The Iliad by Homer is from the MODG 10th Grade Ancient History and Literature Syllabus.
Aside from Sacred Scripture, there is perhaps no work in the Western Tradition more important than Homer’s Iliad. Its influence can be felt on every great work of literature for at least 800 years after it first appeared and is absolutely essential in helping to establish a proper understanding of the men and women of the pre-Christian world. The characters presented in the story were the flesh and blood heroes of the ancient world; they were the men and women held up as paragons to be imitated. To really understand any of the most fundamental personalities of ancient history, from Alexander the Great, to Julius Caesar, one must first understand those they sought to emulate.
The epic tale of Achilles and his wrath, set in the closing days of the Trojan War, presents the reader with a comprehensive view of the pagan world, from the heights of Olympus, to the bloody battlefield, to the domestic life of the city. Homer does not shy away from the brutality of war, nor from the darker side of human nature. Alongside that darkness, though, Homer vividly brings the real excellence and the heroism of the human soul to light. It is a Classic in the truest sense and is absolutely a must-read for those embarking on the study of history or literature.
- Recommended by James Endres, MODG History and Literature Teacher