What lessons can be learned from the defeat of Odysseus and his men at Ismarus?

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jilllessa | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Associate Educator

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There are several lessons that can be learned from the defeat at Ismarus.  First, the defeat is the result of an unprovoked attack which may be a lesson in itself.  Nothing is for free and when Odysseus attacked to gain booty and he paid for it with the deaths of many of his men.  The second lesson which could be learned is that Odysseus cannot trust his men to obey him.  He told them to leave quickly but in their greed they did not obey and they paid for it dearly.  This would not be the last time that his men would get themselves in trouble by disregarding Odysseus' orders.  A final lesson is about greed.  His men wanted more and more booty and they paid for it.  Again, this would not be the last time that greed gets Odysseus or his men in trouble. The defeat at Ismarus sets the scene for the repeat of these mistakes again and again.  Only Odysseus begins to learn the lessons to be gained here.  

 

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