- Odyssey :A myth travels in the Mediterranea sea-
The Myth starts when the Mediterraneans sailed to Troy to bring back Helen, the beautiful queen of Sparta who had been kidnapped by Paris the prince of Troy.
The war lasted ten years.
The Meceneans took Helen
and they set out to return
home. For some of them the
travel was short and easy
but for some others like
Odysseus it was long and
full of adventures.
At the beginning Odysseus’ ship arrived in
Evia and then in Thraka, the country of Cicones
an area opposite the island called Samothraka.
Odysseus and his men conquered the area, stole a lot of goods and kidnapped a lot of women. Zeus punished them by sending a storm.
Ten days later they
arrived in the country of
Tunesia where lotus-eaters
lived. They ate loti but
anybody who ate a lotus lost
Three mean ate loti and wanted to stay there
for ever. But Odysseus forced them to follow
him and fastened them on the ship not to
Then Odysseus with his
men arrived in the country
of Cyclops who used to eat
people. Sicily is said to be
the country of Cyclops
while some others believe
that the island Ortihia is the
Odysseus met Polyphemus -Posideon’s son- and asked him food and shelter but Polyphemus ignored him, ate six men and locked the rest in his cave. So Odysseus found a chance and blinded him with a wooden stake and escaped with his men. Polyphemus tried to kill them by throwing huge rocks at them between Katania and Taormina. The rocks are still in the sea and are called “the Cyclop’s rocks”.
Then Odysseus and his men arrived in the island of the master of the winds called Aeolus. He gave Odysseus a bag containing all the winds, except one : the west wind, to help them return home.
But the sailors pushed by curiosity foolishly opened the bag while Odysseus was sleeping. All the winds blew out and the storm drove the ships back to the Aeolus’ islands again.
Aeolus as well as all the gods were angry
with them. On the island Stromboli there is a
cave where Aeolus lived.
Then they travelled to the island of the Cannibal Laestrygones, huge creatures who destroyed all the ships except Odysseus’ own ship. This island is supposed to be Bonifacio in Corcica.
Odysseus sailed to the island where the witch-godess Circe lived. She turned half of his men into pigs. Odysseus was lucky to meet Hermes who gave him “Moly” (a drug that resisted to Circe’s magic) .
But Circe fell in love with Odysseus so she released his men and gave them instructions how to cross the Ocean. Those who crossed the Ocean visited “the country of dead” Ades. (an area near Ancona)
Odysseus sacrificed to the dead and spoke with spirits and prophets (Tiresias) who warned him that his journey would be long and difficult.
So, Odysseus, being wise, returned to Circe’s island who advised them about their journey. They reached the land of Sirens, a beautiful place called Sozzento near Napoli (some other say it is Capri).
Then they passed between the many-headed monster Scylla and (the whirlpool) Charybdis. It is southwest of Kalavria where there is still a small town called Skylla and on the opposite coast a city called Charybdis.
Odysseus and his men landed on the island of Thrinacia. Here Odysseus’ men hunted down the sacred castle of the sun god Helios.
Six days later when they sailed again Jupiter punished them sending them a shipwreck in which all but Odysseus fought for nine days and nine nights to survive and in the end he was washed ashore on the island of Calypso who loved him at first sight and kept him as her lover for seven years. This island is supposed to be in Malta (a place called Gogo).
The story is nearly over. The gods decided to help Odysseus to return home at last. So they obliged Calypso to give him a ship and anything else he needed.
So Odysseus finally sails to Ithaca and after ten years of adventures and risks Odysseus reaches his beloved island, Ithaka. It sounds like a miracle.