What are the characteristics of Ulysses in Tennyson's poem?

The Ulysses in Tennyson's poem can be characterized as an old man who wants to travel, strive, achieve, and continue to make a difference in the world. He refuses to allow stereotypes about old age to hold him back.

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In the poem "Ulysses" by Alfred, Lord Tennyson, an aged Ulysses, having finally returned safely to his homeland from his long odyssey after the Trojan War, sits in idleness on his throne and contemplates going on another adventure. He wants to leave his "aged wife" and the "savage race" of people that he rules and venture forth on the seas one more time. He supposes that he will leave "the septre and the isle" with his son Telemachus, who will rule in his place.

We see an old man who has returned home after many hardships. After he has settled down, he realizes that he felt more fulfilled during his adventurous journey than he does while undertaking his responsibilities as a ruler. In this poem, Ulysses is a complex character. There are numerous words that we could use to describe characteristics that he displays.

First of all, he is dissatisfied with the life that he is now living, so he longs to escape it. He is restless when he compares the serenity and inactivity of his present state with...

(The entire section contains 3 answers and 1037 words.)

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