The Greek Myth of Odysseus and the Cyclops
Soon after escaping the Lotos Eaters, Odysseus and his crew encounter the Cyclops: “giants, louts, without a law to bless them they neither. Odysseus and his shipmates encountered the Cyclops on their ill-fated return up the nearest two of Odysseus's men, bashed out their brains on the floor and. Odysseus and his men first come to the land of the Kikonians, where they kill When Odysseus and his crew run across a Cyclops' deserted cave, his men want .
The Island of the Cyclops
Odysseus will soon find what his lotos is. Soon after escaping the Lotos Eaters, Odysseus and his crew encounter the Cyclops: In Cyclops Land there is no community, only the individual living separate from the others, like members of the Minnesota Militia hunkered down in caves waiting to defend themselves with violent force against any intruder who happens to be stupid enough to venture into their land without his NRA card.
The cyclops are even distrustful of each other, only interested in isolation, not in venturing out to meet others or even to tell stories. Based on its concentration on hospitality and community, the Odyssey seems to count the cyclops as a representation of barbaric, pre-communal beings that are not as sophisticated as humans.
Now Odysseus and crew do not actually moor on Cyclops island, but one very near to it.
Then he led his sheep out to the pasture, being careful to roll the rock into the mouth of the cave after him. The Cyclops had left behind him a great walking stick, of the sort that shepherds use to climb over the mountains.
This gave Odysseus an idea. He ordered his men to look for sharp pieces of flint in the back of the cave. They took these and used them to sharpen the end of the stick into a cruel point. Next Odysseus told his men to pick up the stick and harden the point in the fire.
That evening when the Cyclops returned, the men trembled with fear, not knowing which of them the Cyclops would eat next. But Odysseus wished the giant good evening, saying: Let us not be enemies. See here, I have a gift for you of the finest wine. It was given to me by a priest of Apollo, who wanted to thank me for saving his life.
It tastes no less wonderful than the ambrosia which the gods who live on mount Olympus feast upon. Here, I have a whole skinful for you.
That is what I am called by my friends who love me, and my enemies who fear me. But as a reward for your gift of fine wine, I shall not eat you till I have eaten all the others. Now that the Cyclops was sound asleep, Odysseus ordered those of his men whom the Cyclops had not yet eaten to pick up the great stick that they had sharpened and hardened in the fire. They carried it over their shoulders, which was as big as the trunk of a young tree, and they drove it into the one and only eye of the Cyclops.
The giant let out a terrible scream and raged around the cave calling for help. The other one-eyed giants who lived nearby came running to see what was the cause of this commotion.
Much confused, they all went back to bed. In the morning, the Cyclops was careful to make sure that Odysseus and his men did not slip out of the cave. As each of his sheep went out, he felt it carefully to check that a man was not riding on its back, but he did not know that Odysseus had ordered his followers to tie the sheep together in threes, and that now they were clinging upside down between the sheep.
The last animal to leave the cave was the old ram with curly horns.
The Island of the Cyclops – The Humanities Index
Odysseus was clinging to his underside. The Cyclops stroked the ram and said: I shall find him tonight cowering in the corner of the cave, and I shall eat him for dinner, chewing very slowly. They pulled their boat out from where it was hidden in the brush wood, and started to row swiftly out to their friends on the island. Up above on the cliffs they saw the Cyclops, standing as tall as an oak tree and bellowing with rage: Uranus, fearing their strength, locked them in Tartarus.
Cronusanother son of Uranus and Gaia, later freed the cyclopes, along with the Hecatoncheiresafter he had overthrown Uranus. Cronus then placed them back in Tartarus, where they remained, guarded by the female monster Campeuntil freed by Zeus. They fashioned thunderbolts for Zeus to use as weapons, and helped him overthrow Cronus and the other Titans.
The lightning bolts, which became Zeus' main weapons, were forged by all three cyclopes, in that Arges added brightness, Brontes added thunderand Steropes added lightning. The cyclopes were said to have built the "cyclopean" fortifications at Tiryns and Mycenae in the Peloponnese. The noises proceeding from the heart of volcanoes were attributed to their operations.
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Euripides[ edit ] Euripides' only extant comedy is his play Cyclopswhich was written in B. It is the only complete satyr play of ancient Greece that has survived. It is based on a story that occurs in book nine of Homer 's Odyssey.
Cyclops - Wikipedia
It takes place on the island of Sicily near the volcano Mount Etnaand the cyclops is portrayed as a cave-dwellingviolent, cannibalisticoafish character. For this crime, Apollo was then forced into the servitude of Admetus for one year. Other stories after Euripides tell that Zeus later revived Asclepius and the cyclopes.
This was after the year of Apollo's servitude had passed. Zeus pardoned the cyclopes and Asclepius from the underworlddespite them being dead, even though Hades is lord of the dead and they are his prisoners. Hades as well does not ever allow any of his souls to leave the Underworld.
Zeus could not bear the loss of the cyclopes, for they were the biggest reason the Olympians assumed power.