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So she spoke, and they halted and called to each other. Then they set Odysseus in a sheltered place, as Nausicaa, the daughter of great-hearted Alcinous, bade, and beside him they put a cloak and a tunic for raiment, [215] and gave him soft olive oil in the flask of gold, and bade him bathe in the streams of the river. Then among the maidens spoke goodly Odysseus: “Maidens, stand yonder apart, that by myself I may wash the brine from my shoulders, and [220] anoint myself with olive oil; for of a truth it is long since oil came near my skin. But in your presence will I not bathe, for I am ashamed to make me naked in the midst of fair-tressed maidens.” So he said, and they went apart and told the princess. But with water from the river goodly Odysseus washed from his skin [225] the brine which clothed his back and broad shoulders, and from his head he wiped the scurf of the unresting sea. But when he had washed his whole body and anointed himself with oil, and had put on him the raiment which the unwedded maid had given him, then Athena, the daughter of Zeus, made him [230] taller to look upon and mightier, and from his head she made the locks to flow in curls like unto the hyacinth flower. And as when a man overlays silver with gold, a cunning workman whom Hephaestus and Pallas Athena have taught all manner of craft, and full of grace is the work he produces, [235] even so the goddess shed grace upon his head and shoulders. Then he went apart and sat down on the shore of the sea, gleaming with beauty and grace; and the damsel marvelled at him, and spoke to her fair-tressed handmaids, saying: “Listen, white-armed maidens, that I may say somewhat. [240] Not without the will of all the gods who hold Olympus does this man come among the godlike Phaeacians. Before he seemed to me uncouth, but now he is like the gods, who hold broad heaven. Would that a man such as he might be called my husband, [245] dwelling here, and that it might please him here to remain. But come, my maidens; give to the stranger food and drink.” So she spoke, and they readily hearkened and obeyed, and set before Odysseus food and drink. Then verily did the much-enduring goodly Odysseus drink and eat, [250] ravenously; for long had he been without taste of food.

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