What is the attitude of Polyphemus towards the Gods in The Odyssey?  

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accessteacher | High School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

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Clearly Polyphemus does not have a particularly good attitude towards the gods, and especially Zeus. Note how Polyphemus responds to what Odysseus tells him about who they are and where they are going:

The Cyclopes care nothing about Zeus,
who bears the aegis, or the blessed gods.
We are much more powerful than them.
I wouldn’t spare you or your comrades
to escape the wrath of Zeus, not unless
my own heart prompted me to do it.

The arrogance and blasphemy of Polyphemus in what he says is patently obvious. To believe that you are "much more powerful" the gods is to clearly place yourself above them and to ignore their power and control over your life. In this speech, Polyphemus effectively conveys his disregard and disrespect towards the gods. Of course, as always in Greek literature, such hubris is punished, and the way in which Odysseus tricks Polyphemus and manages to escape clearly shows the punishment for saying and believing such things.

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