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Examine how the Iliad can be seen as an epic.

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lehcir | Student | (Level 1) Valedictorian

Posted February 3, 2013 at 5:21 PM via iOS

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Examine how the Iliad can be seen as an epic.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted February 3, 2013 at 7:53 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that it's tough to not consider Homer's work an example of the epic genre.  It meets so many of the established criteria for what makes an epic.  The epic hero is evident in the work.  One could look at figures like Hector or Achilles as an example of the epic hero, one whose exploits and endeavors are worthy of a significant detailing.  At the same time, I think that one could see the supernatural presence of the story as part of the epic genre.  The Greek Gods and Goddesses occupy such an integral role in the development of the narrative that this condition of the epic work is also present.  The length and breadth of the work also helps to qualify it as an epic.  Additionally,the opening invocation of the work is one in which there is an epic quality imbued from the opening words.  The battles featured in the work are also of an epic condition.  The struggle between Achilles and Hector would be representative of an epic battle.  The work has come to be associated with the epic genre.  I am not sure one gets very far without seeing Homer's work as an epic.  The definition of the genre can go back to the work itself, used as a reference to what the epic actually means or embodies.

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