Homer’s Odyssey and Iliad Background

What is an epic? A long narrative poem about a national or legendary hero.
Which two works are considered the first great works of Western Literature? The Odyssey and the Iliad
Who is the Odyssey named for? Its hero, Odysseus or Ulysses
What is the Iliad named for? Ilium, or Troy, the setting of the action
Who is the main character of the Iliad? Achilles
Which came first, the Iliad or the Odyssey? This Iliad
Which war were both the Iliad and the Odyssey based off of? The Trojan War
What was the cause of the Trojan War? Economic problems
How did the Trojan War begin? Helen, the most beautiful woman in the world and wife of Kind Menelaus of Sparta, was kidnapped by Paris, a young Trojan prince
How were Homer’s works first recorded? By word of mouth. They were memorized by traveling poets called thaj sodes who recited them at important events
What is the premise of the Iliad? It is the tenth year of the Trojan war. Neither side is winning. Achilles, the greatest Greek warrior and Agamemnon, the leader of the Greeks have been arguing over a captive slave girl. Achilles goes, sulking into his tent, giving the Trojans an advantage. However, when Achilles’ friend Patroclus dies at the hands of Hector, a Trojan hero, Achilles goes into war again and kills Hector. The story ends with a twelve-day truce to mourn the dead.
What is the premise of the Odyssey? Odysseus is the creator of the Trojan horse (we all know this story). In his miraculous defeat of the Trojans, he angers those Gods and Goddesses who supported the Trojans. They vow that his journey home will be long and difficult. This journey takes 10 years.
How many books are there in the Odyssey? 24
Describe the three main plot strands in the Odyssey? 1. What happens to Odysseus’ wife and child as they wait for his return2. Odysseus’ wanderings during the 10 years3. Odysseus returns to Ithaca and joins his son in defeating enemies
What is the name of Odysseus’ son? Telemachus

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