A brief overview of "The Odyssey" by Homer.
Book 23: Odysseus and Penelope
While Odysseus was purifying the hall downstairs, Eurycleia went up to draw the good Penelope from her chambers and to tell her that her husband was waiting for her downstairs. When Penelope awoke and heard the news, she could not believe the old woman and accused her of playing tricks on her. But Eurycleia was persistent and she told Penelope again and reminded her of the scar her husband had upon his leg from the boar as a child. Reluctantly, Penelope followed the old maid downstairs.
There in the hall Penelope sat on the opposite wall from Odysseus and neither spoke to each other for some time. It was in fact, Telemachus who finally broke the silence and chastised his mother for not speaking or running to her husband with tears and happiness after so many long years apart. Penelope shot back at her son though and the patient Odysseus sent his son away and ordered all of the men and maids in the house to bath and put on finery so that they could sing and dance and the people of the town would think that Penelope had finally married and no one would guess for the night the slaughter that had taken place.
After being washed, oiled and endowed with good looks from Athene, Odysseus once again appeared before his wife who put him to a test. She asked Eurycleia to move their bed out into the hall so that Odysseus may sleep on it for the night, Odysseus knew that this task was nigh impossible though because he had built the bed himself around a living olive tree. With this as proof, Penelope knew that she was standing before her husband and at once threw her arms around him. By the grace of Athene, the night persisted and the two spent it in each others’ arms telling each other their stories. In the morning Odysseus awoke and bade his wife to stay in her apartments and admit no one while he went to visit his father, Laertes.
Book 24: The Feud is Ended
Heremes came to take the dreadful souls of the freshly killed Suitors and he led them mournfully to the Halls of Hades where Achilles and Agamemnon were speaking. It was there that Agamemnon recognized Amphinomus and asked of him how it was that so many young men of the same age were wiped out at the same time. Amphinomus replied by telling of Penelope, of her scheme with the shroud and finally of the return of Odysseus, how he had hidden in his own palace as a beggar and schemed with Telemachus to bring about their downfall. To this Agamemnon praised the loyalty of the good Penelope and once again was filled with remorse at his own shameful death by the hand of his infidel wife.
Odysseus, meanwhile, was in the gardens of his father when he approached the old and worn man, Laertes. There he decided to test his father and he asked him where he was and if this was the place where he might encounter Odysseus. To this Laertes replied through weeping and told him that his son was long dead and that he was too late, filled with grief Odysseus took his father into his arms and let the truth of his identity be known. Together they wept then went to eat and talk with each other.
Rumour, the messenger was spreading the news of the Suitors demise all about town and soon everyone knew about it. Everyone gathered and wept at the gates of Odysseus’ palace where they claimed their dead and gave them proper burials. They then gathered together and led by the father of Antinous they began planning revenge on Odysseus to which Medon and the minstrel protested and so did the seer. All the same many of the men there gave out loud war-cries until Athene, after consulting Zeus, came down from the heavens and instructed Odysseus to throw out his spear, which went through the head of Antinous’ father. Again they plunged into battle, but soon into it Athene stopped it and brought peace to the two sides.
*Notes based off reading from The Odyssey by Homer