In Book V of Homer's Odyssey, Zeus declares that Odysseus will return with more gold than he would have if his journey from Troy had not been filled with disaster. Why?

1 Answer | Add Yours

noahvox2's profile pic

noahvox2 | College Teacher | (Level 2) Educator

Posted on

As did the opening book of Homer's Odyssey, the fifth book of this epic begins with a conversation between the goddess Athene and her father Zeus. Athene is worried about Odysseus, who is the prisoner of Calypso on her island. Zeus tells Athene not to worry and that Odysseus will ultimately return to his native land. Zeus also declares that Odysseus will return home with more riches than he had won at Troy. The reason for this, Zeus explains, is because the Phaeacians, the people who will eventually take Odysseus back to his native land, will shower Odysseus will all sorts of gifts.

They will honour him from the heart, as if he were divine, and send him on board ship to his native land, gifting him piles of gold, and bronze and garments, more than he could ever have won from Troy if he had reached home safely with his fair share of the spoils. (A.S. Kline translation)

Any previous precious items that Odysseus had acquired at Troy would have been lost during the adventures that he describes in Odyssey 9-12. The Phaeacians, however, will give Odysseus more than that with which he would have gone away from Troy.

Sources:

We’ve answered 318,915 questions. We can answer yours, too.

Ask a question