This is a landscape selection from the Latin poets (see the selections index here). The ancients would have assumed that the world was boundless and nature was inexhaustible, in contrast to our modern realisation that the world is small and fragile in a way that was unimaginable as recently as the 1960s.

First (see a shield used as an umbrella in the illustration from a 5th-century Virgil), in the wild and storm-swept Carthaginian hunting country, Dido and Aeneas find a fateful shelter from the rain in

Dido’s cave..

On the occasion of the festival of Fontinalia, Horace celebrates the beauty of

the Spring of Bandusia.

Horace flatters a friend over the attractions of his beloved Tarentum, but makes it clear that he will be staying at his Sabine farm near


Catullus gives us a complete account of the changing seascape from the Black Sea all the way to Italy as told by his


In Book 8 of the Aeneid, and centuries before it was built, Virgil gives us a

guided tour of the future Rome.

Zooming out, Boethius reminds us that prospects are not only Earthly and local, but

Cosmic and eternal.