• Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

The Significance of Immortals and Fate in Virgil's 'The Aeneid'.

Extracts from this document...

Introduction

VIRGIL - THE AENIED - 'Storm & Banquet' The Significance of Immortals and Fate In Virgil's 'The Aeneid', the intertwining themes of immortals and fate play a key role within the storyline, examples of which can be found in the events of 'Storm and Banquet'. It is these two themes that establish the foundation of the poem, as well as acting as the key elements that drive the events of the storyline. At the time of Virgil, fate was considered a sacred philosophy that affected everyone. It was the belief that events in one's life were designed and predestined to occur. Whether that fate was destined to be one of glory or downfall, it would be unavoidable at all costs. Part of this sacred belief was that fate was controlled at will by Jupiter, the leading superior Olympian who had the power to map out the fate of an individual mortal. Using his immortal powers and the assistance of other gods and messengers, he would ensure that that particular fate was fulfilled. Other less significant gods and goddesses would attempt to intervene with his plans for their own personal achievement, but Jupiter's decisions are always final, making fate inescapable. ...read more.

Middle

Both Neptune and Aeolus demonstrate the power to control nature; another key element of the poem. Virgil was inspired by Homer in a number of ways, and it is possible that this mythological element is one of them. Such incidences also allow him to display his use of imagery; for example his description of Aeolus releasing the tempest is extremely vivid - 'The winds seemed to form a column and pour out through an open gate to blow a hurricane over the whole world'. When Neptune blocks Juno's intentions and calms the storm, Virgil shows the god's powerful influence over nature in his speech to the winds - 'Do you winds now dare to move heaven and earth and raise these great masses of water without my divine authority?'. This also implies that the winds have will of their own, and are inferior to the extent that they must obey the demands of such a powerful immortal. In a way this supports the mythological ideas that nature is controlled by the immortals, and that nature itself acts as their means of expressing emotion and enforcing their authority. It is likely that the immortals were used as a way of promoting pride in Rome. ...read more.

Conclusion

This is shown through Aeneas' words the moment that Venus turns away and her immortal beauty is revealed - 'Why am I never allowed to take your hand in mine, to hear your true voice and speak to you as you really are?'. Venus makes one final intervention into the storyline at the end of 'Storm and Banquet'. In an attempt to save her son from Juno's manipulation that may stir the people of Carthage to turn against Aeneas, she sends Cupid to Dido in the form of Aeneas' son Ascanius. Being the god of sexual passion, Cupid places with the queen an infatuation for Aeneas that will save him from being attacked by Juno. However, it is this passion that will lead to Dido's own downfall. In conclusion, I feel that the intertwining theme of immortals and fate are the key elements of the 'The Aeneid'. Fate is controlled by the will of the gods and is unavoidable, there fore it is these two important factors that drive the storyline, events having been planned out beforehand. The actions of the immortals also help us to understand the philosophies and beliefs of the people at the time and how they possibly viewed the natural world, as well as the mythological influences from Homer that helped to inspire Virgil. A.D. - Joseph Smith August 2004 ...read more.

The above preview is unformatted text

This student written piece of work is one of many that can be found in our AS and A Level Classics section.

Found what you're looking for?

  • Start learning 29% faster today
  • 150,000+ documents available
  • Just £6.99 a month

Not the one? Search for your essay title...
  • Join over 1.2 million students every month
  • Accelerate your learning by 29%
  • Unlimited access from just £6.99 per month

See related essaysSee related essays

Related AS and A Level Classics essays

  1. Compare and contrast the portrayal of the Gods in Virgil's Aeneid and Ovid's metamorphoses.

    to feed him human flesh and he highlights his own power and important status, when he says: 'Can you suppose them (demi-gods) safe, when against me, me whom the lightenings, whom yourselves obey, Lycaon plots his treacherous devilry?'7 Moreover, when Jupiter contemplates the destruction of the world, he recalls several

  2. Assess the significance of the Gods in Homer's Iliad and Odyssey

    Divine quality? What kind of quality? What id the religious message of the ">Iliad<-"? There is certainly no providential design in the <+">Iliad<-">, no struggle for the transcendental cause. The Homeric gods have a different sphere. Their power lies in the immediate present.

  1. In your opinion, where did the real power lie within the Spartan Constitution?

    Unlike other Greek Poleis during the Archaic Period, the Spartiates didn't remove their Kings, instead choosing to keep them and have the Ephors act as a check-and-balance system for the power of the Kings. There were five Ephors, each of which only had one year in office, who played the

  2. To what extent does the architecture of Rome highlight the aims of the emperors?

    For example, Alston tells us that Caligula constructed temples to his "numen" or divine image on both the Capotiline and Palatine hills as he believed he was a god and that he should be worshipped. It was against the beliefs of the Romans that a living man should be considered

  1. Was Julius Caesar an effective leader?

    Caesar gratified the Roman people, and proved that he would not be a tyrant by pardoning his senatorial opponents. This clemency of Caesar's although magnanimous did not win the affection of his rivals.17 Through acts of mercy he preserved the rivals who went on challenging his authority during his dictatorship.

  2. To what extent and for what reasons did Augustus resist the creation of an ...

    Virgil?s Aeneid is the prime example of this; the poem depicts Augustus descending from heaven with ?Iulus?, loaded with the wealth of Egypt of the ?Orient?s spoils? and that ?he too shall be called upon in prayer?. To add to this emphasis of his connection with Iulus, the building of

  1. Is Aeneas pious, and would the Romans of Augustan Rome have thought him to ...

    all of Rome, past and in Virgil?s present, to ?govern the people of the world in (their) empire?, which is hugely obvious as propaganda, and in a way, excuses Augustus? plan for world domination, in the same way that many countries throughout history have excused the invasions of other countries:

  2. What is the role of Jupiters Prophecy in the Aeneid?

    He too will be called upon in prayer.? This prophesises the deification of Julius Caesar ? for a mortal to be formally recognised as a god was, understandably, an enormous honour for the Julian family, although it could be argued from the point of view of a Roman that due

  • Over 160,000 pieces
    of student written work
  • Annotated by
    experienced teachers
  • Ideas and feedback to
    improve your own work