Xenia In Odysseus In Homer's The Odyssey

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In Book X of The Odyssey, Odysseus is still narrating his journey, and he is now at the point in the story where he could have returned home, but jealousy within one of his shipmates causes them to be turned around by a bag of winds he opens because he thought it was gold and silver. Still questing for home, they land on the island of Aiaia, where Kirke, a goddess lives. When Odysseus sends his men to check out the island, they come across her marble home and enter it. She invites them in, gives them wine with a pinch of her vile, and they are turned into pigs. Odysseus goes to save them, is met by Hermes who tells him how to not fall under her spell, and gives him a plant that rebukes the potion. As he goes in with the advice, he saves his men, but they stay a year more than they planned, but are taken care of by Kirke very well due to an oath taken by her for Odysseus. Initially she greets them and serves them food, but turns them into pigs. After changing them they are treated with excellent care, but the question is how does she fulfill and break xenia during the first encounter, or not, and is she a…show more content…
They also are seated and are then given cheese and barley to eat. So, due to the fact that she invites them in and gives them food and drink she does not break xenia. Xenia is being a good host to your guest, and being a good guest to your host. Odysseus' men are offered food and drink, and it would have broke xenia if they did not take it themselves. So, even though she turned the men into pigs, she never broke xenia. After the men were turned into pigs, she still gave them food. Lines 267-69 say, "So, squealing, in they went. And Kirke tossed them acorns, mast, and cornel berries - fodder for hogs who rut and slumber on the earth." There she tossed them food, but the food was food that was suitable for pigs to eat. Ironically, she betrays their trust, but never breaks

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