Listen&Learn: Homer

Jaksyn Peacock Posted by: Jaksyn Peacock
Learn about the mysterious author of epic poems.

Pre-listening vocabulary

  • epic: a long narrative poem that tells the story of a hero
  • dialect: a version of a language that is specific to an area
  • document: to track something by writing it down
  • blind: unable to see
  • pseudonym: a false name that someone uses to hide their identity
  • oral: relating to speech

Listening activity

Gapfill exercise

Homer was an ancient Greek poet known for his epics, the Odyssey and the Iliad. The stories are some of the earliest foundations of European . However, know very little about Homer himself. The dialect of the original texts makes it likely that he was born in Ionia, which is now in Turkey. His birth year is hard to determine because he lived before was commonly documented. Historically, many and writers have depicted him as blind, but there is little evidence of this. There is even debate about whether Homer at all. Some people believe that the Odyssey and the Iliad were written by two different people using the same pseudonym. Some others believe that Homer simply compiled stories from oral traditions.

Comprehension questions

See answers below

  1. Historians believe Homer was from Ionia because
    a. the original texts were found there
    b. the dialect of the writing originated there
    c. the stories are set there
  2. Homer’s birth year is hard to determine because
    a. most calendars from that time period were destroyed
    b. time was not commonly documented yet
    c. different sources from the time name different years
  3. Homer is often depicted as
    a. a blind man
    b. a faceless figure
    c. a child

Discussion/essay questions

  1. Do you think it is important to know the real author of a piece of literature? Why or why not?

Transcript

Homer was an ancient Greek poet known for his epics, the Odyssey and the Iliad. The stories are some of the earliest foundations of European literature. However, historians know very little about Homer himself. The dialect of the original texts makes it likely that he was born in Ionia, which is now in Turkey. His birth year is hard to determine because he lived before time was commonly documented. Historically, many artists and writers have depicted him as blind, but there is little evidence of this. There is even debate about whether Homer existed at all. Some people believe that the Odyssey and the Iliad were written by two different people using the same pseudonym. Some others believe that Homer simply compiled stories from oral traditions.

Answers to comprehension questions

1b 2b 3a

Written and recorded by Jaksyn Peacock for EnglishClub
© EnglishClub.com

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