Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set (Memoria Press) {Review}

Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set (Memoria Press) {Review}

Do you even have to ask to know that this Creative Madness Mama absolutely adores materials from the people behind Memoria Press? In addition to teaching my own children on their level, I am also slowly working myself through the upper levels of material in continuing my own Classical Christian Education. Right now, I am delighted to have started a portion of the eighth grade Classical History curriculum. Thanks to the blessing of the Homeschool Review Crew, I am able to review Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set, a set of The Iliad & The Odyssey curriculum from Memoria Press which makes up the plans for Classical History in the second semester of a planned eighth grade year.

What is in the complete set?

Our box arrived, and knowing the Memoria Press logo, my third grade daughter was ecstatic. We opened it up and while I was trying to explain to her that this is actually a review for me and something she’ll get to eventually in third grade… she grabbed The Odyssey text and ran off and started reading it alone. I guess she must be ready for reading beyond our current study of Ancient Greece and Rome with books like Rosemary Sutcliff’s Black Ships Before Troy & The Odyssey!

As mentioned, the set includes a set of student readers (the novels). These are translated by Samuel Butler and republished by Memoria Press in a durable, attractive paperback edition (epub and Kindle versions are also available for purchase from Memoria Press). There are black and white illustrations through out the text for interest. Each novel has a Student Guide, Teacher’s Guide, and Instructional DVD to help teach and cement the information for your student and bring Homer alive. The Teacher’s Guide has inset student pages with answers, notes, quizzes, and tests. Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set (Memoria Press) {Review}The Iliad by Homer
Series: Memoria Press Classical Studies
ISBN: 161538037X
Genres: Homeschool Textbook
Published by Memoria Press on August 19th 2013
Pages: 447
Format: Paperback
Source: Homeschool Review Crew
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The Iliad is an ancient Greek epic poem in dactylic hexameter, traditionally attributed to Homer. Set during the Trojan War, the ten-year siege of the city of Troy (Ilium) by a coalition of Greek states, it tells of the battles and events during the weeks of a quarrel between King Agamemnon and the warrior Achilles. Although the story covers only a few weeks in the final year of the war, the Iliad mentions or alludes to many of the Greek legends about the siege; the earlier events, such as the gathering of warriors for the siege, the cause of the war, and related concerns tend to appear near the beginning. Then the epic narrative takes up events prophesied for the future, such as Achilles' looming death and the sack of Troy, prefigured and alluded to more and more vividly, so that when it reaches an end, the poem has told a more or less complete tale of the Trojan War. The Iliad is paired with something of a sequel, the Odyssey, also attributed to Homer. Along with the Odyssey, the Iliad is among the oldest extant works of Western literature, and its written version is usually dated to around the eighth century BC.Recent statistical modelling based on language evolution gives a date of 760-710 BC. In the modern vulgate (the standard accepted version), the Iliad contains 15,693 lines; it is written in Homeric Greek, a literary amalgam of Ionic Greek and other dialects.

Memoria Press Review Memoria Press ~ ( is the company known for their Latin curricula, but in the past few years they are providing so much more for education in cottage schools and homeschools everywhere including their histories and classical studies. Samples of each book and the DVDs may be found on the Memoria Press website.

Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set
The Iliad and Odyssey DVDs are each about 12 hours long and include one lecture per chapter (called “books”). There are five discs for The Iliad and six discs for The Odyssey in hard cases. Thus, each individual lecture is about 25-30 minutes. Using the Memoria Press lesson plans, (aimed at eighth grade, but usable over a series of grade levels) which cover the Book of the Ancient Greeks in the first semester and the Iliad & Odyssey in the second semester, students read two or three chapters per week. The lectures on the DVDs bring the lesson even more to life than the simply with the use of the Teacher’s Guide. There is the inclusion of pictures, discussion prompts, quotes, and other historical context. While the rare homeschool educator at home may be very knowledgeable in the background of Greek and Roman history, being able to have these lectures to enhance lessons is a great bonus and a way to push a student toward more independent learning. The Student Guides include Vocabulary and Characters defined, comprehension questions to be completed, Quotations and Discussion Questions to be discussed orally for each chapter/book. Followed by an Appendix, which includes genealogies, full character lists, a terminology glossary, and more. The Student Guides are stapled and easy to open and write within. These books are consumable. In a nearly identical fashion, the Teacher’s Guides include everything within the student lesson pages inset on the page with Background and Drill, Discussion Help, Teacher Notes, and even prompts for things to study for tests in the future. The How to Use this Teacher’s Guide segment at the very beginning is also helpful in including a short biography of Homer, scheduling tips, exams and essays and more. The Teacher’s Guide includes the same Appendix portion on full pages, but also a section with Tests and Test Keys.

What’s next?

This is where the study of Western Civilization truly begins in our study plan with Memoria Press Classical History curriculum. Even for people completely new to studying Great Books, The Iliad & The Odyssey are a great place to begin. The Teacher’s Guides have a labeled spine, while the consumable student books have a stapled and easy lay flat format. Using the set, one could choose either book for a starting point. As to follow the Memoria Press Lesson Plans, in the second semester of study it starts with the Iliad, soon to be followed by the Odyssey. The set is aimed at students from 7th-12th grade or even continue Classical Education adults, as mentioned in the plan of study from Memoria Press it is planned for the eighth grade year. If following Memoria Press’ plan of study, students will have already been exposed to D’Aulaires Greek Myths (3rd and 4th), Famous Men of Rome (5th), Famous Men of the Middle Ages (6th), Famous Men of Greece, The Trojan War, and Horatius at the Bridge (7th), and the Book of the Ancient Greeks (first semester of eighth grade). In the next year, studies continue with the Book of the Ancient Romans and the Aeneid (9th). Plans for 10th-12 and even an optional year have been laid out, but include many individual books rather than these longer studies. This that I’m currently discussing are the plans for Classical Studies from Memoria Press, this does not include other history studies such as Christian Studies or America and Modern Studies. In Memoria Press’ plans, eighth grade modern studies is a continuation of geography. While Christian Studies works through the Book of the Ancient World. As a side note, each of the Dorothy Mills, John H. Haaren and A. B. Poland books have a Memoria Press republished edition available as well as a set of Student and Teacher’s Guides to help guide and enhance the study. Iliad & Odyssey Complete Set (Memoria Press) {Review}The Odyssey by Homer
Series: Memoria Press Classical Studies
ISBN: 9781615380381
Genres: Homeschool Textbook
Published by Memoria Press on January 1st 2012
Pages: 358
Format: Paperback
Source: Homeschool Review Crew
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'Muse, tell me of a man: a man of much resource, who was made to wander far and long, after he had sacked the sacred city of Troy. Many were the men whose lands he saw and came to know their thinking: many too the miseries at sea, which he suffered in his heart, as he sought to win his own life and the safety of his companions.' Recounting the epic journey home of Odysseus from the Trojan War, The Odyssey - alongside its sister poem The Iliad - stands as the well-spring of Western Civilisation and culture, an inspiration to poets, writers and thinkers for thousands of years since. This authoritative prose translation by Martin Hammond brings Homer's great poem of homecoming to life as Odysseus battles through such familiar dangers as the cave of the Cyclops, the call of the Sirens and his hostile reception back in his native land of Ithaca.

Our thoughts…

Memoria Press Homer Lesson PlansIn addition to the complete set, which I received for review, I also went ahead a purchased a digital copy of the Ancient Greeks and Homer Lesson Plans. This arrives as an instant PDF for less than $10. The lesson plans cover an entire year of study, and for the purposes of this review, I will be skimming at first and the skipping ahead in the plans to Week 16, which is where the plans for The Iliad begin. After years of using a variety of both full Classical Core Curriculum Guides as well as Simply Classical Lesson Plan Guides and individual a la carte course lesson plans, I can tell you that I LOVE the Memoria Press lesson plans and the organization that they afford me in my planning and scheduling. It truly makes something transform into an open and go material. The Ancient Greeks and Homer Lesson Plans are written for four days per week of study. An example I can give you is Week 17, Monday, The Iliad, Read Book 2: Before Battle, Complete Book 2 Study Guide. Some days are to read one new chapter/book, others are multiple sections, and even days for review are built in. Tests and even Final Exam days are scheduled as well. This makes things so simple for me as an educator to glance and know where my student needs to be.  (Even if it is myself for this particular study!) A standard lesson for me includes reading the Identify section in the study guide to prepare for the reading, Read the pages in the novel as appropriate. For myself, I’m just reading, but since my daughter is interested (but not quite taking this course yet) we are taking turns reading aloud. Occasionally, I will take notes during the reading for important details. At the time of this review, I have yet to decide whether I want to annotate this book or not. Since we only have one copy at the moment, I’m even more unsure. I have really enjoyed taking notes in the margin of the study guide pages and marking where some answers to Comprehension Questions as I have come across them. During my “class” for the day, I also take some time to sit and watch the appropriate lecture on the DVD (my third grade daughter insists on being included in this as well).

For students being taught, one of the neat things about the way that Memoria Press guides are written is that some questions could be discussed aloud, while others can be written depending on what method your student learns best. It is not necessary to write the answer to every question, as long as the question is pondered and answered. This makes the program really accessible to any student, whether handwriting is a issue or not.

After spending time in this set of study for myself, I absolutely plan to keep the Teacher’s Guide and the idea of the course of study to use when my students get to the appropriate age. With each and every material that I use from Memoria Press, I find myself to be more and more impressed and wanting to use their materials again and again for my next student.

Ancient Romans LPCheck back in my archives to read my review on The Book of the Ancient Romans & The Aeneid (review before the release of the teaching DVDs) and the Lesson Plans scheduled for a portion of the ninth grade Classical History curriculum (paired with The Story of Christianity for a full year).

Connect with Memoria Press on Social Media


Homeschool Review Crew

First Form Greek, Iliad/Odyssey and American History {Memoria Press Reviews}

Make sure to check out the parts of my 1st, JrK, & Kindergarten review in posts!



Part I – Lesson Plans

Part II – Recitation & Phonics

Part III – Math

Part IV – Copybook & Memory

Part V – Enrichment

Part VI – Conclusion

CMM JrK Review

You might also be interested in Junior Kindergarten.

Part I – Lesson Plans

Part II – Phonics

Part III – Math

Part IV – Poetry

Part V – Prayer & Devotion

Part VI – Crafts


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About CherryBlossomMJ

The Creative Madness Mama also known as Margaret is a Christian Stay-at-home Mama, married to the Enginerd, Quilter, avid reader and book-a-holic. A book blogger for bunches of different publicists. She loves to share the latest and greatest about books coming out as well as her quilt and other crafty projects with some pictures of her eight-year-old AppleBlossom, three-year-old Almond Blossom (the Rascal boy!), six-year-old OrangeBlossom (the Princess), and newborn Mermaid Warrior in between. Plotting to be a homeschooler, she's a cloth diapering, breastfeeding, babywearing, list making mama full of a little creative and a lot of madness.