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Have You Ever Eaten Lotus Fruit?

To modern Greeks, the lotus fruit is the Japanese persimmon, which looks a lot like a large, smooth, hairless peach. I have seen them growing in gardens in Lakonia province in the Peloponnese of Greece. Personally I’m not a fan of this particular lotus fruit, it’s dry and leaves your mouth feeling like it really needs water. It tastes a bit like vanilla. After tasting this fruit, it’s hard to believe that Odysseus was so fascinated by it. and his crew of adventurers.

Of course, it’s reasonable to assume that the ancient Greek hero stayed close to his homeland, but that’s unlikely given how many years it seems it took for him to return home after the Trojan War. It is much more likely that he traveled to Asia and encountered the sacred lotus. The sacred lotus, Homer wrote in Book 9 of the Odyssey, caused Odysseus and his followers to forget the purpose of their journey, which is why some commentators suggest that the lotus eaters of the poppy of
ate the seed pods, you will see that they resemble those of the opium poppy . Each pod contains approximately 24 seeds.

In Cambodia, they are appreciated as a very tasty snack! The lotus plant is also valued for its medicinal properties as it contains nuciferin and aporphin, which are substances similar to morphine. This indicates that Lethe’s sleep could well be induced by ingesting the plant. No wonder Odysseus takes so long to get home. Herodotus, the father of history, thought that the lotus eaters were inhabitants of the coastal area of ​​Libya.

Herodotus is not always a reliable source, however. In ancient times, eating the lotus fruit was believed to cause forgetfulness. Whether this was before or after Homer’s Odyssey is debatable. Maybe lotus eaters never really existed. However, they have certainly captured the imagination of generations.

The English poet Alfred Lord Tennyson wrote a poem about her, The Lotos – Eaters, and the idea of ​​it also caught Edith Wharton’s imagination. As seen in his novel The Age of Innocence. Fans of Rick Riordan’s novels will no doubt recall the lotus eater theme in his Camp Half-Blood Chronicles. If you are curious to taste the Greek lotus, go to the Peloponnese in autumn. seems to reap it.