9.231-280

"ἔνθα δὲ πῦρ κήαντες ἐθύσαμεν ἠδὲ καὶ αὐτοὶ

τυρῶν αἰνύμενοι φάγομεν, μένομέν τέ μιν ἔνδον

ἥμενοι, ἧος ἐπῆλθε νέμων. φέρε δ᾽ ὄβριμον ἄχθος

ὕλης ἀζαλέης, ἵνα οἱ ποτιδόρπιον εἴη,

ἔντοσθεν δ᾽ ἄντροιο βαλὼν ὀρυμαγδὸν ἔθηκεν·235

ἡμεῖς δὲ δείσαντες ἀπεσσύμεθ᾽ ἐς μυχὸν ἄντρου.

αὐτὰρ ὅ γ᾽ εἰς εὐρὺ σπέος ἤλασε πίονα μῆλα

πάντα μάλ᾽ ὅσσ᾽ ἤμελγε, τὰ δ᾽ ἄρσενα λεῖπε θύρηφιν,

ἀρνειούς τε τράγους τε, βαθείης ἔνδοθεν αὐλῆς.

αὐτὰρ ἔπειτ᾽ ἐπέθηκε θυρεὸν μέγαν ὑψόσ᾽ ἀείρας,240

ὄβριμον· οὐκ ἂν τόν γε δύω καὶ εἴκοσ᾽ ἄμαξαι

ἐσθλαὶ τετράκυκλοι ἀπ᾽ οὔδεος ὀχλίσσειαν·

τόσσην ἠλίβατον πέτρην ἐπέθηκε θύρῃσιν.

ἑζόμενος δ᾽ ἤμελγεν ὄις καὶ μηκάδας αἶγας,

πάντα κατὰ μοῖραν, καὶ ὑπ᾽ ἔμβρυον ἧκεν ἑκάστῃ.245

αὐτίκα δ᾽ ἥμισυ μὲν θρέψας λευκοῖο γάλακτος

πλεκτοῖς ἐν ταλάροισιν ἀμησάμενος κατέθηκεν,

ἥμισυ δ᾽ αὖτ᾽ ἔστησεν ἐν ἄγγεσιν, ὄφρα οἱ εἴη

πίνειν αἰνυμένῳ καί οἱ ποτιδόρπιον εἴη.

αὐτὰρ ἐπεὶ δὴ σπεῦσε πονησάμενος τὰ ἃ ἔργα,250

καὶ τότε πῦρ ἀνέκαιε καὶ εἴσιδεν, εἴρετο δ᾽ ἡμέας·

‘ὦ ξεῖνοι, τίνες ἐστέ; πόθεν πλεῖθ᾽ ὑγρὰ κέλευθα;

ἦ τι κατὰ πρῆξιν ἦ μαψιδίως ἀλάλησθε,

οἷά τε ληιστῆρες, ὑπεὶρ ἅλα, τοί τ᾽ ἀλόωνται

ψυχὰς παρθέμενοι κακὸν ἀλλοδαποῖσι φέροντες;’255

ὣς ἔφαθ᾽, ἡμῖν δ᾽ αὖτε κατεκλάσθη φίλον ἦτορ,

δεισάντων φθόγγον τε βαρὺν αὐτόν τε πέλωρον.

ἀλλὰ καὶ ὥς μιν ἔπεσσιν ἀμειβόμενος προσέειπον·

‘ἡμεῖς τοι Τροίηθεν ἀποπλαγχθέντες Ἀχαιοὶ

παντοίοις ἀνέμοισιν ὑπὲρ μέγα λαῖτμα θαλάσσης,260

οἴκαδε ἱέμενοι, ἄλλην ὁδὸν ἄλλα κέλευθα

ἤλθομεν· οὕτω που Ζεὺς ἤθελε μητίσασθαι.

λαοὶ δ᾽ Ἀτρεΐδεω Ἀγαμέμνονος εὐχόμεθ᾽ εἶναι,

τοῦ δὴ νῦν γε μέγιστον ὑπουράνιον κλέος ἐστί·

τόσσην γὰρ διέπερσε πόλιν καὶ ἀπώλεσε λαοὺς265

πολλούς. ἡμεῖς δ᾽ αὖτε κιχανόμενοι τὰ σὰ γοῦνα

ἱκόμεθ᾽, εἴ τι πόροις ξεινήιον ἠὲ καὶ ἄλλως

δοίης δωτίνην, ἥ τε ξείνων θέμις ἐστίν.

ἀλλ᾽ αἰδεῖο, φέριστε, θεούς· ἱκέται δέ τοί εἰμεν,

Ζεὺς δ᾽ ἐπιτιμήτωρ ἱκετάων τε ξείνων τε,270

ξείνιος, ὃς ξείνοισιν ἅμ᾽ αἰδοίοισιν ὀπηδεῖ.’

ὣς ἐφάμην, ὁ δέ μ᾽ αὐτίκ᾽ ἀμείβετο νηλέι θυμῷ·

‘νήπιός εἰς, ὦ ξεῖν᾽, ἢ τηλόθεν εἰλήλουθας,

ὅς με θεοὺς κέλεαι ἢ δειδίμεν ἢ ἀλέασθαι·

οὐ γὰρ Κύκλωπες Διὸς αἰγιόχου ἀλέγουσιν275

οὐδὲ θεῶν μακάρων, ἐπεὶ ἦ πολὺ φέρτεροί εἰμεν·

οὐδ᾽ ἂν ἐγὼ Διὸς ἔχθος ἀλευάμενος πεφιδοίμην

οὔτε σεῦ οὔθ᾽ ἑτάρων, εἰ μὴ θυμός με κελεύοι.

ἀλλά μοι εἴφ᾽ ὅπῃ ἔσχες ἰὼν ἐυεργέα νῆα,

ἤ που ἐπ᾽ ἐσχατιῆς, ἦ καὶ σχεδόν, ὄφρα δαείω.’280

    The monster arrives and questions Odysseus.

    Ambiguities persist as the Greeks first perform a proper sacrifice, then settle, uninvited, into the cave and help themselves to some cheese while they await their host. He arrives with a crash, throwing down a huge stack of wood for his fire. The interlopers scatter in fear to the dark recesses of the cave, then watch as Polyphemus attends to his chores with his usual fastidious care. 

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    Herding the female goats and sheep into the cave, leaving the males outside in their pens, he blocks the entrance to the cave with a huge boulder, then milks the sheep and goats, finally putting a lamb or kid under each female to nurse. Half of the milk goes into baskets for cheese, the other half into pails for his own meals.

    Polyphemus’s monocular face, huge size, and cannibalistic eating habits would seem to mark him as an apt candidate for chaos monster, embodying and/or effecting a scrambling of the usual categories that define proper order in the universe. But what the Greeks witness here sends a different message: nurturing husbandry, careful sequestering of his flocks according to sex, judicious apportioning of the dairy products, all aimed at preserving the orderly categories that will ensure a fruitful harvest of resources. The poet seems determined to keep the monster’s status indeterminate.

    Such a liminal figure is useful for Homer, as for all storytellers, drawing our attention to boundaries that define ordinary experience, prompting us to consider why they should happen to be where they are. Proteus the shapeshifter, also a shepherd, performs this function even more overtly (Od. 4.383–424). Because he can assume the form of many other elements in the universe, other creatures and even water and fire, Proteus defies easy categorization. Menelaus is told that in order to find out how to escape from Egypt, he must restrain this “Old Man of the Sea,” as he is called, preventing him from changing form. He must, in other words, find the knowledge he needs by bounding out the myriad alternate shapes—and thus, categories of existence— that Proteus can assume, confining the creature to one kind of being. By putting limits around what is potentially limitless, Menelaus can produce the requisite knowledge. The entire episode is a symbolic representation of the Greek paradigm for human civilization, imposing human order on the untamed forces of nature to channel its power for human use. That the Polyphemus episode does not fit as easily into this paradigm underscores the fact that the poet is not in this case looking for clarity but rather a fruitful ambiguity that trains our attention on the question so often raised by Greek literature: what does it mean to be human?

    The rituals of hospitality resurface as Polyphemus catches sight of the intruders. We might expect a violent response, but again the poet surprises us:

    ὦ ξεῖνοι, τίνες ἐστέ; πόθεν πλεῖθ᾽ ὑγρὰ κέλευθα;
    ἦ τι κατὰ πρῆξιν ἦ μαψιδίως ἀλάλησθε,
    οἷά τε ληιστῆρες, ὑπεὶρ ἅλα, τοί τ᾽ ἀλόωνται
    ψυχὰς παρθέμενοι κακὸν ἀλλοδαποῖσι φέροντες;

    Oh strangers, who are you? From where do you sail the watery waves?
    Do you travel on business, or wander recklessly
    like pirates, over the sea, roaming around,
    risking your lives and bringing evil to those from other places?

           (Odyssey 9.252–255)

    The monster is in highly civilized company here. These words appear, verbatim, on the lips of Nestor, one of the poem’s exemplary hosts (3.71–74) and again in the post-Homeric Hymn to Apollo, from the mouth of the god himself (Hymn Hom. Ap. 452–455). As it happens, Polyphemus is only a middling host in this case, since the strict protocol, observed elsewhere in the poem, is for the host to make the guest comfortable with food and drink before asking who he is (See e.g., 4.60–64). Nevertheless, though frightened, Odysseus takes his cue from Polyphemus’s flawed civility, describing the Greeks’ return from war and its attendant miseries. They are from the army of Agamemnon, whose fame stretches to the heavens, honored for his success in sacking Troy. Since the Cyclops seems familiar with civilized discourse, perhaps he will be moved by the plight of men who fought in a famous war. Hoping to build on the leverage that fame might afford them, Odysseus pulls out all the rhetorical stops. He and his crew are “at his knees” (266), in hopes that he will give them a “guest gift,” as is the custom in civilized society. They are suppliants, under the care of Zeus himself, who honors suppliants and guests, avenging any wrongs done to them. We note, however, that Odysseus does not reveal his name to the monster, a familiar tactic that will be crucial to his survival.

    Odysseus’ gambit here has a second life in Sophocles’ Philoctetes, in a scene much influenced by the Cyclops episode. Philoctetes, a warrior headed for Troy, is bitten by a snake at the shrine of Asclepius, causing a festering wound that will not heal. Odysseus convinces the Greeks to abandon him on the remote and desolate island of Lemnos. A prophecy ten years later predicts that Troy will only fall if Philoctetes returns with his famous bow. Odysseus heads an expedition back to Lemnos, which includes Neoptolemus, son of the now-dead Achilles, to fetch the abandoned soldier. As the play opens, we see that Philoctetes has had to survive by hunting with his bow, scratching out a dismal, lonely existence, living in a cave. The Greeks come upon the cave when Philoctetes is out hunting and, like Odysseus and his crew, proceed to explore:

    NEOPTOLEMUS
    I see an empty dwelling, with no one there.

    ODYSSEUS
    Are there things needed for making a home inside?

    NEOPTOLEMUS
    Yes, trampled-down leaves as if for someone living there.

    ODYSSEUS
    The rest is empty, with nothing under the roof?

    NEOPTOLEMUS
    There’s a cup, made from one piece of wood, the work
    of a bad craftsman, and stones for making a fire.

    ODYSSEUS
    Those treasures you mention must be his.

    NEOPTOLEMUS
    Aha! Here’s something else: rags being
    dried by the sun, stained with pus from some sore.

           (Sophocles, Philoctetes 31–39)

    There is here, as in the Cyclops episode, a certain anthropological cast to the investigation. What kind of creature lives in such bare and solitary surroundings? When Philoctetes approaches soon after from his hunt, the Greeks are alarmed by the sound of his cries and stumbling footsteps. Is this cave creature some kind of primitive savage?

    Philoctetes’s first words recall those of Polyphemus:

                       Hail, strangers!
    Who are you, who have put in to this deserted land
    that lacks a good harbor?

           (Sophocles, Philoctetes 219–221)

    In the exchange that follows, Sophocles presents his “monster” in an entirely sympathetic light, playing against the implications of the Polyphemus paradigm. He greets the strangers warmly, expresses delight at hearing the Greek language, “most beloved of sounds” (234). When Neoptolemus identifies himself, Philoctetes declares him to be the “child of the dearest father,” from “a dear land” (242). He is at pains to identify himself as a patriotic Greek soldier, not some frightening derelict. The rehabilitation of Philoctetes that begins here proceeds through the rest of the play, until he emerges as the divinely ordained hero who seals Troy’s doom. Sophocles has clearly thought carefully about the Cyclops episode, incorporating into his play much of the irony generated by Homer’s deceptively civilized cave dweller. And Polyphemus, like Philoctetes, will undergo some rehabilitation before the Greeks leave.

    The savage returns in Polyphemus’s reply to Odysseus’s request for hospitality. Odysseus is a fool (νήπιός, 273) or someone from far away indeed, to expect leniency from him. The Cyclopes are much stronger than the gods and have no need to respect any of them, even Zeus. He will treat the Greeks any way he wants. Nothing we have heard suggests that the Cyclopes are in fact more powerful than the gods. Rather, Polyphemus’ arrogance primes us for the retribution we know is coming. As the episode develops, we will see that the norms of hospitality keep surfacing as paradigm against which the poet casts his complex meditation on heroism and the nature of human civilization.

    Further Reading

    Edwards, M.W. 1975. “Type Scenes and Homeric Hospitality.” Transactions of the American Philological Association 105: 51–72.

    Lateiner, D. 1993. “The Suitors’ Take: Manners and Power in Ithaca.” Colby Quarterly 29: 172196.

    Reece, S. 1994. The Stranger's Welcome: Oral Theory and the Aesthetics of the Homeric Hospitality Scene, 123–144. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

    Thalmanν, W. 1992. The Odyssey: Αn Εpic of Return, 131–132. New York: Twayne Publishers.

    Van Nortwick, T. 2015. Late Sophocles: The Hero’s Evolution in Electra, Philoctetes, and Oedipus at Colonus, 43–52. Ann Arbor: University of Michigan Press.

    231  κήαντες: = καύσαντες in Attic Greek, aorist participle > καίω.

    232  τυρῶν: partitive genitive, as in line 225.

    233  ἧος: “until” (ἕως).

    233  ἐπῆλθε νέμων: “he came back (from) grazing (his sheep).” The participle agrees with the implied subject of ἐπῆλθε, the Cyclops.

    234  ὕλης: “firewood.”

    234  οἱ: 3rd person personal pronoun, dative of advantage.

    235  βαλὼν: understand ὄβριμον ἄχθος as the object.

    235  ἔθηκεν: “he made” (= ἐποίησε).

    236  ἀπεσσύμεθ(α): “fled” > ἀποσεύω, syncopated aor. 2 passive.

    237  : definite article used personal pronoun (referring to the Cyclops) as commonly in Homer (Monro 256).

    238  μάλ(α): adds emphasis to πάντα.

    238  λεῖπε: imperfect = ἔλειπε in Attic Greek.

    238  θύρηφιν: “at the doors,” dative of place where (Smyth 280).

    239  ἔνδοθεν: "within." Most editors of Homer print ἔκτοθεν, "outside of," but M.L. West made a convincing case for the correction.

    241-2  οὐκ ἂν …  / ὀχλίσσειαν: potential optative.

    241  τόν: refers to θυρεὸν in line 240.

    243  τόσσην: “so great a ….”

    243  ἐπέθηκε θύρῃσιν: “he set in place in the doorway.” θύρῃσιν is the dative expected after ἐπιτίθημι, “to place something (τι) on something else (τινι).”

    244  ὄις: accusative plural (see LSJ ὄις).

    245  κατὰ μοῖραν: "in order" (see LSJ μοῖρα IV).

    245  ἔμβρυον: “her young,” “a lamb.”

    245  ὑπ᾽… ἧκεν: tmesis > ὑφίημι, "to place under."

    245  ἑκάστῃ: is the expected dative after ὑφίημι, “to place something (τι) under something else (τινι).”

    246  θρέψας: “having curdled” (LSJ τρέφω I, “thicken or congeal a liquid”). Rennet is used to separate milk into solid curds for cheese-making and liquid whey. In the world described by Homer some part of the fig was evidently used as rennet.

    247  ἀμησάμενος: “having collected” > ἀμάω, middle voice.

    248  ὄφρα οἱ εἴη / πίνειν αἰνυμένῳ: "so that he might (have it) to take and drink." εἴη is optative a purpose clause introduced by ὄφρα, rather than by the usual ἵνα, ὅπως, or ὡς (Smyth 2193.a). οἱ is the 3rd person pronoun, dative of possession.

    249  πίνειν: infinitive with an impersonal verb (Monro 233), εἴη in the previous line.

    250  σπεῦσε πονησάμενος: “had busily performed” (Montgomery).

    250  τὰ ἃ: “his” (LSJ ἑός; Monro 254).

    251  εἴρετο: “he asked,” impf. > ἔρομαι or εἴρομαι, = ἤρετο in Attic Greek.

    252  πλεῖθ’: πλεῖτε > πλέω.

    253  : introduces a question with a tone of surprise or indignation (Monro 338).

    253  τι κατὰ πρῆξιν: “οn some business.”

    253  ἀλάλησθε: perfect > αλάομαι with present sense as usual (Monro 28).

    254  οἷά: “like.”

    254  ληϊστῆρες: “pirates” > λῃστήρ, = λῃσταί (> λῃστής) in Attic Greek.

    254  ὑπεὶρ: ὑπέρ, ultima lengthened for metrical reasons.

    255  ψυχὰς παρθέμενοι: “risking their lives,” παρθέμενοι > παρατίθημι, aorist middle participle.

    256  ἡμῖν: “our,” possessive dative describing ἦτορ, which is collective singular referring to the hearts of Odysseus and his men.

    256  κατεκλάσθη: aorist passive > κατακλάω “to break down, overcome.”

    257  δεισάντων: the genitive participle refers to the possessive dative pronoun ἡμῖν, possible since the genitive is the regular case expressing possession.

    258  ἀλλὰ καὶ ὥς: "but even so."

    261  ἄλλην … ἄλλα: “along another ... over another,” accusative of extent of space (Smyth 1581, Monro 138).

    262  οὕτω που: “so it would seem,” “so, I suppose,” indicating a conjecture.

    263  εὐχόμεθ᾽ εἶναι: “we profess ourselves,” “we boast that we are,” a common phrase in Homer (see lines 519 and 529).

    264  τοῦ: “whose,” definite article used as a relative pronoun (Monro 262).

    264  μέγιστον ὑπουράνιον: predicate nominative adjectives.

    266  δ᾽ αὖτε: “on the other hand.”

    266  κιχανόμενοι: "reaching," i.e., "visiting." 

    266  σὰ: “your” (possessive adjective > σός). By saying that he and his men have come “to your knees,” Odysseus implies that they are suppliants. He makes this explicit in line 269.

    267  εἴ τι πόροις: “on the chance that you might provide,” or “in the hope that you might provide,” εἴ + optative, related to an optative of wish (Goodell 477; Smyth 2354).

    268  τε … θέμις ἐστίν: “as is the custom,” with generalizing τε (Monro 332).

    269  αἰδεῖο: "respect," middle imperative = αἰδοῦ (> αἰδέομαι) in Attic Greek.

    269  φέριστε: a term of great respect. Wilson (2018) translates, "sir, my lord." 

    269  τοί: dative of the 2nd person singular pronoun, rather than the particle τοι. 

    271  ξείνιος: “(the god) of strangers.” ξείνιος (ξένιος in Attic Greek) was a common epithet of Zeus.

    273  εἰς: “you are” (= εἶ), enclitic (Monro 87).

    273  ἢ τηλόθεν εἰλήλουθας: "or have you come from afar," are thus are ignorant of our ways. εἰλήλουθας is perfect = ἐλήλυθας in Attic Greek (> ἔρχομαι).

    274  ὅς ... κέλεαι: "since you urge me" (LSJ ὅς IV.3). κέλεαι = κέλεσαι, 2nd person singular present indicative > κέλομαι. Introduces an accusative and infinitive construction as usual, like its synonym κελεύω (LSJ κέλομαι).

    274 δειδίμεν: infinitive > δείδω.

    274 ἀλέασθαι: "to shun," aor. infin. > ἀλέομαι.

    275  Διὸς ἀλέγουσιν: ἀλέγω, “to care about,” takes a genitive, as usual.

    277-8  οὐδ᾽ ἂν … πεφιδοίμεν / … εἰ … κελεύοι: future less vivid conditional (Goodell 651). πεφιδοίμεν is aor. 2 optative > φείδομαι, “to spare the life of” + genitive. For the form, compare aor. optative δοῖμεν > δίδωμι.

    277  ἀλευάμενος: aorist middle participle > ἀλέομαι.

    279  ἔσχες: “you kept” (i.e., moored).

    280  ἐπ᾽ ἐσχατιῆς: "at a remote part (of the island)."

    280  δαείω: "so that I might learn," aorist subjunctive (LSJ *δάω) in a purpose clause introduced by ὄφρα, rather than the usual ἵνα, ὅπως, or ὡς (Smyth 2193.a).

    καίω καύσω ἔκαυσα –κέκαυκα κέκαυμαι ἐκαύθην: to light, kindle, burn

    ἠδέ: and

    τυρός –οῦ ὁ: cheese

    αἴνυμαι – – – – –: to take, seize (+ acc. or gen.)

    ἔφαγον (aor. with no pres. in use): to eat, devour

    μιν: (accusative singular third person pronoun) him, her, it

    ἔνδον: within, at home

    ἧμαι (or κάθημαι) ––– ––– ––– ––– –––: sit

    ἐπέρχομαι ἔπειμι ἐπῆλθον ἐπελήλυθα ––– –––: to approach, arrive; to encounter, come up against, attack

    νέμω νεμῶ ἔνειμα νενέμηκα νενέμημαι ἐνεμήθην: to distribute, assign, give out; to pasture or tend flocks; (mid.) to possess, enjoy, inhabit, feed upon

    ὄβριμος [–α] –ον: strong, mighty; (of things) heavy

    ἄχθος –ους τό: a weight, burden, load

    ὕλη –ης ἡ: woods, forest; firewood

    ἀζαλέος –α –ον: dry, parched

    ἕ: himself, herself, itself

    ποτιδόρπιος –ον: that is used to prepare meals, for dinner

    ἔντοσθε: from within

    ἄντρον –ου τό: a cave, cavern

    ὀρυμαγδός –οῦ ὁ: a loud noise, din 235

    δείδω δείσομαι ἔδεισα δέδοικα (or δίδια) ––– –––: fear

    ἀποσεύω ἀποσεύσω ἀπέσσυα: (mid.-pass.) to run off, escape

    μυχός –οῦ ὁ: the innermost place, inmost nook

    ἄντρον –ου τό: a cave, cavern

    ἀτάρ: but, yet

    εὐρύς –εῖα –ύ: broad

    σπέος –ους τό: a cave, cavern, grotto

    πίων –ονος ὁ/ἡ: fat, plump; rich, opulent

    μῆλον –ου τό: sheep or goat

    ἀμέλγω ἀμέλξω ἤμελξα: to milk

    ἄρσην ἄρσενος: male

    θύρα –ας ἡ: door

    ἀρνειός –οῦ ὁ: ram, wether (3-year old ram)

    τράγος –ου ὁ: a he-goat

    βαθύς βαθεῖα βαθύ: deep, high

    ἔκτοθεν: from without, outside

    αὐλή –ῆς ἡ: courtyard; enclosure for livestock; court, residence

    ἀτάρ: but, yet

    ἐπιτίθημι ἐπιθήσω ἐπέθηκα ἐπιτέθηκα ––– ἐπετέθην: lay/put upon, set up, apply oneself

    θυρεός –οῦ ὁ: a stone put against a door

    ὑψόσε: aloft, on high, up high

    ἀείρω ἀρῶ ἤειρα ––– ἤερμαι ἠέρθην: to lift, heave, raise up 240

    ὄβριμος [–α] –ον: strong, mighty; (of things) heavy

    ἄμαξα –ης ἡ: wagon, cart

    ἐσθλός –ή –όν: good

    τετράκυκλος –ον: four-wheeled

    οὖδας –ους τό: the surface of the earth, the ground, earth

    ὀχλίζω ὀχλίσω ὤχλισα: to move by a lever, to heave up

    τόσος –η –ον: so great, so vast

    ἠλίβατος –ον: high, steep, precipitous

    πέτρα –ας ἡ: rock, cliffs, shelf of rock

    ἐπιτίθημι ἐπιθήσω ἐπέθηκα ἐπιτέθηκα ––– ἐπετέθην: lay/put upon, set up, apply oneself

    θύρα –ας ἡ: door

    ἕζομαι – – – – –: sit down

    ἀμέλγω ἀμέλξω ἤμελξα: to milk

    ὄϊς ὄϊος ὁ/ἡ: sheep

    μηκάς –άδος: bleating

    αἴξ αἰγός ὁ/ἡ: goat

    μοῖρα –ας ἡ: part, portion, lot, fate

    ἔμβρυον –ου τό: a young one, new-born lamb; embryo 245

    ἥμισυς ἡμίσεια ἥμισυ: half

    λευκός –ή –όν: white; light, bright

    γάλα –ακτος τό: milk

    πλεκτός –ή –όν: interwoven, coiled

    τάλαρος –ου ὁ: a basket

    ἀμάω ἀμήσω ἤμησα ἤμηκα ἤμημαι ἠμάθην: reap, mow down

    κατατίθημι καταθήσω κατέθηκα κατατέθηκα κατατέθην: put down; (mid.) lay aside, store up

    αὖτε: again

    ἄγγος –ους τό: a vessel

    ὄφρα: while; until; so that; ὄφρα … τόφρα, while … for so long

    ἕ: himself, herself, itself

    αἴνυμαι – – – – –: to take, seize (+ acc. or gen.)

    ποτιδόρπιος –ον: that is used to prepare meals, for dinner

    ἀτάρ: but, yet

    σπεύδω σπεύσω ἔσπευσα ἔσπευκα ἔσπευσμαι ἔσπευθην: to hurry; to strive, do one's utmost

    πονέω πονέσω/πονήσω ἐπόνεσα/ἐπόνησα πεπόνηκα πεπόνημαι ἐπονήθην: to work; to labor over, prepare

    ἑός ἑή ἑόν: his, her, own 250

    ἀνακαίω ἀνακαίσω ἀνέκαυσα: to light up

    εἰσοράω εἰσόψομαι εἰσεῖδον εἰσεόρακα/εἰσεώρακα/εἰσόπωπα εἰσεόραμαι/εἰσεώραμαι/εἰσῶμμαι εἰσώφθην: to look into, look upon, view, behold

    πόθεν: from where? whence?

    ὑγρός –ά –όν: wet, moist, running, fluid

    κέλευθος –ου ἡ: path, with neuter plural κέλευθα

    μαψιδίως: randomly, senselessly, rashly, recklessly, insolently

    ἀλάλημαι (perf. of ἀλάομαι): to wander

    οἷος –α –ον: such as, of what sort, like, (exclam.) what a!, how! ; οἷός τε (+infin.) fit or able to; οἷόν τε (+infin.) it is possible to

    λῃστήρ –ῆρος ὁ: robber, pirate

    ἅλς ἁλός ὁ: salt (m.); sea (f.)

    ἀλάομαι ἀλήσομαι ἀλάλημαι ἠλήθην: to wander, stray

    παρατίθημι παραθήσω παρέθηκα παρατέθηκα ––– παρετέθην: place beside, provide, set before

    ἀλλοδαπός –ή –όν: from another country, foreign 255

    αὖτε: again

    κατακλάω κατακλάσω κατέκλασα – κατακέκλασμαι κατεκλάσθην: to break, shatter

    ἦτορ τό: the heart

    δείδω δείσομαι ἔδεισα δέδοικα (or δίδια) ––– –––: fear

    φθόγγος –ου ὁ: sound; voice

    πέλωρος [–η] –ον: monstrous, prodigious, huge, gigantic

    μιν: (accusative singular third person pronoun) him, her, it

    ἀμείβω ἀμείψω ἤμειψα ἤμειφα ἤμειμμαι ἠμείφθην: to respond, answer; to exchange; (mid.) to take turns, alternate

    προσεῖπον (aor. 2 of προσαγορεύω and προσφωνέω); Εp. προσέειπον: to speak to one, address, accost

    τοι: let me tell you, surely

    Τροίηθεν: from Troy

    ἀποπλάζω ἀποπλάγξω ἀπέπλαγξα (aor. pass.) ἀπεπλάγχθην: to divert, distract; (aor. pass.) to be diverted, get lost

    Ἀχαιός –ά –όν: Achaian, Greek

    παντοῖος –α –ον: of all sorts

    ἄνεμος –ου ὁ: wind

    λαῖτμα –ατος τό: the depths of the sea 260

    οἴκαδε: homeward

    κέλευθος –ου ἡ: path, with neuter plural κέλευθα

    Ζεύς Διός ὁ: Zeus

    μητίομαι μητίσομαι ἐμητισάμην: to devise, contrive, plan

    Ἀτρείδης –ου ὁ: son of Atreus

    Ἀγαμέμνων –ονος ὁ: Agamemnon

    εὔχομαι εὔξομαι ηὐξάμην ηὖγμαι: to pray; to make a vow, promise; to declare, affirm; to glory in, boast of (for good reason)

    ὑπουράνιος –ον: of the sky; rising to the sky

    κλέος –ους τό: glory

    τόσος –η –ον: so great, so vast

    διαπέρθω διαπέρσω διέπερσα/διέπραθον: to destroy utterly, sack, lay waste 265

    αὖτε: again

    κιχάνω κιχήσομαι ἔκιχον: to reach, overtake, meet with (+ acc.)

    γόνυ γόνατος τό: knee

    ἱκνέομαι ἵξομαι ἱκόμην ––– ἷγμαι –––: to come

    πόρω ––– ἔπορον ––– ––– –––: to offer, furnish, supply, give; (pf. pass. 3 sing.) it is fated

    ξεινήιον –ου τό: guest gift

    δωτίνη –ης ἡ: a gift, present

    θέμις –ιστος ἡ: norm, custom; right, law

    αἰδέομαι αἰδέσομαι ᾐδεσάμην –––– ᾔδεσμαι ᾐδέσθην: to respect, revere, honor

    φέριστος –η –ον: bravest, best

    ἱκέτης –ου ὁ: suppliant

    ἐπιτιμήτωρ –ορος ὁ: an avenger

    ξείνιος –α –ον: belonging to a friend and guest, hospitable; protector of guests (epithet of Zeus) 270

    αἰδοῖος –α –ον: respectable, venerable; respectful

    ὀπηδέω – – – – –: to follow, accompany, attend

    ἀμείβω ἀμείψω ἤμειψα ἤμειφα ἤμειμμαι ἠμείφθην: to respond, answer; to exchange; (mid.) to take turns, alternate

    νηλής –ές: pitiless, ruthless

    νήπιος –α –ον: infant, child; silly, ignorant, without foresight

    τηλόθεν: from afar, from a foreign land

    κέλομαι κελήσομαι ἐκελησάμην ἐκεκλόμην: command, urge on, exhort, call to

    δείδω δείσομαι ἔδεισα δέδοικα (or δίδια) ––– –––: fear

    ἀλέομαι ἀλήσομαι ἀλευάμην: to avoid, shun

    Κύκλωψ –πος ὁ: Cyclops

    αἰγίοχος –ον: aegis-holding

    ἀλέγω – – – – –: to trouble oneself, have a care 275

    μάκαρ μάκαρος: blessed, happy

    φέρτερος –η –ον: better, braver

    ἔχθος –ους τό: hate, hatred

    ἀλέομαι ἀλήσομαι ἀλευάμην: to avoid, shun

    φείδομαι φεισόμαι ἐφεισάμην ––– πέφεισμαι ἐφείσθην: to spare (+ gen.)

    ἑταῖρος –ου ὁ: comrade, companion

    ὅπῃ: in which direction, where; in what way, how

    εὐεργής –ές: well-wrought, well-made

    ἐσχατιά –ᾶς ἡ: the furthest part, edge, border, verge

    σχεδόν: near; almost

    ὄφρα: while; until; so that; ὄφρα … τόφρα, while … for so long

    δάω δαήσω ἐδάην δεδάηκα: to learn 280

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    Suggested Citation

    Thomas Van Nortwick and Rob Hardy, Homer: Odyssey 9-12. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 20122. ISBN: 978-1-947822-17-7 https://dcc.dickinson.edu/homer-odyssey/ix-231-280