Aeneas has arrived but does not yet know the significance of the impoverished city that he is visiting.
Hear in Latin and follow in English here.
See the illustrated blog post here.
Today’s new Latin poem is from Virgil’s Aeneid. It sets the scene for Aeneas, as an honoured guest at the court of Dido, Queen of Carthage, to describe the fall of Troy. He is a Trojan prince, and the story he tells will be first-hand, vivid and full of drama, and a rarer subject in ancient literature than you might suppose – Homer’s Iliad ends before Troy falls. As Book 2 begins, Aeneas’s superhuman dignity and charisma are meant to remind us of his descendant, the Emperor Augustus.
Leaving Tartarus behind in his underworld journey, Aeneas arrives at the home of the blessed, the Elysian Fields. He will see many illustrious warriors there: the ones in the illustration are King Leonidas and the Spartans before the battle of Thermopylae, as imagined by Jacques-Louis David.
Hear the Latin and follow in English here.
Aeneas succeeds in rescuing his son and father, but cannot save his wife, Creusa. Hear the story in Latin and follow in English here.
Having persuaded Charon the ferryman to take him across the river Styx, Aeneas is distressed to find the spirit of his former lover Dido, the Queen of Carthage, in the Fields of Mourning, the home of those who in life have suffered unhappy love. Hear the Latin and follow in English here.
As Book 11 of the Aeneid begins, Aeneas makes preparations to bury the dead and mourn the fallen Prince Pallas, son of his ally, King Evander. Hear Virgil’s original Latin and follow in John Dryden’s classic English translation here.