According to ancient tradition, the author of the Greek narrative epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey (both derived from oral tradition). Little is known about the man, but modern research suggests that both poems should be assigned to the 8th century BC, with the Odyssey the later of the two.
The epics, dealing with military values, social hierarchy, and the emotions and objectives of a heroic class of warriors, supported or opposed by the gods, had an immediate and profound effect on Greek society and culture and were a strong influence on the Roman poet Virgil in the composition of his Aeneid.
The predominant dialect in the poems indicates that Homer may have come from an Ionian Greek settlement, such as Smyrna or Chios, as was traditionally believed.
In the Renaissance a revival of the study of Greek brought English translations from Alexander Pope and George Chapman. Modern writers influenced by Homer include James Joyce and Nikos Kazantzakis.
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