It's the comparison of Greek & Roman cultures in the storeis of Medea & The Aeneid.

Essay by gahottie1916University, Bachelor'sA+, October 2002

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Greeks Verses Romans

I thought that both of these stories were very interesting to read. The Greeks and Romans had similarities and differences in their cultures. I will discuss the similarities and differences of their cultures, and the stories of Medea and Aeneid.

Both the Roman and the Greeks respected and feared their gods. Romans preferred war. It was in their nature to fight. They were raised to battle. Romans were not well rounded; their main or only study growing up was physical training and military science. Aeneas was very much Roman in this way. Aeneas was very skilled on the battlefield. Greek heroes were well rounded. Greeks would study music, dancing, rhetoric, philosophy, mathematics, physical training, and military science. Studying rhetoric, philosophy, and mathematics made Greeks more useful citizens. The Greeks two main beliefs were: know thyself, and nothing in excess. Roman heroes were considered great because of their achievements on the battlefield.

Unlike a Greek hero, a Roman hero could not be overcome by emotion or lack of self-control. Aeneas lost his best friend, Pallas, during the war to the enemy, Turnus. However, he was not overcome by thoughts of revenge as he continued fighting.

Roman spirit was the major influence of the Aeneid. Unlike the Greek heroes, Aeneas did not let is emotions interfere with his goals. This trait helped him to accomplish his goal even though Aeneas did not get to see Rome after all his sacrifices. Virgil's goal in writing the Aeneid is to present Aeneas as a pious individual, and thus giving Rome a glorious founding. By closing the novel with an act of rage, however, Virgil portrays Aeneas as a ruthless killer. The ending is inappropriate because it casts doubt on the very reason for which Virgil wrote the Aeneid. Aeneas is presented as someone who is the model of pietas. Romans must show piety towards his family, his country, and above all, piety to the Gods.

Euripides' characterization of women is considered unique in the play Medea because the tragic Heroine is done over by a woman after cheating on her with the princess of the King of Corinth. He places emphasis on human emotions and individual psychology in order to help the reader produce a clear picture of the characters. Medea features strong dramatic situations and a stirring part for the heroine, whose attitude of feminine pride and tradition is still popular in today's world. The theme of revenge is strong in the sense of Medea's desire to seek revenge on Jason.

Greeks hated chaos and in Medea, the only way to achieve this peace is to remove the one who causes the chaos. Women in Ancient Greece were a minority. Medea went to a great extent to help Jason. She killed her own brother and disrespected her father to be with him. This deeply angers Medea, which becomes her tragic flaw, to be an over excessive sense of revenge. Medea naturally becomes angry and acts in ways considered the opposite of what was expected of a Greek woman. She kills the princess and her children to get back at Jason for leaving her. She is very decisive and intelligent and had thought through her actions against Jason before carrying them out.

Medea is about a woman who fights back against injustice in a world of men, although her methods are quite shocking. Aeneid is about a woman who fights back against injustice in a world of men, although her methods are quite shocking. I would suggest reading both of these stories to anyone.