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Summary Book XII

Book 12
When Odysseus had buried Elpenor, Circe revealed his course to him, advising how he might avoid each danger. Leaving her, he sailed past the island of the Sirens, whose song draws men to their death: Odysseus bid the crew to cover their ears, while he himself was tied to the mast, so that he might listen, yet not be seduced. Avoiding the Wandering Rocks, he sailed between the monster Scylla and the whirlpool Charybdis. Scylla, with her six heads on six long necks, snatched and devoured six of Odysseus' companions. Next they reached Thrinacia, the island of the Sun, where the Sun's sheep and cattle grazed. Teiresias and Circe had ordered Odysseus to leave them unharmed. Eurylochus, disobeying Odysseus, led the crew in a slaughter. Thereafter Zeus avenged the Sun (Helios) by dashing Odysseus' ship in storm; only Odysseus survived, drifting back to Charybdis on a plank and thence, after ten days, to Calypso's Ogygia. Here ends Odysseus' story to the Phaeacians.