds of his hands. So for doubting him, Jesus appeared and told Tomas to touch and so he believed. Doubting Tomas Arthur Pendragon was a boy conceived in unusual circumstances. His father Uther desired Igraine (Arthur’s mother) so much that Uther went to the wizard Merlin and convinced him to use dragon’s breath to cause him to look like Igraine’s husband, the Duke of Cornwall, who would be away for the night. Uther finally defeated Cornwall in battle and married Igraine. As a result of their union that night Arthur was conceived. Arthur was handed over to Merlin as a part of the deal Uther made with him. Merlin fostered him with a Knight and removed his support from King Uther in hopes that Arthur would become the great king that England needed. Uther, Igraine and Arthur's Birth Lancelot was a noble night, married to Elaine (the Lady of Shallot) and father of Sir Galahad. He was Arthur's best friend and the greatest knight of the Round Table. Guinevere, Arthur's wife and queen, and Lancelot fell in love. Mordred, Arthur's bastard son by his half-sister Morgan le Fay, accused Guinevere of adultery and Arthur had no choice but to condemn her to die at the stake. At the last moment, Lancelot saved her. Because of what happened, Arthur had to face Mordred's troops alone. After Arthur died Guinevere enter a nunnery and Lancelot wandered alone. Arthur, Guinevere, Lancelot and the love triangle Sir Gawain is also known as The Perfect Knight and appears the most in Arthurian legends. In “Sir Gawain and the Green Knight”, The Green Knight rides into Arthur’s court and challenges anyone in Arthur’s court to a game. He tells them that any one brave enough need only to get up and strike him with their axe, and in one year shall receive a blow of their own. Gawain gets up and cuts off the Knight’s head. The Knight picks up his head and says for Gawain to come to him in a year and a day at the Green Chapel. During Gawain’s travel to meet the Green Knight, he comes upon a castle with a Lord (later known as Bertilak), his wife, and an old lady. He challenges Gawain, that he will give Gawain his hunting bounty each day for anything that Gawain can acquire while he remains at the castle. Each day when the lord goes out, the wife visits Gawain and gives him 1, 2, and 3 kisses (on days 1, 2, and 3 respectively) and each day exchanges them for the Lord’s bounty. On the third day, however, the wife also gives Gawain a girdle which will protect the wearer from death. He does not give this to the lord, just the kisses he received. He sets out and eventually comes to the Green Chapel where he finds the Green Knight. The Knight feigns 3 blows and draws blood on the third feign. Gawain says that their contract has been met, but the Knight just laughs at him. He tells Gawain that his name is Bertilak and that he was the Lord whose castle Gawain had stayed in. He drew blood because Gawain did not give up all of his winnings on the 3rd day of his stay. He also reveals that the old woman was actually Morgan le Fay. Gawain wears the girdle as a symbol of shame for his failure to tell the whole truth. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight Merlin is known to be many things most notably: a wizard, a prophet, a tutor, a bard, and an advisor. In some versions, he is said to be the son of a devil and a nun. In earlier works, he was not Arthur’s advisor. As a young boy, he called himself Ambrosius and made a series of prophecies about the future of Britain. He is also known as “The Wild Man of the Woods” and is often based of a Welsh legend of a man named Myrddin. In some works, he plays a part in Arthur’s conception and birth by helping Arthur’s father Uther, by making him resemble Igraine’s husband at the time. In other works, he was also known to have educated Arthur. He also took Arthur to receive a new sword, Excalibur, from the Lady of the Lake after his sword broke in a fight. The round table that Arthur and his knights sit around was designed and built by Merlin. Merlin Morgan le Fay (translated Morgan the Fairy) was known as an Arthurian sorceress. She was said to be very powerful. “In Celtic terms, Morgan (or Morcant) is a man's name. The feminine version is more correctly Morgain (or Morgue or Morgne).” Morgan could also shape shift at will and was said to be an antagonist to King Arthur and Queen Guinevere (The knights of the round table.) She was skilled in the arts of healing, and she ruled over Avalon the island. Sometimes she is presented as in a positive light as one of the queens that bears a dying Arthur on a barge to Avalon where he will be healed to return when England needs him. She learned her powerful magic from books and also from Merlin. Sometimes she is said to have stolen magic from Merlin and trapped him a cave. She is the mother of Morderd by her half-brother Arthur (through her trickery or through accident depending on the story). Morgan le Fay Numue (aka Vivienne or most commonly Lady of the Lake) is a Celtic goddess. She is the protector of Excalibur (the sword in the stone). One of her most earlier appearances was that of a mortal girl. She is famous for giving King Arthur the legendary sword of Excalibur and the mystic scabbard which protected the wearer from dying. Nimue is also known for abducting Lancelot to her underwater dwelling to be her ward, training him to be the greatest of all knights. Her most prevalent power is being immune to aging and common diseases. Lady of the Lake Is often said to be related to Arthur (either as his nephew or as a foster child) but is mostly said to be Arthur’s son (conceived by Arthur and his sister half-sister Morgawse or half-sister Morgan le Fay). Arthur did not know that Morgawse was his sister at the time. He was a knight of the round table, but he tried to overthrow Arthur and in fact waged war against him. Arthur and Mordred killed each other in battle. Mordred Isle of Avalon, the domain of the Lady of the Lake and the Grail Castle. Avalon has been called "Isle of Apples".
When King Arthur was mortally wounded, his half-sister, Morgan le Fay, writers say that she brought the king to Avalon, to be healed. Geoffrey of Monmouth, mentioned Morgan le Fay as one of nine sisters who were also great sorceresses and they lived in Avalon
Avalon Camelot was the great castle of King Arthur. Camelot was the seat of power in Britain, where inside a council was established. Arthur and his knights who presided over the council were called Knights of the Round Table. Camelot symbolised the Golden Age of Chivalry. Camelot Excalibur was the mythic sword given to Arthur by the Lady of the Lake. With this sword, Arthur coould neve be defeated in a battle in which he was fighting for a just cause. It's scabbard also protected the wearer from death, but Arthur lost it. Excalibur The wizard Merlin has placed the sword into a huge stone, declaring that only the true heir of Uther Pendragon could reclaim it. Several warriors attempt the task, but it can only be withdrawn by "the true king," the divinely appointed king and true heir to the throne. In the midst of a national crisis, the young Arthur withdraws the sword and soon becomes king. The Sword in the Stone The Holy Grail became the source of the greatest quest in the Arthurian legend. The Grail was often called Sangreal, which san greal literally means "Holy Grail". However, through arrangement of the letter "g", sang real come to mean, "True Blood". The Grail was associated with the cup used by Jesus in the Last Supper; however, the story of the Grail, owes more to pagan origin than in Christian belief. The magical restorative power of a cup was a common theme in Celtic myth than the Bible. The quest for the Grail is often a spiritual quest, and depending on the tale is either accomplished by Perceval or Galahad, the knight pure enough of hear to win the Grail. The Holy Grail A mother duck's eggs hatch, but the biggest egg takes longer than all the others. A nosy neighbor opines that the egg looks like a turkey egg. When the egg finally hatches, Mother Duck is relieved to see that her newest son swims - he must not be a turkey - but as ducklings go, he's not very good looking.

The unnamed ugly duckling lives an unpleasant life in the "duckyard" of the farm on which his family lives. With the notable exception of his mother, he is not only disparaged for his looks, he is often bullied and brutalized.

The ugly duckling has by now given up on life. He intends to place himself among the swans and then expects them to simply kill him. Instead, they recognize him as one of their own. Looking at his own reflection in the water, he sees that he is! In fact, the little children who visit the garden think him the most beautiful swan of all. The Ugly Duckling A beautiful queen, while pregnant looks upon the white snow and the pinprick of blood upon her embroidery and thinks that she would love her daughter to have skin as white as snow and lips as red as blood. Her daughter Snow White fulfills her wish, but she dies and her husband marries again to a beautiful but cruel and vain queen. This queen spends every day looking in a magic mirror asking "who is fairest in the land" and every day she is told that it is her, but one day the mirror says it is Snow White. The Queen has a hunter take Snow White out to the woods to kill her, but he can not. He tells her to run away. She ends up in the home of seven dwarves who she looks after. The Queen discovers she is still alive and disguised as an old crone gives her a poisoned apple that puts her into a deep sleep. The Queen delighted with her success accidently falls into an abyss and dies. A prince comes accross Snow White in the glass coffin the dwarves have made for her. He kisses her and she awakes. They live happily ever after. Snow White and the Seven Dwarves A proud father boasts that his daughter is the most wonderrful in the world. Not only is she beautiful, but she can spin straw into gold. The King hearing this takes her to his castle and demands that she spin a room of straw into gold or she will die. As she is crying in the room, a strangle little man appears. He discovers her dilemma, and offers to help her for payment. She gives him a token, a necklace, and he spins the straw into gold. The King is pleased and takes her to a larger room. The little strange man appears again and for another token, a ring, he spins the straw. The third time the King takes her to a room, she has nothing to give the little man. He has her promise to give him her first born child. Facing death she agrees. After the third night the King, takes her as his Queen and does not ask her to spin anymore straw into gold. Time passes and she gives birth to a son. The little man reappears to demand his payment. She begs him to take anything else. He tells her that if she can quess his name that will be her payment. She tries every name over the two days he visits her, but none are his. She send men all over the kingdom to catalog all the names, but none of the one's she tries are his. Finally one of her men, hear him singing in the wood his glee that no one will guess his name is Rumpelstiltskin. The third time he visits she tells him his name is Rumpelstiltskin. He goes crazy at being thwarted and runs off. Rumpelstiltskin There was a prince who wanted to marry a real princess. He traveled all over in hopes of finding one but there was always something wrong with the princesses he visited and met. He returned to his kingdom very sad that he had not found his princess. One night there was a very bad storm and someone knocked very hard on the castle's door. The king went to answer the door and it was a young lady who said she was a real princess. She was all wet and her clothes hung to her skin. The queen quickly thought of a way to test if the girl was really a princess. She placed 1 peas on the bedstead and laid 20 mattresses on top of them and on top of this she laid 20 feather beds and allowed the princess to sleep there. The next morning the princess was asked how she slept and she replied that she slept horribly and that her back was all bruised. This proved she was a real princess because only a real princess could be so delicate and the prince married her. The Princess and the Pea The town of Hamelin has a rat infestation and a man pretending to be a rat-catcher promises the town a solution to their rat problem. The town agrees to pay him and he gets to work. He lures all the rats into a river by playing a musical pipe and all the rats end up drowning. But the townspeople do not pay him and he seeks revenge. On St. John and St. Paul’s day while the town was at church he played his pipe again and attracts the children. Legend says 130 children were lured into a cave by him and they were never seen again. The Pied Piper of Hamelin There is a very pretty little girl who lives with her mother. She wears a beautiful red hood and the townspeople call her little red riding hood. One day her mom bakes a cake and tell her to take it to her grandma who is sick. On her way to her grandma’s house an evil wolf pretends to be nice and asks her where she is going. She tells him where her grandma’s house is and he beats her there. When he gets there he pretends to be the little girl and eats the grandma. When the little girl arrives he dresses in her grandma’s clothes and hides under the covers. Because she thinks her grandma is sick Little Red Riding hood comes into the house. He pretends to be her grandma and lures her into the bed where he eats her. Little Red Ridding Hood Hansel and Gretel were brother and sister who lived with their father and step-mother in a little cabin. During a time of famine there was not enough food for all four of them so the step-mother convinces the father to abandon them deep in the forest so that they cannot come back. Hansel overhears her and the next day when they are being led through the woods he drops little pebbles on the ground so that he can find his way back. They find their way back home after some time in the forest and the father is very happy to have them back. After some time another famine overcomes the family and this time the step-mother convinces the father to lead the kids deeper into the forest so they can never find their way back. This time Hansel drops little bread crumbs on the ground. When they try t go back home he discovers that the little birds in the forest have eaten the crumbs. After days of wandering around the forest they follow a white dove into a house that is made of bread, sugar, and cake. An evil witch lives here but she pretends to be a nice old woman. She plans to fatten Hansel up and then eat him. Gretel outsmarts her one day and throws her into an oven to burn. The kids find pearls and riches from the house and soon find their way home. When they come home they give their father the riches and discover that the step-mother has died. They live happily ever after with their dad. Hansel and Gretel Also known as “The Frog King” or “Iron Henry”. A beautiful princess drops a golden ball into a well in the forest. A frog hears her weeping and offers to find the ball for her if she promises to love him and let him be her companion. She agrees but after he returns with the ball she forgets and goes back to the castle. Later on as she eats dinner with her father, the king, the frog arrives at the castle and reminds her of her promise. She is disgusted by the frog but her father makes her keep her word. Later at night when he asks to sleep comfortably in her bed she throws him against the wall and he become’s a prince. The following morning the ride off in a beautiful carriage and go to his kingdom. His faithful servant, Henry, who had been extremely sad when the prince was turned into a frog by an evil witch, becomes extremely happy again and they all live happily ever after. The Frog Prince Cinderella There was a maiden whose mother died. Her father remarried women who had to two daughters; they looked beautiful in appearance but had black hearts and treated the maiden badly. They called her Cinderella because they made her sleep in ciders. When her father asked them what they wanted while he went on a trip, both the stepsisters said they wanted clothes and jewels, while the maiden only wanted a fig branch. The maiden planted the tree on her mother’s grave, and here tears allowed it to flourish and grow. One day the king pronounced a festival to last three days so that his son may find a bride. The stepsisters gave Cinderella impossible task so that she couldn’t go to the festival. She asked the birds to help her and she did the task only to find that she could not go. She wept at the tree and the birds dropped a splendid dress. She went to the ball and enchanted the prince, returning earlier then her family. Each night she wept and cried beneath the tree and was given a dress. On the third day the prince laid pitch on the steps the prevent her from leaving. Her left shoe got struck and the prince used this to find her as he searched the land. The eldest stepsister had to much a big toe to fit the shoe so her mother told her to cut it off and she did. She fit the shoe and rode off with the prince, before birds sang there is blood on her shoe. The prince went back and tried the other sister, who cut off her heel to fit the shoe and was returned home as her sister. Finally it was Cinderella turn and she fit the shoe and married the prince. The birds picked out the eyes of both of her the stepsisters and they were condemned to be blind. There is a rich man who owns fine houses in the city and the country, as well as great quantities of gold and silver. He is unlucky enough to have a bluebeard so women and girls find him ugly and run away from him. One day he wanted one of his neighbor’s two daughters to be his wife. Neither of the sisters wanted him, and hated him because no one knows what happened to his other wives. To win their affection he invited them, their mother, and their friends to his country house where they partied and had a good time. The youngest started to think of him as a gentlemen; she married Bluebeard. A month later Bluebeard said he was going to go on a business trip and gave his wife several keys so that she may see all his wealth. However she was not allowed to go into the little closet. While the neighbors looked at the wealth, her curiosity got the better of her as she headed to the closet. Tempted she unlocked the door; inside she found the floor covered in blood and the dead bodies of the Bluebeard’s past wives. The key to the closet was stained with blood which did not come off with soup or sand. Bluebeard came back that day and asked for the keys. He found out she had been in the closet and pronounced she must die. She begged to be allowed to pray before her execution and was given half a quarter of an hour. She called her sister Ann to watch on the tower to see if her two brothers were coming. Before Bluebeard was about to strike her, her two brothers came on horseback and killed Bluebeard. Bluebeard In the town of Persia there lived to brothers Cassim and Ali Baba. While Cassim was rich Ali Baba was poor. One day while Ali Baba was in the forest he saw a band of forty men on horse back. Their leader stood before rocks said “Open Sesame!” A opening opened in the rocks and closed as the went in. When they came out the captain said “Shut Sesame!” When they left Ali Baba using the phrases and went in. He found much wealth and jewels, but only took a bag of gold with him. He returned home and told his wife to measure the gold. Due to his brother’s sisters curiosity on what he was measuring his brother Cassim found out about the treasure. Cassim went on his own in the morning with many mules and bags to take back his own treasures. However he forgot how to open the treasure cave once inside and remained trapped. The Forty thieves found him and cut him into pieces and placed him in bags for fear of their secret being found. Ali Baba found his brother’s parts and took them home. He told his slave, Morgiana to pretend as if Cassim was dieing and finally dead so that the thieves would not find them. She went and asked the apothecary for a root only given to those dyeing for Cassim. Days later the family pretended he died. Morgiana then went and sought out an old cobbler and put a piece of gold in his hand. She begged him to bring needle and thread, blinded folded him and led him to the house. With little lighting he was able to sew Cassim up again so he could be buried. The thieves finding Cassim parts missing, where looking for another person who knew their secret. One of the thieves found the old cobbler who was bragging about sewing the parts together. Though he was blinded he was able to lead the thief to Ali Baba’s house. The thief marked the house with a piece of chalk to return again later. Morgiana saw the mark and she marked the rest of the houses also. When the came that night they couldn’t find the house and the thief again marked the house with a red piece of chalk. Morginana marked the rest of the houses also and they didn’t find the house again. The third time the captain went to find the house and instead of marking it he memorized where it was and how it looked. He then had the other thieves buy 19 mules and 38 empty jars and one oil fill jar. That night the thieves hid inside the empty jars while the captain disguised as oil merchant begged to stay the night at Ali Baba’s house. He told the thieves to come out when he gives the signal. Empty on oil for the oil lamp Morgiana went outside to get some. She found the a thief inside who asked her if it was time. She said not yet, knowing the danger to her master and moved down the line with the same response till she got to the oil filled jar. She boiled the oil and killed each thief. The Captain gave his signal late at night when they did not respond went to look. Seeing their deaths he fled. The captain came back again and set up a shop across Ali Baba’s, and had the fortune to be invited to his house again. He had one condition that he could not eat victuals with salt in them. Morgiana after hearing this realized this was the captain of the forty thieves because he did not want to share salt with his enemy, planned to kill him. That dinner she danced around with a dagger and often pretended to stab her master as he played the instrument, at the end she stabbed the captain. Ali Baba & the
Forth Theives Aladdin was the son of a dead poor tailor. One day a man claiming to be his uncle came and they believed he was. Learning Aladdin had no trade he bought him a shop and merchandise to sell, and fine clothing. The next day the man and Aladdin journeyed till they almost reached the mountain. They came to two mountains divided by a valley where the magician kindled a fire and said some words. The earth trembled and a opening beneath was revealed, Aladdin tried to run but the man hit him. Asking why? The man said that their was treasure only Aladdin could touch. Aladdin did as the man asked since he wanted the treasure and the man only wanted a lamp. Before he went in the man gave him a ring. He found everything as the man said but when it came time to get out he refused to give the man the lamp till he was out. Frustrated the man left Aladdin, he was really an African Magician. Aladdin cried and rubbed his hands and the ring. A genie came out and granted his wish to leave this place. He went home where he fainted and asked his mother for food. Since there wasn’t any food in the house she was going to sell cotton. Aladdin told her to sell the lamp instead. While she was rubbing the lamp to make it cleaner, and out came a genie. Aladdin wished for a feast and the genie bought him a silver cup, 12 silver plates containing meat, two silver cups and two wine bottles. His mother wanted him to sell the lamp still, but Aladdin kept it and sold each silver plate to live on. The Sultan decreed that no one may see the princess while she goes to town baths, however Aladdin saw her and fell in love. He told his mother he wanted to marry her and gave her jewels from the cave with the lamp to give to the sultan. She waited for week to see the Sultan, and he finally noticed her and the jewels. He asked the advice of his visor, who said to wait three months because he wanted to marry his own son to the princess. In three months the sultan forgot about Aladdin and married his daughter off to the visor’s son. Aladdin angered by this commanded the genie to bring the new couple to his house. He sent the groom to a cold place and he slept down in the bed as the princess laid awake in fear. The next day the Sultan asked what happened, the princess kept her mouth shut and only told her mother. It continued each night until the Sultan finally got angered by the princess silence and threatened to execute her if she did not speak. She spoke and so did the visor’s son who asked to break the marriage. Aladdin’s mother came again to remind the Sultan of his promise, and upon seeing her poverty he a challenge for Aladdin to showcase his wealth. Aladdin asked the genie and upon seeing the jewels the Sultan married his daughter to him immediately. Aladdin asked genie to build a splendid palace for him and his wife. Meanwhile after many years Aladdin’s fame grew, the African magician learned about Aladdin’s wealth and the power of the lamp. Bent on revenge he bang to sell new lamps for old lamps by Aladdin’s place while Aladdin was out hunting. The princess hearing this from a slave traded Aladdin’s old lamp. The magician commanded the genie to transport the palace and the princess to Africa. The Sultan and Visor astonished about the disappearance, wanted to execute Aladdin for his trickery. The people came to rescue Aladdin and frightened by the mob the Sultan let Aladdin speak. Aladdin asked for forty days to find the princess and his palace. It was granted and he wandered for three days until he rubbed his ring. The genie of the ring granted his wish to find the palace. He found the princes who rouse early and told her to pretend to be over him and start to like the magician, and to power a powder into his wine. She did as he said; the magician died and Aladdin took back the lamp. The magician had a brother he wanting revenge pretended to be a holy women and asked the princess for a roc egg. She asked Aladdin who asked the genie; angered at Aladdin’s request to hang his master on top of dome told him about the hole women’s real visage. The magician’s brother was killed. Aladdin Building Background Knowledge to Recognize Common Literary Allusions A childless couple that wanted a child lived next to a walled garden which belonged to an enchantress. The wife, as a result of her long-awaited pregnancy, noticed a rapunzel plant planted in the garden and longed for it to the point of death. For two nights, the husband went out and broke into the garden to gather some for her; on the third night, as he was scaling the wall to return home, the enchantress, whose name is said to be "Dame Gothel", caught him and accused him of theft. He begged for mercy, and the old woman agreed to be lenient, on condition that the then-unborn child be surrendered to her at birth. The old woman raised the child and when she became a young woman she locked her in a tower with no door. When the witch went to visit Rapunzel, she stood beneath the tower and called out:
"Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your hair, so that I may climb the golden stair."

One day, a prince rode through the forest and heard Rapunzel singing from the tower. Entranced by her ethereal voice, he went to look for the girl and found the tower, but was unable to enter. He then returned often, listening to her beautiful singing, and one day saw Dame Gothel visit, thus learning how to gain access to Rapunzel. When Dame Gothel was gone, he bade Rapunzel let her hair down. When she did this, he climbed up, made her acquaintance, and finally asked her to marry him. Rapunzel agreed. Together they planned a means of escape, wherein he would come each night (thus avoiding the enchantress who visited her by day), and bring her silk, which Rapunzel would gradually weave into a ladder. Before the plan came to fruition, however, Rapunzel affair with the prince is given away because her dress was getting too tight around her belly In anger, Dame Gothel cut short Rapunzel's braided hair and cast her out into the wilderness to fend for herself.

When the prince called that night, the enchantress let the severed braids down to haul him up. To his horror, he found himself staring at the witch instead of Rapunzel, who was nowhere to be found. When she told him in anger that he would never see Rapunzel again, he leapt from the tower in despair and was blinded by the thorns below. In another version, the witch pushes him and he falls on the thorns, thus becoming blind. For months he wandered through the wastelands of the country. One day, while Rapunzel sang as she fetched water, the prince heard Rapunzel's voice again, and they were reunited. When they fell into each others' arms, her tears immediately restored his sight.

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