Hospitality in the Odyssey

Topics: Odyssey, Homer, Greeks Pages: 1 (345 words) Published: September 15, 2013

Seth Horton

Citizens living in Peloponnesia would have been ready to welcome a guest to house them for a long stay or even just a simple meal. The features of the ancient Greek times are that the hospitality had to be ready on the spot at almost all times. In modern day times an unscheduled visit from a stranger would be unheard of. For an ancient Greek this would not have been too extremely rare. Even though might be a slight inconvenience the people who lived in this culture were ready and welcoming to a stranger like this.

When a person enters someone’s home they see how the host reacts too see if the person is welcoming or not. Hospitality is the friendly or kind way of welcoming someone into there home and treating them right. The Greeks considered hospitality to be a major part of their “Here we stand, beholden for your help, or any gifts you give-as custom is to honor strangers. We would entreat you, great Sir, have a care for the gods’ courtesy; Zeus will avenge the unoffending guest.” (Homer 989).

Everyone did not obey hospitality though. The Cyclops, and even Odysseus did not obeyed by this unspoken set of rules. For example the Cyclops had power and decided that he didn’t really have to welcome Odysseus and his crew. “We Cyclopes care not a whistle for your thundering Zeus or all the gods in bliss; we have more force by far.” (Homer 989). The Cyclops does not believe in the gods or Zeus because of how his species has been shunned from the rest of civilization. So if the gods did not bless the Cyclops then the gods must not exist.

One of the things that the Odyssey teaches us that Hospitality is an important trait to have and practice as much as possible. By welcoming others with respect it can help some one get through the day or even help them make it back to there sons...
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