Please summarize the episode of the Cyclops from the story "The Odyssey."

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ophelious eNotes educator| Certified Educator

OK, here is a summary of how that section goes, the fabled "Land of the Cyclops." Odysseus and his men land on an island and they smell roasting meat.  They investigate and end up in the cave of a giant, one eyed, powerful beast known as "the cyclops."  The cyclops is not particularly friendly and quickly munches down two of Odysseus' men.  Before they can escape the cyclops (who happens to be named Polyphemus,) puts a big rock over the entrance to the door.  His plan is to keep them trapped and slowly snack on them.

Odysseus offers Polyphemus some really strong wine, which Polyphemus drinks, getting drunk.  Odysseus tells Polyphemus that his name is "No Man" before the cyclops passes out.

Odysseus and his men act fast.  They take a log and sharpen it at one end to make something like a giant pencil.  While Polyphemus is sleeping the men take the giant pencil-thing and jam it in the cyclops' eye, blinding him.

The cyclops starts screaming and the other cyclopses on the island start to yell and ask what is wrong.  Polyphemus replies "No Man hurt me!" (because, remember, he thinks Odysseus' name is "No Man")  Thinking that the Gods are hurting him instead, the other cyclops don't want to get involved.

The heroes still have the problem of the rock in front of the door.  Their only advantage is that the Cyclops can't see them any more.  They come up with a plan by which they hang onto the bellies of the Cyclops' goats (which are in the cave.)  The Cyclops eventually lets his goats out to graze, feeling teach one to make sure a man isn't riding it.  This is the way by which the humans make their escape.

At the end of the chapter, Odysseus can't help but taunt the cyclops by yelling from his boat to let the monster know he has escaped.  Polyphemus gets made and starts throwing boulders at the boat (at least in the direction the yelling is coming from) but he fails to hit the ship.