Ancient Epics

English / April 23, 2015 / No Comments /
Compares Virgil’s The Aeneid with Homer’s the “Iliad” & the “Odyssey.” Differences based on oral tradition & literate audience.

The Roman poet Virgil (sometimes spelled Vergil) is best-known for his epic work The Aeneid which celebrates the founding of Rome. The work takes its shape from the Greek epics of Homer, the Iliad and the Odyssey, and like the latter work, it tells of what happened to one of the leaders in the Trojan War in the years immediately following that conflict. Yet while there are similarities between Homer and Virgil, there are also important differences showing that Virgil is a product of a different culture, has a particular agenda in the writing of his epic that sets him apart, and shaped his work in a way that allowed it to be seen as both a synthesis of Greek and Roman culture but also as a precursor and standard for Western culture thereafter.


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