Odysseus and Aeneas are two of the most prominent characters in Greek Mythology. They are considered to be two of the greatest heroes of their respective races. Obviously, these two characters have several similarities and, inevitably, some differences, as well, for several reasons.
First, as a similarity, they're both survivors, able to keep going when everything is stripped from them. At first, Aeneas is wandering the Mediterranean as the Aeneid opens, with everything that remains of his past loaded into his ships. Fresh from the Trojan War, it is given that Aeneas already lost his wife, Creussa, and left everything else, except his armor and sword, in the fallen city of Troy. On the other hand, Odysseus is stripped of his crew and his direction many times, from storms taking out his ship, specifically the one conjured by Poseidon upon Athena’s plead to him, to winds blowing him off course, brought about by the leather sack, given to him by King Aeolus, containing all the Storm Winds.
In addition, both these heroes fought at Troy during the war, and both spent a great deal of time sailing around, being frustrated by a divine nemesis, Hera and Athena respectively. Both were also delayed by women: Aeneas by Dido and Odysseus by Circe, Nausicaa and Calypso.
Next, they both have divine blood in their veins; Aeneas is the son of Aphrodite while Odysseus is the great-grandson of Hermes. Even though Hermes' blood is only one eighth of Odysseus, the family craftiness still shows. However, in Aeneas, the divine lineage tends not to show as apparently as it does in Odysseus.
Furthermore, they are both unique among epic heroes in that their strength comes not from inhuman powers or exceptional physical ability, but mainly from their will. Sheer willpower and bravery was the foundation upon which they based several of their next actions and decisions on. In the Odyssey, countless events where such determination was employed and a concrete example of this...