BOOK 5 - The Odyssey.

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BOOK 5 – The Odyssey

  1. The chapter opens up with the Gods sat down in assembly, and Athene feeling bad for Odysseus, because he is imprisoned in Nymph Calypso’s home, so Athene recalls Odysseus’ misfortunes to the God’s minds. Athene reminds the God’s what Odysseus has suffered, how he longs to be home and how his son Telemachus has gone to sacred Pylos and Lacedaemon for news of his father, risking being murdered by his mother’s suitors.

Zeus agrees Odysseus should be set free and sends his son Hermes, the messenger to tell Calypso his decision. Hermes tells Calypso the news, and although Calypso is not happy with this decision, she agrees to let Odysseus go, but she informs Hermes, she will not help Odysseus.

Calypso takes Odysseus to the place on the island were the trees grow and tells him to make himself a raft; Calypso gives Odysseus an axe, adze, some other tools, and cloth to make his sail. It took Odysseus 4 days to complete his raft and on the 5th day Calypso packed his raft with wine, water, leather sacks if grain and meat, dressed him in sweet smelling clothes and saw him off the island.

On the seventeenth day, Poseidon, who was on his way back from Ethiopians, caught sight of Odysseus from mountains of Solymi. Seeing Odysseus made him angry because he had a grudge with Odysseus because he had blinded Poseidon’s Cyclops son. Poseidon gathered the clouds and stirred up the sea, and summoned the North, West, South and East winds to blow. Waves crashed onto Odysseus raft, Odysseus managed to escape the sea and sit in the middle of his raft. Leucothoe, the once mortal now goddess took pity on Odysseus, she tells Odysseus to take off his heavy clothes, leave his raft for the winds to play with a swim for the Phaeacian coast, she gives him a veil to tie around his wrist, she informs Odysseus it will protect him from injury and death. Whilst Odysseus was deciding whether or not to take Leucothoe’s advice, Poseidon sent another wave, tearing his ship into pieces, so Odysseus obey Leucothoe and took off his clothes, tied the veil around his wrist and swam for the Phaeacian coast. At the point Athene intervenes and sends the winds to sleep.

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Odysseus swam for two nights and two days and on the third he spotted the land close by. As he struggled away from waves, with the help of Athene he finally reaches land. He makes himself a bed under a bush, and falls to sleep.

  1. Epithets used for Zeus;

Zeus the thunderer, the greatest of them all

Gather of the clouds

Zeus who bears the aegis/aegis bearing

Epithets used for Odysseus;

That admirable king

The long enduring

Lion hearted

Dogged by misfortune

The valiant Odysseus

Unhappy friend

The stalwart good Odysseus


Favourite of Zeus, ingenious Odysseus


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