Odysseus: Novel Summary: Chapters 19-20

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Chapter 19: Odysseus and Telemachus take Odysseus' armor that hangs from the wall, so that he can use it in the upcoming battle. He talks with Penelope, who does not recognize him, but she treats him well, and scolds one of her servants for not treating him well. When she asks who he is and where he comes from, he lies again. She tells him her story very bluntly, of how she tricked the suitors for three years by weaving a shroud that she would unweave each night. Odysseus tells her made-up information about Odysseus, and claims to have met him. Penelope tests him by asking him details about her husbands clothing, which he relates accurately, and she offers him her friendship. Odysseus hints to Penelope that her husband will return safely, but she has little faith. Penelope asks her only trusted servant, Eurykleia who was Odysseus' nurse, to wash his feet. Eurykleia recognizes Odysseus but he silences her so she does not ruin his plans. The next day, Penelope tells Odysseus of a dream that she had. He interprets it as an omen that the suitors will all die. Odysseus and Penelope arrange a feast and an archery contest the next day. Penelope offers Odysseus a bed in the house so he doesn't have to sleep at the house of the pig shepherd.
Chapter 20: Odysseus has second doubts about killing all of the suitors, since he fears retaliation by their fathers and other relatives. During the preparations for the feast, Philoitios the cow shepherd meets Odysseus, treats him well, and is found to be a loyal servant. The suitors show up, and one of them, Ktesippos, is incredibly and openly violent. Theoklymenos, the man whom Telemachus saved from Pylos, begins to prophesy that the suitors will die. They laugh at him, but Theoklymenos leaves the house so he will not be killed.

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