It argues a certain hardness, or at any rate dislike of the "Iliad" on the part of the writer of the "Odyssey," that she should have adopted Hector's farewell to Andromache here, as elsewhere in the poem, for a scene of such inferior pathos.
The scrupulous regard of Laertes for his wife's feelings is of a piece with the extreme jealousy for the honour of woman, which is manifest throughout the "Odyssey".
The second period, which produced the "Iliad" and the "Odyssey", needs no description here: but it is very important to observe the effect of these poems on the course of post-Homeric epic.
While, therefore, an epic like the "Odyssey" is an organism and dramatic in structure, a work such as the "Theogony" is a merely artificial collocation of facts, and, at best, a pageant.
He translated not only the Iliad, but with the help of two lesser poets the Odyssey
I fancy, also, that I must by this time have read the Odyssey
, for the "Battle of the Frogs and Mice" was in the second volume, and it took me so much that I paid it the tribute of a bald imitation in a mock-heroic epic of a cat fight, studied from the cat fights in our back yard, with the wonted invocation to the Muse, and the machinery of partisan gods and goddesses.
His Margites bears the same relation to Comedy that the Iliad and Odyssey
do to Tragedy.
There is neither Iliad nor Odyssey
to be found in the libraries of the Chinese; indeed, a favourite feature of their verse is the "stop short", a poem containing only four lines, concerning which another critic has explained that only the words stop, while the sense goes on.
The truth must have been that, all unversed in the arts of the wily Greek, the deceiver of gods, the lover of strange women, the evoker of bloodthirsty shades, I yet longed for the beginning of my own obscure Odyssey
, which, as was proper for a modern, should unroll its wonders and terrors beyond the Pillars of Hercules.
For the next dozen years he occupied himself chiefly with the formidable task (suggested, no doubt, by Dryden's 'Virgil,' but expressive also of the age) of translating 'The Iliad' and 'The Odyssey
.' 'The Iliad' he completed unaided, but then, tiring of the drudgery, he turned over half of 'The Odyssey
' to two minor writers.
Mr Bayle (I think, in his article of Helen) imputes this, and with greater probability, to their violent love of glory; for the truth of which, we have the authority of him who of all others saw farthest into human nature, and who introduces the heroine of his Odyssey
, the great pattern of matrimonial love and constancy, assigning the glory of her husband as the only source of her affection towards him.[*]
By degrees, the fate of the unfortunate king interested his auditors so greatly, that the play languished even at the royal table, and the young king, with a pensive look and downcast eye, followed, without appearing to give any attention to it, the smallest details of this Odyssey
, very picturesquely related by the Comte de Guiche.