ODYSSEUS AND HIS GHOSTS

GHOSTS OF ANCIENT GREECE

  • 8th Century BC
  • Odysseus travels to the Underworld and makes the offerings according to Circe’s instructions.
  • The shades of the dead (ghosts) gather to drink the blood talk to Odysseus.
  • The first shade is Elpenor, freshly fallen from Circe’s roof. This was a crew member of Pybysseus, so —he weeps when listens to the man’s story.
  • Elpenor begs for Odysseus to honor his death by building a burial mound (essentially a pile of rocks) for his dead body. Odysseus agrees.
  • Odysseus then glimpses his mother’s shade among the rest of the dead. This is news to him, since last he heard she was still alive.
  • Odysseus meets up with Teiresias (the blind prophet) who tells him that all of Odysseus’ crew members will die. He says that Odysseus will make it home – but he’ll find trouble there.
  • Odysseus meets shade after shade in the underworld – some personal to him and some famous in Greek mythology – before he high tails it back to his ship and gets on with his journey.

 

ODY

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