An Analysis Of ' Xenia ' And ' The Odyssey ' Essay

1048 Words May 18th, 2016 5 Pages
"Easy for them, all right, they feed on another’s goods and go scot-free" (p.7) This quote shows Telemachus ' rage over his mother 's suitors taking advantage of the Gods requirement for xenia. In The Odyssey, Homer uses an epic poem to convey lessons about ancient Greek culture. One of the main themes in this epic is the importance of xenia, or hospitality. In this essay, I want address good and bad examples of xenia, and show its great importance in the plot. During Odysseus ' great journey, xenia constantly saves him from hardship, and in the end helps him to get home. The first instance I would like to cover is both sides of the suitors ' stay in Odysseus house. Other than xenia 's affects on Odysseus himself, this is the most influential display of xenia. In Book 1, we see Telemachus becoming upset over Penelope 's suitors squandering the household goods and diminishing his father 's wealth. They are allowed to stay on the conditions of xenia, which says that guests should be treated like royalty: being fed, staying for a visit, and receiving gifts. Telemachus realizes they are going beyond these terms and that only he can do something about it (pg. 4-17). Then in Book 2, when Telemachus tries to address the kingdom, the suitors plea that they are doing nothing more than fulfilling their part of xenia by being gracious to their host. Telemachus does not want to disrespect the Gods by not treating the suitors like honored guests, but he also knows that…

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