What did Odysseus prove about his abilities when he shot the arrow through the twelve axes? Why is that important now?Book 23
Odysseus proves his abilities as a warrior in this scene. Furthermore, Penelope knew that only her own husband would have been able to accomplish this.
It is important now because of Penelope's challenge, that she would marry whoever was able to accomplish such a feat. However, this is not even necessary because Odysseus goes on after shooting the arrow through the ax handles to kill all the suitors as well as the disloyal servants.