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The odyssey. Book xii. Kirke’s Help. Odysseus and his men sail to Kirke’s island They bury Elpenor on the island Kirke warns Odysseus of the Seirenes , the threat of drifting rocks, and Kharybdis

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the odyssey

The odyssey

Book xii

kirke s help
Kirke’s Help
  • Odysseus and his men sail to Kirke’s island
  • They bury Elpenor on the island
  • Kirke warns Odysseus of the Seirenes, the threat of drifting rocks, and Kharybdis
  • After these obstacles would come the island of the cattle of the sun, or Apollo, Thrinakia
  • The cattle on this island is sacred to Apollo and must not be disturbed
kirke s instructions
Kirke’s Instructions
  • When Odysseus and his men meet with the seirenes, Odysseus must give each one of his men earplugs made of earwax so avoid being lulled by the Seirenes’ beautiful singings
  • Odysseus wished to listen to their songs, so to avoid being lulled by them, he ordered his shipmates to tie him to the mast so that he does not give in to the Sirens’ beauty
  • To avoid Kharybdis, the whirlpool, Kirke advises Odysseus to sail close to the cave of Skylla, where the six-headed monster will only take six of his men, rather than losing all of them in Kharybdis
thrinakia
Thrinakia
  • This is the sacred island of Apollo, or Helios, where his cattle graze, fine herds, and flocks of goodly sheep.
  • The heards and flocks are seven and fifty each
  • The life, including the two shepherds (nymphs), are immortal
  • Kirke warned Odysseus to leave the life on the island alone or Apollo would not be happy and punish Odysseus and his men
odysseus follows through almost
Odysseus Follows Through (almost)
  • That same night, Odysseus had relayed his info from Kirke to his men, and they followed his instructions the next day
  • However, he purposely left out the part of Skylla and Kharybdis to avoid a revolt
  • As soon as they neared the island of the Seirenes, everyone of Odysseus’s crew put in their beeswax earplugs, and tied Odysseus to the mast so tight that he could not escape no matter how lulling the music was
  • He later described the music to his crew, but encouragingly told his crew to keep moving
odysseus follows through continued
Odysseus Follows Through (continued)
  • The crew rowed faster and watched the Kharybdis on their left vomiting up debris.
  • While they watched Skylla ate six crew men
  • Odysseus heard yelling but had his men row faster
  • Once they were out of danger, they started to near the island, Thrinakia
as i said almost
As I said, almost
  • Odysseus tried to get his men to row past Thrinakia, but the crew did not want to row through the night, and Eurylokhos promised not to disturb the life on Thrinakia
  • So Odysseus complied and landed on the island, ate, and mourned the six that they had lost
  • They become stranded on the island for 20 days due to stormy weather
  • When Odysseus had gone on into the island to pray alone, Eurylokhosecouraged the men to kill the cattle and make an elaborate sacrifice to the gods
continued
(continued)
  • Odysseus awoke from a nap and smelled the smoke, and immediately prayed to Zeus as he had realized what his men had done
  • Apollo went to Zeus to ask for revenge, and Zeus promised to avenge Apollo
  • Once the men had left Thrinakia, Zeus split their ship in half with a lightening bolt
  • All of Odysseus’s men were killed, but he survived and floated of some debris toward Skylla and Kharybdis
continued1
(continued)
  • Odysseus was almost sucked down into the whirlpool, but jumped at the last second and held onto a fig tree.
  • He waited for the whirlpool to spit out the ship’s debris and jumped back onto it
  • He then floated to the island of Kalypso
  • **This is where he started and ended his story**