Interpretation Of The Aeneid Essay, Research Paper
Though depicted as a hero by Virgil, Aeneas had lost the war of Troy. He showed signs of imperfection in his character. Aeneas was sent out by the gods to create the city of Rome and establish it into a powerful empire. He is separated from his men when Juno creates a devastating storm that lands him at Carthage. When he gets to Carthage his mother Venus tells him to go and find the city newly built by Dido, who is the queen of Carthage. When he arrives in Carthage Dido and Aeneas quickly fall in love. This is where his character begins to show signs of imperfection.
While in Carthage, Dido decides to take Aeneas on a hunting trip with a group of men. They get separated, and go into a cave for shelter, the gods create this plot so they fall in love. In the cave the two realize their lust for each other. This is where their affair starts.
When the affair reaches its peak, he and Dido get so involved that Zeus has to send Mercury, the messenger to come and remind Aeneas of his mission, that he should not forget about it. So Mercury tells Aeneas that he should forget about Aeneas, get a fleet equipped with many men and sail off to find Rome.
“What have you in mind? What hope, wasting your days in Libya? If future glories do not affect you, if you will not strive for your own honor, think of Ascanius. Thin of the expectations of your heir Julius, to whom the Italian realm, the land of Rome, are due.
Another flaw in his Aeneas’s character was the fact he tried to hide his departure from Dido by leaving at night. Dido had some clue that some plot was in the air. She caught a wind of change, being in fear of her safety. She came face to face with Aeneas. Dido asked Aeneas if their love cannot hole them together than what can. Dido was very outraged at his leaving and said this to Aeneas.
“I hope and pray that on some grinding reef midway at sea you’ll drink your punishment and call and call in Dido’s name. From far away, I shall come after you with my black fires, and when cold death has parted body from soul I shall be everywhere. A shade to haunt you! You will pay for this.”
Heroes in many epics are deemed heroes, but their imperfections are hidden by the greatness they have achieved in the stories. Here in Virgil’s Aeneid Aeneas is depicted as a hero by Virgil, his imperfections are well hidden in the context of his greatness. But his flaws are well observed during the time he was in Carthage with Dido, which ultimately led to the death of Dido.