A long, narrative poem whose hero is a noble person, upon whose actions hinge the fate of a nation or a people. Consequently, epics tend to be o national or even of cosmic importance. The diction of the poem tends to be formal, elevated, and decorous. The setting of the epic is expansive and even global, as the hero embarks upon jounrneys that may take place over many years, often decades. The gods, referred toas the epic machinery, are interested in and take and active part in shapingthe events of the epic. Several epic conventions include the poet's invocation of the muse, a begining in medias res (in the middle of things), epic battles and/or epic games), catalogues (of ships, warriors, horses, etc.), delivery of set speaches, arming of the warrior, performance of religious rituals, and (sometimes) transmogrification of a dead hero to the celestial sphere.