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Transcript of Odysseus' Journey
The Lotus Eaters
Land of the Dead
Scylla and Charybdis
Ithaca Odysseus and his men have just won the Trojan War.
His twenty year journey continues to Ismarus, home of the Cicones. When they arrive here, Odysseus sends three men to search the land. They meet the Lotus Eaters and are given lotus plants to eat. The lotus plants make them basically enchanted and they want to stay among the Lotus Eaters. So, Odysseus has to drag them onto the ship and tie them down. They hurriedly set sail and end up on the island of the Cyclops. Aeolia After the men open the bag of wind, they go back to Aeolia. Odysseus tells Aeolus what happened and asks for another bag of wind, but Aeolus refuses. Laestrygonians The next stop they make is the island of the Laestrygonians, giant cannibals who wreck ships using catapults and eat the victims. Odysseus sends more men to explore and when they come upon the kings home, a few of them are captured and eaten and the others run for their lives. The Laestrygonians wreck all but one of Odysseus' ships as they sail away and try to escape. Aeaea Next, the men land on the island of the witch, Circe. She lures Odysseus' men to her lair with song. They drink honeyed wine, that is enchanted, and all of the men are turned into pigs except for Eurylochus. He escapes and tells Odysseus what happened, and Odysseus goes to rescue his men. Hermes stops him on the way to give him antidote for the spell and tells him to threaten her, sleep with her, and then she will free his men. Odysseus demands his men back and drinks the wine, but does not turn into an animal. Circe realizes that the gods are involved and promises Odysseus that after granting her wish, she will let them go. After a year, Circe tells him that they must go to the underworld and speak to Teiresias, who will show him the way home. Land of the Dead Before seeing Hades, Odysseus sees the shade of Anticleia, his mother, and discovers that she committed suicide. She tells him that Penelope still awaits for his return and has been nothing but faithful. Odysseus then visits Teiresias and he tells him of his prophecy. He is told that he and his men will travel to Thrinacia and that it is forbidden to eat or harm Helios' cattle or they will suffer major consequences. Odysseus is also told that he will return home to trouble and will have to reclaim his home with violence. After visiting the Underworld, Odysseus returns to Aeaea to bury Elpenor and receive further instructions from Circe. Aeaea When Odysseus returns to Aeaea, Circe warns him of his next adventure, which is the Sirens. She tells him to put beeswax in his men's ears and if he wants to listen, his men must tie him to the mast. Circe then tells him of the two obstacles he must pass, Scylla and Charybdis. She advises him to stay close to Scylla, a six-headed monster who eats men, because it is better to lose six men than losing all of them to Charybdis, a huge whirlpool that sucks in anything in its path. Sirens After visiting Circe once more, they travel past the Sirens, winged women who crave sailors' lives. Odysseus informs his men to put beeswax in their ears and tie him to the mast. As they past through the Sirens, Odysseus is so attracted and tempted by their song that he wants to be set free to join them. Scylla and Charybdis Odysseus and his men head for Scylla and Charybdis after the Sirens. Scylla strikes and kills six of his men. The survivors are terrified and tortured by the shrieks of the men being eaten. Thrinacia When Odysseus and his men reach Thrinacia, they convince him to stay there. His men promise to eat their own provision until all of it disappears. Odysseus is put to sleep by the gods and the men sneak off to eat Helio's cattle. Zeus is enraged by this and strikes their ship with a lightening bolt, destroying it and causing Odysseus' men to drown. Odysseus floats on a piece of debris and ends up meeting Charybdis. Athena gives him the idea of holding on to a tree, which he does for one whole day. Charybdis sucks up everything in its path and eventually spits out the water. Odysseus floats on debris for nine days after this. Ogygia Odysseus' next stop is Ogygia, Caypso's island. Calypso falls in love with Odysseus and traps him their for quite some time. Finally, Zeus sends Hermes to order Calypso to release Odysseus from her island. After four days of preparing, he leaves Ogygia. Poseidon is enraged and creates a storm that destroys Odysseus' raft. Ino advises him to swim to Phaeacia, which takes him about twenty days. Phaeacia The king of the Phaeacians, Alcinous, welcomes Odysseus into his home. Odysseus does not want to reveal his identity, but eventually he does. He tells the Phaeacians of his journey and Alcinous is so touched by his story that he decides to help Odysseus. The Phaeacians shower him with gifts and provide a ship for him to return home. Odysseus sleeps throughout the whole trip to Ithaca, and is still sleeping when they arrive. The Phaeacians set him down on the ground and put his gifts nearby. Ithaca Odysseus does not recognize Ithaca when he wakes up because he has been gone for so long. He believes that Alcinous sent him to a foreign land and stole his gifts since he does not see them. Athena visits him in the form of a man and tells him they are in Ithaca, but he does not believe her. She then turns into a young woman and he realizes who he is talking to. She points out features of the island to prove that they are in Ithaca. They then proceed to plan their attack against the suitors and end them once and for all. Athena makes Odysseus look like an old beggar, which is apart of their plan. She then leaves for Sparta to tell Telemachus to return home.