Essay by alixoxHigh School, 12th gradeA, October 2014

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Ovid's Metamorphosis and Virgil's Aeneid: A Comparison in Tone

The theme of duty appears in both Virgil's Aeneid and Ovid's Pyramus and Thisbe. Each author's attitude towards the Roman ideals of duty varies greatly between each of the works. Virgil's tone was selfless and he was able to portray a good Roman citizen that lived up to the ideals of duty through his character Aeneis. Ovid used a more selfish tone that portrayed the importance of personal needs over other's needs. Both of the tones used in each of the works are prevalent in our society today and create the basis for how society functions as a whole.

Ovid's tone in Pyramus and Thisbe does not follow the Roman ideals of duty. The Romans valued a sense of duty, honor and patriotism, while service to family and the state was valued to the highest degree. In Pyramus and Thisbe, Ovid uses a selfish tone.

The characters Pyramus and Thisbe are forbidden lovers that do not care what lengths they have to go to, to be together. They do not take anyone else's feelings into consideration and were not willing to sacrifice their own personal wants, needs and pleasures for anyone other than themselves. They did whatever they needed to do to be together even if it meant hurting other people in the process. In the end, they both ended up killing themselves, which was a selfish act by not thinking of how their families would be impacted. They did not value a duty to their people or those around them, they pursued a duty of pleasure to themselves.

Unlike Ovid in Pyramus and Thisbe, Virgil is able to convey Roman ideals through Aeneis' character in the Aeneid. Aenis makes many personal sacrifices in this story and is...