M.G. Bianco's Reviews > The Aeneid

The Aeneid by Virgil
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Aug 15, 12

bookshelves: fiction
Read in July, 2012

When I began reading this book I felt very strongly that Virgil was not quite the author Homer was. When I finished reading the book, I was less convinced of that opinion.

Virgil is clearly writing in imitation of Homer. But imitating greatness is not to be seen as a weakness or fault in Virgil's own writing. In fact, quite to the contrary, Virgil was able to do in one epic poem what it took Homer two to do! Homer wrote one epic poem, The Iliad, to describe war for the Greeks. He followed that up with a second epic poem, The Odyssey, to describe the home and homecoming for the Greeks. He did both masterfully. Virgil, on the other hand, writes about both home/homecoming and war all wrapped up into one epic poem. He does it well.

I will be translating portions of this poem from the Latin into English with my Challenge 4 class (Classical Conversations) this year, as well as reading it again in English with them. I hope to discover more insights in the process.

This really is a must read--although I realize that Peter Leithart would beg to differ (at least his introduction to Heroes of the City of Man would seem to indicate) that any Christian *must* read the classics. So maybe I should say that anyone interested enough to read this review is someone who should probably read the poem.
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