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Women in the Odyssey[edit]

Why are many of the people that Odysseus mets on his travels female? (~~Ric5575~~talk) — Preceding unsigned comment added by Ric5575 (talkcontribs) 04:23, 17 January 2012 (UTC)


The first line in the second paragraph states: "... his journey home after the fall of Troy." I believe it to be more accurate to state that "... his journey home after the conquest of Troy." Unless this be a variation in the translation, Troy did not "fall" by way of natural disaster or self inflicted demise. It was "conquered".

HENRY9504 (talk) 06:14, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

Sources generally use "fall" because essentially there was nothing left to be ruled over - the city was gone, the men all killed and the survivors taken away. The dictionary can help TEDickey (talk) 14:03, 16 February 2013 (UTC)

Edit request on 21 February 2013[edit] (talk) 20:06, 21 February 2013 (UTC)

The link to the wikisource page is incorrect.

Fixed and thanks! Garion96 (talk) 20:17, 21 February 2013 (UTC)


OdysseyThe OdysseyThis is the most common English translated title. Crazynas t 07:55, 22 February 2013 (UTC)

  • Do you want to include Iliad in this request? --BDD (talk) 17:48, 22 February 2013 (UTC)
No, Iliad does not appear to have the same problems with disambiguation. Crazynas t 20:31, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. When this poem is mentioned in secondary sources, it's usually called the Odyssey, not The Odyssey. Just take a quick stroll through Google Scholar to convince yourself of this. --Akhilleus (talk) 19:34, 22 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Question. Is it usually called "Odyssey", or "the Odyssey"? The capitalization in our title is solely because the first letter of every title is capitalized. Apteva (talk) 20:32, 22 February 2013 (UTC)
    • It's usually called the Odyssey. But "the" is not part of the work's title--that's why you can write "Homer's Odyssey", but not "Homer's The Odyssey". The situation is similar with many ancient works of literature--Euripides' play about Jason's (former) wife is called the Medea, or Euripides' Medea; the Apology, or Plato's Apology, etc. --Akhilleus (talk) 21:09, 22 February 2013 (UTC)
      • So it is like the Netherlands, where it is always preceded with the even though the is not a part of the name, but not like The Gambia where the is a part of the name? Apteva (talk) 23:05, 22 February 2013 (UTC)
I think that's accurate. At least that's how I've always written it. --BDD (talk) 17:39, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
... and I've unbolded the article in the first sentence. This was changed December 17 and I never noticed, otherwise I would have reverted for the same reasons Akhilleus gives.  davidiad { t } 23:01, 22 February 2013 (UTC)
Just a note, I support not having it bold in the lead, just that it should be part of the title. Crazynas t 20:36, 25 February 2013 (UTC)
But if the work is referred to as "the Odyssey" in the text of the article, then shouldn't the page title/headword be "Odyssey"?  davidiad { t } 00:23, 27 February 2013 (UTC)
By the same logic shouldn't Medea (play) start Medea (play) (Ancient Greek: Μήδεια, Mēdeia)? Crazynas t 20:47, 27 February 2013 (UTC)

  • Oppose per Akhilleus and WP:THE. A similar discussion was once held about the title of the article on the Divine Comedy, with the The-less version getting the nod. Deor (talk) 13:21, 24 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Support (as nom) Per WP:THE
If a word with a definite article has a different meaning with respect to the same word without the article, the word with article can be used as the name of a page about that meaning, and the word without article can be used as the name of a separate page.

The word odyssey means: "An extended adventurous voyage" (not necessarily the one Odysseus was on). When italicized (witout the article) it can refer to the epic by Homer, however in the vast majority of current English translations the title is 9/10 times The Odyssey. Now, per WP:TITLE

When this offers multiple possibilities, editors choose among them by considering several principles: the ideal article title resembles titles for similar articles, precisely identifies the subject, and is short, natural, and recognizable.

I don't disagree that the title could by our rules be Odyssey however I think that it is more precisely identified with the The in the title. Apology is a disambig page, Medea to the person (not the play). In general my argument is that as an encyclopedia the primary purpose of our titles is to allow readers to find the subject matter they are searching for. 9/10 times when someone searches for "The Odyssey" they are looking for the poem by Homer, when someone types in "Odyssey" there are ~50 things they could be looking for, but needlessly are directed here. Crazynas t 20:29, 25 February 2013 (UTC)

  • Oppose per Akhilleus. Published translations are often called The Odyssey of Homer too, but that's the publication title of the particular translation, not of the epic itself. You might also find The Aeneid of Vergil or The Medea of Euripides as titles, but surely we're not going to insert a The before all titles of classical works that also refer to something else: The Antigone? I have to reject reasoning that would cause us not to have the same style for both the Odyssey and Iliad. That automatically delegitimates the proposal for me, because it indicates that we're imposing internally generated and arbitrary "rules" instead of serving the subject matter intelligently. Whatever is correct style for one of the two Homeric epics has to be correct style for the other. I don't oppose The as strongly, perhaps, as some of my colleagues, but I find the reasoning specious unless both titles are to be treated the same. Cynwolfe (talk) 12:45, 26 February 2013 (UTC)
Just a note that the current pagename of the play by Euripides is Medea (play). Crazynas t 20:39, 27 February 2013 (UTC)
That's because Medea is about the mythological character, so the article about Euripides' play needs a different title. There's not a similar situation here; there is no article about the common noun odyssey, nor is there likely to be--this is an encyclopedia, not a dictionary. --Akhilleus (talk) 21:21, 27 February 2013 (UTC)
I know why it is were it is, and there is an article about the common noun odyssey it even has a link to the Wiktionary definition, it provides a place for the many differing proper nouns that odyssey might refer to a space to disambiguate between them, I would have no problem modifying my requested move to Odyssey (epic) if that would suit your preferences better. I suppose if you go by the guideline at WP:DAB my argument is that this article is not the primary topic of the word odyssey, that the DAB page would be a better base page for this word. Crazynas t 21:33, 27 February 2013 (UTC)
Unless I'm missing something, we *don't* have a page on the common noun. We have a disambiguation page, but that's not the same thing as an article. --Akhilleus (talk) 02:19, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
I suppose if you go by the guideline at WP:DAB my argument is that this article is not the primary topic of the word odyssey, that the DAB page would be a better base page for this word. (from above). Crazynas t 06:05, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
That's a misunderstanding of "primary topic", which does not mean "most common word usage". We disambiguate existing article titles. As Akhilleus points out, we don't have an article on the common noun "odyssey": that's a dictionary entry. Besides, I can scarcely think of a better example than the Odyssey to illustrate the guideline that states A topic is primary for a term, with respect to long-term significance, if it has substantially greater enduring notability and educational value than any other topic associated with that term.Cynwolfe (talk) 12:34, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
I'm fine with accepting the consenus that this page is the primary topic for the word. I was however, concerned that I was being misunderstood (re: question about the Iliad, various arguments about Medea and Divine Comedy etc.) I just thought that moving this page to "The Odyssey" would get rid of the ugly parenthetical on the DAB page, put the epic poem at it's most common translated English title and allow people looking for the other ~50 uses of the word one less click in what they were looking for (at the expense of one more click for the people that both want this page and didn't get it through the current The Odyssey redirect) Kill 3 birds with one stone, so to speak. Crazynas t 13:40, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
  • In any case, I'm withdrawing the RM as I'm clearly incorrect about my thoughts. Thank you to everyone that participated. Crazynas t 13:47, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
The question was worth raising. I'm confused about one thing in your last comment, about people who want this page and don't get it through the current The Odyssey redirect. It looks as if both The odyssey and The Odyssey redirect to the Homeric Odyssey. Just checking what your concern was with that. Cynwolfe (talk) 14:47, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
Hmmm, my negative was unclear, I meant (at the expense of one more click for the people that both want this page (about the epic) and came directly to the page by searching for Odyssey not by searching for The Odyssey and arriving at this page through the redirect.) In other words, I was saying the only people my RM would disadvantage are people that search Odyssey not The Odyssey and are looking for the epic poem (since they would have be directed to the DAB page, not this page). Does that clear it up? Crazynas t 15:20, 28 February 2013 (UTC)
  • Oppose. Akhilleus is right about scholarly usage. You can tell a WP:COMMONNAME more easily by studying how a work is referred to in well-edited publications than by looking on the title pages of translations. Wareh (talk) 00:54, 5 March 2013 (UTC)

Cultural Impact - Addition[edit]

Odyssey The Musical (2012) is a musical written by classics undergraduate Khamsina and based on Homer's epic. Staged as a student production at Victoria College, University of Toronto 2013. Due to be staged in the UK 2014 at The Courtyard Theatre, Maidenhead.

Further information at — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 21:51, 7 April 2013 (UTC)

No objection in principle to mentioning this, but it should cite a review or something from elsewhere than the producers’ own website.—Odysseus1479 (talk) 22:43, 7 April 2013 (UTC)

Review from University of Toronto's "The Newspaper" Review from audience members — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 23:07, 7 April 2013 (UTC)

The first link is not a third-party source (it's part of the same university); the second link is merely an advertisement TEDickey (talk) 00:05, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

To clarify, Khamsina is a classics undergraduate at Royal Holloway University of London, UK. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 01:21, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

So you should look for third-party, reliable sources which are relevant to whatever point you're making. So far, the proposed changes appear to promote someone's play, and are not particularly relevant to this topic TEDickey (talk) 08:50, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

The proposed changes were to merely indicate that this musical has been written and subsequently staged. The review from The Newspaper indicating that there was a strong audience reaction and therefore has had some cultural impact. However, if the moderators of this article feel that it is a promotional request then please disregard this proposal. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 13:40, 8 April 2013 (UTC)

I have no reason to believe the proposal is promotional, but without independent notice it will at least appear so, and anyone who wants to remove it will have the backing of policy. BTW no-one here is a “moderator”: the article has only been protected from anonymous contributions because of frequent vandalism, so can be edited by anyone with a “confirmed” account.—Odysseus1479 (talk) 02:42, 9 April 2013 (UTC)

Need to add something about prominence in public buildings, not just it but other Greek Myths... --Fisch1234 (talk) 00:25, 30 September 2015 (UTC)


The synopsis reads unfortunately like a synopsis of the novelisation of a film of the Odyssey. It really needs to be rewritten along the lines of the synopsis in the Iliad article, as a condensation of the poem. --Quadalpha (talk) 06:48, 9 May 2013 (UTC)

Indian Ocean[edit]

From an archaeological point of view, the geographical locations of this storee are probablee Egipts Red Sea, the islands of Aden, Sayshells, Deago garcean, and Sri Lanka. Some even suggest that the story may even take in Western Australea and Indonesea. The inscritptian on the wall of the socalled Jerimiahs tomb in Eireann\Ireland suggest that the Emu galaxee was noticed and world mapped in this tomb, and the actual travelers were Irish dwarves\midgets on Egiptian ocean going Fellucas. It is possible that some native greeks were also on this voyage, but it is more probable that it is a handed down storee spanning hundreds of years. This inscriptian is said to date around 600-550BC. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 15:29, 18 September 2013 (UTC)

"Western" literature?[edit]

Should this sentence be rethought?:

The poem is fundamental to the modern Western canon, and is the second oldest extant work of Western literature, the Iliad being the oldest.

Describing the Homeric poems as the earliest extant works of "Western" literature seems to imply an arbitrary and possibly anachronistic distinction between "Western" and "non-Western" (specifically "Near Eastern"). It suggests that Gilgamesh, to cite the most obvious example, belongs to an entirely unrelated civilizational tradition, even though the article itself cites evidence for the possible influence of Gilgamesh on the Odyssey, and even though the Greek alphabet was clearly derived from "Oriental" models. A possible alternative (although one that may pose issues of its own) is to state that it is the second oldest extant work of "European" literature. 850 C (talk) 14:09, 18 April 2014 (UTC)


Gilgamesh's relationship to the Odyssey is irrelevant. The Odyssey, whatever tradition it belonged to or was continuing in its own time and place, itself founded a separate and distinct tradition that is Western literature. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:243:C100:B9D5:4946:C749:1238:BD05 (talk) 23:04, 14 May 2016 (UTC)


What on earth is "archaeologically dated" and what is the source for that inexact note? HJJHolm (talk) 14:47, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

Some details can be found here; it seems an appropriate enough statement to me, but I don't think anyone would object to more detail. For the time being, I'll wikilink to the article/section I just referenced here, which should provide some context for those interested. Edit: Woops, it already is linked! Snow talk 23:11, 8 May 2014 (UTC)

Relationships and the Roles of Women[edit]

The recent edits don't follow the suggested source, perhaps some other was meant. here is (google cache...) the source TEDickey (talk) 00:05, 13 July 2014 (UTC)

Map of Odisseus' Journey[edit]

I've added a map of Odisseus's Journey in the section "Odysseus' account of his adventures". This map describes Odysseus' travel around Mediterraneum, as it is narrated in the chapter. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Giu.zcc (talkcontribs) 17:21, 3 December 2014 (UTC)

And I've removed it. No one knows whether the places mentioned in the Odyssey were meant to correspond to real geographical locations, so any map like this would be highly speculative at best. In any case, and more importantly, such a map, not comming from a reliabale source would constitute original reasearch which is not allowed on Wikipedia. Paul August 18:32, 3 December 2014 (UTC)
Ok then, I apologize for the inconvenience. There might be a way to improve my work and include it on the page? Maybe a time line without a map would be more appropriate. Obviously still following article Odysseus' account of His adventures. I would appreciate any suggestions. Thanks.--Giu.zcc (talk) 10:09, 9 December 2014 (UTC)


The band Symphony X should get a mention for writing a song based on the Odyssey. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 12:28, 11 July 2015 (UTC)

Oral tradition: "most" scholars?[edit]

Since the Odyssey predates Greek literacy, are there any scholars who believe it was composed via something other than oral tradition? This line just seems a bit hedged for no good reason. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:602:8B01:A543:DC05:A6F4:B771:6493 (talk) 19:07, 15 February 2016 (UTC)

I believe the qualification (which is actually “many“, if I’m looking at the same passage you are) is intended to apply to all the given details, beyond the mere existence of an oral tradition as substrate, which I think is broadly accepted. There is disagreement about the provenance and transmission of the epics, whether they were anciently coherent or assembled from originally separate elements, stylistic or thematic, and also about the extent of Homer's contributions in terms of creativity or original authorship vs borrowing/adaptation or compilation. See Homeric scholarship for a fuller treatment.—Odysseus1479 21:31, 15 February 2016 (UTC)

I deleted the line from the header about the noteworthy features.[edit]

It says that noteworthy features of the Odyssey are its non-linear plot, and the influence women and serfs have on the plot.

Noteworthy to whom? No source is cited. This imo was a sneaky PC insertion and nothing more, using the non-linear bit as a battering ram to deliver the rest, and help it seem plausible and non-partisan. Who considers it noteworthy that women and serfs influence the plot? I can guess who - PC liberal activist academics. — Preceding unsigned comment added by 2601:243:C100:B9D5:4946:C749:1238:BD05 (talk) 23:07, 14 May 2016 (UTC)

Polemics aside, I’m inclined to agree with the deletion. The lead is supposed to summarize the body, where I don’t see either theme being addressed at all. And unless it can be properly sourced, having been challenged, the default position should be to remove.—Odysseus1479 03:27, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
Aside from the bit about serfs (there are no serfs in ancient Greece! there are slaves!), this bit is somewhat accurate. It could be a lot better written, though. Non-linear plot--books 9–12 are a flashback, and books 1–4 happen at the same time as books 5-8. Not hard to think about how women influence the plot—Penelope is the prime example, but also Nausicaa, and if goddesses=women, Athena and Circe are others. Slaves who are important are Eumaeus and Eurycleia. --Akhilleus (talk) 14:59, 16 May 2016 (UTC)
I generally agree, but I don’t think we should be characterizing these features as “noteworthy” (in what context? Greek epics, or all of literature?) without any source, or giving the remark such prominence without a fuller discussion, including adequate citations, in the body. The non-linearity and story-within-story aspects must be pretty well covered in the academic literature. And apart from the major goddesses there are certainly more females here than in the Iliad, often with more depth to them, and likewise lower-class characters, but we need backing from scholarly opinion to avoid WP:OR.—Odysseus1479 02:01, 17 May 2016 (UTC)


To match the section on editions, surely this article needs a section on the surviving manuscripts. --Pfold (talk) 13:00, 1 August 2016 (UTC)

Major problems with "Dating The Odyssey" section[edit]

The "Dating The Odyssey" section seems to quite clearly fall under WP:FRINGE. The whole section seems to treat the events of The Odyssey as though they actually happened historically, which is historically impossible. Although there may be some remote historical basis behind the events described in the poem, that historical basis is impossible for modern scholars to determine; it is buried under centuries of myths and legends. To me, it seems absurd to interpret the events of the poem in such a literalistic manner. The idea of dating the events of The Odyssey on the basis of astronomical observations seems not only patently ludicrous, but downright misguided. I do not know of any mainstream scholars who interpret The Odyssey as a literal, historical account describing actual events. I think that this section should either be deleted entirely or at least significantly reworded to avoid giving the reader the false impression that The Odyssey-as-a-historical-narrative is the prevailing opinion among classical scholars.--Katolophyromai (talk) 22:09, 3 March 2017 (UTC)

I have now gone ahead and deleted the section. I can think of no good reason why it should be kept. --Katolophyromai (talk) 02:18, 30 April 2017 (UTC)