The Odyssey is an ancient Greek poem written by the poet Homer. It is one of two poems that he wrote in about 730 BCE but it is still enjoyed by modern audiences today – you can download a copy of The Odyssey PDF for free by clicking the button down below.
The Odyssey is an exciting story filled with battles, adventure, magic, monsters, and ancient gods. It is a timeless story that follows the adventures of Odysseus and his long journey to return home after the fall of Troy. Interestingly it was handwritten in Greek up until the 15th century with the earliest translations only appearing in Europe in the 16th century. The first original English translation was done by the poet George Chapman in 1616.
Title: The Odyssey
Published: A Really Long Time Ago
Format: A4 PDF
Release Date: April 1999
Copyright Status: Public Domain In The USA
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The Odyssey Summary
The Odyssey begins at the end of the Trojan War. Odysseus, the king of Ithaca, is longing to get home to his wife Penelope and his son Telemachus. He is however being kept captive on the island of Ogygia by Calypso, a beautiful nymph who has fallen in love with him.
In the meantime, Penelope is waiting faithfully for him to return. Penelope has many suitors who have overrun the palace all hoping to win her hand in marriage. The young Prince Telemachus is powerless against them and longs for his father to return and searches for news on him. He travels to Peloponnese and finds a couple of men who fought with his father during the Trojan War. They tell him that Odysseus is still alive but that he is imprisoned on Calypso’s Island.
He plans to return home not knowing that a couple of his mother’s suitors are planning to kill him as soon as he returns.
Meanwhile, on Olympus, Zeus sends Hermes to Ogygia and orders Calypso to release Odysseus. She does as Zeus requests and gives Odysseus food and clothing for his journey.
Odysseus builds himself a raft and set sail. Before long Poseidon discovers that Odysseus is on his way home. Because he holds a grudge against Odysseus for blinding his son, he destroys the rafts in a storm.
He manages to get to the island of Scherie. There he meets the king and queen of the Phaeacians and they promise to help him get home safely.
The Phaeacian king and queen keep their word and Odysseas is soon home in Ithaca. He disguises himself as a beggar so that he can secretly investigate everything that has been happening in his kingdom. In the meantime, Telemachus has managed to outwit his killers and is also home in Ithaca.
When Odysseus meets Telemachus he tells him who he is and they work on a plan to get rid of Penelope’s suitors. Odysseus is also discovered by his old housekeeper but he swears her to secrecy so that Penelope doesn’t know who he is.
Penelope notices the beggar and suspects that he might just be Odysseus. She arranges a competition for the suitors and promises that she will marry the winner. She sets a trap knowing that the only man who has the skill necessary to win the competition is her husband.
She is right! Odysseus easily wins the completion and when he does he kills all the suitors with the help of Telemachus and his other faithful servants. He then reveals who he is to Penelope and they are joyfully reunited.
The Odyssey Movies & Adaptations
Quite a few movies and other adaptations have been inspired by The Odyssey over the years – according to a website called Greek God Paradise, there are over 30! These include:
1. Ulysses: A Dark Odyssey (2018)Greek Gods Paradise
2. Troy the Odyssey (2017)
3. The Odyssey (2016)
4. Odysseus (2013 – TV series with 12 episodes)
5. The Telemachy (2012)
6. Keyhole (2011)
7. Clash of the Gods (2009)
8. Penelopa (2009)
9. Odysseus: Voyage to the Underworld (2008)
10. The SpongeBob SquarePants Movie (2004)
11. Greek Gods and Goddesses – The Odyssey (2004)
12. L’Odyssée (2002) – Also known as Mission Odyssey (Animation)
13. The Simpsons – Tales from the Public Domain
14. O Brother, Where Art Thou? (2000)
15. The Animated Odyssey – HBO TV Mini-Series (2000)
16. Ulysses: An Animated Classic (1998) – Italy
17. Odysseus and the Journey Home (1998)
18. The Odyssey miniseries (1997)
19. Ulysses – Xena (1997)
20. Ulysses’ Gaze (1995)
21. Wishbone: Homer Sweet Homer (1995)
22. Nostos: Il Ritorno 1989 (Nostos: The Return (1989)
23. The Smurf Odyssey (1989)
24. The Odyssey (1987 TV Movie) – Animation
25. Ulysse 31 (1981–1982)
26. The Warriors (1979)
27. L’Odissea (Odissea) (1968)
28. Ulysses (1967) – James Joyce
29. Contempt (1963)
30. Ulysses Against the Son of Hercules (1962)
31. Ulysses (1954)
32. L’Odissea (1911 film)
33. L’île de Calypso: Ulysse et le géant Polyphème (1905)
While there are lots of adaptations we couldn’t really find one that really stood out or was highly recommended. The latest adaptation, Ulysses: A Dark Odyssey, is a modern-day adaptation of the story.
In 2017 Troy: The Odyssey was released. While it was set in ancient Greece it, unfortunately, didn’t get great reviews. We would love to know, have you watched an adaptation of The Odyssey that you enjoyed and would recommend?
Troy: The Odyssey Trailer | 2017
The Odyssey is a true classic that has been enjoyed for centuries! It is definitely worth reading especially if you enjoy action-adventure type stories coupled with Greek mythology. Download a free copy of The Odyssey PDF here!