I think to make a good story you need vivid description, contrasts, violence, some long descriptions, some elements of the supernatural, well-rounded realistic characters and a good use of language. In this essay, I am going to explore these areas of the Odyssey. Homer uses some amazing vivid descriptions through the Odyssey; he uses similes and metaphors to create a better image in our minds.
For example of this is when he compare the suitors to fish which have just been caught and are sort of still living, this brings out the horror of the whole situation and we came imagine more easily what it looks like and smells like. Homer also uses epithets to describe people and things for example Odysseus of many Wiles is an epithet that Homer uses a lot to show Odysseus’s courage and ability to stand up to everything. Am epithet is something that is unique and something that people will remember it. He also uses tricolons, which emphasize points for example when the THREE volleys of the suitors all miss.
Homer uses long descriptions to build up tension and to hold back the inevitable, I think he does this well in book twenty one when he describes the oak door and Penelope’s time in the storeroom. This adds to the excitement as at times, it can build the tension but also it can relieve the tension. Homer also uses comedy to relieve the tension for example in book twenty two the tension is peaking, and rather to try keep that up he has decided to relieve the tension by using the comedy of the suitor’s three volleys missing.
Homer also uses juxtapositioning to great effect, especially with a contrast of characters an good example of this is when Odysseus recognizes Athene disguised as Mentor and the suitors don’t, this shows that Odysseus was in favor with the gods and he was closer to them than the suitors were. In book twenty two there is a lot of violence, this is a factor of a good story but too much can ruin it, I feel that Homer has got the amount of violence just right.
He has done it so every death is different to the one before, this leaves us in anticipation of wanting to find out how each person dies, he also uses the idea of a crime to fit the punishment an example is that he hung the unfaithful maids which is suitable for there adultery they committed. In the Odyssey all the characters are well rounded and quite realistic, for example Telemachus admits that he left the store room door open which allowed the suitors to get weaponry and the fact that Odysseus was scared when he saw the armed suitors.
The gods play an important part in the Odyssey weather it is to help or hinder Odysseus In book 22 Athene helps Odysseus to defeat the suitors and in book twenty three she helps him look more handsome and youthful and holds back the dawn so Odysseus and Penelope could have more time together. In conclusion, I believe that the Odyssey has filled my criteria for a good story, it has everything the supernatural, violence, realistic characters, contrasts, long and vivid descriptions and a beautiful use of language. It is a lovely story made along time ago and is still remembered.