Odysseus: An Epic Hero In Homer's The Odyssey

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Homer’s protagonist in The Odyssey, Odysseus, is a legendary hero; he wins the Trojan War for the Greeks, outsmarts Polyphemus, evades the Sirens, survives Scylla and Charybdis, visits the Underworld, possesses an unhealable wound, and restores peace to his kingdom (Howell). He is not only a mighty warrior who is favored by the gods (,) but also an intellectual, known as the cleverest of all Greek heroes. Additionally, Odysseus is a loyal husband and father. He is the embodiment of the values and standards of his culture, fitting the definition of an epic hero perfectly. Odysseus is the epitome of an epic hero; ancient Greeks valued heroes who are great warriors with intelligence and loyalty, and Odysseus is exactly that. Odysseus is a skilled warrior who is favored by the gods and…show more content…
In The Odyssey, Odysseus repeatedly does not abandon his men and crew. When some of his men are captured by Circe, Odysseus is adamant about saving his men. “Eurylochus tells Odysseus what has happened and begs him to sail away from Circe’s island. Against this advice, however, Odysseus rushes to save his men from the enchantress,” (Fitzgerald 387). He eventually does save his men and befriend Circe. When Odysseus and his men are about to leave Circe’s island, he shows this trait again. Circe offers him some advice and tells him that choosing the path of Scylla would result in the loss of some of his men. Odysseus states that he wanted all of his men to survive. Circe replies, “‘No, hug the cliff of Scylla, take your ship / through on a racing stroke. Better to mourn / six men then all, and the ship, too’” (Homer 12.68-70). Odysseus cares about the lives of his men. Moreover, Odysseus stays loyal to his wife, Penelope, over the course of twenty years. He even “[declines] immortality twice on his journey just to get home to his wife and son” (“Odysseus”). His resolve and loyalty pay off, though, when he finally returns to

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