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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He is allowed to see the glories of the history which will be , depicted in cold and glittering metal , but , since that history has not yet happened , even with divine aid the hero cannot really understand it .
Pity is the English word derived from the Latin pietas and pity is as characteristic of the poem as pietas is of its hero . It will not have escaped the reader that in every one of these cases it is the impulsion of the gods which ...
It reminds us that the hero's first utterance in the poem is the wish that he were dead . In reply Anchises expounds a Platonic philosophy of rebirth after purgatory for sin , which seems to disregard the question of nationality ...
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Rome and Arcadia
the Muse in hobnails
The Aeneid and the myth of Rome
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