Greek poetry before Homer was all composed orally; therefore it is assumed that Homer’s works are the first written works of art (Joachim Latacz, page 15). Scholars who have spent extensive time researching the origin of Homer’s work cannot verify a specific time the Iliad and the Odyssey were written (Latacz, 24). Many who have tried, usually run into a dead end, but it seems most have came to the conclusion that the poems were produced in the late eighteenth century (Latacz , 59).
There are several similarities in the two stories of the Iliad and the Odyssey. The two stories are classic, epic poems written by the legendary poet Homer. Achilles and Odysseus, the main antagonists of the Iliad and the Odyssey, are both Greek warriors and are both represented in each of the poems in some fashion. Odysseus is shown in the Iliad all throughout as one of the Greek forces most cunning warriors (Coleman-Norton, JStor). Although he is shown throughout the Iliad, his first appearance is the most similar to the Odysseus shown in the Odyssey when he is the one picked to captain the ship that is returning Chryseis to her father ( The Iliad, lines 440-447). Achilles character is shown in book eleven of the Odyssey when Odysseus speaks with his spirit for a brief moment (The Odyssey, 585-629). The two stories also include a form of kidnapping within. In the Iliad it is shown right away with the taking of Chryseis and Briseis by Agamemnon and Achilles as war prizes (The Iliad, 182-185). The Odyssey shows ...
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...tions of different women, the song of the Sirens, and the fruit of the Lotus Eaters. Another contrasting point between the two poems is cunning versus strength. The Iliad is all about war and brute force in battle to determine the winner. The Odyssey is all about the brain of Odysseus. He must use his wit to survive many of his misadventures.
Homer’s epic poems, The Iliad and The Odyssey, are similar in many ways as well as different. The gods of Mount Olympus play a big role in each of the stories; but that does not necessarily mean the same role. The attitudes betrayed from the gods seem as if they are nearly polar opposites from the Iliad to the Odyssey. Yes, there are some similarities shown from the gods rather than just their name but there are very few. The structure as well as the theme of the two poems shows a few similarities and many differences, also.
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