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anyone got a list of standard dimensions in architecture? you know, like doorways are always 4 feet wide or whatever. i know theres a standardized list somewhere... (US dimensions)


Check out some city building codes at municode.com and google ASTM. Those are the official standards.

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The Odyssey is the story of Odysseus’ return to Ithaca, which is both helped and hindered by the Greek gods. Despite Poseidon’s greatest efforts to drown the man, Odysseus finally makes it home, but it could not have happened without the help of various gods and goddesses. The goddess Ino “saved Odysseus when his raft was wrecked” and “[gave] him her scarf to keep him afloat” (Howatson and Chilvers). The goddess Athena assisted Odysseus the most, simply by virtue of him being a “favorite” of hers (Leeming). And, despite holding Odysseus captive, the goddess Calypso sent Odysseus off from her island bearing “food and water/ruddy wine…clothing… [and] a stiff following wind/ So you can reach your native country unharmed.” (Lawall). Thus it is established that the goddesses were of great help in getting Odysseus back to Ithaca, each in their own way. In fact, was it not for the assistance of these three goddesses, Odysseus would not have made it back to Ithaca alive.


As the story goes, after the Trojan War Odysseus and his 12 ships set sail from Troy bound for their home of Ithaca. Over their journey they encounter a slew of mythical figures; some, such as Aeolus (who gave him a bag containing all winds but the west, to send Odysseus home), are helpful, but most are not, and threaten Odysseus and his crew. Through his various encounters, the cannibal Laestrygones leaves Odysseus with just one ship, and the sun god Helios wrecks the remaining ship after Odysseus’ crew eat the sun god’s sacred cattle (Wikipedia). After this final shipwreck, Odysseus finds himself marooned on an island. It turns out to be the island of the goddess Calypso, who immediately takes a liking to him. The part Calypso plays in the Odyssey is interesting, and is relatively open to interpretation. William S. Anderson reads Odysseus’ time on Ogygia (Calypso’s island) as a time “not of eternal life, but eternal death.” He backs this claim:


“The trees and flowers surrounding the cave of the nymph, conceivable as an entrance to Hades, connote death. The black alder (klé-thre) is probably funereal; the black poplar (aígeiros) Homer describes as growing also in Hades, in the glades of Persephone; and the cypress still marks the location of cemeteries in Italy and Greece.”


Other authors propose that this cave is a womb, not a portal to Hades (Arrowsmith). And this definition fits well with the primary thesis, as Calypso is the first of the three goddesses to save Odysseus’ life. After having spent seven years in an odd sort of captivity on Calypso’s island, Zeus sends messenger Hermes to instruct Calypso to let him go (Lawall). However, Zeus does not promise him an easy journey, saying “Odysseus journeys home…on a lashed, makeshift raft and wrung with pains” (Lawall). The minimum requirement for Zeus and the rest of the Gods is simply that Odysseus return home; in fact, as seen above, Zeus even appears to wish that the voyage would be both physically and emotionally difficult for Odysseus. Hermes, following Zeus’ orders, relays the message to Calypso, that Odysseus is to return home “with all good speed” (Lawall). Despite these minimal requirements, Calypso sends Odysseus off very well, as she offers him “food and water,/ruddy wine to your taste- all to stave off hunger-…clothing…a stiff following wind/so you can reach your native country all unharmed” (Lawall). She also gives him tools and supplies to make for himself a sturdy craft for his trip home; hardly bad hospitality or the “lashed, makeshift raft” that Zeus describes (Lawall). Had Calypso not given Odysseus these supplies, he would have likely died; her island was extremely remote. How remote was it? So remote that, to get to the closest local island, Phaeacia, Odysseus had to sail for “Seventeen days …[and] on the eighteenth shadowy mountains slowly loomed” (Lawall). Not to mention that for the entire trip, he was navigating “the stars, the Pleiades and the Plowman late to set/ and the Great Bear that mankind also called the Wagon…the stars the goddess told him to keep hard to port as he cut across the sea” (Lawall). Suffice to say that even though Odysseus was clearly capable of navigating by the stars, if he had set out from Ogygia navigating by the stars alone, he would have had a slim chance of reaching Ithaca ever again. Calypso’s assistance and knowledge of her location is another reason she is so invaluable to Odysseus’ survival.


Inō is the next goddess to come to Odysseus’ aid. Much like Calypso, she too has a small part, the smallest of the three mentioned herein. But her entire purpose in the Odyssey is to save the life of Odysseus. Inō is an early form of a mermaid; in mythology, mermaids first appeared “in the poets” (Burnell), such as the Odyssey. There is more than one story detailing how, exactly, Inō went from a human to goddess of the water, the “one with lovely ankles… esteemed by the gods as she deserves” (Lawall). The main tenet of her immortality, however, is her scarf, which renders the wearer invulnerable (Burnell). Inō meets Odysseus under unfortunate circumstances; Odysseus has just been found sailing safely home by by Poseidon, and, angry he blinded his son, Poseidon is seeking revenge by destroying his ship and hopefully him as well. Inō, however, recognizes Odysseus’ plight in the boiling waters of the sea, and lends her scarf to him to protect him, saying:


“Just do as I say. You seem no fool to me/ Strip off those clothes and leave your craft/ For the winds to hurl, and swim for it now, you must,/ Strike out with your arms for landfall there,/ Phaeacian land where safety awaits” (Lawall).


Inō is a lifesaver in that she rescues Odysseus from almost certain death at the hands of Poseidon, and had she not appeared to offer him her scarf, it is certain that Odysseus would have drowned in the “heavy breaking seas” caused by Poseidon (Lawall).


The final goddess is the one that over shadows the previous two in her devotion to assisting Odysseus. In the study of the classics, Pallas Athena is always associated with being the goddess of war; “Pallas” is thought to have meant “brandished,” a clear allusion to war (Howatson and Chilvers). And her loyalty to Odysseus is likely the result of his own legendary prowess as a war hero. Her assistance is ever-present in the Odyssey, and her assistance is responsible for saving Odysseus’ life more than once. In the scene with the goddess Inō, Odysseus is in a great deal of trouble as he struggles to save himself from the ocean. While Inō has given Odysseus her scarf to prevent him from drowning, he still must somehow make land fall on the land of Phaeacia, just out of reach, and while the sea is still foaming, he stands no chance of doing that safely (Lawall). In return, “the god [Athena] stemmed his current, held his surge at once/ and smoothing out the swells before Odysseus now,/ drew him safe to shore at the river’s mouth” (Lawall). Even after landing Odysseus safely on Phaeacia, Athena saves him again when leading him to the palace shortly after meeting Nausicaa, daughter of King Alcinuous. Warning him that “the men here never suffer strangers gladly” and “have no love for hosting someone from foreign lands,” she transports him across the island, invisible to all (Lawall). Here, again, Athena saves Odysseus from problems, potentially hostile locals; in his current state, starved from lack of food during his exhausting ordeal with Poseidon, a fight with any locals would have likely ended badly.


While the first two goddesses do not reappear in the story and Athena does, they each play critical roles in the completion of Odysseus’ trip home. And Athena essentially is Odysseus’ trip home; she facilitates connections wherever he goes (like in Phaeacia), alters his appearance to make him more hospitable, and essentially makes it entirely possible for him to return home (Lawall). In the Odyssey, it is interesting to note that even in the sexist society of Ancient Greece, Odysseus the war hero and archetypal “good guy” finds himself in need of female assistance so frequently. This association does not end with the gods. Indeed, the first people he meets after landing at Phaeacia are the daughter of the king, Nausicaa, and her maids (Lawall). When Odysseus appears to them, “naked now as he was, for the need drove him…a terrible sight, all crusted, caked with brine” (Lawall) he promptly begs the assistance of young Nausicaa, who directs him to her fathers palace. Thus Odysseus’ need for the assistance of the goddesses (and other females) is, once again, strongly asserted.



free essay for anyone who wants it.

i'll toss in the works cited page in MLA format for $15.00

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