Hypothetical life of Homer

Clearly, all this must remain speculation. It is not that important: my interpretation of the poems does not depend on this. Any questions why A should be self-reflective and B not, must remain unanswered. The only criterion is that the story must make sense and explains a lot of references of both Iliad and Odyssey.

  1. Admittedly Autolykos is Odysseus maternal grandfather. But he is described as the "greatest thief in the world" (Od 19.395-) which seems a good description for someone who steals a whole city. His name is a hint as well.
  2. If this is true, the story that Phoenix tells is rather rough humour, a reversal of the picture that I give. Reversing wedded wife and concubine, he appears to say: "I slept with your mother, I could be your father". Note how his brother is the addressee, in a hidden way of course. It will certainly not be a literal version of events but I cannot help suspecting that the story of Phoenix' exile and the relation with Peleus and Achilles is some kind of reflection of Homer's own life.
    All this reminds of Hesiod's admonitory address to his brother Perses.