to Homer the palace was located on a quite high place "under the wooded
Neion" (Od., III, 81), so that from his terrace one could see the sea
and the harbour… Under the palace walls lies an esplanade sheltered
from the wind and high enough to have a view of the harbour. We can see
there ships loading or unloading goods. From these heights above Stavros
one clearly distinguishes the harbour of Ormos Polis to the south. It is
from the Harbour of the City that Telemachus went off in search of information
about his father disappeared since the fall of Troja (Od. II, 382-434).
It is from here again that the suitors sent a ship to intercept and kill
Odysseus' son who was too dangerous to them (Od. IV, 768-786 ; cf. chap.
XX). It is from the shore of this cove that we, too, shall reembark…
Ormos Polis, a very small harbour according to present-day norms, has a
deep harbour sheltered in general from both north and south winds. A sandy
beach four or five hundred meters long, nicely curved, offered antique ships
a grounding place able to receive several tens of them, much more than the
whole fleet of Odysseus' kingdom could count. It is now the port of registry
of a half dozen fishing boats. On land, the only building is a small coffee
bar that opens in the afternoon when fishermen come back. A majestic tree
provides its shadow over the coffee bar at the end of the way going down
to the city. In the middle of the beach stands a shed housing the carpenter's
tools and a winch. Two ships are lying dry nearby waiting for small repairs.
of the expedition is moored at the fishers' pier of Ormos Polis.
In the background the island of Cephalonia.
A few hundred meters from there is the Tripods Cave where remains of liturgical
furniture dedicated to the cult of the deified hero Odysseus were excavated
and two or three kilometers higher on the mountainside, at Pilikata and
Aghios Athanasios, remains of important Mycenaean buildings brought to light
by British archaeologists : Odysseus' palace ? Nothing proves it. At least
they are remains of a "palace" dating back to the Troja war time,
a place that gives food for epic imagination.