Extensive poems ( epic poems ) are referred to as national epic , which have such an outstanding meaning for the identification of a people or a nation that they are considered constitutive or at least exemplary for its cultural history .
They often deal with the historical or prehistoric self-assertion of a hero (hero) who stands up for the self-esteem of a modern nation. The often very old seals usually only have this function in modern times. The Nibelungenlied , which was completely forgotten between 1500 and 1750 , became a national epic in the 19th century, for example. In the age of nation-building in the 19th century, the national idea and the need for historical roots in one's own tradition in many younger nations led to the creation of a new national epic of identification.
List of national epics
The list below shows the national epics of individual states or peoples, the time of origin referring to the earliest written record that is known to us. Many national epics were passed down orally centuries earlier.
- National poet
- National hero
- Ossian - faked epic poetry around 1760 - the chants deal with Celtic heroes
- Heinrich Detering et al. (Ed.): National epics between facts and fictions . University of Tartu Press, Tartu 2011, ISBN 9789949199112 .