After the Trojan war, Odysseus and his men set sail from Troy.
They plunder the Cicones but are routed by reinforcements.
On the island of the lotus eaters, some men eat the food of the enchanting inhabitants and loose all hope of home.
On the Island of the Cyclops, Odysseus's curiosity causes him trouble: he and twelve others are imprisoned by the cannibal Polyphemus. They blind him in order to escape.
At Aeolia, the wind king Aeolus offers to help Odysseus. He bags up all the winds and places them on Odysseus's ship. But Odysseus's foolish crew open the bag, thinking it is treasure. The winds become a storm and blow the ships back to the island. Aeolus is angry at their irresponsibility and sends them away.
They arrive at an island inhabited by cannibals who destroy all of the ships except for Odysseus's.
They land on Aeaea, where the enchantress Circe lives. She turns some of the men into pigs. Later, she restores them and sends Odysseus on a lone quest to the Land of the Dead.
In the Land of the Dead, Odysseus sees his mother who died while waiting for him to return home. Next, A blind prophet named Teiresias gives Odysseus a warning and a promise: Odysseus will arrive home, but all the other men will die.
Odysseus and his men return to Aeaea. Circe warns him of three perils that await him: the Sirens, Scylla, and Charybdis. They set sail and manage to avoid the danger.
After their adventures, they arrive at the island of Helios. Eventually, the crew get discouraged and kill the holy cattle for food. Zeus kills all the crew except for Odysseus.
Odysseus arrives at Calypso's island where he is held captive for seven years.
At Athena's urging, the gods on Mount Olympus decide it is time for Calypso to free Odysseus.
Telemachus sets sail to find information about his father. Nestor tells Telemachus that he should ask King Menelaus about his father. King Menelaus tells Telemachus that Odysseus is being held by Calypso.
Calypso releases Odysseus, and he builds a raft and sets sail.
Poseidon, who holds a grudge against Odysseus, destroys the raft in a storm. Odysseus washes up on an island.
A young girl named Nausicaä finds Odysseus and leads him to the city. Athena appears to Odysseus and leads him to the palace of Alcinous.
The king invites Odysseus to the feast if he will entertain them for a while. The next day, the king holds a party for Odysseus. They play games and a minstrel sings for Odysseus. Odysseus tells his tale in the courts. Afterward, King Alcinous gives him passage to Ithaca. Athena disguises him as an old beggar.
Odysseus travels to the hut of his old swineherd, Eumaeus. Eumaeus doesn't recognize Odysseus because of the disguise, but he politely entertains Odysseus.
Athena appears to Telemachus and advises him to return to his home.
Telemachus meets his father.
Penelope creates a test to prevent the suitors from marrying her: they must string Odysseus's huge bow—a task that only he can do. All the others fail, but Odysseus is successful. The suitors still ignore the beggar.
Odysseus defeats the suitors.
Odysseus visits his father, king Laertes, but the relatives of the suitors have gathered to revenge. Laertes kills the leader, but Athena interrupts them before anything else can happen. She commands them to end the violence.