Telemachus Maturity Essay

Telemachus Maturity Essay-8
The scene with the bow captures the endpoint of his development perfectly.He tries and tries to string it, and very nearly does, but not quite.

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As the epic opens, Telemachus, about 21 years old, is on the brink of manhood, uncertain and insecure in his potential power, and in grave danger from the suitors who would prefer to see him dead.

Telemachus initially asserts himself by calling an assembly of Ithaca's leaders in order to protest the suitors' activities.

He does nothing at first, as his "heart [is] obsessed with grief" (book 1, line 134).

He is sad, he misses his father, and he appears hopeless. As for giving orders, men will see to that, but I most of all: I hold the reins of power in this house" (book 1, lines 408–414). See to your feasting elsewhere" (book 1, lines 430–1).

Although he speaks well at the meeting and impresses some of the elders, the leading suitors (Antinous and Eurymachus) show no respect for either Telemachus or his mother, Queen Penelope, and little is accomplished.

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Athena senses danger and manages for the prince to visit two foreign kings who are old comrades of his father: Nestor of Pylos and Menelaus of Sparta. Athena, disguised as Mentor, guides and instructs him. Nestor reinforces in the prince a respect for loyalty and devotion.

When he speaks with a man named Menelaus, Menelaus tells Telemachus that he is becoming wise and brave. The men go on to defeat the suitors and protect their reign over the kingdom of Ithaca.

Menelaus says to him, "Not even an older man could speak and do as well. Comparing Telemachus to Odysseus says a lot about Menelaus's level of respect for Telemachus as a mature man; he is not a boy. Telemachus's road to adulthood and full maturity is an interesting journey to follow.

Menelaus encourages him with news that Odysseus may be alive and held captive by a goddess-nymph named Calypso.

Athena keeps the prince alive by helping him avoid an ambush set up by the suitors on his return trip to Ithaca.


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