Chapter 20.docx - Chapter 20 The Returns and the Odyssey...

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Chapter 20: The Returns and the Odyssey The returns from Troy of the Achaean heroes, other than Odysseus, were narrated in a lost epic called Nostoi “Returns.” The return of Odysseus is the subject of Homer’s Odyssey . The Nostoi (returns) o Ajax the lesser (son of Oileus) and Agamemnon Athena raised a storm in the Aegean in anger at the sacrilege of Ajax, son of Oileus, during the sack of Troy The storm wrecked much of Agamemnon’s fleet, and Ajax, who boasted of his escape from drowning, was killed by Poseidon with his trident. A second storm struck the fleet, wrecking many more ships on the coast of Euboea. Agamemnon finally reached Mycenae, where he was murdered by Clytemnestra and Aegisthus o Menelaus Menelaüs reached Egypt after losing five ships in another storm. The sea-god Proteus told him how to appease the gods and sail back safely to Greece. The visit of Menelaüs to Egypt fits with the legend that Helen spent the years of the war in Egypt, while her phantom went to Troy. Seven years after the fall of Troy, Menelaüs and Helen reached Sparta safely and resumed their life together. At his death Menelaüs was transported to Elysium because, as the husband of the immortal Helen, he was the son-in-law of Zeus. o Nestor, Diomedes, and Philoctetes Of the other Peloponnesian leaders, Nestor returned to Pylos safely. Diomedes, who had wounded Aphrodite at Troy, returned to Argos to find that the goddess had caused his wife, Aegialia, to be unfaithful. He left Argos and came to Italy, where he founded several cities. Philoctetes returned to Thessaly and also was driven out by his people. He too went to Italy and founded several cities. The stories of Diomedes, Idomeneus, and Philoctetes seem to be connected with the foundation of Greek colonies in Italy o Idomeneus Idomeneus returned to Crete to find that his wife, Meda, had been unfaithful with Leucus, who then murdered her and her daughter and made himself king over ten cities. Leucus drove out Idomeneus, who went to Italy. Another story of the exile of Idomeneus is that he vowed to Poseidon that he would sacrifice the first living thing that came to meet him if he returned home safely. His son was the first to meet him, and Idomeneus sacrificed him. In punishment for the killing, the gods sent a plague on the Cretans, who drove Idomeneus out. o Neoptolemus Neoptolemus went by land back to Phthia with Helenus and Andromache With them and his wife, Hermione, he went to Epirus as king of the Molossi. He was killed at Delphi and was honored there with a hero-cult. The return of Odysseus (the Odyssey, books 1 - 12) o The return of Odysseus is narrated in the Odyssey .
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It was delayed for ten years by the anger of Poseidon.
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