Greek Female Loyalty
In the epic poem, the Odyssey, written by Homer, the fates of the heroes Agamemnon and Odysseus both lie, at least partially, in the hands of their wives, Penelope and Clytemnestra, women capable of wielding power over or in the service of their husbands. The Odyssey clearly contrasts the qualities of Greek women by demonstrating the fates of these two heroes’ wives. Penelope represents the ideal Greek woman because of her ability to resist the suitors, her ability to wield power and strategize in the service of her husband, and her trusting relationship with her husband. In direct contrast, Clytemnestra embodies the most horrific wife imaginable in her submission to the temptation of suitor, Aegisthus, who is a known rival to her husband, and her strategic power over her husband, with the help of her suitor.
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