(i) Epic means a long narrative poem that tells in grand style the history and aspirations of a national hero. (ii) A long narrative poem dealing with heroic theme and adventure. (সুদীর্ঘ রোমাঞ্চকর কাহিনীকাব্য, মহাকাব্য)।
There are two types of epic:
(1) Primary or Oral epic:
A Primary epic is a type of epic with which the epic tradition began. In a primary epic the episodes taken from the oral tradition are linked with one another to make a longer story.
Homer's Iliad and Odyssey are primary epics.
(2) Secondary or Literary epic:
The Secondary or Literary epic is the one which imitated the tradition of the primary epic. A primary epic displays savage and rude heroism but a secondary epic shows a more refined taste.
Virgil's Aeneid, Dante's Divine Comedy and Milton's Paradise Lost are secondary epics.