The rosy fingered prawn

Eos, the Goddess of the Dawn, infused with saffron robes is no doubt a few drachma short thanks to Homer (as in Odyssey, not doughnut) who refrains to call her by name, instead choosing a more awakening announcement for her arrival, the rosy fingered dawn. If you’ve ever read – or as I have recently – heard the great epic of courage and the high seas than this will rose-onate with you, too.

The epithet, “rosy-fingered dawn” marks the beginning of Odysseus’ odyssey. For example, “When the young Dawn with finger tips of rose lit up the world”.  Or perhaps ‘the sun arrives after rosy fingered dawn to illuminate the world’.

The Metaphor of the Dawn

Throughout Odysseus’ journey, the metaphor of the dawn symbolizes his odyssey from immaturity, maturity, and fulfillment. The progression of Odysseus’ development of strength is like the development of day, from dawn to dusk.

The epithet, “rosy-fingered dawn” marks the beginning of Odysseus’ odyssey. After his journey, the epithets “gold-throned dawn” and “bright-throned dawn” replace the “rosy-fingered dawn” however, after Odysseus returns home from his journey, he plans to rid his house of suitors, and the “rosy-fingered dawn” returns. After accomplishing the destruction of the suitors, finally, the “gold-throned dawn” replaces the “rosy-fingered dawn”

In the beginning of Odysseus’ journey, the “rosy-fingered dawn” (10) is referred to as a fresh and young beginning of whatever is to come. It also resembles the hardships of a journey in the future, symbolizing his state of immaturity and lack of experience. This shows how the development of day is like Odysseus’ development of strength, by addressing the symbolism of “rosy-fingered dawn,” possibly symbolizing Odysseus’ present state of youth and immaturity.

The “rosy-fingered dawn” returns once again, as a new obstacle is introduced. When the “rosy-fingered dawn” (162) returns, another obstacle of Odysseus’ is sure to come.

For example, right before Odysseus attempts to rid his home of suitors, the day is begun with the “rosy-fingered dawn.” In a way, this foreshadows obstacles to come. This example introduces the relation between Odysseus’ strength and the metaphor of the dawn.

When Odysseus returns home from his long journey, the “rosy-fingered dawn” is replaced by the “bright-throned dawn” (151). This symbolizes the accomplishments of his numerous obstacles because the term “bright” symbolizes and accomplished tasks, such as Odysseus’ return home. The “gold-throned dawn” represents Odysseus in a way of maturity, knowledge, experience, and strength, again, supporting the theory that Odysseus’ development of strength symbolizes the development of the dawns.



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