This preview shows pages 1–2. Sign up to view the full content.
This preview has intentionally blurred sections. Sign up to view the full version.View Full Document
Unformatted text preview: While modern readers tend to find the first half of the Aeneid more engrossing than the second, Virgil himself regarded the second half as fulfilling the true purpose of the epic and expected his readers to feel the same. We, however, may sometimes find his descriptions of man-to-man combat wearisome, especially in Book X, in which these military contests go on longer than elsewhere. Still, Virgil's readers probably appreciated the elaborate descriptions of carnage. We must remember that the Romans were a warlike people: They relished gladiatorial fights, and persistent warfare was the means by which Rome forged its empire. Furthermore, war was regarded as the noblest theme of epic poetry. Virgil especially emphasizes a warrior's code of honor against which combatants are judged. Generally, those warriors who respect the unspoken code will prosper, but those who flaunt their...
View Full Document