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Lecture 28.docx

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York University
HUMA 1105
Donald A Burke

Book 23 • The two final recognition scenes take place within the last 2 books. • Penelope’s recognition scene here and Laertes recognition scene in 24. • Odysseus still proceeds to gradually reveal hi identity • Eurykleia the nurse goes to tell Penelope how Odysseus has returned and killed the suitors • She doesn’t believe her and says how she has secret signs in which she can identify with Odysseus • She decides to test the stranger to see if she is Odysseus • Page 338, line 107: This is the secret sign of the unmoveable bed • The trunk of this tree was used to build this bed • Penelope tests Odysseus in the bottom of page 339 • Odysseus knows the bed is unmoveable. • Penelope knows it is Odysseus when he describes the bed and knows no other mortal man has seen the bed • Penelope responds to his description in line 225: says how she is convinced this is Odysseus • This is not only a recognition scene, Penelope and Odysseus are both testing each other • Odysseus knows she has been faithful when she says no other mortal man has seen this bed • Odysseus informs Penelope that he has one final trial to fulfill • Page 342 266-284 • Penelope finally make love after 20 years. After, Odysseus tells her about all his adventures • Odysseus wants to replenish the stocks of food in his household since the suitors destroyed most of it • He says he is going to raid farm and let the Achians give him some stock • One additional task Odysseus has to perform is to visit Laertes • Odysseus instructs her to stay in her chamber with her maids so words of him killing the suitors doesn’t run around • The suitors’ families will want revenge since Odysseus has killed 108 of the noblemen of Ithaka • The families will come to seek retribution and clan vengeance. This is based on retributive justice. • There were at least 6 different recognition scenes in The Odyssey: Telemachos, Argos, Eurykleia, Odysseus tests his servants Eumaois and the oxherd, Penelope, & L
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