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Hero Cycle for Odysseus
Transcript of Hero Cycle for Odysseus
outside the city of King Aeolus, in which they receive a gift, a bag of wind, which they use to sail back towards Ithaca. Odysseus and his men come across an island, Circe a goddess who turns his men to swine, eventually agrees to help them depart from the island. In the case of our hero, the Woman as Temptress branch of the hero cycle occurs before the meeting with the goddess. Odysseus's men are shipwrecked on her island and being a powerful sorcerer, she turns them all to swine. With help from Hermes, Odysseus becomes immune to her powers and she agrees to help them depart from the island on the condition that he shares her bed chamber with her. Upon leaving the island, Circe recommends that he visits the land of the dead, a feat few have accomplished over the years, to seek council with Tiresias, who then tells him that if he returns home he will be rejected, and unknown by his former family. After receiving help from Circe, and visiting the land of the undead, his crew begin to wonder if he is a god, because of the luck, and moral strength that Odysseus obtains. Throughout the story, Odysseus's Goal has been to return to his family in Ithaca. At this point in the story he has accomplished this goal, although he is not able to return to his family, because he fears he will not be know to them. Upon arrival to the city, Athena presents herself to him bearing beggars clothes and the advice to devise a plan before returning home. There are many points in the story where refusal to return is considered by Odysseus. Although there is one outstanding from the rest. Odysseus, while on the island with Calypso, is offered immortality on the condition that he rest with her for eternity. This step occurs well before he achieves his ultimate boon. After his return to Ithaca, Odysseus studies his home as a servant, and even dines with the suitors that are trying to bed his wife. He devises a plan to defeat them, by shooting them with arrows. Again, this step does not occur after the ultimate boon. Rescue from without is interpreted as his liberation from the island, by word of Hermes. Once again, Odysseus is thrown into the world of the unknown once landed on Ithaca. In order to return, and cross the return threshold he must devise a plan to kill the suitors. He tells his son Telemachus of his return, who in turn helps him defeat the suitors. Mastery of the 2 worlds occurs just before the slaughter of the suitors. There is a contest held, whoever can string and shoot a bow through 12 rings can have Penelope's hand in marriage. Odysseus strings the bow, shoots the arrow through the 12 rings and proceeds to shoot many of the suitors. Penelope fears that this Odysseus may be a god in disguise, and tests the theory by telling on of the house servants to move the bed in their chambers. Odysseus intervenes and points out that this would be impossible because one of the posts is made of a living olive tree. Penelope accepts the return of her husband, and is able to live in peace with him. FIN