Illustration of Odysseus tied to a ship's mast

The Odyssey

by Homer

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Book 17 Questions and Answers

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Study Questions
1. Why does Telemachus tell Peraeus to hold onto Menelaus’ presents?

2. What does Theoclymenus promise Penelope?

3. Whom does Eumaeus call upon to grant Odysseus’ homecoming and the subsequent destruction of Melanthius?

4. Why does the dog Argos react to Odysseus’ presence?

5. What is ironic about Athene’s desire to have Odysseus test the suitors?

6. According to Antinoös, why do the other suitors give so freely to Odysseus?

7. Why does Penelope wish to see the disguised Odysseus?

8. Why does Eumaeus wish to dissuade Penelope of the interview?

9. Why does Odysseus suggest the interview be postponed until later?

10. What command does Telemachus issue to Eumaeus before the swineherd departs?

1. He fears the suitors will despoil him of his prizes.

2. Theoclymenus promises Penelope that Odysseus’ return and vengeance are imminent.

3. Eumaeus calls upon the nymphs, who are daughters of Zeus.

4. He used to be Odysseus’ own dog before his master left for Troy.

5. She has no intention of sparing any of them.

6. They generously donate food that does not belong to them.

7. She wants to hear possible news of Odysseus.

8. He does not want her to believe what he thinks are the stranger’s false assertions concerning Odysseus.

9. The violent suitors might disrupt the interview.

10. He tells the swineherd to return the next day.

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