Virgil (70-19BC) studied rhetoric and philosophy in Rome where he became a court poet. As well as The Aeneid, his Eclogues earned him the reputation as the finest Latin poet. Before his retirement, David West taught Classics at the University of Newcastle.
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After a century of civil strife in Rome and Italy, Virgil wrote the Aeneid to honour the emperor Augustus by praising his legendary ancestor Aeneas. As a patriotic epic imitating Homer, the Aeneid also set out to provide Rome with a literature equal to that of Greece. It tells of Aeneas, survivor of the sack of Troy, and of his seven-year journey: to Carthage, where he falls tragically in love with Queen Dido; then to the underworld,; and finally to Italy, where he founds Rome. It is a story of defeat and exile, of love and war, hailed by Tennyson as 'the stateliest measure ever moulded by the lips of man'.
Translated with an Introduction by DAVID WEST
VirgilDavid WestDavid West
Virgil (70 BC - 19 BC) is considered to be Rome's greatest poet and one of the most influential writers of all time. His work, particularly the epic poem The Aeneid, has had lasting impact on the Western canon, inspiring Dante, Milton and James Joyce.