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Odyssey by Homer: Portrayal of Odysseus as the Perfect Hero

By tzarnoth Apr 23, 2013 577 Words
“Remember that fear always lurks behind perfectionism, confronting your fears and allowing yourself to the right to be human can paradoxically make you far happier and a more productive person.” Dr David M Burn’s quote explains how you must face your fears to be a more perfect and productive person. A perfect hero must face al their fears, which allows them to become a perfect hero. In the Odyssey by Homer, Odysseus is portrayed as a perfect hero because he shows traits such as strength, bravery, and wisdom.

There are many traits a perfect hero must have, the most important one may be strength. Strength is so vital to be a perfect hero because you can accomplish so much with it. Perfect heroes need both mental and physical strength to succeed. Maybe a hero needs to lift a heavy car off a child, or the mental strength to to leave a loved one. Odysseus displays mental strength by leaving Penelope and Telemachus for twenty years. Not only did he leave his family he left his homeland which Odysseus was very fond of. It takes a lot of mental strength to allow yourself to leave your family and home for twenty years. Also, he showed mental strength by avoiding the sirens by making his men tie him to the boat. Not only is that very smart it also takes strength to know what has to be done. Obviously Odysseus has mental strength he also had physical strength by killing a suitor, who stood in the way of him and Penelope. Although, these are only three minor acts, Odysseus shows mental and physical strength throughout the odyssey. “Odysseus’ arrow hit him under the chin and punched up to the feathers through his throat.” (II 1419-1420)

In addition to strength a perfect hero must also have bravery. Heroes are never seen as scared or wimpy. Always, they are seen fighting off their enemies or rescuing a civilian. Without bravery there would definitely be no heroes because it takes bravery to be one. When the Cyclopes’ eye was poked out by, Odysseus, he showed bravery. Not only was the Cyclopes ten times bigger than Odysseus, but he also could have easily crushed him. Odysseus has seen things no other man should see one of these was his men being ripped to shreds by Scylla. It takes bravery to see such horrible actions and not break down. A brave hero, also has guts to stand up for himself. When Odysseus approached Antonius, he had bravery to stand up for himself even though he was disguised as a beggar. Antonius was a suitor to Penelope and was living in his home. Odysseus had the guts to ruin Antonius’ reputation. “The eyeball hissed around the spike…the Cyclopes track roared around him and we fell back in fear.” (I )

Further more, wisdom is the last essential trait to a perfect hero. Wisdom isn’t the most important but, the most powerful. It is the most powerful because it’s a trait that you can’t automatically have. You either have to work at it or in some cases you’re born with it. When you have wisdom it’s a very powerful weapon to your enemies, just like Odysseus. Odysseus makes the Cyclopes drunk so he could poke out his eye easier since the Cyclopes was much more bigger and stronger than Odysseus. Not only did he make the Cyclopes drunk he told him a false name

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