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The Maturity Of Telemachus Essay

1490 words - 6 pages

Prince Telemachus of Ithaca was living in a world of greed and disrespect during his father's twenty-year hiatus. His father, King Odysseus, had set off to fight along with fellow Greeks in the Trojan War. After the war, all the Greeks who did not perish during the battles had made it back to their homelands, with the exception of Odysseus. During this time suitors had taken over Odysseus' palace and were courting his wife. It was time for Telemachus to take action against the crude suitors and become a mature adult. In "The Odyssey" by Homer, a young prince sets off to learn news about his father. At the same time Telemachus meets influential people who introduce him to a whole new world, which propels him to become a mature and respected individual.

As the bards sang, and the guests talked amongst one another, Telemachus watched his house get destroyed by the brazen suitors. Telemachus takes no initiative to rid the suitors of Odysseus' palace. He grieves his father is dead and that there is no one to remove the suitors. As Telemachus was sulking about his father, Athena appeared in disguise as Mentor. She approached Telemachus and urged him to drive the suitors from his house. Mentor and Telemachus devised a plan to repulse the suitors. First, Telemachus was to order an assembly where he would give orders to the suitors. Then he was to go to Pylos and Sparta to learn if his father was still alive.

After getting acquainted with Mentor, Telemachus followed her orders told and the suitors:

...at first light we all march forth to assembly, take our seats so I can give my

orders and say to you straight out: You must leave my palace! (I. 427-430)

He also told the suitors he hoped the Gods would take vengeance on them for destroying his house. But before he gives the orders to the assembly his mother had scorned the bard for singing heartbreak songs. When Telemachus sees this, he tells his mother that the bards are here for entertainment not to dishearten anyone. He then sends his mother off to her room so he could address the crude suitors. After these two events the suitors were in awe that Telemachus had the poise to stand in front of them and tell them to leave. The suitors did not think much of his actions and went back to dancing and singing.

These two actions show the beginning of Telemachus' maturity. When Athena came in disguise to help Telemachus, the name Mentor was appropriately fitting. Before Mentor approached Telemachus, no one was trying to control the suitors or make them leave. But, the advise Mentor gave Telemachus encouraged him to take action against the shameless suitors. He proves to be the man of the house by standing up to his mother so he could address the crowd. He is learning how to take control of a situation, which he does not stand for, and how to stand up for himself and his family.

Next, Telemachus did as Mentor told him and sailed off to Pylos...

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