Mything Words - Lotus Eaters

by Erin on April 28, 2012

In Homer’s Odyssey, Lotus Eaters, or lotophagi, were mythical people who forgot their former lives when they consumed the lotus.

Here’s a taste about the Lotus Eaters from the relevant passage in the Odyssey:

“Upon the tenth
we came to the coastline of the Lotus Eaters,
who live upon that flower. We landed there
to take on water. All ship’s companies
mustered alongside for the mid-day meal.
Then I sent out two picked men and a runner
to learn what race of men that land sustained.
They fell in, soon enough, with Lotus Eaters,
who showed no will to do us harm, only
offering the sweet Lotus to our friends -
but those who ate this honeyed plant, the Lotus,
never cared to report, nor to return:
they longed to stay forever, browsing on
that native bloom, forgetful of their homeland.”

(Homer, Odyssey, Book Nine, lines 82 ff.)

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