What is Cleos in the Odyssey

Cleos - Cleos

This article is about the Greek term. For the rock album see Kleos (album).

Cleos (Greek: κλέος) is the Greek word that is often translated as "reputation" or "fame". It is related to the English word "loud" and has the implicit meaning of "what others hear about you". A Greek hero deserves Cleos, doing great deeds.

According to Gregory Nagy, can Cleos besides the meaning of "fame" can also be used as a medium (in this case ancient Greek poetry or the song) conveying fame.

Cleos is invariably passed on from father to son; The son is responsible for continuing and building on the "glory" of the father. This is one reason Penelope put off her suitors for so long, and one justification for Medea's murder of her own children, was to break off Jason's Cleos.

Cleos is a common theme in Homer's epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey , with the main example in the latter being that of Odysseus and his son Telemachus, fearing that his father might have died a wretched and wretched death at sea rather than a serious and lovable one in battle. In the Iliad it's about ultimate Cleos on the battlefields of Troy while the Odyssey the ten-year search for Ulysses Nostos (or return trip) is. Telemachus fears him Kleos was withheld . This refers on hereditary Cleos . Cleos is sometimes with Aidos related - the feeling of shame.


After Gregory Nagy is Cleos a noun derived from the verb kluein which means "hear".

The Greek term kleos is derived from another source from the Proto-Indo-European (PIE) term * ḱlewos from who expressed a similar concept in the PIE society. Since the PIE people had no idea of ​​the continuation of the individual after life, one could only hope * ḱlewos * ndhg w hitom or "the fame that is not expires Bruce Lincoln notes, “In a universe where impersonal matter lasted forever but the personal self was obliterated at death, most of that self that survived was a rumor, a shout. For this, the person longed for immortality - a condition that is only right to the gods and in contrast to human existence - was completely dependent on poets and poetry. "

Relatives are Sanskrit, श्रवस् ( śravas ); Avestan, 𐬯𐬭𐬀𐬬𐬀𐬵; Armenian, լու ( low ); Old Church Slavonic Slava and Old Irish, Clú. Compare with the Greek: κλύω ( kluō - I hear ).


The Greek philosopher Plato makes in his dialogue The symposium about a discussion about love an excursus on fame and honor. It is in the section that deals with the dialogue between Socrates and Diotima. She explains that men look for ways to attain some kind of immortality, such as through physical and intellectual procreation. Then it is claimed that the love of fame and honor is very strong, and in fact, people are ready to put up with the greatest effort, take risks and make sacrifices, even at the cost of their lives. Then explicit reference is made to Alcestis, who died to save Admetus, or to Achilles to avenge Patroclus, and to Codrus as examples of heroes in search of fame and immortal prestige.

See also


further reading

  • Barbantani, Silvia. "Models of Virtue, Models of Poetry: The Search for" Eternal Glory "in Hellenistic Military Epitaphs." In Fame, Fame, and Shame in the Hellenistic World, edited by FABER RIEMER A., 37-69. Toronto; Buffalo; London: University of Toronto Press, 2020. Accessed May 19, 2020. doi: 10.3138 / j.ctv102bjkd.8.
  • Finkelberg, Margalit. "More on" Kleos Aphtiton "." The Classical Quarterly 57, No. 2 (2007): 341- 50. www.jstor.org/stable/27564082.
  • Floyd, Edwin D. "Kleos Aphthiton: An Indo-European Perspective on Early Greek Poetry." Glotta 58, no. 3/4 (1980): 133-13. 57. www.jstor.org/stable/40266513.
  • Meltzer, Gary S. "" Where is the glory of Troy? "" Kleos "in Euripides'" Helen "." Classic Antike 13, No. 2 (1994): 234-23; 55. doi: 10.2307 / 25011015.
  • Segal, Charles. "KLEOS AND HIS IRON IN THE ODYSSEY." L'Antiquité Classique 52 (1983): 22-22; 47. www.jstor.org/stable/41653211.
  • Segal, Charles. "Cleos and his ironies." In singers, heroes and gods in the "Odyssey", 85-110. ITHACA; LONDON: Cornell University Press, 1994. www.jstor.org/stable/10.7591/j.ctv3s8rff.9.