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Odyssey Literary Terms

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A few of the literary devices Mr. Sheehy's class studies while reading The Odyssey.

A few of the literary devices Mr. Sheehy's class studies while reading The Odyssey.

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  • 1. Literary Terms & The Odyssey English 9
  • 2. Epic • A long poem telling a story about the actions of heroes and gods
  • 3. Epic hero • A “larger than life” person who takes on a dangerous journey. • He possesses the character traits most valued by the culture who tells his story
  • 4. Simile • comparison of two things using the words like or as • “caught two in his hands like squirming puppies “
  • 5. Epic Simile - defined • long, detailed version of a regular simile • Often uses phrases like – just that way – just so – just as – even as • When reading, it feels like the speaker is getting lost on a tangent.
  • 6. Epic simile – an example “Sometimes in farmyards when the cows return well fed from pasture to the barn, one sees the pens give way before the calves in tumult, breaking through to cluster about their mothers, bumping together, bawling. Just that way my crew poured round me when they saw me come” (118-123).
  • 7. Metaphor • A comparison where you call one thing something it is not. • Using one thing to represent something else
  • 8. Analogy • A comparison, usually on multiple points of similarity
  • 9. Personification • giving human traits or characteristics to a non-human thing • “each one took my hands, / and wild regret and longing pierced them through, so the room rang with sobs” (103-104).
  • 10. Flashback • When a story is told by a character who looks back on the past - flashes back to it
  • 11. Poetic Justice • When a character gets what he deserves • When the most fitting reward or punishment is doled out to a character