All Sources -
Updated Media sources (1) About encyclopedia.com content Print Topic Share Topic
views updated

221. Epic (See also Saga.)

  1. Aeneid Virgils epic poem glorifying the origin of the Roman people. [Rom. Lit.: Aeneid ]
  2. Beowulf Old English epic poem of sixth-century Denmark. [Br. Lit.: Beowulf ]
  3. Divine Comedy Dantes epic poem in three sections: Inferno, Purgatorio, and Paradiso. [Ital. Lit.: Divine Comedy ]
  4. Faerie Queene allegorical epic poem by Edmund Spenser. [Br. Lit.: Faerie Queene ]
  5. Frithiofs Saga Esaias Tegners poetic version of the Norse Saga of Frithiof the Bold. [Nor. Lit.: Haydn & Fuller, 275]
  6. Gilgamesh Babylonian epic of myth and folklore, centered on the king, Gilgamesh. [Babyl. Myth.: Gilgamesh ]
  7. Gosta Berlings Saga Selma Lagerlofs story of the legendary life of an early nineteenth-century character. [Swed. Lit.: Gosta Berlings Saga in Benét, 412]
  8. Heimskringla medieval account of the kings of Norway from legendary times to the twelfth century. [Norw. Hist.: Haydn & Fuller, 322]
  9. Iliad Homers epic detailing a few days near the end of the Trojan War. [Gk. Lit.: Iliad ]
  10. Jerusalem Delivered Tassos celebrated romantic epic written during Renaissance. [Ital. Lit.: Jerusalem Delivered ]
  11. Kalevala alliterative epic poem of Finland. [Finn. Lit.: Kalevala ]
  12. Laxdale Saga medieval account of two Icelandic families and their feud. [Icel. Lit.: Benét, 572]
  13. Lusiad, The celebrates Portuguese heroes and wars. [Port. Lit.: Magill II, 608]
  14. Mahabharata Indian epic poem of the struggle between the Pandavas and the Kauravas. [Indian Lit.: Mahabharata ]
  15. Nibelungenlied medieval German epic poem of Siegfried and the Nibelung kings. [Ger. Lit.: Nibelungenlied ]
  16. Njál Saga greatest of the Icelandic sagas, based on the historical adventures of two families. [Icel. Lit.: Haydn & Fuller, 524]
  17. Odyssey Homers long, narrative poem centered on Odysseus. [Gk. Lit.: Odyssey ]
  18. One Hundred Years of Solitude encompasses the sweep of Latin American history. [Lat. Am. Lit.: Gabriel Garcia Marquez One Hundred Years of Solitude in Weiss, 336]
  19. Orlando Furioso Ariostos romantic epic; actually a continuation of Boiardos plot. [Ital. Lit.: Orlando Furioso ]
  20. Orlando Innamorato Boiardos epic combining Carolingian chivalry and Arthurian motifs. [Ital. Lit.: Orlando Innamorato ]
  21. Paradise Lost Miltons epic poem of mans first disobedience. [Br. Lit.: Paradise Lost ]
  22. Ramayana epic poem of ancient India. [Indian Lit.: Ramayana ]
  23. Song of Igors Campaign Old Russian epic poem of 12th-century Prince Igor. [Russ. Lit.: Song of Igors Campaign ]
  24. Song of Roland chanson de geste of Roland and Charlemagne. [Fr. Lit.: Song of Roland ]
  25. Song of the Cid epic poem of Spain by an anonymous author. [Span. Lit.: Song of the Cid ]
  26. Terra Nostra combines the myths and history of twenty centuries of Western civilization. [Lat. Am. Lit.: Carlos Fuentes Terra Nostra in Weiss, 458]
  27. Volsunga Saga cycle of Scandinavian legends, major source of Niebelungenlied. [Scand. Lit.: Benét, 1064]
views updated


EPIC was an acronym for the "End Poverty in California" movement, an effort to promote left-liberal candidates within the Democratic Party in California and Washington State in 1934. Upton Sinclair formed the movement in 1933 and ran under its banner as the Democratic candidate for governor of California. Calling for "Production for Use and Not for Profit," Sinclair supported higher taxes on corporations, utilities, and the wealthy, along with a network of state factories and land colonies for the unemployed. The twelve principles of EPIC and its twelve political planks alarmed the Democratic Party establishment but deeply appealed to factions of an electorate concerned about the contemporary economic depression. By election day there were almost two thousand EPIC clubs in California. Sinclair lost the election by a small margin, but twenty-seven EPIC candidates won seats in California's eighty-seat legislature. In Washington, EPIC backers elected a U.S. senator.


McElvaine, Robert S. The Great Depression: America, 1929–1941. New York: Times Books, 1993.

McIntosh, Clarence F. "The Significance of the End-Poverty in-California Movement." The Pacific Historian 27 (1983): 21–25.

Sinclair, Upton. I, Governor of California, and How I Ended Poverty. A True Story of the Future. New York: Farrar and Rinehard, 1933.

James DuaneSquires/c. p.

See alsoCalifornia ; Great Depression ; Share-the-Wealth Movements .

views updated

ep·ic / ˈepik/ • n. a long poem, typically one derived from ancient oral tradition, narrating the deeds and adventures of heroic or legendary figures or the history of a nation. ∎  the genre of such poems: the romances display gentler emotions not found in Greek epic. ∎  a long film, book, or other work portraying heroic deeds and adventures or covering an extended period of time: a Hollywood biblical epic. • adj. of, relating to, or characteristic of an epic or epics: England's national epic poem Beowulf. ∎  heroic or grand in scale or character: his epic journey around the world. DERIVATIVES: ep·i·cal adj. ep·i·cal·ly adv.

views updated

epic Long, narrative poem in grandiose style. The earliest known form of Greek literature, epics were originally used to transmit history orally. Using highly formalized language, epics tend to involve gods, men and legendary battles. Homer is the author of two of the most famous epics, the Iliad and the Odyssey, which effectively established the scope and conventions of the form. Later examples include the Aeneid by Virgil, Paradise Lost (1667) by Milton, and The Faerie Queene (1589–96) by Spenser.

views updated

epic •priapic • aspic • epic •philippic, prototypic, stereotypic •Olympic • nitpick •ectopic, gyroscopic, heliotropic, horoscopic, isotopic, isotropic, kaleidoscopic, macroscopic, microscopic, misanthropic, myopic, philanthropic, phototropic, telescopic, topic, tropic •Ethiopic • biopic •Inupik, Yupik •toothpick

views updated

epic a long poem, typically one derived from ancient oral tradition, narrating the deeds and adventures of heroic or legendary figures or the past history of a nation. The word comes via Latin from Greek epikos, from epos ‘word, song’, related to eipein ‘say’.

views updated

epic adj. XVI; sb. XVIII. — L. epicus — late Gr. epikós, f. épos word, song; see -IC.

views updated

EPIC Engineering and Production Information Control
• (or Epic; (ˈpɪk)) European Prospective Investigation into Cancer