Odysseus | Greek Hero

Odysseus Greek Mythology

Odysseus (Greek: Οδυσσεύς, transl. Odysseus) or Ulysses (Latin: Ulysses or Ulixes) was, in Greek mythology and Roman mythology a character in Homer's Iliad and Odyssey. He is the main character of the latter work, and a separate figure in the narrative of the Trojan War. He is one of the most cunning warriors in the entire Greek epic, even after the war, upon his long return to his kingdom, Ithaca, one of the numerous Greek islands.


Greek hero, Odysseus was king of Ithaca and son of Laertes and Anticleia. His father was the only son of Archesius, and his mother was the daughter of Autolycus, a notorious thief.

When Tyndareus saw that there were several suitors for his daughter Helen, Odysseus suggested that all suitors swear to defend the chosen one from any evil done against him; only then did Tyndareus choose Menelaus to marry Helen, and made Icharius, his brother, marry Penelope, Icharius' daughter, to Odysseus. Hence the friendship existing between Menelaus, his brother Agamemnon, and Odysseus.

From his union with Penelope was born Telemachus, his beloved son, whom he had to leave at an early age to fight alongside other Greek nobles in Troy. He was one of the most active elements in the siege of Troy, in which he stood out mainly for his prudence and cunning.

During the Trojan War, the Greeks won many battles on the advice of Odysseus, who himself was a great warrior, despite his short stature (some legends even said he was a dwarf). He tried to convince Achilles to cease his wrath against Agamemnon, siding with Ájax, son of Télamo and Phoenix, son of Amintor, but without success.

One of his most famous ruses was to assist in the construction of a wooden horse, which allowed the Greek armies to enter the city. In fact, it was his strategy.

After the defeat of the Trojans, he began a ten-year journey back to Ithaca where his wife awaits him with stubborn fidelity, despite the delay. This journey merited Homer's creation of the epic poem Odyssey, in which the adventures and misadventures of Odysseus and his crew since leaving Troy are narrated, some caused by them and some due to the intervention of the gods.

When they blinded the Cyclops Polyphemus, they aroused the wrath of Poseidon, who tormented them for years. Later, still trying to return to Ithaca, he ended up on the island of Calypso, a woman who imprisoned him on her island for years and would not release him from there until she married him.

He did not accept, however, and stayed on the island for several years, until Hermes, the messenger god, appeared to the goddess Calypso and gave her orders from Zeus, ordering Odysseus to be released, so the goddess helped him build a raft, so that he could continue on his way to his homeland.

With the help of Zeus and the other gods, Odysseus arrived home alone to find his wife Penelope harassed by suitors. Disguised as a beggar, he first checked whether Penelope was faithful to him, and then killed the suitors for her succession who were pursuing her by clearing out the palace. This started a final battle against the families of the dead men, but peace was restored by Athena.