Theme Of Love In The Aeneid

1740 Words 7 Pages
Register to read the introduction… Queen Dido is tricked by Cupid in the form of Ascanius and “[uses] his gifts to fire the queen to madness, / weaving a lover’s ardor through her bones” (Virgil, 785-786). She begins to ask Aeneas questions upon questions about his comrades depicted in the scenes on the walls of her temple. Queen Dido requests and begs Aeneas to tell her and her dinner guests about his story, and he goes on to accept her request. As he tells his story, he portrays himself as the hero. Along with this and the many things that Dido finds that they have in common, “[her] passion for Aeneas has grown during his narrative” (Gransden, 37). During this growth, it has created an internal conflict within Dido. As the queen talks to her sister, she brings up Sychaeus who was Dido’s first husband that was killed back in Phoenicia. Dido explains to her sister that this issue was caused by Aeneas since he “is the only man who’s roused [her] deeply, / [swaying her] wavering heart” and has “carried [her] love away” (Virgil, 28-29, 35). However, Dido vowed that her love for her first husband would always stay with him and that she would not consider another to remarry. This is her internal conflict caused by love; either keeping her vow or pursuing a new love. Anna, Queen Dido’s sister, asked her sister why she would “waste away, grieve [her] youth away, alone, / never to know the joy of children, all the gifts of love” and to follow her newfound love because “no one tempted [her] in the past, / not in [her] great grief, [over Sychaeus] / no Lybian suitor, and none before in Tyre” (Virgil, 40-41, 44-46). Anna also brought forth the idea that if she were to marry Aeneas, then Carthage would be able to grow into a wonderful city because of the assistance from the Trojan army. Dido decided to continue on with her newly discovered love for …show more content…
Within “The Aeneid”, love towards your country brought a person happiness, while love towards an individual brought another sadness, despair, and ultimately death. As Aeneas’ internal conflict is choosing between the love for his country and following his destiny or to stay with Dido, and as Dido’s internal conflict is choosing her vow to Sychaeus or to love a new lover; they both have consequences if the wrong choice is chosen. If Aeneas had chosen to stay with Dido, then his future would have looked similar to Mark Antony and Cleopatra. If Dido had chosen her vow to Sychaeus, then her future would not have held an unhappy, painful, tragic love story. It may not have also involved her suicidal

Related Documents