From the story   -   The Odyssey
Of the tradition   -   Greek Oral Poetry
Role in story   -   Hero, Postpones suitors
Family members   -   Penelope (mother), Odysseus (father), Laertes (grandfather)

Telemachus is Odysseus's son, and was an infant when Odysseus left for Troy. Telemachus is about twenty at the beginning of The Odyssey. He is a natural obstacle to the suitors desperately courting his mother Penelope, and although he has courage and good heart, he at first does not have the poise and confidence to oppose the suitors. He takes a trip to Pylos and Sparta in Books 3 and 4, and matures. Athena often assists him.


  • Devoted to his mother Penelope and to maintaining his father Odysseus's estate
    • Does not know how to protect them from the suitors.
    • It has only been a few years since discovering the suitors' intentions.


  • Athena, in Book 1, improves his stature and bearing and teaches him the responsibilities of a young prince.
    • Becomes more assertive.
    • Confronts the suitors and denounces the abuse of his estate
    • When Penelope and Eurycleia become anxious or upset, he takes control

Character TraitsEdit

  • Doesn't match Odysseus' talents
  • Stout heart
  • Active mind
  • Bit of a temper, but he never schemes with the same skill or speaks with quite the same fluency as Odysseus.
  • Makes small mistakes, (leaving weapons storeroom unlocked and suitors arm themselves)
  • No pride (can't string bow)

Origin of nameEdit

  • Tele = far away
  • Machos = battle
  • Telemachus = far away from the battle (Trojan war)

  The Odyssey by Homer edit

Ithaca Residents: Odysseus - Telemachus - Penelope - Eumaeus - Eurycleia - Melanthius - Melantho - Laertes
Gods and Goddesses: Athena - Poseidon - Zeus - Hermes
Suitors: Antinous - Eurymachus - Amphinomus
Voyage Acquaintances: Calypso - Polyphemus - Circe - Tiresias - Nestor - Menelaus - Helen - Agamemnon
Phaeacians: Nausicaa - Alcinous - Arete

Italacized members are Odysseus's enemies - Strike-through members are deceased by the end of The Odyssey