Odyssey Loyalty

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In Homer's epic poem, The Odyssey, friends and family of Odysseus show great loyalty to him. The loyalty can be seen through the commitment Penelope, faith of Odysseus' servants, and his dog, Argos', patience. The most loyal was Penelope. As his faithful wife, she waited twenty years for him to come home. With her brilliant trickery, she was able to fool the suitors long enough for Odysseus to return. When he arrives, she tells him, "I armed myself long ago against the frauds of men, imposters who might come- and all those many whose underhanded ways bring evil on" (436). Having the courage to stand up to other men and wait twenty years is the perfect example of true loyalty.

Odysseus' servants also show loyalty. Eurycleia, Odysseus' wet nurse, finds out his identity when he is disguised as a beggar. She exclaims, "You are Odysseus! Ah, dear child! I could not see you until now- not till I knew my master's very body with my hands" (368). Although she is excited to spread the news of his return, she is loyal and keeps quiet just as he asks. Other servants were not loyal to Odysseus. Instead they joined the suitors and began to serve them. After killing the suitors, Odysseus had these servants clean up the blood and guts of their new masters, and then he hung them. Talking to Odysseus about the servants Eurycleia says, "Twelve went bad, flouting me, flouting Penelope, too" (423). These also show the loyalty and disloyalty shown to Odysseus.

Odysseus' faithful companion, Argos is the last that shows devotion. When Odysseus arrives at his palace, Argos is aged, and waiting on a pile of manure outside. After waiting twenty years, he opens his eyes and wags his tail at the sight of Odysseus. Homer says, "...but death and darkness in that instant closed the eyes of Argos, who had seen his master, Odysseus, after twenty years" (320). Waiting twenty years for your master really shows that Argos has true devotion for Odysseus.

In, The Odyssey, Homer's epic poem,...
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