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The Odyssey: The Lotus Eaters

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1 The Odyssey: The Lotus Eaters

2 Plot Summary Odysseus and his men made their way to Ismaros where they met the Ciconians. They destroyed the city, killed the men, and kept the women, some cattle, and goods. The men had a feast, but some Ciconians, held captive, escaped to their neighbors. The neighbors came and killed six men from each ship, while Odysseus and his men went to safety.

3 Plot Summary cont. Zeus sent clouds over the land and sea and brought night to earth. The winds were so strong that the ships’ sails ripped, and the men spent two days and two nights in hardship and anxiety. On the third day, light came, but the sea current and wind brought the boats outside Cythera. They spent nine more days out at sea, but on the tenth, they reached the land of the lotus-eaters, who get their food from flowers.

4 Plot Summary cont. Odysseus sent two men and a runner to meet the lotus-eaters and found them to be harmless. The men were offered the honey-sweet lotus flower, and when they ate it, they lost their will power and refused to return to the ship. Odysseus found his men. He tied them up and dragged them back to the ship. They quickly rowed into the ocean and were on their way to the land of the Cyclopes.

5 What is a “runner”? The long run of Philippides, the messenger who conveyed news of the victory to Athens, became the inspiration for the marathon race, first staged at the 1896 Olympic Games." Nike is the Greek goddess of victory. According to legend, in the battle of Marathon, the winners sent a messenger back to their hometown and it was about 25 miles. The messenger was so exhausted when he got there that he said one word: Nike! which also means victory in Greek, and then died from dehydration and exertion.


7 The lotus represents many things:
Lotus Symbols The lotus represents many things: It can represent the good life, wanting to stay and never coming back, not wanting to do anything, and selfishness and greed. More…more…more, two of the 7 deadly sins (greed and gluttony), and forgetting about everything else and only caring for your needs are also things that can symbolize the use of lotus in the text.


9 Compare and contrast Odysseus
to Capt James T. Kirk


11 Characters cont. Lotus Eaters-These are the people whom some of Odysseus’s men met. They get their food, which is lotus, from flowers. Lotus is very honey-sweet and makes its eaters want more.

12 Modern Society Event in the Bible
Even though the Bible is old, it connects to the lotus eater adventure. In the story of the Prodigal son, a father gives his son all of his money, but the son wastes all of it for himself. In connection to the adventure, the Prodigal son represents the men that ate the lotus, the money represents the lotus, and the spending of money represents Odysseus’s taking away the men from the lotus.

13 Difference Between Modern and Greek Society
In Greek society, men took things for themselves by force, but in today’s society, people take things for themselves by choice. Back in Greek society, they probably didn’t know it was a sin to be greedy and eat with greed, but now, it is a deadly sin to be greedy and eat a lot (gluttony). Still, some people today and back then want the easy way in life and only think for their needs (selfishness).

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