Examples Of Admirability In The Odyssey

1208 Words 5 Pages
Different societies have different views on the favorability of some traits over others. However, there are similarities in what each society believes is admirable. In the fictional epic poem “The Odyssey,” by Homer, the reader can see what ancient Greek society views as admirable. The character traits that were most admired by the ancient Greeks were intelligence, pride/reputation, and loyalty because they were frequently used, characters respected these traits, and they were important to many areas of society; nevertheless, these traits are still praised to this day. To begin with, Odysseus frequently uses his intelligence as his main means for overcoming his external conflicts. For instance, he uses his this trait to escape from Calypso, …show more content…
For reference, Calypso is known as the “loveliest goddess,” and she is asking Odysseus how is it possible that he should prefer Penelope over her. She questions, “‘Can I be less desirable than she is? Less interesting? Less beautiful? Can mortals compare with goddesses in grace and form?’...Odysseus answered... My quiet Penelope would seem a shade before your majesty...Calypso, loveliest among goddesses.”(109-112, 114-115, 148-149). The author uses this quote to reveal the importance of Calypso’s pride and reputation to both Calypso and Odysseus. Her pride in her reputation is explicitly expressed and Odysseus does not want to offend her. He is wary because her pride shows confidence, which is very bold thus admired. In addition, Eurylochus attempts to persuade the crew to eat Helios’s cattle by arguing that after all the perils they have faced he refuses to die of starvation. For example, he declares, “‘You’ve gone through everything; listen to what I say. All deaths are hateful to us, mortal wretches, but famine is the most pitiful...Better to open up your lungs to a big sea once and for all than waste to skin and bones on a lonely island,’”(880-882, 892-894). After this speech, the crew and Eurylochus slaughtered and ate the forbidden cattle. Nevertheless, this shows that the crew had utter admiration and respect for Eurylochus, who was prideful and did not wish to die “pitifully.” Typically, one wants to adopt traits they admire, and apparently the crew admired his pride. They respect him, and Eurylochus instilled a feeling of pride in them about their victories and history to the point where they agreed with his views. Therefore, when someone is prideful they exert power and confidence, which is what these characters

Related Documents