The Man of Twists and Turns

Exclusively available on PapersOwl
Updated: Mar 28, 2022
Cite this
Date added
Pages:  3
Order Original Essay

How it works

The chosen adventure features Odysseus and what’s left of his crew as they find themselves in an island where the goddess Circe resides. In this adventure, the witty Odysseus managed to avoid Circe’s bewitching, save his men, and found aid for the next part of their journey, albeit charmed to have a year pass by, the hero still makes it out and onto his next destination. Barely escaping certain doom at the hands of Laestrygonians in Telepylus, Odysseus and his crew arrived in the Aeaean island belonging to Circe, four days into their stay, he sent out his men to scout Circe’s halls and attempt to plead for aid from the cunning goddess (Fagles 161).

Need a custom essay on the same topic?
Give us your paper requirements, choose a writer and we’ll deliver the highest-quality essay!
Order now

Upon reaching her halls, the goddess invited the men in, all were foolish to quickly succumb to the goddess’ invitation, save for one, Eurylochus, the very man who incurred the wrath of the gods by his folly of leading Odysseus’ men to hunt the livestock owned by the sun god, Apollo, later on in their journey (Fagles 162, 206). Eurylochus, wary of the trap, managed to flee the halls and return to the rest of the crew by the shoreline, there he told of the grim fate they suffered at the hands of Circe, prompting Odysseus to go after his men.

On the way, he encountered Hermes, the giant-killer, who provided a special herb that could counteract Circe’s magic, as well as a strategy to outwit the cunning goddess, armed with the herb and a plan, he braved the presence of Circe, who upon failing to bewitch him recognized him as the “man of twists and turns” (Fagles 164, 165). After he had managed to save his men, the feasts and pleasures of her halls kept them charmed for an entire year, until Odysseus realized with the help of his crew and finally approached Circe for help and guidance to the next part of their long, arduous journey home (Fagles 170).

Here his adventure in Circe’s island ends at last. Odysseus’ encounter with the goddess began with him sending his men to scout Circe’s halls in his place, possibly to avoid having his men succumb to despair as a result of losing their beloved king. After learning of what happened to his scouting party, Odysseus was quick to rush through the goddess’ home and save them, but on his way, he ran into Hermes, god of guides and messenger to the Olympian gods (Fagles 79), who helped him through his encounter with Circe by handing him an herb, dubbed by the gods as moly, the magical plant is said to be fatal to all when plucked, save for the immortal gods, along with the herb, Hermes also provided him with a detailed plan to force Circe’s favor and avoid her enchanting magic (Fagles 164).

In order to ensure that Odysseus and his men escape the goddess’ charm, he was to “rush her fast as if to run her through” (Fagles 164), in her fear she would attempt to invite him to her bed and he was to accept it, and finally, to prevent Circe from pulling a deceptive trick up her sleeve, he must get her to swear “the binding oath of the blessed gods” (Fagles 164). Armed with moly and all the knowledge bestowed upon him by Hermes, he stuck to the plan and ultimately managed to free his men and win Circe’s favor, despite being kept for a longer time, a year to be exact, the goddess sent them their way.

The Greeks in ancient stories are often portrayed observing a profound sense of reverence for their gods, they would conduct certain traditions in order to please them and ultimately avoid their wrath, as it would be no difficult task for the Olympians to obliterate mortals, as is the case with the Phaeacians when they angered Poseidon by helping Odysseus finally get home to Ithaca (Fagles 216). In this regard, getting help from the gods does not make Odysseus any less of the hero he is, because despite his wits, he still remains a mere mortal, and he never would have made it home at all without the help of the gods, without the help of Athena pleading to Zeus to release him from captivity in Ogygia. He would have just been stuck there weeping for the rest of his days with Calypso (Fagles 82), or her disguising Odysseus as a beggar allowed his return to Ithaca remain hidden from everyone (Fagles 224), which then bought him enough to time plan for his climactic battle against army of suitors that plagued his home (Fagles 364).

Another instance where he survived an encounter that would have otherwise costed him the rest of his life is when Hermes provided him with moly to prevent him from succumbing to Circe’s enchantments (Fagles 164). Furthermore, having the gods’ favor is often seen as something positive, only bestowed upon the few mortals who have excelled greatly among their fellowmen and earned the respect of the gods themselves. In conclusion, Odysseus’ claim to being “wily” and “clever” stems from his uncanny ability of escaping situations which spells certain doom for him and his men, in this case, escaping Circe’s cunning magic, and although he had help from the gods Athena and Hermes throughout his journey, this only proves that he has earned their favor through the exceptional qualities he possessed as a hero.

The deadline is too short to read someone else's essay
Hire a verified expert to write you a 100% Plagiarism-Free paper

Cite this page

The Man of Twists and Turns. (2021, Mar 27). Retrieved from