The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy eBook

This eBook from the Gutenberg Project consists of approximately 162 pages of information about The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy.

’Polyphemus then, groaning with pain, rolled away the stone and sat before the mouth of the cave with his hands outstretched, thinking that he would catch us as we dashed out.  I showed my companions how we might pass by him.  I laid hands on certain rams of the flock and I lashed three of them together with supple rods.  Then on the middle ram I put a man of my company.  Thus every three rams carried a man.  As soon as the dawn had come the rams hastened out to the pasture, and, as they passed, Polyphemus laid hands on the first and the third of each three that went by.  They passed out and Polyphemus did not guess that a ram that he did not touch carried out a man.’

’For myself, I took a ram that was the strongest and fleeciest of the whole flock and I placed myself under him, clinging to the wool of his belly.  As this ram, the best of all his flock, went by, Polyphemus, laying his hands upon him, said, “Would that you, the best of my flock, were endowed with speech, so that you might tell me where Noman, who has blinded me, has hidden himself.”  The ram went by him, and when he had gone a little way from the cave I loosed myself from him and went and set my companions free.’

‘We gathered together many of Polyphemus’ sheep and we drove them down to our ship.  The men we had left behind would have wept when they heard what had happened to six of their companions.  But I bade them take on board the sheep we had brought and pull the ship away from that land.  Then when we had drawn a certain distance from the shore I could not forbear to shout my taunts into the cave of Polyphemus.  “Cyclops,” I cried, “you thought that you had the company of a fool and a weakling to eat.  But you have been worsted by me, and your evil deeds have been punished."’

’So I shouted, and Polyphemus came to the mouth of the cave with great anger in his heart.  He took up rocks and cast them at the ship and they fell before the prow.  The men bent to the oars and pulled the ship away or it would have been broken by the rocks he cast.  And when we were further away I shouted to him: 

’"Cyclops, if any man should ask who it was set his mark upon you, say that he was Odysseus, the son of Laertes."’

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’Then I heard Polyphemus cry out, “I call upon Poseidon, the god of the sea, whose son I am, to avenge me upon you, Odysseus.  I call upon Poseidon to grant that you, Odysseus, may never come to your home, or if the gods have ordained your return, that you come to it after much toil and suffering, in an evil plight and in a stranger’s ship, to find sorrow in your home."’

’So Polyphemus prayed, and, to my evil fortune, Poseidon heard his prayer.  But we went on in our ship rejoicing at our escape.  We came to the waste island where my other ships were.  All the company rejoiced to see us, although they had to mourn for their six companions slain by Polyphemus.  We divided amongst the ships the sheep we had taken from Polyphemus’ flock and we sacrificed to the gods.  At the dawn of the next day we raised the sails on each ship and we sailed away,’

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The Adventures of Odysseus and The Tales of Troy from Project Gutenberg. Public domain.
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