It seems a little reductive to "rate" one of the most important books in Western culture.
The most exciting drama of war and men ever-
Plus any would-be writer will gain much by noting the literary devices used brilliantly by Virgil.
The themes of loyalty, duty and heroism are examined in detail with beautiful writing- very movingly.
The shocking end!! I'm still thinking about the ramifications Virgil was saying about the Roman Empire.
What is lost when hate and vengeance blot out all other emotions?
The final line: " His life fled with a groan of outrage down to the shades below."
Never, ever, would I have thought that I would enjoy epic poetry so much. Once I had finished this version I did attempt to read another translation and didn’t fare so well, thus I attribute most of my enjoyment to the work of Robert Fagles. The translation makes to book apparently.
Having always enjoyed both Trojan and Roman history I have a basic knowledge of the names of the characters, including the gods and goddesses that are an important part of this tale. I’m sure it could be enjoyed without knowing these but it made it much easier to follow having that information already at hand.
I found myself very amused by the blatant Roman propaganda displayed in the verses. Every once in a while I had to wonder if the populace would really fall for this but I guess when you already believe your emperor is a god this couldn’t really have been much of a stretch.
This poem was well worth the time to read and I might even have to break my no re-reading rule sometime in the future.
Great translation, great story.
The lack of understanding of the feminine is a product of the Roman intellectual elite no longer studying the Aeneid and thus losing contact with the Greek and Trojan Goddess. As a priest today we have to remember we made the Gods to teach the people how to get in touch with various aspects of the Deity or Divine Intelligence no matter what planet or culture. Now to bring back compassion. MM
The Aeneid tells the story of the Trojan hero Aeneas, who escaped from Troy as it fell to the Greeks, led a group of Trojans to the Italian peninsula, and with them founded a city that would, centuries later, lead to the founding of Rome. Virgil, writing in Latin, adapted Homeric Greek epic to explore crucial issues facing Romans of his time. He uses the figure of Aeneas to explore a conception of heroism different than Homer's, and to explore the themes of civilization, violence, and humanitas, a word coined by the Romans of Virgil's time to capture the qualities most essential to being deeply human and humane. He also uses the epic to help his readers reflect on what it means to be Roman. Annotation by Professor Walter Englert.
Lombardo's translation is very readable in English. Roman version on Homeric hero poem. Enjoyable to read. The tough part is the introduction however the introduction is quite necessary for fully enjoying the story.
Amazing translation. R.I.P. to the translator. And Virgil, of course :P
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