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What does the sun symbolize for Odysseus and his men?

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The loss of Helios, the sun, for Odysseus and his crew, happens when they touch the sacred animals on the island of Thrinacia and dedicate them to the Sun God. To him and the team, it forebodes death and despair. In the end, all of Odysseus’ men die, and he survives but returns home a tired and broken man.

Detailed answer:

Odysseus’s travels feature many trials of courage, wisdom, and wit. The final trial awaits him and his crew at the island of Thrinacia, which is consecrated to Helios, the god of the sun. Odysseus wants to avoid the island because of warnings and prophecies made by Circe and Tiresias. He is forced to land ashore because of his men. They are tired and hungry and have not been ashore for long. The captain caves in and allows them to land.

While he sleeps, there is a revolt by Eurylocus, who leads the men to kill the sacred lambs and offer one of them as sacrifices to Helios. Neither he nor Zeus are impressed. As an insult to injury, the sailors did not provide any wine as a sacrifice. Gods have their vengeance once the Greeks set sail again. The sun disappears, sentencing the ship to darkness. A powerful storm comes forth, killing all of the sailors and sinking the ship. Only Odysseus survives. Alone and without help or food, he struggles against Charybdis. Later, he ends up at Ogygia, where he is held captive for the next several years. Therefore, the loss of Helios, the Sungod, is an omen of death and destruction to all but Odysseus.

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"What does the sun symbolize for Odysseus and his men?" IvyPanda, 1 Dec. 2020, ivypanda.com/q/what-does-the-sun-symbolize-for-odysseus-and-his-men/.

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IvyPanda. "What does the sun symbolize for Odysseus and his men?" December 1, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/q/what-does-the-sun-symbolize-for-odysseus-and-his-men/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "What does the sun symbolize for Odysseus and his men?" December 1, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/q/what-does-the-sun-symbolize-for-odysseus-and-his-men/.

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IvyPanda. (2020) 'What does the sun symbolize for Odysseus and his men'. 1 December.

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