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Ebook The Homeric Hymns by Homer read! Book Title: The Homeric Hymns
The size of the: 877 KB
Edition: Spring Publications
Date of issue: May 1st 1998
ISBN: 0882142100
The author of the book: Homer
Language: English
Format files: PDF
ISBN 13: 9780882142104

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3 Stars, Completed February 9, 2016

I'm not sure how it happened but after taking six semesters of Latin (high school and a few upper level college courses of the foreign language), I never had to translate and read any Roman or Greek text fully in Latin. We read excerpts or parts in translated idiomatic English. So I sort of felt cheated by this being someone that was very interested in mythology growing up. (It's a shame most of my Latin/Greek mythology knowledge is from Percy Jackson and the Olympians series; Rick Riordan does a good job with being consistent with the characters and stories but I'm aware there are so many creative liberties as well in those middle grade retellings.) Anyway, I decided to take an Introduction to Mythology course my last semester of undergraduate studies for fun and this text was one of the required readings.

After reading the opening Introduction, I learned that The Homeric Hymns, a series of poems and stories written a few millennia ago, aren't, in fact, written by Homer but anonymous poetry. They were created for entertainment and performed by the Greeks at religious events, competitions, and festivals but used the same meter, dialect, and style as Homer's epic poems, The Iliad and The Odyssey . These hymns were sung in celebration to the gods and described man's daily struggles.

Thirty three of the thirty four poems were about celebrating the gods and one was used to address the hosts of some Greek performances. Most served as introductions before performances because, often times, these stories were about how some of the gods and goddesses were born and their origins. Others are just entertaining accounts of the gods and goddesses' interactions with mortals.

I was pleasantly surprised that I knew most of these stories even before I had read them. My favorite by far was one of the longer hymns, the second hymn, which was the first "Hymn to Demeter." This one was about the well known story about the abduction of Persephone by Hades and how it lead to a bad season of vegetation because of Demeter's grief for the loss of her beloved daughter. The other longer hymns had other popular Greek myths such as Hermes and his act of stealing Apollo's cattle as a day old baby and Aphrodite's affair with Anchises as punishment by the gods. Shorter hymns such as the birth of Athena and how she sprung from Zeus's head were also included.

Unlike monotheistic religions, these gods and goddesses had a lot of human-like qualities and were flawed despite being divine. And you found yourself disliking them for their pettiness, selfishness, and troublesome nature than wanting to revere them, but I loved how each god and goddess helped explain man's nature. And I've always found it funny how there are so many intended innuendos and sexual connotations in Greek and Latin poetry. (One I notice often used in today's society is "carpe diem" or "seize the day," but it's actually from a very sexual poem by Horace; he's talking to Leuconoe (no one is very certain if she was completely fictional or just some person that was close in the poet's life) about "seizing the day" by sleeping with him.)

The Homeric Hymns had a selection of passages ranging in length and included a variety of gods, goddesses, and other divine figures. The notes at the end were helpful with triggering my memory with the lesser known mythical creatures and kings and queens. Overall, I only really liked three (the ones I mentioned earlier about Demeter, Hermes, and Aphrodite) while I found the others to be too short to have much meaning or story behind them to be entertaining.


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Ebook The Homeric Hymns read Online! In the Western classical tradition, Homer (Greek: Όμηρος) is considered the author of The Iliad and The Odyssey, and is revered as the greatest of ancient Greek epic poets. These epics lie at the beginning of the Western canon of literature, and have had an enormous influence on the history of literature.
When he lived is unknown. Herodotus estimates that Homer lived 400 years before his own time, which would place him at around 850 BCE, while other ancient sources claim that he lived much nearer to the supposed time of the Trojan War, in the early 12th century BCE. Most modern researchers place Homer in the 7th or 8th centuries BCE.
The formative influence of the Homeric epics in shaping Greek culture was widely recognized, and Homer was described as the teacher of Greece. Homer's works, which are about fifty percent speeches, provided models in persuasive speaking and writing that were emulated throughout the ancient and medieval Greek worlds. Fragments of Homer account for nearly half of all identifiable Greek literary papyrus finds.

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