Homer Writing Styles in The Iliad

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English meter involves patterns of stressed and unstressed syllables. Greek meter, on the other hand, involves patterns of long and short syllables in which, as a general rule, two short syllables equal one long syllable. Greek poetry does not rhyme, although it uses of alliteration and assonance (repeated use of the same or similar consonant patterns and vowel patterns, respectively).

The Iliad is written in dactylic hexameters, which is the "standard" form for epic poetry: in fact, this particular meter is sometimes referred to as "epic meter" or "epic hexameter." Hexameter means that there are six elements, or "feet," in each line; dactylic refers to the particular metrical pattern of each foot: in this case, the basic pattern is one long syllable followed by two short ones, although variations on that basic pattern are allowed. The final foot in each line, for example, is almost always a spondee...

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This section contains 799 words
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Epics for Students
The Iliad from Epics for Students. ©2005-2006 Thomson Gale, a part of the Thomson Corporation. All rights reserved.