Date Thesis Awarded


Access Type

Honors Thesis -- Access Restricted On-Campus Only

Degree Name

Bachelors of Arts (BA)


Classical Studies


William Hutton

Committee Members

Vassiliki Panoussi

Suzanne Hagedorn


Heliodorus, the 4th century AD novelist, incorporated thematic elements from the Odyssey into his own work the Aithiopika or the Ethiopian Story. In doing so, he built upon a tradition already established by Second Sophistic authors, including Lucian, Philostratus, and Dio Chrysostom. Heliodorus’ work also engages innovatively with the conventions of the Greek novels, whose main thematic elements often involve travel and a love story. In the Aithiopika, Charikleia has a nostos to her home country of Ethiopia. During the course of her journey, Charikleia grows in confidence and learns to use deceit and intelligent plans to accomplish her goals and avoid danger. This paper argues that Heliodorus constructs the relationship of Kalasiris and Charikleia to mirror the relationship of Athena and Odysseus in the Odyssey. Just as Athena acts as mentor and patron to Odysseus, so Kalasiris guides and mentors Charikleia.

On-Campus Access Only