Consider the thorough depiction of Sibylline's prophesy in Virgil's Aeneid (6.77-102) or haruspicy (foretelling the future) in Seneca's Oedipus (303 ff.). In certain cultures, such as ancient India, literature may serve as the primary chronicle of a religious tradition. For example, the Mahabharata is an extensive collection of stories covering many topics including war, love, politics, philosophy, etc.
Also consider the Bible. It is both literature and religion. As Christianity is the largest religion in the world, it is important to understand how both Judaism and Islam view the Bible.
Biblical literature is made up of four major divisions: the Torah (or Pentateuch), the Prophets, the Hagiography (or Lives of the Saints), and the Apocrypha. The Torah consists of the Five Books of Moses: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. This material covers Israel's history from its creation until about 450 B.C., when the people rebel against Moses' leadership and are given land of their own.
The Prophets include Moses, Elijah, and Elisha. These men were considered holy prophets because they spoke for God. They were also political leaders who fought against sin and idolatry throughout Israelite history.
The Hagiographies are stories about other people who have connections with Christianity.
The Sumerian/Babylonian Epic of Gilgamesh, which dates from around 2150 BCE, is one of the first known literary works. Even yet, accuracy in recounting real events was valued (as ancient criticism of the historian Herodotus' descriptions of events demonstrates). The poem itself for many years was believed to be a collection of stories about the legendary king Gilgamesh, but new evidence has shown it to be a single work.
It includes examples of all five of Aristotle's major categories of composition, including narration, argument, complaint, description, and prophecy. In addition, it contains many other types of compositions such as epigrams, proems, prayers, songs, and verses. Although not considered a novel in our sense of the word, the Epic of Gilgamesh does deal with large amounts of narrative material in a systematic way and uses characters who change over time. It therefore meets all three of Aristotle's requirements for poetry.
In conclusion, the Epic of Gilgamesh is considered the first great work of literature because it is assumed that this poem started a tradition of storytelling that developed over time into what we know today as literature. This assertion is based on two facts: first, the poem itself states that its purpose is to entertain the reader; second, many other poems, stories, and essays were written by different authors throughout history that follow similar structures and themes to the Epic of Gilgamesh.
Inscriptions on tombs, stele, obelisks, and temples; myths, tales, and legends; religious writings; philosophical works; autobiographies; biographies; histories; poetry; hymns; personal essays; letters, and court records are all examples of ancient Egyptian literature. Although much has been written about ancient Egypt over the years, its culture is still visible in many ways today, especially through its writing.
Ancient Egyptian literature can be divided up into three main categories: religious texts (such as prayers and sermons), literary texts (such as stories, poems, and treatises), and administrative documents (such as letters, decrees, and statutes).
Religious texts are important tools for learning about ancient Egyptian society because they show what people believed about gods and humanity, what duties they felt were necessary for salvation, and what actions could help them obtain eternal life after death. Religious texts also include instructions on how to perform various rituals so that God will listen to them and their supplications will be answered.
The second category, literary texts, includes anything written for entertainment purposes, such as novels, short stories, plays, and movies. These texts often feature characters who struggle with issues such as love, loss, anger, or fear and who learn through these experiences.
The major works of Greek, Roman, and other comparable ancient civilizations are referred to as Classical Literature. Classical literature includes the works of Homer, Ovid, and Sophocles. The phrase does not only refer to novels; it may also refer to epics, lyric poetry, tragedy, comedy, pastorals, and other types of literature.
Classical literature is considered one of the most important influences on modern literature. Many classic writers have become famous over time: Homer, Virgil, Ovid, Terence, Livy, Vergil, Cicero, Catullus, and Lucan are all well-known names. These poets and others like them were responsible for developing many elements of modern literature including drama, fiction, and poetry. Although much classical literature was written in Ancient Greece and Rome, some of the most famous poems and plays are from different times periods all over the world. For example, "The Iliad" is a Greek epic poem that we today would call a novel. It is believed to have been written around the end of the 13th century BC.
Classical literature is often quoted or referenced in today's society. For example, many American students learn about Shakespeare's work through class discussions and school theater productions. Also, many scientists believe that they are studying ancient writings when they are reading actual texts from Classical authors such as Plato or Aristotle. Finally, many people use examples from classical literature in order to make themselves or others feel better about themselves or their situation.