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What Do You Admire and Criticise About Odysseus' Behaviour as a Hero?

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"What do you admire, and what do you find to criticise, in Odysseus' behaviour as a hero?"

What I admire about Odysseus' behaviour as a hero is his confidence. Rather than being self-doubting of his abilities he is proud of them. We see this in Book 9 when he deals with the Cyclops Polyphemus. Firstly, he tells the Cyclops his name is Ð''Nobody'. This idea helps him to escape at the end when Polyphemus screams "O my friends, it's Nobody's treachery, not violence that is doing me to death", and the other Cyclopes believe that nobody is hurting him.

He escapes the cave using a sharpened, burning stick to blind the son of Poseidon, and then laughs to himself about how the Ð''cunning notion of a false name' fooled the Cyclops. He shows a lot of pride in what he has done when he says this. A hero should be smart and have confidence in his own abilities, and Odysseus certainly shows both of these traits in this book.

In Book Ten Odysseus shows his loyalty to his men. He kills a huge stag on Circe's island for his men. Later, when Eurylochus comes back alone from Circe's house, Odysseus says he has "absolutely no choice" but to save his men. He could have easily left his men behind, but he insists on saving his men. After befriending the goddess, Odysseus refuses to eat until he sees his companions safe and sound. The scene of their reunion is a compassionate one, and even the goddess Circe herself is moved.

In book 21 we see Odysseus' great strength, a very admirable quality in a hero. When nobody else could string the great bow, Odysseus Ð''strung the great bow without effort or haste' and shot an arrow through every axe. Skills with a weapon are necessary to have for a hero.

Book 22 sees the great battle between Odysseus and the suitors. He kills all the suitors despite their pleas. He shows some compassion however when he saves Phemius and Medon, who were forced to work for the suitors. He could have killed them just like all the others, but spares their lives at the request of his son. I admire that he is kind to them after being so ruthless to the others.

Book 23 is when Odysseus and Penelope get together again. Odysseus shows why he went through his journey in this book. After all the obstacles and deaths of his friends he has reached his goal. I admire him as a hero in this book because we see he really cares for Penelope. I think back at all that he went through in his journey and admire him because he did it all for her and their son.

Some might argue that Odysseus was not just simply confident, but arrogant. We see an example of his arrogance in Book 9. Once he



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