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The Odyssey

The Odyssey

by Homer

The Odyssey Eurylochos Quotes Page 1

Quote #1

Circe is referring here to the monster Skylla, but you can really apply her words to all forms of suffering. Pain, she tells Odysseus, is unavoidable.

(Eurylochos, in Odysseus’s tale:) ‘“Listen to what I say, my companions, though you are suffering evils. All deaths are detestable for wretched mortals, but hunger is the sorriest way to die and encounter fate. Come then, let us cut out the best of Helios’ cattle, and sacrifice them to the immortals who hold wide heaven, and if we ever come back to Ithaka, land of our fathers, presently we will build a rich temple to the Sun God Helios Hyperion, and store it with dedications, many and good. But if, in anger over his high-horned cattle, he wishes to wreck our ship, and the rest of the gods stand by him, I would far rather gulp the waves and lose my life in them once for all, than be pinched to death on this desolate island.”’ (12.340-351)

Quote #2

(Eurylochos, in Odysseus's tale:) '"You are a hard man, Odysseus. Your force is greater, your limbs never wear out. You must be made all of iron, when you will not let your companions, worn with hard work and wanting sleep, set foot on this land, where if we did, on the seagirt island we could once more make ready a greedy dinner; but you force us to blunder along just as we are through the running night, driven from the island over the misty face of the water."' (12.279-285)

Eurylochos reminds us that Odysseus is, well, god-like: normal humans can't really endure this much. (Maybe Eurylochos would feel differently if he had Penelope to come home to. Just saying.)

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