“I sing of arms and of the man”
After a century of civil strife in Rome and Italy, Virgil wrote The Aeneid to honour the emperor Augustus by praising Aeneas – Augustus’ legendary ancestor. As a patriotic epic imitating Homer, The Aeneid also provided Rome with a literature equal to the Greek. It tells of Aeneas, survivor of the sack of Troy, and of his seven year journey – to Carthage, falling tragically in love with Queen Dido; then to the underworld, in the company of the Sibyl of Cumae; and finally to Italy, where he founded 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’.
David West’s acclaimed prose translation is accompanied by his revised introduction and individual prefaces to the twelve books of The Aeneid.
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-The New York Times Book Review (front page review)
“Fagles’s new version of Virgil’s epic delicately melds the stately rhythms of the original to a contemporary cadence. . . . He illuminates the poem’s Homeric echoes while remaining faithful to Virgil’s distinctive voice.”
-The New Yorker
“Robert Fagles gives the full range of Virgil’s drama, grandeur, and pathos in vigorous, supple modern English. It is fitting that one of the great translators of The Iliad and The Odyssey in our times should also emerge as a surpassing translator of The Aeneid.”
-J. M. Coetzee
One: The Trojans reach Carthage
Two: Aeneas’ Narration—The Sack of Troy
Three: Aeneas’ Narration continued—His Travels
Four: The Tragedy of Dido
Five: The Funeral Games
Six: The Visit to the Underworld
Seven: War in Latium
Eight: The Site of the Future Rome
Nine: Siege of the Trojan Camp
Ten: The Relief and Pitched Battle
Eleven: Councils of War: Pitched Battle Again
Twelve: Decision: the Death of Turnus
List of Variations from the Oxford Text
Glossary of Names
Genealogical Table of the Royal House of Troy and Greece