Odyssey rhapsody 1 (Homer)

Odyssey rhapsody 1 by Homer

Homer's Odyssey, 1st rhapsody by Ioannis Stratakis

About rhapsody 01 of the Odyssey

Typically for epic poems, the Odyssey also begins with an invocation to the Muse, passing into the protagonist’s character and giving us the background of the story: why Odysseus is prevented from returning home to Ithaca.
Starting in the middle of the story, we understand that Odysseus is been held captive by the nymph Calypso on her island. Goddess Athena comes before the assembly of the gods, pleading successfully for his release and then flies to Ithaca, in the form of Odysseus’ friend Mentes, in order to advise Telemachus, the son of Odysseus on the right course of action.
The palace is since years full of uninvited men courting Penelope (wife of Odysseus) and dishonouring the house with insults, even while living at the cost of the house lords.
Athena hints that Odysseus is alive and shall return, but Telemachus has first to travel to Pylos and Sparta to get information about his father.
After Penelope comes to the main chamber asking the bard Phemius not to sing of the grieving heroes’ returns from Troy, Telemachus reminds her that it’s divine will that keeps her husband away and not the… bard’s song. After Athena departs, Telemachus addresses the suitors, asking them to leave the palace, as he wishes to rule over the estate till Odysseus’ return.
As the suitors are surprised by Telemachus’ courageous words, a dialogue ensues between suitors Antinous, Eurymachus and the young Telemachus, where the latter, empowered by the words of Athena/Mentes, establishes his presence and position as someone to take into account.


Though Homer doesn’t need an introduction, in case you’d like to refresh your knowledge about his life and work, you can read enough in published books, or online by consulting websites like:
the Center for Hellenic Studies of Harvard University (using the search field), Encyclopedia Britannica, the “Living Poets” website, Wikipedia, Biography.com, or elsewhere.

About the audiobook

This recitation is trying to find a balance between dramatisation and metrical correctness. I’ve avoided excess on both sides: not to render it as mechanically rhythmic as it usually happens in educational context on all levels and, not over-dramatise it, as is often the case in live performances in larger venues. I hope this is a proper approach for this medium.
The recording contains the complete, unabridged Ancient Greek text of the 1st rhapsody.
After purchase you will be able to download the zip file, containing both mp3 and m4b formats. The m4b format is bookmarkable and divided in the chapters themselves for your convenience when listening or following the original text.

A short sample chapter

You can listen to lines 1 to 48, as an audio sample of the present audiobook. Please, click on the play-button bellow and, if you wish, follow the Ancient Greek text lower on the page, or alternatively watch the video. Thank you!


ΟΜΗΡΟΥ ΟΔΥΣΣΕΙΑ – ῥαψωδία 01 (α1-48)

Ἄνδρα μοι ἔννεπε, Μοῦσα, πολύτροπον, ὃς μάλα πολλὰ
πλάγχθη, ἐπεὶ Τροίης ἱερὸν πτολίεθρον ἔπερσε·
πολλῶν δ’ ἀνθρώπων ϝἴδεν ϝἄστεα καὶ νόϝον ἔγνω,
πολλὰ δ’ ὅ γ’ ἐν πόντῳ πάθεν ἄλγεα ὃν κατὰ θυμόν,
ἀρνύμενος ἥν τε ψυχὴν καὶ νόστον ἑταίρων.
ἀλλ’ οὐδ’ ὧς ἑτάρους ἐῤῥύσατο, ἱέμενός περ·
αὐτῶν γὰρ σφετέρῃσιν ἀτασθαλίῃσιν ὄλοντο,
νήπιοι, οἳ κατὰ βοῦς Ὑπερίονος Ἠϝελίοιο
ἤσθιον· αὐτὰρ ὁ τοῖσιν ἀφείλετο νόστιμον ἦμαρ.
τῶν ἁμόθεν γε, θεά, θύγατερ Διός, ϝεἰπὲ καὶ ἡμῖν.        α 10

ἔνθ’ ἄλλοι μὲν πάντες, ὅσοι φύγον αἰπὺν ὄλεθρον,
ϝοἴκοι ἔσαν, πόλεμόν τε πεφευγότες ἠδὲ θάλασσαν·
τὸν δ’ οἶον, νόστου κεχρημένον ἠδὲ γυναικός,
νύμφη πότνι’ ἔρυκε Καλυψώ, δῖα θεάων,
ἐν σπέϝεσι γλαφυροῖσι, λιλαιομένη πόσιν εἶναι.
ἀλλ’ ὅτε δὴ ϝἔτος ἦλθε περιπλομένων ἐνιαυτῶν,
τῷ οἱ ἐπεκλώσαντο θεοὶ ϝοἶκόνδε νέεσθαι
εἰς Ἰθάκην, οὐδ’ ἔνθα πεφυγμένος ἦεν ἀέθλων
καὶ μετὰ οἷσι φίλοισι· θεοὶ δ’ ἐλέϝαιρον ἅπαντες
νόσφι Ποσειδάωνος· ὁ δ’ ἀσπερχὲς μενέαινεν        α 20
ἀντιθέῳ Ὀδυσῆϝϊ πάρος ἣν γαῖαν ἱκέσθαι.
ἀλλ’ ὁ μὲν Αἰθίοπας μετεκίαθε τηλόθ’ ἐόντας,
Αἰθίοπας, τοὶ διχθὰ δεδαίαται, ἔσχατοι ἀνδρῶν,
οἱ μὲν δυσομένου Ὑπερίονος, οἱ δ’ ἀνιόντος,
ἀντιόων ταύρων τε καὶ ϝἀρνειῶν ἑκατόμβης.
ἔνθ’ ὅ γε τέρπετο δαιτὶ παρήμενος· οἱ δὲ δὴ ἄλλοι
Ζηνὸς ἐνὶ μ῾εγάροισιν Ὀλυμπίου ἁθρόοι ἦσαν.
τοῖσι δὲ μύθων ἦρχε πατὴρ ἀνδρῶν τε θεῶν τε·
μνήσατο γὰρ κατὰ θυμὸν ἀμύμονος Αἰγίσθοιο,
τόν ῥ’ Ἀγαμεμνονίδης τηλεκλυτὸς ἔκταν’ Ὀρέστης·        α 30
τοῦ ὅ γ’ ἐπιμνησθεὶς ἔπε’ ἀθανάτοισι μετηύδα:
«ὢ πόποι, οἷον δή νυ θεοὺς βροτοὶ αἰτιόωνται.
ἐξ ἡμέων γάρ φασι κάκ’ ἔμμεναι· οἱ δὲ καὶ αὐτοὶ
σφῇσιν ἀτασθαλίῃσιν ὑπὲρ μόρον ἄλγε’ ἔχουσιν,
ὡς καὶ νῦν Αἴγισθος ὑπὲρ μόρον Ἀτρεΐδαο
γῆμ’ ἄλοχον μνηστήν, τὸν δ’ ἔκτανε νοστήσαντα,
ϝεἰδὼς αἰπὺν ὄλεθρον, ἐπεὶ πρό οἱ ϝεἴπομεν ἡμεῖς,
Ἑρμείαν πέμψαντες, ἐΰσκοπον Ἀργεϝϊφόντην,
μήτ’ αὐτὸν κτείνειν μήτε μνάϝασθαι ἄκοιτιν·
ἐκ γὰρ Ὀρέσταο τίσις ἔσσεται Ἀτρεϝΐδαο,        α 40
ὁππότ’ ἂν ἡβήσῃ τε καὶ ἧς ἱμείρεται αἴης.
ὣς ἔφαθ’ Ἑρμείας, ἀλλ’ οὐ φρένας Αἰγίσθοιο
πεῖθ’ ἀγαθὰ φρονέων· νῦν δ’ ἁθρόα πάντ’ ἀπέτεισε.»
τὸν δ’ ἠμείβετ’ ἔπειτα θεὰ γλαυκῶπις Ἀθήνη:
«ὦ πάτερ ἡμέτερε Κρονίδη, ὕπατε κρειόντων,
καὶ λίην κεῖνός γε ἐοικότι κεῖται ὀλέθρῳ,
ὡς ἀπόλοιτο καὶ ἄλλος ὅτις τοιαῦτά γε ῥέζοι.
ἀλλά μοι ἀμφ’ Ὀδυσῆϝϊ δαΐφρονι δαίεται ἦτορ,
δυσμόρῳ, …

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