BOOK VIII – ODYSSEUS AND THE GAMES
Odysseus is still recovering from his shipwreck, but attends the feast and
games organized by his hosts.
One of the entertainers is a blind minstrel who sings about the Trojan Wars.
This brings back bitter memories for Odysseus and his host notices that he is moved.
The King suggests that they move outside in order to observe athletic
competitions including running, boxing and wrestling.
One of the young athletes taunts Odysseus for not participating in the games
and he surprises the company by hurling the discus further than anyone had done before, and he challenges anyone present to take him on in any activity.
The company is impressed by Odysseus’ prowess; the Phaeacians are a nation
proud of their athleticism.
Odysseus receives many valuable gifts from the Chieftains present.
The King then asks the stranger for an account of his adventures and he
tells them that he is Odysseus, King of Ithaca.