Analysis Pages

Imagery in The Odyssey

Homer uses imagery to create elaborate settings that become almost palpable to the audience. By putting so much effort into constructing space within this epic, Homer ensures that the audience has a vivid image of events within the story.

Imagery Examples in The Odyssey:

Book IX

🔒 1

"lion..."   (Book IX)

Note the differences between how the Cyclops is described as a lion compared to how Odysseus is described as a lion in Book B. Homer repeats the lion imagery, but he uses it in a more animalistic and barbaric way here to further contrast these two characters.

"to take it by force of arms..."   (Book XVII)

Homer may be emphasizing how large and well-defended the house is to prepare us for a later battle. It's also possible that he's showing off Odysseus' considerable wealth by saying that one building "keeps following on" after another, suggesting an entire complex, not just a house.

"against the wall at right angles to that by which she had entered..."   (Book XXIII)

Notice the care with which Homer precisely describes the physical setting. As one of the most climactic moments in the story, he wants to ensure that his audience experiences the scene as completely as possible.

Analysis Pages