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06F CLASSICS 20 AENEID 2NDPAPER - Aeneas and Dido Torn by...

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Aeneas and Dido: Torn by Fate November 25, 2006
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The Fates defined destiny that controlled not only mortals, but also left the gods powerless to ultimately change the course of the future. This explains why Aeneas was forced to leave Dido; his fate was to find Rome, not to stay in Carthage and rule. Even with Dido’s protest and appeals, Aeneas still left her. Upon closer inspection his actions are rooted in the heart of Juno who didn't want her beloved city of Carthage to be destroyed. She tried to impede Aeneas' destiny, but her efforts are fruitless - clearly displaying that fate rules above all. Therefore, the love affair in The Aeneid by Virgil between Aeneas and Dido shows the Roman belief that neither mortals nor gods could ultimately change the fated founding and glory of Rome. The fact that Aeneas is chosen is a direct act of the Fates because his character is most compatible with their plan. Jupiter knows this and never doubts that the fate and destiny of Rome will not be fulfilled (Virgil, The Aeneid , I, 348). This shows that Jupiter already knows that the character of Aeneas is steadfast and obedient to the will of the gods. This is essential to the fulfillment of fate because as long as a mortal listens to the gods, then fate will be fulfilled. In effect, Jupiter acts as a facilitator of fate that tries to help ensure that fate does occur. Aeneas does exactly this and even proclaims when talking to Venus that "I am Aeneas, duty-bound...And my descent is from all-highest Jove" (Virgil, The Aeneid, I, 519). He recognizes that he does indeed have a duty as is told to him by his wife Cruesa's ghost. This creates Aeneas as the obedient pawn that allows the will of the gods to be fulfilled. This means that from the very beginning, the unwavering character of Aeneas is wisely chosen by the fates and would be part of the huge plan that created Rome. This highlights the Roman ideology that fate was indeed not only inevitable but also preordained.
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06F CLASSICS 20 AENEID 2NDPAPER - Aeneas and Dido Torn by...

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