Aeneid Book 10, lines 333 - 344

Aeneas joins the fray

by Virgil

Warned by the sea-nymphs that his comrades and his son are hard-pressed in battle, Aeneas and his new allies hasten to support them. As they approach, he signals with his huge, new, god-given shield, to the delight of the Trojans and the dismay of their enemies. Once ashore, Aeneas is quick to join the battle, and it is not long before the Rutulian warriors have a taste of what they are up against. The English is by the 16th century poet John Dryden.

See the illustrated blog post here.

To follow the story of Aeneas in sequence, use this link to the full Pantheon Poets selection of extracts from the Aeneid; see the next episode here.

To listen, press play:

To scroll both versions of the poem at the same time - tap inside one box to select it and then scroll.

Fidum Aeneas adfatur Achaten:
‘suggere tela mihi, non ullum dextera frustra
torserit in Rutulos, steterunt quae in corpore Graium
Iliacis campis.’ tum magnam corripit hastam
et iacit: illa volans clipei transverberat aera
Maeonis et thoraca simul cum pectore rumpit.
huic frater subit Alcanor fratremque ruentem
sustentat dextra: traiecto missa lacerto
protinus hasta fugit servatque cruenta tenorem,
dexteraque ex umero nervis moribunda pependit.
tum Numitor iaculo fratris de corpore rapto
Aenean petiit: sed non et figere contra
est licitum, magnique femur perstrinxit Achatae.

The prince then call’d Achates, to supply
The spears that knew the way to victory —
“Those fatal weapons, which, inur’d to blood,
In Grecian bodies under Ilium stood:
Not one of those my hand shall toss in vain
Against our foes, on this contended plain.”
He said; then seiz’d a mighty spear, and threw;
Which, wing’d with fate, thro’ Maeon’s buckler flew,
Pierc’d all the brazen plates, and reach’d his heart:
He stagger’d with intolerable smart.
Alcanor saw; and reach’d, but reach’d in vain,
His helping hand, his brother to sustain.
A second spear, which kept the former course,
From the same hand, and sent with equal force,
His right arm pierc’d, and holding on, bereft
His use of both, and pinion’d down his left.
Then Numitor from his dead brother drew
Th’ ill-omen’d spear, and at the Trojan threw:
Preventing fate directs the lance awry,
Which, glancing, only mark’d Achates’ thigh.