The Aeneid Books Essay

This essay has a total of 1058 words and 6 pages.

The Aeneid Books



The subtlety in the differences between Aneas and Turnus, reflect
the subtlety in the differences between the Aeneid and the Iliad. Although
both characters are devout and noble, Aneas does not possess the ardent
passion of Turnus. Unlike Turnus, Aneas is able to place his beliefs in
the fated establishment of Latium before his personal interests. Although
Turnus is not a bad person, the gods favor Aneas in their schemes. The
roles of Aneas and Turnus are reversed as the Aeneid progresses. The
erasure of Aneas' free will accounts for his triumph and success.
Time and time again, Aneas' courage, loyalty, and will are tested
in the Aeneid. Through seemingly endless journeys by sea, through love left
to wither, and through war and death, Aneas exhibits his anchored
principals and his unwavering character.

"Of arms I sing and the hero, destiny's exile...
Who in the grip of immortal powers was pounded
By land and sea to sate the implacable hatred
of Juno; who suffered bitterly in his battles
As he strove for the site of his city, and safe harboring
For his Gods in Latium" (Virgil 7).

As a slave to the gods and their plans, Aneas assimilates his mind and
sacrifices his life to the establishment of Latium. As the greatest of all
warriors, Aneas displays his superb strength and his leadership
capabilities, by guiding the Trojans to victory over the latins and
establishing Latium. The selflessness of Aneas and his devotion to the
Gods, enables him to leap over and break through any obstacles that
obstruct his destiny. Patterned after Homer's Hector, Virgil's Turnus is
also a courageous and devout hero. As the most handsome of Rutilians,
Turnus' nobility reflects his physical appearance; he is a god-fearing,
libation-bearing soldier. Turnus was greatly admired and respected by his
subjects: "by far the fairest (of Italian men) / Was Turnus, favored both
in his noble forbears / And by the queen who advanced his claims with
eager devotion" (Virgil 147).
Unlike Turnus, Aneas is able to place his beliefs in Rome before
his own interests; that is the defining characteristic of Aneas' heroism.
Leaving Dido, the beautiful and passionate Carthaginian Queen, was
extremely difficult for Aneas, and he delayed leaving her as long as
possible. Aneas laments, "If the Fates / Allowed me the life I would
choose to live for myself... it is not / Of my own free will I must seek
Italy" (Virgil 84). Aneas had suffered greatly at sea and lost many men, he
did not long to sail again. Aneas did not want a war to erupt between
Trojan and Latins, but he knew that nothing could keep him from
establishing Latium where the gods had prophesied. Both Aneas and Turnus
are spurred on to action by visions. In the underworld, Aneas is goaded
by the image of his father:

"'Father, it was you--
Your grief-engendering spirit time and again
Appeared to me and constrained me to make my way
To the edge of this world'" (Virgil 139).

Turnus' hatred for Aneas, inspired by the goddess Allecto, was the only
stimulation that Turnus required.

"Turnus!
Will you stand by and see so much of your effort wasted?
And what is yours transferred to Trojan settlers?
The king is refusing to give you your bride, or the dowry
Won with you blood, and a stranger is being imported
To inherit the throne! Go on expose yourself
To unmerited dangers! Be mocked!" (Virgil 158).

Consequently, Turnus leads the war against the newcomers blindly and filled
Continues for 3 more pages >>




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