Two main views of the country called in the Odyssey the Land of the Phaeacians or Scheria are current among Homeric scholars. Some think it is, or is in, the island known to the ancients as Corcyra, and that the people who are described as living in it were ordinary flesh and blood mortals. The other view, the belief of the majority, though of great variety, is that Scheria is in fairyland or some other supramundane sphere, and a creation of (...) the poet's fancy. In Class. Rev. XXIV. 204 Mr. Evelyn-White says, after quoting Monro, that it ‘cannot be disputed’ that the Phaeacian and other adventures of Odysseus are Märchen, so the matter is as good as closed. But as many of the Homeric choses jugées of last century have been proved of recent years to be unsubstantial, it has seemed worth while to examine the fairyland theory afresh. I begin with a survey of the literature of the question, and shall then inquire in a second paper what Homeric foundation there is for the supernatural theory. Elsewhere I shall endeavour to show that Homer describes a real people, and that Scheria can be fitted into the Mediterranean world, as we now know it, of the latest Minoan or Mycenaean period, and is in fact a Minoan settlement in Corcyra. (shrink)
One of the grounds for arguing that the books of the Iliad, I, K, Ψ, Ω, are late and Odyssean, is that there are found in them uses of certain prepositions, especially xs22EFπxs22EF, xs22EFν, xs22EFξ, which appear in the Odyssey, but not, or only very rarely, in the other twenty books of the Iliad.
In Appendix II. to his edition of Odyssey, xiii.-xxiv., the late Dr. Monro examined the ‘ Relation of the Odyssey to the Iliad.’ One section of this Appendix, pp. 327 sqq., deals with ‘ passages of the Iliad borrowed or imitated in the Odyssey.’ It is there admitted that repetition is a characteristic of the epic style, and that in many cases of parallelism no detrimental inference can legitimately be drawn. But if, it is said, ‘ we are able to (...) point to a sufficient number of passages tending to show that the author of the Odyssey imitates the Iliad, and if no considerable instances can be produced of the converse,’ then it is thought there is confirmation of the view that the Odyssey is the later poem. The object of the present paper is to suggest that the decisions in individual cases have been arrived at on scanty or disputable grounds, and without due regard to relevant epic practice; and consequently that the reasons for inferring the existence of a later poet imitating an earlier are inadequate. (shrink)
The whereabouts of this ancient town is of interest in the Leukas-Ithaka controversy, but unfortunately there is little information on which to fix it. The data may be said to be one passage in the Odyssey and one in Thucydides. In the former, ω 377–8, Laertes is wishing he were young again, οος Nρικον ελον υκτμενον πτολεΘρον, κτν περοιο, Kεαλλνεσσιν νσσων.
What was Agamemnon's political position in Greece? Was he only king of Mycenae and territory adjoining it, or had he in addition a suzerainty over the rest of the Peloponnesus? Was he sovereign in the whole of the Peloponnesus? Did he exercise any supremacy over, and especially can he be described as king or emperor of, Mycenaean Greece and its islands? In regard to the expedition against Troy, did he command it by virtue of a dominion over the whole of (...) Greece, or was he selected for the position for some special reason, as his relationship to Helen or his pre-eminence in power over the other Achaean princes? (shrink)
Dissecting criticism of Homer has proved to its own satisfaction that certain books of the Iliad are late, and have special affinity with the Odyssey. This Odyssean connexion is established by collecting verbal and metrical peculiarities and grammatical usages, which are found outside these parts of the Iliad only in what is held to be the later poem. The chief delinquents are I, K, Ψ and Ω but many would add the Apaté, Nestor's reminiscence in Λ, and other tracts. There (...) is not complete agreement as to the limits of the category; but generally it is assumed that the four books, and, when necessary, other parts of the Iliad, have the Odyssean taint. Strangely enough, Θ is not so treated. Yet, as Mr. Andrew Lang has remarked, it ought to be Odyssean, if, as so many think, it was composed as a ‘prologue’ to I. (shrink)