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what are the 11 characteristics of epic poetry?
1. the hero is a figure of heroic stature, of national importance, or international prominence, and of great historical or legendary significance
2. the setting is vast in scope, covering great nations, the world, or the the universe
3. the action consists of deeds of great valor or requiring great courage
4. supernatural forces interest themselves in the action and intervene from time to time
5. poem is written in a style of sustained elevation and grandeur
6. the epic poet recounts the deeds of his hero with objectivity
7. poets open by invoking a muse to inspire and instruct him
8. poets open by stating his theme
9. poet opens in medias res
10. poet includes a journey to the underworld for his hero
11. poet includes catalogues of warriors, ships, armies: he gives extended formal speeches; and he makes frequent use of the epic simile. Often the hero will boast of past or future accomplishment
ten traits of the hero
1. hero are often of obscure or mysterious origin
2. heroes are neither fools nor invincible
3. heroes are called upon to make a difficult journey
4. the hero's way is not always direct or clear to him
5. the hero's way is beset with dangers, loneliness, and temptation
6. many quest tales supply friends, servants, or disciples as company for the hero
7. the hero has a guide or guides
8. the hero descends into darkness and is not the same after emerging form the darkness
9. what the hero seeks is usually no more than a symbol of what he really finds
10. with few exceptions, mythological heroes are male
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