Virgil lived through the fall of the Roman Republic and the establishment of the Empire. In his poems we see a series of attempts, increasingly ambitious in scale and conception, to combine technical brilliance and beauty with profound meditation on the nature of imperialism and the relation of the individual to the State. From short pastoral poems on love and song he progressed to the heroic myth of the founding of Rome. "The Aeneid", immediately recognised as the greatest masterpiece of Latin literature, has had incalculable influence on European literature in the two thousand years since it was first published.
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The civil war between Caesar and Pompey was only one of the self - inflicted wounds which Rome and Italy suffered during the poet's lifetime . In 63 , when Virgil was just seven years old , Catiline , at the head of an Italian army ...
Varro includes some passages of a moral and patriotic character : he deplores the ostentation of the present as compared with the admirable simplicity of the past ; he makes his speakers gather round a map of Italy and reflect on its ...
( A 12.827 ) Let Italian hardihood make Rome great . This picks up a theme which has been touched on elsewhere in the poem - the moral character of the Italian people . A powerful speech in the Ninth book points a contrast between the ...
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Rome and Arcadia
the Muse in hobnails
The Aeneid and the myth of Rome
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