The Odyssey by Homer

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What quotes from The Odyssey illustrate how Odysseus is a hero?

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David Wisar eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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What makes someone heroic? There are a few definitions of hero, so I will pull quotes that help provide an excellent idea of how Odysseus fits the concept. Odysseus is clearly the hero of the story, though he has flaws like all Greek heroes. He fits the ancient Greek definition of a hero, and his story follows the hero’s journey framework set out in The Hero with a Thousand Faces.

Ancient Greek Definition

The ancient Greeks had a clear definition of Hero. They should be high-born, a warrior, loyal, and favored by the gods. Nearly all Greek heroes suffer from a flaw. Odysseus is a hero by that definition.

Odysseus is high-born, meaning he is a man of high station or class. Nearly every Greek hero is a demigod, prince, or king. Although he is not the son of a god, Odysseus is the great-grandson of the god Hermes. He is also the king of Ithaca. The island is not doing well in his absence, proving how important he is as a ruler. At the final confrontation, Odysseus’s status as king becomes...

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