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But not the sorrows of the Trojan race,
So speaking, mighty Hector stretched his arms
“O Jupiter and all ye deities,
So speaking, to the arms of his dear spouse
“Sorrow not thus, beloved one, for me.
go thou home, and tend thy labors there,
Thus speaking, mighty Hector took again
Bryant's Translation, Book VI.
“ The surge and thunder of the Odyssey."
'HE Odyssey relates the adventures of Ulysses on his
return to Ithaca after the Trojan war. It consists of twenty-four books, the first four of which are sometimes known as the Telemachia, because Telemachus is the principal figure.
The difference in style of the Iliad and Odyssey has caused some critics to assert that the latter is not the work of Homer; this is accounted for, however, by the difference of subject, and it is probable that the Odyssey, though of a later date, is the work of the same hand, “the work of Homer's old age,
an epic bathed in a mellow light of sunset."
If the Odyssey alone had come down to us, its authorship would have passed unquestioned, for the poem is so compact, its plot so carefully planned and so skilfully carried out, that there can be no doubt that it is the work of one hand.
The Odyssey is as great a work of art as the Iliad, and is even more popular; for the Odyssey is a domestic romance, and as such appeals to a larger audience than a tale of war alone, - the romance of the wandering Ulysses and the faithful Penelope. Interwoven with it are the ever-popular fairy tales of Ulysses's wanderings and descriptions of home life. It is marked by the same pagan enjoyment of life, the same freshness and charm that lend enchantment to the Iliad.
BIBLIOGRAPHY AND CRITICISM, THE ODYSSEY. F. B. Jevons's History of Greek Literature, 1886, pp. 17-25; A. Lang's Homer and the Epic, 1893, chaps. 8–13; J. A. Symonds's Studies of the Greek Poets, ed. 3, 1893 ; J. E. Harrison's Myths of the Odyssey in Art and Literature, 1882; W. J. Stillman's On the Track of Ulysses, 1888; F.W. Newman's The Authorship of the Odyssey (in his Miscellanies, vol. v.); J. Spence's Essay on Pope's Translation of the Odyssey, 1837.
STANDARD ENGLISH TRANSLATIONS, THE ODYSSEY. The Odyssey, Tr. into English blank verse by W. C. Bryant, 2 vols., 1871; The Odyssey, Tr. according to the Greek, with introduction and notes by George Chapman, ed. 2, 2 vols., 1874 ; The Odyssey, Tr. by William Cowper; The Odyssey, Tr. by G. H. Palmer, 1894 (prose); The Odyssey, Tr. by Alexander Pope, with notes by Rev. T. W. A. Buckley, n. d.; The Odyssey, Tr. by S. H. Butcher and A. Lang, 1879 (prose).