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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Two questions present themselves : what is the significance of this ' following of a Greek predecessor ... The general question is one of the greatest importance for Latin literature as a whole and it is central not only for Virgil's ...
Here he presses the question in an untraditional direction : how can a great goddess have treated in this unjust way a man outstanding for moral virtue ? It is as if Virgil were shocked by his own story when he goes on with the ...
That plangent question is not quite what we might expect from the progenitor of a race of conquerors . 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 ...
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Rome and Arcadia
the Muse in hobnails
The Aeneid and the myth of Rome
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