“Epic heroes are admirable, even though their actions at times bring pain and suffering to others. Discuss this statement with reference to ‘The Odyssey’.
In the epic poem “The Odyssey”, the courageous and diligent Odysseus displayed many admirable traits, even though at times his actions brought pain and suffering to others. These lapses of character may have inflicted considerable distress and anguish to particular individuals, but they were unintentional and failed to tarnish the image of the protagonist Odysseus during his many journeys.
Odysseus portrayed the image of a time-honoured warrior. His stature and charisma depicted him as a god-like figure among men and a worthy king amongst his people. Odysseus’ physical supremacy demanded respect and his intelligence and good nature was admired by all. His commanding role in Troy emphasised his strength as a fighter and as a person. Odysseus demonstrated his intellect devising strategic plans of attack, illustrated by his penetration of Troy with the infamous ‘Trojan horse’. Nestor, Menelaus, Achilles, and Agamemnon, all heroes in their own right, spoke highly of their comrade.
“For all of the Achaeans who strove at Troy it was Odysseus who strove the hardest and achieved the most.”
Heroes and combatants were praised in ancient Greece; the honour associated with battles and wars distinguished individuals. Odysseus’ actions were known throughout the land, no more so than in his own country, Ithaca. Noblemen and people of his land reflected impressions of his rule, showing that Odysseus was a competent and admirable king. Even though their leader had been absent for more than a decade, many citizens were still loyal and hopeful of his return. The relationship between Eumaeus the swine herd, Philoetius the goat herd and Odysseus demonstrated the strong personal bond that he had with all of his people.
“It is for the lost Odysseus that my heart ache...