Needless to say, Homer’s Odyssey is considered the oldest work in the Western history of literature and become the must-read classic in schools worldwide. As an English major, I remember how my literary professor in college introduced the journey of Odysseus, the protagonist who wins the Trojan War, and the heroic adventures he has on his way home (a journey which lasts ten years! OMG). The twist and turns in the epic have inspired so many students, scholars, and cultural influencers.
Image via BBC
Now, the poetic wave of the Odyssey is unfolded again with the discovery of the oldest extract of the Odyssey in Greece. According to the Greek culture ministry, an engraved clay has recently been found in the Temple of Zeus located in ancient Olympia, the birth place of Greek mythology, by a team of Greek and German archaeologist researchers.
On the clay, thirteen verses from the Odyssey’s 14th Rhapsody are recorded. This part of story basically focuses on Odysseus’ reunion with his old friend Eumaeus after his ten years of wandering. Though the exact date of this item is still under evaluation (probably before the 3rd century AD; the Roman era), the new discovery still marks a salient progress on its “archaeological, epigraphic, literary and historical exhibit,” claimed the ministry.
Reading this latest activity in Greek culture and literature, I cannot help but get trapped in my memory of sitting in the classroom reading the Odyssey in college. What else exciting things will be decoded on the clay? How this new interface will influence our understanding of Odyssey? As Odysseus did on his journey home, I look forward to the updates, and any twists and turns.
The Featured Image via Glogster