The Iliad (Real Reads)

Overview

It is the ninth year of the siege of Troy by the Greeks. Will the fighting go on forever?

Achilles, the greatest of Greek heroes, is angered by Agamemnon and decides to withdraw from the battle. What is the reason for his wrath? Is there anything that will make him change his mind and return to the battlefield?

Both armies have suffered tremendous losses, and the long war seems to be heading towards a ...

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Overview

It is the ninth year of the siege of Troy by the Greeks. Will the fighting go on forever?

Achilles, the greatest of Greek heroes, is angered by Agamemnon and decides to withdraw from the battle. What is the reason for his wrath? Is there anything that will make him change his mind and return to the battlefield?

Both armies have suffered tremendous losses, and the long war seems to be heading towards a stalemate. The Greeks, however, have an ingenious stratagem that may well determine the outcome of the war.

Brave warriors, noble heroes, women of divine beauty and envious gods moved by human passions come alive in this wonderful retelling of the most famous epic war story of all time.

Real Reads are accessible texts designed to support the literacy development of primary and lower secondary age children while introducing them to the riches of our international literary heritage. Each book is a retelling of a work of great literature from one of the world’s greatest cultures, fitted into a 64-page book, making classic stories, dramas and histories available to intelligent young readers as a bridge to the full texts, to language students wanting access to other cultures, and to adult readers who are unlikely ever to read the original versions.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781906230531
  • Publisher: Real Reads
  • Publication date: 9/15/2013
  • Series: Real Reads Series
  • Edition description: Reprint
  • Pages: 64
  • Sales rank: 985,543
  • Age range: 9 - 13 Years
  • Product dimensions: 5.10 (w) x 7.60 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Homer

HOMER is 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.

THANOS TSILIS was born in Athens in 1977, and studied graphic arts, illustration and animation. Most of his work has been in illustration, though in 2002 he also started working for animated films. From 2005 to 2008 he worked for Total Eclipse Games, and since then has worked mostly as a concept artist for advertising and digital entertainment.

BEATRICE SAMPATAKOU is one of Greece’s best-known retellers of Greek mythology, and has written the stories of the gods and goddesses of her literary tradition for all levels of readers. Her Greek-language versions of the Iliad and Odyssey are the standard versions used in Greek schools.

Biography

We know very little about the author of The Odyssey and its companion tale, The Iliad. Most scholars agree that Homer was Greek; those who try to identify his origin on the basis of dialect forms in the poems tend to choose as his homeland either Smyrna, now the Turkish city known as Izmir, or Chios, an island in the eastern Aegean Sea.

According to legend, Homer was blind, though scholarly evidence can neither confirm nor contradict the point.

The ongoing debate about who Homer was, when he lived, and even if he wrote The Odyssey and The Iliad is known as the "Homeric question." Classicists do agree that these tales of the fall of the city of Troy (Ilium) in the Trojan War (The Iliad) and the aftermath of that ten-year battle (The Odyssey) coincide with the ending of the Mycenaean period around 1200 BCE (a date that corresponds with the end of the Bronze Age throughout the Eastern Mediterranean). The Mycenaeans were a society of warriors and traders; beginning around 1600 BCE, they became a major power in the Mediterranean. Brilliant potters and architects, they also developed a system of writing known as Linear B, based on a syllabary, writing in which each symbol stands for a syllable.

Scholars disagree on when Homer lived or when he might have written The Odyssey. Some have placed Homer in the late-Mycenaean period, which means he would have written about the Trojan War as recent history. Close study of the texts, however, reveals aspects of political, material, religious, and military life of the Bronze Age and of the so-called Dark Age, as the period of domination by the less-advanced Dorian invaders who usurped the Mycenaeans is known. But how, other scholars argue, could Homer have created works of such magnitude in the Dark Age, when there was no system of writing? Herodotus, the ancient Greek historian, placed Homer sometime around the ninth century BCE, at the beginning of the Archaic period, in which the Greeks adopted a system of writing from the Phoenicians and widely colonized the Mediterranean. And modern scholarship shows that the most recent details in the poems are datable to the period between 750 and 700 BCE.

No one, however, disputes the fact that The Odyssey (and The Iliad as well) arose from oral tradition. Stock phrases, types of episodes, and repeated phrases -- such as "early, rose-fingered dawn" -- bear the mark of epic storytelling. Scholars agree, too, that this tale of the Greek hero Odysseus's journey and adventures as he returned home from Troy to Ithaca is a work of the greatest historical significance and, indeed, one of the foundations of Western literature.

Author biography from the Barnes & Noble Classics edition of The Odyssey.

Good To Know

The meter (rhythmic pattern of syllables) of Homer's epic poems is dactylic hexameter.

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