Homer - Research Article from Encyclopedia of Philosophy

This encyclopedia article consists of approximately 6 pages of information about Homer.
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Homer

The Homeric poems Iliad and Odyssey (probably eighth century BCE) are of interest to the historian of philosophy because they provide the background, in language and to some extent in thought, from which Greek philosophy emerged. The hexameters of Parmenides and Empedocles follow the Homeric pattern closely, and they both use Homeric words and coin words for themselves after the Homeric model. They also sometimes use the same thought forms. For instance, a comparison may be drawn between Parmenides' journey (see Fr. 1) and Odysseus's journey to the underworld (Odyssey, Book 11). The Homeric simile is the forerunner of the natural philosopher's "working model," by which an unfamiliar process is explained by comparison with a more familiar one. For example, to illuminate his description of an evenly poised battle Homer introduced a "careful working woman" weighing wool in her scales; Empedocles compared the breathing process in animals with operations performed...

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This section contains 1,580 words
(approx. 6 pages at 300 words per page)
Buy the Homer Encyclopedia Article
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Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Homer from Encyclopedia of Philosophy. Copyright © 2001-2006 by Macmillan Reference USA, an imprint of the Gale Group. All rights reserved.
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