Homer was the traditional name assigned to the author of the Iliad
and the Odyssey
, two of the most famous epic poems ever written. Virtually nothing is known about Homer
as a person. Many people are doubtful about whether a single person can have written both poems. By historical and linguistic evidence, it's most likely that these works were composed in the Greek
settlements of Asia Minor
in the late eigth century BC.
Homer's epics were both written in elaborate style, with language that was impersonal and formal. The metrical form is dactylic hexameter. No stylistic difference can be distinguished between either of the two works.
In addition to the Iliad and the Odyssey, there are a series of relatively short poems celebrating various gods. These are composed in similar style as the epics, and have been called the "Homeric Hymns."
Homer was the parent of Greek literature. Everything from drama, historiography, and philosophy show the marks of issues and the techniques Homer used to approach them.