Part I establishes the basic motifs and patterns for the heroic and royal battle narratives. For the heroic pattern, Chapter 2 examines six important narratives from Egypt, the ancient Near East, and Homer. In these stories, “our” side meets the challenge of an enemy threatening to destroy “our” life. Typically the leaders must find a hero who is able to meet the challenge.
Chapter 3 explores the royal pattern, in which the king takes the role of both hero and leader. These narratives celebrate the relationship between king and deity who often takes a role in the battle.