Odyssey Chapter summaries

Book 1 - 4

The book starts with the narrator invoking the Muse of Poetry to relate the tale of a certain brave man who survived the …

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Book 5

Ulysses has been held captive by Calypso for seven years. They have had an intimate, sexual relationship, and during this …

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Book 6 - 8

Ulysses has washed ashore on the island of Scheria. The island's Princess Nausicaa has been compelled by Athena (in disguise …

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Book 9

The reader is now being taken back ten years, just after the end of the war, as Ulysses relates his tale to the Phaeacians. …

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Book 10

Ulysses and his men journey to the home of The God of Wind, Aeolus. Aeolus appears to be an ally of Ulysses. He captures all …

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Book 11

At the Land of the Dead, Ulysses meets with some spirits, or incarnations, of the dead, including, among many, his …

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Book 12

Next, Ulysses and his men return to Aeaea. Circe gives them more advice and warns them of obstacles they may face. 

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Book 13 - 14

Ulysses has now completed relating his tale to the Phaeacians, thus far. Phaeacians traditionally provide travelers with …

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Book 15 - 16

Telemachus is in Sparta. Athena meets him there, imploring him to return home quickly, to prevent the suitors from taking …

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Book 17 - 18

Eumaeus has still not recognized Ulysses, as they walk with a group including Telemachus, Penelope, and Theoclymenus, who is …

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Book 19

That evening, when the suitors have retired for the night, Ulysses and Telemachus gather all weapons and hide them so that …

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Book 20

Ulysses sees the palace maids slip away to meet with some of the suitors for sexual relations, angering him further about …

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Book 21 - 22

The contest begins. Ulysses' bow is brought forth, and Telemachus puts on a show of attempting to string the bow, …

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Book 23

After the battle and executions, Penelope is informed that the victor is her husband, Ulysses. Still understandably wary …

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Book 24

Hermes accompanies the souls of the dead suitors to Hades, the Land of the Dead. One tortured soul even recites the tale of …

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