The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #75102   Message #1319716
Posted By: GUEST
07-Nov-04 - 02:11 PM
Thread Name: Wee pen knife
Subject: RE: Wee pen knife
Nerd,

Whoa! Strong Claim.

I can't claim any knowledge of the Oral-formulaic theory and am way too lazy to do a google search....

BUT

your claim is certainly counter-intuitive to a layperson.

Are you suggesting that Homer might just as well have chosen "tall blonde Achaeans" or "goat-riding Achaeans"? If he was composing for an audience that had no knowledge of or experience with Achaeans I can see where he could get away with it, but was that really the case? (And I am aware that speaking of Homer as if he were a real individual might simply be a convenient fiction for the sake of this discussion).

I'd be interested in an example of a formula that is/was clearly arbitrary and unrelated to any reality.