The Odyssey Quotes

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Of all creatures that breathe and move upon the earth, nothing is bred that is weaker than man.

900

There is a time for many words, and there is also a time for sleep.

360

A man who has been through bitter experiences and travelled far enjoys even his sufferings after a time

357

There is nothing more admirable than when two people who see eye to eye keep house as man and wife, confounding their enemies and delighting their friends.

337

For a friend with an understanding heart is worth no less than a brother

316

Be strong, saith my heart; I am a soldier; I have seen worse sights than this.

274

Sleep, delicious and profound, the very counterfeit of death

170

Ah how shameless – the way these mortals blame the gods. From us alone they say come all their miseries yes but they themselves with their own reckless ways compound their pains beyond their proper share.

145

[I]t is the wine that leads me on,the wild winethat sets the wisest man to singat the top of his lungs,laugh like a fool – it drives theman to dancing... it eventempts him to blurt out storiesbetter never told.

136

Men are so quick to blame the gods: they saythat we devise their misery. But theythemselves- in their depravity- designgrief greater than the griefs that fate assigns.

121

My name is Nobody.

105

Each man delights in the work that suits him best.

102

some things you will think of yourself,...some things God will put into your mind

101

There will be killing till the score is paid.

99

The blade itself incites to deeds of violence.

97

Now from his breast into the eyes the acheof longing mounted, and he wept at last,his dear wife, clear and faithful, in his arms, longed for as the sunwarmed earth is longed for by a swimmerspent in rough water where his ship went downunder Poseidon's blows, gale winds and tons of sea.Few men can keep alive through a big serfto crawl, clotted with brine, on kindly beachesin joy, in joy, knowing the abyss behind:and so she too rejoiced, her gaze upon her husband, her white arms round him pressed as though forever.

80

And empty words are evil.

66

Why cover the same ground again? ... It goes against my grain to repeat a tale told once, and told so clearly.

59

Few sons are like their fathers--most are worse, few better.

55

out of sight,out of mind

53

So, the gods don't hand out all their gifts at once, not build and brains and flowing speech to all. One man may fail to impress us with his looks but a god can crown his words with beauty, charm, and men look on with delight when he speaks out. Never faltering, filled with winning self-control, he shines forth at assembly grounds and people gaze at him like a god when he walks through the streets. Another man may look like a deathless one on high but there's not a bit of grace to crown his words. Just like you, my fine, handsome friend.

47

Immortals are never alien to one another.

45

Yea, and if some god shall wreck me in the wine-dark deep,even so I will endure…For already have I suffered full much,and much have I toiled in perils of waves and war.Let this be added to the tale of those.

38

Even his griefs are a joy long after to one that remembers all that he wrought and endured.

35

These nights are endless, and a man can sleep through them,or he can enjoy listening to stories, and you have no needto go to bed before it is time. Too much sleep is onlya bore. And of the others, any one whose heart and spiriturge him can go outside and sleep, and then, when the dawn shows,breakfast first, then go out to tend the swine of our master.But we two, sitting here in the shelter, eating and drinking,shall entertain each other remembering and retellingour sad sorrows. For afterwards a man who has sufferedmuch and wandered much has pleasure out of his sorrows.

33

Aries in his many fits knows no favorites.

32

Come then, put away your sword in its sheath, and let us two go up into my bed so that, lying together in the bed of love, we may then have faith and trust in each other.

29

down from his browshe ran his curlslike thick hyacinth clustersfull of blooms

28

By hook or by crook this peril too shall be something that we remember

27

[B]ut it is only what happens, when they die, to all mortals.The sinews no longer hold the flesh and the bones together,and once the spirit has let the white bones, all the restof the body is made subject to the fire's strong fury,but the soul flitters out like a dream and flies away.

26

For they imagined as they wished--that it was a wild shot,/ an unintended killing--fools, not to comprehend/ they were already in the grip of death./ But glaring under his brows Odysseus answered:'You yellow dogs, you thought I'd never make it/ home from the land of Troy. You took my house to plunder,/ twisted my maids to serve your beds. You dared/ bid for my wife while I was still alive./ Contempt was all you had for the gods who rule wide heaven,/ contempt for what men say of you hereafter./ Your last hour has come. You die in blood.

24

There is no greater fame for a man than that which he wins with his footwork or the skill of his hands.

20

but sing no more this bitter tale that wears my heart away

20

Sing in me, Muse, and through me tell the storyof that man skilled in all ways of contending,the wanderer, harried for years on end

19

Say not a word in death's favor; I would rather be a paid servant in a poor man's house and be above ground than king of kings among the dead." -Achilles

18

My every impulse bends to what is right

14

...if fifty bands of men surrounded us/ and every sword sang for your blood,/ you could make off still with their cows and sheep.

13

First she said we were to keep clear of the Sirens, who sit and sing most beautifully in a field of flowers; but she said I might hear them myself so long as no one else did. Therefore, take me and bind me to the crosspiece half way up the mast; bind me as I stand upright, with a bond so fast that I cannot possibly break away, and lash the rope's ends to the mast itself. If I beg and pray you to set me free, then bind me more tightly still.

13

The rose Dawn might have found them weeping still had not grey-eyed Athena slowed the night when night was most profound, and held the Dawn under the Ocean of the East. That glossy team, Firebright and Daybright, the Dawn's horses that draw her heavenward for men- Athena stayed their harnessing.

12

Come, weave us a scheme so I can pay them back!Stand beside me, Athena, fire me with daring, fierceas the day we ripped Troy's glittering crown of towers down.Stand by me - furious now as then, my bright-eyed one -and I would fight three hundred men, great goddess,with you to brace me, comrade-in-arms in battle!

12

...he'll never lie - the man is far too wise.

11

It is unfortunate for us, that, of some of the greatest men, we know least, and talk most.

11

Take courage, my heart: you have been through worse than this. Be strong, saith my heart; I am a soldier; I have seen worse sights than this.

10

If you are one of earth’s inhabitants, how blest your father, and your gentle mother, blest all your kin. I know what happiness must send the warm tears to their eyes, each time they see their wondrous child go to the dancing! But one man’s destiny is more than blest—he who prevails, and takes you as his bride. Never have I laid eyes on equal beauty in man or woman. I am hushed indeed.

10

Heaven has appointed us dwellers on earth a time for all things.

8

Upon my word, just see how mortal men always put the blame on us gods! We are the source of evil, so they say - when they have only their own madness to think if their miseries are worse than they ought to be.

8

What a lamentable thing it is that men should blame the gods and regard us as the source of their troubles, when it is their own transgressions which bring them suffering that was not their destiny.

8

Urge him with truth to frame his fair replies; And sure he will; for wisdom never lies

8

...an irresistible sleep fell deeply on his eyes, the sweetest, soundest oblivion, still as the sleep of death itself...

8

My heart is hardy, for I have suffered much on the seas and the battlefield: this will be only something more. But a ravenous belly cannot be hid, damn the thing. It gives a world of trouble to men, makes them fit out fleets of ships and scour the barren sea, to bring misery on their enemies.

7