Critique of the last chapter of Virgil's "Aeneid"

Essay by Anonymous UserUniversity, Bachelor'sA, February 1996

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The story of Virgil's Aeneid was drawn from many sources, the most influential being the work of the Greek poet Homer. Virgil based the first six books of the Aeneid on the Odessey and the last six books on the Iliad both written by Homer. The Aeneid describes the adventures of Aeneas, the legendary Trojan hero who survived the fall of troy, sailed westward to Italy and founded Rome. During the time that Virgil wrote the Aeneid he incorporated all known Rome history up to his own time.

The book is world renowned and also is said by many to be one of the best works ever. The last chapter of the Aeneid has caused some problems for readers. The first problem that is evident is the manner in which Aeneas deals with Turnus. In book XII Turnus states that the fight should be between the two men as apposed to both armies fighting any further.

Turnus had every right to dislike Aeneas who came unannounced, tried to take his fiancé, Aeneas' son killed their sacred deer, and he took his land. They have a great dual and Aeneas disarmed Turnus by striking him in the leg. With his sword to his chest Turnus makes a last request for his body to be returned to his family, as Aeneas is considering the request he notices that Turnus is wearing the sword belt of Pallas and the stoic ways of Aeneas leave him as rage, fury, and anger run through his body. He kills Turnus in anger and dedicates his death to Pallas. This loss of control and act of violence is the opposite of stoicism and the way Aeneas had been portrayed the rest of the epic.

Turnus has to die for the founding of Rome to occur but he...