By Bruce Louden
The Odyssey's better plot consists of a few special genres of fable, all of that are extant in a number of close to japanese cultures (Mesopotamian, West Semitic, Egyptian). abruptly, the close to japanese tradition with which the Odyssey has the main parallels is the previous testomony. attention of the way a lot of the Odyssey makes a speciality of non-heroic episodes - hosts receiving site visitors, a king disguised as a beggar, acceptance scenes among long-separated kin - reaffirms the Odyssey's parallels with the Bible. specifically the e-book argues that the Odyssey is in a dialogic dating with Genesis, which good points an analogous 3 kinds of fable that include the vast majority of the Odyssey: theoxeny, romance (Joseph in Egypt), and Argonautic fable (Jacob successful Rachel from Laban). The Odyssey additionally deals interesting parallels to the e-book of Jonah, and Odysseus' remedy by means of the suitors bargains shut parallels to the Gospels' depiction of Christ in Jerusalem.
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Additional resources for Homer's Odyssey and the Near East
210–1). Into this sacred site, comes the goatherd Melanthios, driving his goats to provide dinner for the suitors. Unprovoked, he insults and verbally abuses them (Od. 217–32), claiming Odysseus will spoil the suitors’ feasts. Not content with verbal abuse, he strikes Odysseus, kicking him in the hip (Od. 233–34). Eumaios here resembles Lot, who passed the hospitality test, but is unable to shield his divine guest from the mob’s violence. In response Eumaios calls on the nymphs of the fountain to make Odysseus return, a god leading him, to scatter Melanthios’ arrogant (Ëbr©zwn: Od.
But in the second half of the Odyssey, Odysseus himself plays the role normally played by the outraged immortal. 689–97). When Odysseus returns to Ithaka, after his recognition scene with Athena (Od. 221–86),32 the goddess and the hero plot strategy against the suitors. Though their meeting is portrayed as a joint deliberation (Od. 373, 376, 439), it is Athena who declares what his course of action will be, and how he is to proceed. He is to keep everyone in the dark (Od. 308–9), implicitly even Penelope and Laertes.
Offering hospitality, he persuades them to come to his house, bathe their feet, and spend the night. After he serves them a meal, and has clearly passed the implicit test imposed on the host, a mob of men of all ages gathers around his house. This is essentially the point at which the Odyssey has interrupted the progress of its negative theoxeny. There are clear parallels in the roles played by Athena and the two angels, by Telemachos and Lot, and especially close, by the suitors and the mob. Since Genesis is not using its negative theoxeny as part of a heroic epic whose protagonist is far from home, it has no need to delay or interrupt its conclusion, as does the Odyssey.