Penelope The Odyssey Essay

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Penelope and Odysseus of Homer's Odyssey


Penelope and Odysseus, being kin spirits, soul mates, and a great husband and wife in their own right, are very much alike.  They have many of the same qualities.


      Both Penelope and Odysseus are very quick thinking and cunning.  Odysseus, for example, devises the plan to get the Cyclops to drink the wine so the crew could stab him in the eye.  Another example of Odysseus' cunning is his elaborate plan to massacre the suitors.  Odysseus orders that all the weapons be taken out of the room where the arrow contest was being held, then that the women of the household to be locked in their rooms, as to not interfere, then…show more content…

So, each day she weaves the shroud and each night she tears the strings out of the cloths so that everyday the shroud is still in progress. Her plan works for quite a while until someone tips off the suitors.


      Also, both Penelope and Odysseus are very faithful to each other, with Odysseus only straying once in their twenty year absence.  Odysseus, the whole time he is gone, yearns for his wife and even wishing to leave the arms of the seductive Circe saying that he wants the love of his wife even though he says that his wife will never compare to her. Penelope, on the hand, is an angel. She is surrounded by rich, young men who do anything to marry her or just have her love in any way, but Penelope resists their every advance. She feels in her heart that her husband is still alive and never waivers.


      The couple does have a difference though. Odysseus is terribly arrogant and proud while Penelope is very sweet and humble.  Odysseus feels the need to alert the Cyclops when he leaves the island, igniting Poseidon's wrath.  He and his crew plunder the land of the Cicones and stay

Essay about The Role of Penelope in Homer's Odyssey

1100 Words5 Pages

Yet, it is true, each day

I long for home, long for the sight of home.

If any god has marked me out again

For shipwreck, my tough heart can undergo it

What hardship have I not long since endured

At sea, in battle! Let the trial come."(Homer V:225-234)

Despite this high opinion of Penelope, before he left, Odysseus and Kalypso " . . . retired, this pair [He and Kalypso], to the inner cave/to revel and rest softly, side by side."(Homer V:235-238) This was not the only time Odysseus "retired", with another woman. On the island of Kirke "[he] entered Kirke's flawless bed of love"(Homer X:390). Despite these few instances, Odysseus remained faithful to Penelope in their twenty years apart. He never loved either Kalypso or Kirke as he did Penelope, and thusly chose not to stay with either of the two. Although the principle might get lost in the tale, Penelope played the part of the goal for Odysseus to obtain, or re-obtain by the end of the Odyssey.

Penelope did not have any idea whether her husband was alive for most of the twenty-years he was gone. She had promised Odysseus that she would not marry until their son, Telemakos, reached the age of adulthood. Just…

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