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Gods and mythological creatures of the Odyssey in art

The gods and various mythological creatures — from minor gods to nymphs to monsters — play an integral role in Odysseus’s adventures. They may act as puppeteers, guiding or diverting Odysseus’s course; they may act as anchors, keeping Odysseus from journeying home; or they may act as obstacles, such as Cyclops, Scylla and Charbidis, or the Sirens. While Gods like Athena are generally looking out for Odysseus’s best interests, Aeolus, Poseidon, and Helios beg Zeus to punish Odysseus, but because his fate is to return home to Ithaca, many of the Gods simply make his journey more difficult. Below if a brief slideshow of images from Barry B. Powell’s new free verse translation of Homer’s The Odyssey depicting the god and other mythology.

Barry B. Powell is Halls-Bascom Professor of Classics Emeritus at the University of Wisconsin, Madison. His new free verse translation of The Odyssey was published by Oxford University Press in 2014. His translation of The Iliad was published by Oxford University Press in 2013. See previous blog posts from Barry B. Powell.

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