uploadDreamGuide - Christopher Mui Professor Wronski...

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Professor Wronski Medieval and Modern Dreams 12 February 2008 Dream Guides Provide New Perspective In Scipio’s Dream , by Cicero, Africanus is particularly suited to be Scipio’s guide figure. Africanus sits in this position because of his familial ties, his military success, and his view of earth from the seat of heaven. Furthermore these elements help to persuade not only Scipio, but also the reader of higher truths that Cicero values. As Scipio’s grandfather, Africanus has unique ties to Scipio. However, these ties are not the typical grandson-grandfather connection. Scipio says, “My grandfather’s appearance was better known to me from his portrait-mask than from my memories of him” (259). Such lines show that Scipio and his grandfather had little time to form a close connection. Scipio is admittedly afraid of his grandfather when he first appears in the dream. Scipio says of seeing his grandfather, “Upon recognizing him I shuddered” (259). Africanus’ appearance generates a blend of respect and fear that causes Scipio to recognize the dream’s import. The fear element comes from his almost ghoulish presence as a portrait-mask in Scipio’s life; respect from the knowledge that Africanus is Scipio’s elder. This respect for an elder is a compelling reason to listen to whatever Africanus may have to say. As a motivator, the fear element is also helpful, and fuels Scipio’s attentiveness. Africanus’ renown as a military leader is crucial to his place as a guide figure. When
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This note was uploaded on 03/31/2008 for the course ENGL 185 taught by Professor Wronski,c during the Spring '08 term at Cornell.

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uploadDreamGuide - Christopher Mui Professor Wronski...

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