Schedule, syllabus and examination date

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Course content

Epic poetry is one of the most important and fascinating literary genres in ancient Greek literature, and has had a profound effect on later reception of Greek and the Greeks. During this course we read archaic epic poetry (e.g. Homer, Hesiod, Homeric hymns) and some later hexameter poetry (600-750 verses in total). In addition you will be expected to read supplementary literature for orientation and/or in-depth-study of literary, historical, linguistic and/or cultural aspects of the texts.

Learning outcome

Having completed this course, you will be be able to:

  • translate, understand, interpret and discuss texts from Greek epic poetry
  • know, understand and analyze the formal characteristics of Greek epic poetry, such as poetic/formulaic language/vocabulay and metrics
  • have a general overview of the history and development of Greek epic poetry
  • identify the literary devices in the course texts
  • understand and discuss critical reading on Greek epic poetry, and use commentaries


Students who are admitted to study programmes at UiO must each semester register which courses and exams they wish to sign up for in Studentweb.

If you are not already enrolled as a student at UiO, please see our information about admission requirements and procedures.


Formal prerequisite knowledge

GRE1001 – Innføring i gresk I og GRE1002 – Innføring i gresk II or equivalent

Recommended previous knowledge

At least 40 ECTS credits in ancient Greek. We recommend that you have completed all text courses on the 1000-level before you sign up for text courses on the 2000-level. We expect you to have knowledge equivalent to GRE1403 – Homer.


The teaching is given as seminars thoughout the semester (10 double sessions).

We expect you to participate actively in the seminars through:

  • weekly preparations of Greek text passages (translations)
  • occasional critical reading (secondary literature)
  • regular oral contribution; participation in class discussions, reading out loud

In order for you to be allowed to submit the final essay, the following compulsory tuition activities must be approved by the teacher:


Semester paper (8-10 pages of 2300 characters each).

When you write a semester paper, you are entitled to receive individual tutoring. The obligatory draft of the semester paper forms the basis for this tutoring. An exact deadline for handing in the draft will be given by the teacher during the seminar.

In order for you to qualify for the final examination, all compulsory tuition activities must be approved by the teacher.

Previous exams (up until spring 2019 the examination form was a written exam (4 hours))

Use of sources and citation

You should familiarize yourself with the rules that apply to the use of sources and citations. If you violate the rules, you may be suspected of cheating/attempted cheating.

Language of examination

You may write your examination paper in Norwegian, Swedish, Danish or English.

Grading scale

Grades are awarded on a scale from A to F, where A is the best grade and F is a fail. Read more about the grading system.

Explanations and appeals

Resit an examination

Withdrawal from an examination

It is possible to take the exam up to 3 times. If you withdraw from the exam after the deadline or during the exam, this will be counted as an examination attempt.

Special examination arrangements

Application form, deadline and requirements for special examination arrangements.


All courses are subject to continuous evaluation. The Department's assessments of courses are available at our web-pages, but generally only in Norwegian.

Facts about this course






Every spring


Every spring

Teaching language

Norwegian and English