From Nausicaa to Penelope: Reading the Odyssey Through Grey Eyes | Nicole Camellino - gtfd.info
Odysseus and Athena arrive together on Nausicaa's island of Scheria, home to .. 16 creates an illusion of possibility for relationship growth which will fuel the. Odysseus meets Nausicaa. Michele Desubleo Ulisse e Nausica. Capodimonte Palace and National Gallery, Naples. Odysseus, hero of Homer's ''The Odyssey'' must make it past several obstacles before he gets back home after the Trojan War. Along the way, he manages to.
You wily bastard, You cunning, elusive, habitual liar! Nevermind about that though. Here we are, The two shrewdest minds in the universe, You far and away the best man on earth In plotting strategies, and I famed among gods For my clever schemes.Book 6 Odysseus and Nausicaa — Homer The Odyssey
Next, in linesAthena proceeds to blurt out her viewpoint of Odysseus and herself as two of a kind: She has just stated that Odysseus alone holds equal standing to herself in terms of cunning, and is addressing him as an equal: In linesAthena follows the expression of her hurt with a vague statement about the suffering Odysseus will now have to endure.
Does this conclusion point toward a characteristically feminine vindictiveness? Rather than inquiring about the reason as must suffer even further still, the hero makes no mention of the things said in lines at all, but chooses instead to pick up where Athena left off at It would be hard for the most discerning man alive To see through all your disguises, Goddess I know this, though: Beth Cohen New York: Oxford University Press, No, and I suffered in my wanderings Until the gods released me from my troubles20 Odysseus never falls short of pristine in his manipulation of words, and he articulates himself instinctively in whichever form is best set to serve his own best interest.
In this case, the hero does not wish to suffer further woes. Odysseus exposes for us some very important truths regarding his dynamic with Athena through his rebuttal.
Secondly, there is also a hint of pain in the words of Odysseus. It is crucial to recognize this as a moment in which both characters appear to be speaking to one another as equals. In lines of his appeal, Odysseus appears to show some reciprocity, conveying the impression that he is emotionally receptive to Athena.
In doing this, the hero 20 Ibid. Furthermore, in the climactic exchange between Odysseus and Athena in book XIII, we also have the first instance in which Athena hints at a negative opinion of Penelope.
After Odysseus has accused the goddess of not only abandoning him in his travels, but of lying to him about being back on Ithaka, Athena reprimands her hero for his wariness, stating: And I never did have any doubt, but in my heart always knew how you would come home, having lost all of your companions. Odysseus finds himself unable to sleep, tormented by a powerful 21 Lattimore, Od. Odysseus finds himself plagued by self-doubt, as the thought of taking on so many suitors simultaneously seems suddenly impractical.
Athena, sensing his desperation, is described as descending from the sky to arrive promptly at his side. She stands above his restless form, and regards him without compassion: First, the goddess speaks highly of Telemachus, complimenting his character in a way that suggests she may even possess parental feelings toward him.
Of Penelope, however, our heroine is quite patronizing. What is important to observe here is that Athena instinctively dehumanizes Penelope, as opposed to reasserting her own divinity. This is to remind us of the fact that we are now in a human world, and in this world, human qualities are more powerful than divine ones.
The Parallel of Penelope In addition to Odysseus and Athena, Penelope is the only other character in the Odyssey shown to employ and metis as a dominant characteristic.
For four years, the wife of Odysseus has promised to choose another husband upon completion a funeral shroud for the elderly Laertes,25 which she cunningly unweaves every night. The character of Athena is reflected in Penelope in such a way that we see she has become fully real in the glaring reality represented in Ithaka. Through a comparison of the two separate instances in which Odysseus is tested by one of these female characters, we can see striking similarities that clearly establish Athena and Penelope as operating on the same plane.
Neither is more or less honorable than the other in her aim.
Each desires to break him in her own way in exchange for a form of self-preservation; the self, not Odysseus, proves top priority in both cases. Indiana University Press, In book XXIII, Penelope confronts her husband with her famous test of identity, challenging his revelation of himself to her as Odysseus: Put the firm bed here outside for him. Who has tampered with their unique bed, the finest product of his skill in carpentry?
However, Athena transforms Odysseus into a beggar and proceeds to allow him to become the subject of 27 Lattimore, Od. As the men berate him, Athena takes it upon herself to enhance the demeaning effect, egging the suitors on by altering their minds in such a way that they feel unnaturally rambunctious: In the suitors Pallas Athena stirred up uncontrollable laughter, and addled their thinking.
Athena did not want the suitors to hold back their insults, and she sought to make them hurt Odysseus even more with their words. Finally, Athena verbally mocks Odysseus herself, saying to him: No longer, Odysseus, are the strength and valor still steady within you, as when, for the sake of white-armed, illustrious Helen, you fought nine years with the Trojans, ever relentless… How is it now, when you have come back to your own possessions 31 Ibid. What, then, has she been testing him on, specifically?
Playing Odysseus for his weakness-- wrath--Athena delights in self-satisfaction as she drives him toward his bloody climax, and Odysseus passes her test by at long last reacting to her. While it is Penelope who does not recognize Odysseus, recall that it is Odysseus who does not recognize Athena. Bibliography Clarke, Howard W. The Art of the Odyssey. Translated by Herbert Mason. Milton, John, and Philip Pullman. Oxford University Press, Translated by Richmond Lattimore.
Harper and Row, Translated by Stanley Lombardo. Selected Modern Criticism, edited by Charles H. Indiana University Press, Understanding the Gifted Adolescent: Bireley, Marlene, and Genshaft, Judy. This idea has implications for what the ancient image of Athena Polias, which is nowhere described for us, actually was. For at the moment of supplication Arete is represented as sitting at the hearth, holding the distaff, and spinning.
Nausicaa has already told Odysseus that this is how he will find her Odyssey 6. Arete is described in exactly these terms at her first appearance in the poem as well: She sat at the hearth with her serving women, spinning sea-purple wool from a distaff. Thus the scene has already been set twice before Odysseus enters the Phaeacian palace, and there is no need to describe it a third time.
We already have in mind the figure whose knees Odysseus grasps when he makes his supplication. He only repeated what was commonly said about it, that it fell from heaven.
The image itself was doubtless much older, but how old we do not know. It played a central part in traditions about the Cylonian conspiracy of about BC: Iliad 6 offers a parallel for such a full-size seated image of Athena Polias in the Homeric era: Taking the robe fair-cheeked Theano placed it on the knees of beautiful-haired Athena. One thing is clear: It was very likely of a different order from other images, including those of Athena Polias in Troy and other cities.
The question of what this image was should be approached with an open mind. The fourth-century inventories reveal one very important thing about the image itself: This means that its right hand was extended. In representations of women spinning, the right hand is extended to spin wool drawn from a distaff, which is held at a higher level by the left hand; the pose is seen in this example: Perpetual fire is the essential element here, and from a Greek standpoint perpetual fire could be provided by either a hearth or a lamp.
The hearth probably became a lamp when the aegis and gorgoneion were added to the image itself, perhaps as early as the early sixth century. In front of them Pallas Athena held a golden lamp and made a beautiful light. Right then Telemachus quickly addressed his father: Surely some god is within, one of those inhabiting the wide sky.
When Odysseus finishes his appeal to Arete and the rest of the Phaeacians, he sits in the ashes next to the hearth and the fire Odyssey 7. So speaking he sat down by the hearth in the ashes near the fire.
The scene of a suppliant seated in the ashes was presumably a familiar one in the temple of Athena Polias. But when Alcinous, with sacred power, heard this, he took the hand of wise Odysseus, with inventive mind, and raised him from the hearth and sat him on the shining chair.
The goddess herself in her temple would of course apparently do nothing during such an act, and that is what Arete does, apparently nothing.
Who is Nausicaa in The Odyssey?
It is precisely by doing nothing that she becomes the goddess in this tableau. Being compared to a god is not unique to Arete Alcinous himself is compared to an immortal when he sits next to her and drinks wine, Odyssey 6. There are fifty of them and their tasks include grinding corn, weaving, and spinning Odyssey 7. In his palace are fifty servant women, some of whom grind yellow grain on millstones, and others weave fabric and spin wool, seated like the leaves of a tall poplar; liquid oil runs from the close-woven cloth.
The passage continues, saying that just as the Phaeacian men excel at seafaring, the women excel at weaving, for Athena has given them, beyond others, knowledge of beautiful crafts and good wits Odyssey 7.
As much as the Phaeacian men are skillful beyond all others at driving a swift ship on the sea, so the women are skillful at weaving; for Athena granted them beyond others understanding of beautiful works and good wits.
But it is really Arete whom they emulate in this domain, as is indicated by the two descriptions of her spinning by firelight, in which the maidservants are very much her extension.
In the end, of course, this comes back to Athena herself if Arete plays the part of Athena Polias. Athena herself, however, is not incidental to this story; she manages the episode from beginning to end. Twice more Athena directs events from behind the scenes: Nausicaa does not want him to go all the way into town with her, fearing the comments of the townspeople.
Then at once he prayed to the daughter of great Zeus: Grant that I come dear and pitied to the Phaeacians. Odysseus does not know what Athena is doing for him even now, because she does not appear to him openly. But this is only part of the story.
Part 3. Athens
Then at once he prayed to the daughter of great Zeus. So much-enduring shining Odysseus prayed there. This is a complex situation, and it is carefully managed so that the two figures, Athena and Arete, do not interfere with each other. Indeed Athena, as soon as she has told Odysseus about Arete, removes herself from the scene by flying to Athens, leaving center stage to the figure that she has just introduced.
Thus it is not only respect for Poseidon that keeps Athena from appearing openly to Odysseus. The hidden identity of Arete simply would not work if it had to compete with the presence of Athena in her own persona. Nausicaa has played her part and attention now shifts to Arete. I have focused first on Arete, arguing that she represents Athena as a mother goddess; but Athena is also of course a virgin goddess, and both sides of her seem to be represented by the Phaeacians.
When Odysseus reaches shore in Phaeacia and falls asleep, Athena contrives to have Nausicaa find him there and bring him part way to town. In the dream in which she appears to Nausicaa she tells the princess that she must go and do her washing in the morning for her wedding is near: Athena then leaves Scheria and goes to Olympus, and just as her second departure identifies her as Athena the city goddess of Athens, her first departure identifies her as Athena the Olympian.
At once beautiful-throned Dawn came, who awakened her, beautiful-robed Nausicaa. There is another parallel between Arete and Nausicaa themselves, and it is, dramatically, the most striking.
The silence that follows his appeal raises the level of tension higher still. Only one other moment in the Phaeacian episode compares with this in intensity, namely when Odysseus supplicates Nausicaa. The stakes are no less high, for Odysseus has just burst nearly naked onto a group of maidens not long from their baths in the river. He went like a lion bred in the mountains, trusting in its might, which goes forth beaten by rain and wind, and the eyes in it burn; and it goes among the cattle or sheep, or after wild deer; and its stomach commands it, after it has made trial of the sheep, even to enter the strong house; so Odysseus was about to mix with the beautiful-haired maidens, naked as he was; for need had come.
The threat that Odysseus poses is of course clear, given his wild appearance.
The other maidens all flee, but Nausicaa holds her ground, for Athena gives her courage Odyssey 6. Disfigured by the salt sea he was a frightful sight for them to see, and they fled in all directions to the jutting banks.
Nausicaa - Wikipedia
Only the daughter of Alcinous stayed; for Athena put courage in her heart and took fear from her limbs. She stood face to face holding her ground. Nausicaa most takes on her hidden identity as Athena the virgin warrior when she holds her ground and Odysseus wisely decides to keep his distance and supplicate her from afar. The parallel with Arete is again complete, for it is at the moment of supplication that each of these figures most closely realizes a different aspect of the goddess Athena, one the mother goddess, the other the virgin goddess.
How do such overt comparisons fit with a hidden identity as Athena, the virgin warrior goddess?