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Odyssey vs Aeneid Comparison

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    no need to appologise. it was great! Definitely positively repping you when i can!
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    Thank you. To be honest it was pretty good revision for me, I never really understand stuff until I've explained it to someone else.

    I just had a thought on the side of the Aeneid being less serious - there's the funeral games in Book 5, where you get the boat race and the foot-race, etcetera. Personally I loathe it, especially the boat race, but I'd hazard a guess that at the time it'd be crazy exciting, I suppose like watching a race in a film or something, and like a 'fun' break from the narrative. I don't think there's any non-combatant action sequences like that in the Odyssey.
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    Yeh there is, book 8 is the Phaeacian games.

    Although there is the conflict between Odysseus and a Phaeacian noble, the passage serves as a respite from the sufferings of Odysseus, and as further demonstration of his physical prowess. As well as this there is the dance routine demonstrated at the command of Alcinous, which ultimately has no bearing on the plot. However, the need for Odysseus to help spread the fame of the Phaeacians is evident and highlights their isolation from the rest of the world. Thus it acts primarily to show a level of exchange in the process of guest friendship, the Phaeacians need Odysseus to spread their kleos just as much as Odysseus needs them to complete his nostos. It also helps introduce Odysseus to us from a 3rd person perspective, who we will later have to learn about from primarily first person accounts of his wanderings. Thus his rage with the Phaeacian who challenged him and dutifully beating him can be seen as a precursor for the revenge upon the suitors.

    Similarly, the funeral games of book 5 of the Aeneid offer a period of joy in comparison to Aeneas' sufferings in the preceeding 4 books. They are full of references that the Roman audience could have related to, as they were frequent spectators of games, in fact funeral games were a regular custom, and Aeneas' holding of the games is likely to reference Augustus' games for his 'father' Julius Caesar. The games in the Aeneid serve the purpose of showing us Aerneas' character in dealing with his men, he is shown to be loyal and compassionate and fair; he rewards even those who don't win, and in the case of the archery competition even goes as far as to give prizes for those who completely failed or had no chance of winning such as Acestes. Although the games have a jocular tone, such as the helmsman from one boat being thrown overboard by the captain, they are definately not arbitrary. All the above contributes to setting the scene for when the Trojans go to war in the latter half of the poem, nowehere is this more evident than where Nisus throws himself under another run so that Euryalus might win. However the mood quickly turns owing to the contrivances of Juno and we are swiftly returned to the negative pessimistic overtones of the rest of the poem when the women burn the boats.

    Overall both in the Odyssey and the Aeneid the author uses these brief divergences from the advancement of plot to provide relief from the narrative. They also are both used to importantly explain the situation of the protagonists and set the scene for later episodes.
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    right, first of all hi everyone. I also have classics greek an roman epic exam on monday (2 hours of fun that will be ) and was looking through here for ideas on notes iv'e already made. I feel i should add my own two cents as well, and its just my opinions, i don't have the books in front of me so i'll run this by from memory, so feel free to pull me up on whatever.

    First things first, someone mentioned that

    " there's more emphasis on the world itself and less on the people in it in Virgil's underworld - therefore less interesting/'entertaining', more nightmarish."

    i would disagree with that. The underworld in the Aeneid is hugely important for Virgil and his whole "Augustus you the man!" policy. Remember that much of what is written in the Aeneid is an attempt to allude to Virgils time period and the Carthaginian wars. Hence Dido saying "Arise my unkown avenger and harry the race of Dardanus wherever they may settle", she is reffering to Hannibal (not the cannibal ). Anyway the underworld is significant becuase here Aeneas meets pretty much every important Roman who is either realted to Augustus or of some impotance to the romans. There Ceasar, Brutus, Romulus, remus, Marcellus and i think the guy at the end who is going to die was either a close friend of Augustus or his adopted ward or somthing. Anyway the underworld is all about the people, who they are, what they represent to the future of rome and to Virgils rome.

    Remember we know bucket loads about Virgil, who he was, where he was writing, context etc, than we do about Homer. We dont even know if homer was one guy or many, due to everything being oratated poetry back then, so i would steer clear of comparing the authors too much, there really isnt enough to go buy, except mentioning that Virigl lived in a society of patronage and backstabbing which influences his book in ways like the above.

    What you will need to compare in Odyssey and Aeneid is probably the roles of women. the attitudes of the gods, the theme's and characters of the main protagonists (themse like xenia, kleos, nostos and dike) and the ways in which they are portrayed.

    I'm not going to write a massice essay (i'm saving that for monday) but generally:

    Women are more influential in the odyssey but dynamic and appealing in the Aeneid. Examples: Penelope/Calypso/Nausicca/Arete and Venus/Dido/Creusa and Camilla. I include Creusa because her death at the start is significant in freeing Aeneas to begin his journey and meet Dido.

    The God's play similar roles in both books, and you can easilt make comparisons (like in book 5 of Odysses and 4 of Aeneid where Zeus/Jupiter sends Hermes/Mercury to get Odysseus/Aeneas to get a move on. But in general the Gods in the Odyssey are much more restrictive. Posiedon has a grudge against Od. for blinding his son Polyphemus and Od. is also kept hotage at several poitns by semi-divines or is in some way hindered by them (Circe, Calypso, episode with the sun god's cattle and the winds of Aoelus spring to mind). Much of what happens to Od is his own fault or the fault of thsoe around him, and he is not as strict a leader of men to stop this happening again and again;

    Od: Guys, did you open the bag of wind?
    Sailors: No
    Od. By no do you mean yes?
    Sailors: Well ok, yes.
    Od: oh you guys! *giggles*

    Whereas Aeneas would have probably been like this:

    Aeneas: Ok, if anyone so much as looks at that bag of wind, i swear to god im turning this boat right round and there'll be no disneyland for anyone!! Grrrr"
    Sailors: eep :eek:

    Ahem... sorry. But yeah, the Gods in the Aeneid are much more liberal. Juno says early on that she doesn't hate Aeneas personally, like Posiedon hates Od. But just hates the fact that he's a trojan and is goinf to start the roman race, also that Venus is his mother, considering the whole beauty contest incident which started the whole trojan war. Also Aeneas is assisted at several stages by semi divines and other creature, his household gods, the Sybil, his baots when they turn into Nymphs and also think of hsi run in with polydorus: "Why do you tear my poor flesh Aeneas, do not pollute your Righteous hands." Aneas is very much Mr. Pious and reaps the rewards (like in book 10 when hsi mother is "lovingly deflecting" arrows which otherwise might harm him.
    Od is just a smart guy who wants to get home and has the help of a God who is also the patron of his country, Aeneas is a kick ass warrrior who is on a divine mission with a god for a mum.
    Basically Od. is Tom hanks from saving Private Ryan, Aeneas is Rambo.

    Um what else?

    Aeneas can get a little mad, like in book 10 when he says, after killing Lausus that "have consolation in your cruel death that you fell by the hand of the great aeneas". Telemachus and Ascanius can be said to bothe be Ephebes at the start (men untested in combat) and Telemachus achieves his manly status by the end, kinda like Orestes in the Electra. Ascanius doesn't do this really but the reason he is there is to represent the Roman bloodline. Venus remarks somehwere near to the end that "let him [Aeneas] be tossed on undulating waves if only Ascanius can be saved", shwoing that Odyssey is about homecoming of a man, Aeneid is about establishing a violent race through violent means.


    Anyway hope that helps, anything else would be me repeating myself, i dont know what your context books are, mine are 5,6,7,17 of Odyssey and 3,4,10 of Aeneid. Get quotes from your context books and you should do fine.

    good luck,

    PS: Sorry for any spelling errors that are about
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    PMSL reading that dialogue betweene aeneas and his crew! LOL (just for that i'll pos rep you when i can)

    Guys your notes have been fantastic and i'll be cramming them in over the weekend!

    oh adn yes i have the same context books. You know for part (a) are we going to be answering on the aeneid books or either?

    i know books 3, 4 and 10 well, but i only know books 5 and 6 well in the odyssey. 7 okish and i can barely remember 17!!!!
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    i reckon you will encoutner 7 only as examples of xenia and the role of women, mainly because that's all there is. Od. doesnt reveal his name in the book and is known as "the stranger".
    Probs also there will be somthing like *passage from book 7* Explain what has happened for Odysseus to be in this position.
    They surely cant make book 7 that key, its too passive, book 5 and 6 are the crazy ones.

    17 is mainly Telemachus bieng a man he says "let me deal with the suitors, i and the immortal gods" at one point i think. Its basically so we can see Telemachus filling Odysseus' shoes and get an idea of the treatment of od as a stranger and how the suitors show bad xenia (most of the odyssey seems to be a big xenia fest, i dunno how the greeks actually had the time to do anything), also the role of servants, good and bad, in Euamus, Melantho, Euryclia and Melanthius and how Odysseus reacts.

    its also got the scene with the dog, which i remeber because (as one of 3 guys studying classics) it had all the girls in my class crying.

    but, in summary: SPARKNOTES IS GOD!!!! go there
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    i use sparknotes a lot. Thatnks for the help, although last year they DID use book 7 as one of the key books. (i remember the passage was when he walked up to the palace and saw all "the gold, bronze and silver!!" lol i still remember)
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    (Original post by Bboy_Soapy)
    its also got the scene with the dog, which i remeber because (as one of 3 guys studying classics) it had all the girls in my class crying.
    LOL. I'm at an all-female school and you can imagine what the lesson with Argus was like. I was like, "It's only about two lines. All it says is that The Black Hand Of Death Descended On Argus. It's really not that sad." And they were all "NOOOO HOW CAN YOU SAY THAT IT'S SO AWFUL."

    Obviously I am heartless.

    Out of interest, how many quotes have you learned? I ended up hardly using any in the exam last year because I get too tempted to analyse language, and obviously as it's in translation that's not a great idea. But I'm starting to wonder if I do need to try and squish more into my brain before Monday...
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    well, much of my failure at AS in both classics and english lit (and to a lesser extent history) was due to my lack of quotes to back up analysis. So this time ive gone a bit overboard, especially in greek tradgedy. In sculpture its basically the same in that i have to memorise the dates and names etc
    but for epic ive got 4-6 quotes from each book:

    I'll do a run through now, theyre what i see as the key points in each book that will realte to overall themes: Both my books are penguin translations (translated by penguins i assume)

    Odyssey Quotes: Book 5

    1) "What are you saying? Did you not plan all this yourself? Was it not your idea that Odysseus should return and take revenge on these men?" Zeus-Athene

    2) "As for the lion hearted Odysseus....he was sitting disconsolate on the shore...tormenting himself with tears"

    3) "You are hard-hearted you Gods, and unmatched for jealousy" Calypso-Hermes

    4) "Nevertheless i mean to let him have a bellyfull of trouble yet" Poseidon (after seeing Odysseus)

    5) "Poor wretch that i am, what will become of me after all" Od (moaning)

    6) "Athene put it into his head to grab hold of a rock"

    7) "O misery!...Against all odds Zeus let me see land...only to find there is no escape from the foaming sea!" Od. (moaning again)

    Book 6:

    1) "Ask your royal father in the morning to have a waggon made ready for you with a couple of mules" Athene (in dream) to Nausicaa

    2) "Athene put courage into her [Nausicaa's] heart"

    3) "Princess, i am at your knees" Od.

    4) "Slip past him [king Alcinous] and clasp my mothers knee's if you wish to see the day of your homecoming" Nausicaa-Od

    Book 7:

    1) "My child i wonder if you could show me the way to the house of Alcinous, king of this country" Od - Athene (in disguise)

    2) "Their fruit never fails nor runs short...It comes at all seasons of the year"

    3) "the stranger" Od. (never ask his name in this book - xenia)

    4) "Sir, in one respect my daughters judgement is faulty, she should have brought you home with her maids" Alcinous-Od.

    Book 17:

    1) "Your back Telemachus, light of my eyes! I thought i would never see you again after you sailed for Pylos, so secretly, so against my wishes" Penelope

    2) "ha! one villain leading another, a case of birds of a feather" Melanthius- Euamus and Od.

    3) "Odyssues debated whether to leap at the fellow and kill him" (after bieng kicked by melanthius

    4) "So you havn't the brains to match your looks, you who sit here at another mans table" Od. to Antinous

    5) "I will see to everything here, i and the immortal gods" Penelope.


    Aeneid Quotes:

    Book 3:

    1) "Why do you tear my poor flesh Aeneas?...Do not pollute your righteous hands" Polydorus

    2) "She kept talking about Hysperia and the kingdoms of Italy. Who in those days would have believed the prophecies of cassandra?" Anchises

    3) "You will not be given a city...before a deadly famine has come upon you, and the guilt of our blood drives you to gnaw round the edges of your tables" Celaeno the Fury.

    4) "Aeneas dedicated these arms taken from the conquoring greeks" Notice on temple of Apollo

    5) "Before answering Helenus performed a ritual slaughter"

    6) "Lying there with her side all white, and her young all white around her udders, that will be the place for your city" Helenus-Aeneas.

    7) "My native land is Ithaca. I am a comrade of the unfortuante Ulixes. My name is Achaemenides." Achaemenides.

    8) "This is where you left me, O best of fathers" Aeneas about Anchises (the family connection is somthing missing in the Odyssey, Od isnt too bothered about T it seems.)

    Book 4:

    1) "Why do we not instead agree to a marriage and live in peace forever?" Juno-Venus.

    2) "Have you forgotten your own kingdom and your own destiny?" Mercury - Aeneas (sent in same was as Hermes in book 5 of Od, but speaks directly to the hero in Aeneid, reckon thats important.)

    3) "Oh Anna, pity your sister. I should repay it in good measure by my death"
    Dido

    4) "Arise from my dead bones, O my unkown avenger, and harry the race of dardanus with fire and sword, wherever they may settle" Dido about Hannibal (context)

    Book 10:

    1) "This day let each man face his own future and set his course by his own hopes" Jupiter.

    2) "The arcadians were stung by Palla's reproaches.....remorse and shame armed them against their enemies"

    3) "Others [spears] his loving mother Venus deflected so that they only grazed his body".

    4) "'Great Trojan....Spare this life of mine, and take pity on a suppliant' Aeneas cut short his appeal 'This is not what i heard you say a moment ago. Die now." Liger-Aeneas (names not important here, just shows Aeneas bieng a baddy and refusing to follow the rules of supliants. Book 10 gets murky like this, no one is especially bad or good.)

    5) "you will have one consolation in your cruel death, that you fell by the hands of the great Aeneas" Aeneas- Lausus

    6) "Protect me, i beg you, from their fury and let me lie in the grave with my son" Mezentius - Aeneas.


    Thats all i got. If your thinking of learning these quotes and need to burn them into your brain then use this technique, i got shown it a few years back and it defo helps. Use as many of the senses as possible when revising, it burns information into your brain:

    Write the quotes.
    Read the quotes
    Say the out loud
    Put your hands over the quotes and say them again
    Repeat until you got it.

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    (Original post by SamLowry)
    yeah i answered that in a context question a couple of weeks ago and got about 18 or 19 our of 20 marks for it . I think i said that overall the suitors were more vllainous with their improper use of xenia, plotting amongst other things although Amphinomous was one decent suitor. Turnus on the other hand displays a lot of positive character traits (such as honour/bravery, perhaps foolish - doesnt want to runaway from fighting) along with his negative characteristics.
    yeah i also answered this question and got similar marks. i actually argued that turnus was more villainous largely because of the way he kills pallas- in a poem which is so much about the beginning of a new race- a new family; to murder a close friend of aneas seems utterly heinous to me. whereas i feel sorry for the suitors in a way. i feel the odyssey is very much about odysseus returning home triumphant and basically is an excercise in propaganda and therefore the suitors are just in the way of him. you can't blame them for taking up residence in the house of a man who has been away for ages. i just feel odysseus is a bit of an arrogant bastard!
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    mm- satine- i like your quotations. however, i feel they're much more useful in tragedy. i have learnt quite a few along with secondary criticism ones. but for epic i feel that quotations are less useful. especially for the 50 mark essay at the end. you have two poems to get through and it's pie in the sky which quotations would come in useful. i might try and learn a few, and i know a2 is different from AS but i didn't put any quotations in last year and got 98. though i think it's a good idea! i have measure for measure and blake on monday too, so too many quotations to learn!
    i think english gets priority however!
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    ditto man, measure for measure and blake also. Monday is gunna be a killer.
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    NB we were told by our classics tutor today to not learn quotes as they aren't looked on favourably by examiners, they would far rather you paraphrased the text. This is because apparently if you memorise a number of quotes then you are essentially basing an answer around preconceived ideas rather than looking to and explaining the events of the text. This also comes up in examiners reports where they tend to comment that the best answers start with the text and draw an answer from it, rather than thinking up an argument and fitting selected knowledge from it. This is apparently similar to when people just rehash essays theyve already written and ultimately miss the point of the question by being too concerned with using what they have memorised, rather than being flexible.

    Just what I've been told, NB I used no quotes last year either and got full UMS and nearly full raw marks.
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    (Original post by Tenoch)
    NB we were told by our classics tutor today to not learn quotes as they aren't looked on favourably by examiners, they would far rather you paraphrased the text. This is because apparently if you memorise a number of quotes then you are essentially basing an answer around preconceived ideas rather than looking to and explaining the events of the text. This also comes up in examiners reports where they tend to comment that the best answers start with the text and draw an answer from it, rather than thinking up an argument and fitting selected knowledge from it. This is apparently similar to when people just rehash essays theyve already written and ultimately miss the point of the question by being too concerned with using what they have memorised, rather than being flexible.

    Just what I've been told, NB I used no quotes last year either and got full UMS and nearly full raw marks.
    that's good advice. though it worries me slightly, that i did bung in quite a few for the AS tragedy re-sit i did last tuesday- and a few secondary criticism quotes too. damn, i wouldn't have wasted the time if i knew that! although i think i definitely answered the question. yeah, i haven't learnt any for the epic really, so hopefully that's cool. what do you think about the greek tragedy on friday if you're doing it? should we learn some for that too?
    and also surely it depends on the skill and relevance of the quotations whether they're useful or not. the examiners maybe referring to people who bung them in and they don't make sense?
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    have you lot revised for the tragedies yet? Its next friday and i havent. I'm a bit worried about it cos im going to be revising for epic until monday and then that leaves me tuesday and wednesday to revise for maths (on tursday) and grk tragedy on friday. To be honest i didnt do much revision for AS tragedy because we were taught it well and i just read summaries and sparknotes etc. However, im more worried this time as we've got a lot more plays to compare. The plays im doing are:
    - Agamemnon (aeschylus)
    - Oedipus the King (Sophocles)
    - Electra (Sophocles)
    and 3 Euripides plays:
    - Hippolytus, Medea and the Bacchae.

    What are you guys doing?
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    (Original post by SamLowry)
    have you lot revised for the tragedies yet? Its next friday and i havent. I'm a bit worried about it cos im going to be revising for epic until monday and then that leaves me tuesday and wednesday to revise for maths (on tursday) and grk tragedy on friday. To be honest i didnt do much revision for AS tragedy because we were taught it well and i just read summaries and sparknotes etc. However, im more worried this time as we've got a lot more plays to compare. The plays im doing are:
    - Agamemnon (aeschylus)
    - Oedipus the King (Sophocles)
    - Electra (Sophocles)
    and 3 Euripides plays:
    - Hippolytus, Medea and the Bacchae.

    What are you guys doing?
    yeah i'm doing the same. mm, i've got 3 days to revise for this which is fortunate. i've just read the examiner's reports for last june's exams and they keep re-iterating be synoptic- this counts for the epic as well. this is worrying since i've been getting As from my teacher and my essays focus on aenead followed by odyssey or vice versa. i think when i get the question- say it's on the theme of journey or something- i should break that down into sub themes- like where are they going? the circumstances of their journey- who helps them etc. and then compare the poems consistently. that way you're bound to be thoroughly synoptic? i s'pose the same goes for the tragedy. though this is slightly risky as it'll be a complete break away from what i've been doing and i'll have to think quite a bit more!
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    well, those questions were....unusual. They seemed very confined to me, wasnt much scope to reference loads of characters and events. I did question on the lovers and essay on Venus bieng helpful. How did people find it?
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    I did the other context, with the question about women, whcih I thought was awesome.

    For the essay I did the one about which poem places more emphasis on revenge. I think it went ok, wrote a lot and lots of stuff which quite sophisticated, e.g. purposes to the poems and revisions there of, particuarly the Odyssey by Pesistratus and Aristarchus, and thus the purpose of revenge et.c but I still had loads to say which I had to leave out due to time which was really annoying.
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    I did the first context on Dido and Calypso, which was quite an interesting one - although I certainly wasn't expecting the theme of separation and reunion! lol i think I dealt with it ok...

    I did the 'imitation of Homer' essay - I thought it was a really interesting question, and a statement like that is just screaming to be objected to, so I had plenty to argue about!

    everyone in my class did the Venus/Athene one apart from myself and someone else who did revenge - I think the gods one was the easier option of the three, but to me it looked a bit boring...
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    I did not like the exam today, I did the first context question on reunion of lovers and then the revenge question which i totally mucked up

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