Study Guide

Aithon in The Odyssey

By Homer


The fake name that Odysseus gives when speaking with Penelope while in the guise of a beggar. The scholar Olga Levaniouk has recently argued that this name means “fiery,” in the sense of burning with desire or hunger. In this way, by telling Penelope this name, Odysseus is making a sneaky reference to his status as a beggar—as well as his burning desire to get his own life back, by kicking some serious butt.