The Odyssey: Essay Topics & Samples

Are you studying Homer’s Odyssey and need to write a paper on it? Are you lost in the vast diversity of themes the poem is covering? Or maybe you are searching for prompts or examples of Odyssey essay?

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Our team created the list of successful Odyssey essay topics for you. Moreover, we can offer you insightful prompts and useful examples to help you compose an outstanding paper.

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Essay Topics

  1. Why is Odysseus a true epic hero?
    Analyze Odysseus’ personality. What character traits of the King of Ithaca determine him as an epic hero? In your essay, explain why Odysseus remains one of the most widely-discussed heroes for several thousands of years already.
  2. Homeric similes in The Odyssey.
    Define the term Homeric simile and provide examples from The Odyssey book. What was the reason for using these similes? Elaborate on the role of similies in the text. How do Homeric similes differ from the ones we use in regular communication?
  3. The role of women in The Odyssey.
    Analyze the behavior of all the women Odysseus met throughout his journey to Ithaca. What role did the women play in Odysseus’ fate? Compare and contrast Penelope and Athena. Why was Penelope remaining faithful to her husband for 20 years, waiting for him? Why did Athena help Odysseus to overcome the obstacles on his journey? Include appropriate quotes and examples in your essay.
  4. What lessons can the readers learn from Odysseus’ journey?
    The main character’s trip to Ithaca is full of adventures. Based on your observations, explain what useful knowledge the poem delivers to the readers. Don’t forget to include appropriate quotes and convincing arguments to make your essay more impressive.
  5. The theme of loyalty in The Odyssey.
    Compare and contrast the perception of faithfulness by Penelope and Odysseus. Why did Penelope remain dedicated entirely to her husband? How did Odysseys prove the faithfulness to his wife? Explain why the readers consider Odysseus loyal, even though he did not demonstrate loyalty in sexual relationships.
  6. The Illiad and The Odyssey are two interconnected Homer’s books.
    How are the two books linked? Prove the significance of exploring The Odyssey alongside The Illiad and vice versa. How do these books can help in learning ancient Greek history? Support your arguments with appropriate evidence to make your essay more convincing.
  7. The secret of The Odyssey book popularity.
    Being written in approximately 7th century BC, The Odyssey remains a widely-discussed poem. In your opinion, what secret lies behind the book’s recognition? Is it an amazing plot? Or the relevance of the discussed themes? Or maybe the professionalism of the author that attracts the readers’ attention? Prove your position by providing appropriate arguments and supportive details.
  8. The development of Telemachos’ personality throughout the story.
    Analyze how Telemachos turn from an immature boy into a strong and independent man throughout the book. What circumstances played a crucial role in his establishment as a prince of Ithaca? Compare and contrast Telemachos’ character at the beginning of The Odyssey book and the end.
  9. The Odyssey is a door to the world of ancient Greek culture.
    How does the book may help investigate the world order of ancient Greece? Comment on how does the phenomenon of Greek hospitality is enlightened in the poem. What do the readers learn about Greek mythology from The Odyssey? Highlight the significance of the epic to contemporary readers.
  10. The symbols as a crucial part of The Odyssey.
    Homer impresses the readers with a wide diversity of symbols represented in the poem. Pick up three of them. For example, the sea, Odysseus’ bow, and Laertes’ shroud. What do these symbols reflect? How do the symbols help to follow the hidden context Homer managed to write for The Odyssey?

Essay Samples

Willing to create your outstanding essay, but inspiration left you in such a vital moment? No worries! We know how to help you. Take a look at our essay samples, get inspired, and compose your paper.

  1. Five Priorities for Wisest Life: “The Odyssey” by Homer
    The Odyssey, commonly dated to 800 BC, explores a variety of themes relevant to the modern reader. Wondering what they are? Take a look at the sample and learn some valuable lessons from such an old book.
  2. The Aeneid, the Iliad and the Odyssey Literature Comparison
    The Aeneid, The Iliad, and The Odyssey are three iconic pieces of literature. Do you need to investigate what do they have in common? Or maybe you are looking for the differences between the books? Read this essay and find answers to all of your questions!
  3. The Hero’s Journey: The Odyssey and Gilgamesh Comparison
    The conventional journey of the epic hero remains one of the most captivating stories in civilization. The Odyssey, The Iliad, and The Epic of Gilgamesh present different heroes who encounter similar obstacles during their adventures. This essay compares and contrasts these poems in terms of plot and characters.
  4. Odysseus and Maximus: Heroes Comparison
    Contemporary literature presents readers with such prominent heroes as Odysseus and Maximus. The paper demonstrates the differences and similarities between the characters. Additionally, it argues that Maximus is a greater hero and provides evidence.
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