Sunday, April 29, 2007

Vergil Journal 10: Book VI + VII ?'s

Book VI ?'s

1) What is the role of Deiphobe in this book?

2) What about Misenus?

3) Talk briefly about those who are on the jaws of Orcus, 376 ff.

4) Comment on Charon's role and appearance.

5) Recap the Dido/Aeneas episode in this book. Whose side do you take, why?

6) Talk about a few of the punishments described from 753-839.

7) Describe the Deiphobus episode. Who is the main culprit?

8) Talk about the Romans foretold to Aeneas, which we did not translate. 1084-1155.

Book VII ?'s

1) Briefly describe Latinus and his family situation.

2) What has the soothsayer told about his daughter's situation?

3) The tables omen...who interprets it and what does it mean for the Trojans?

4) What were the Latins doing when Ilionesus's assembly arrives? What is the purpose of Ilioneus' assembly?

5) What is Latinus' reply to the envoys?

6) Comment on Juno's speech, 398-441.

7) What does Allecto do?

8) Silvia's stag is the saddest incident, what is its role here?

9) What is the custom with the gates of war?

10) Briefly comment on the various allies of Turnus. In your opinion who is the most interesting?


Mpasini said...

Enjoy this combined Karen/Mia effort!!!

Book VI side-

1) Deiphobe’s (aka Sibyl/Apollo’s priestess) job is to lead Aeneas to the underworld to find his father (and assure him a chance of getting out…by telling him/helping him find the golden tree branch).

2) Misenus = trumpet player of the Trojans. He sadly died young because Triton was envious of his trumpeting skillz and sentenced him to death. Aeneas catches a glimpse of him playing his trumpet in the underworld.

3) The jaws of Orcus (more commonly known as the gates of heck) hold the personified “evils” (of men). Vergil gives them proper names such as Grief, Cares, Diseases, Age, Dread, etc. However, are these really “evils”?…is old age really that bad?!? These things are rather what people fear the most…traumas that many can’t overcome. Welcome to heck everyone!

4) Charon is described as “foul and terrible” with “his beard grown wild and hoar” and his “staring eyes all fame”…scary and ugly. Plus, the poor guy’s job is a ferryman – to deliver the souls across the river of Acheron into further doom. At first, he won’t let Aeneas and the Sibyl cross the river because “no living bodies can cross”, but then they show him the golden branch and they are allowed to cross…how exciting.

5) Well Aeneas (crying…pansy) catches sight of Dido and stops to talk to her as she wanders around in a forest (with her fatal wound still fresh). He explains to her that it wasn’t his will to leave her/Carthage, and asks if he was the cause of her death. Dido, undoubtedly still bitter, doesn’t respond to Aeneas – instead, she walks away with Sychaeus (her dead husband).

Poor Aeneas hasn’t had it easy in this story, especially considering how the fates drastically affect the choices he makes. Upon seeing Dido in the underworld, his grief shows. How could one not sympathize with this sensitive man who clearly has so many regrets (who is obviously sorry for the physical and emotional pain he cause Dido)??? Stupid, selfish, insensitive Dido doesn’t even bother to respond to a man that she once “loved”, who is crying at her side to forgive him. We can only hope that this episode doesn’t have a lasting effect on Aeneas – since Dido has moved on, he should too (even though we know he does because he gets together with Lavinia…but nonetheless).

6) Some of the punishments include: being girdled with a whip, presented to the monster Hydra (who has 50 black throats), sent as lighting to roll forever in the abyss, and having your body spread out so an enormous vulture can pick at you liver for eternity (etc.).

7) Deiphobus (son of Priam) was basically betrayed by Helen (after Paris died, they got together…because of his great accomplishments in war) – she signaled Menelaus to Deiphobus’ bed chamber, and well…now he’s dead and doesn’t have ears. Helen would definitely be the main culprit here!

8) Achinses tells Aeneas about how Romulus (Mars’ son) will found Rome, how Caesar (from the line of Iulus) will bring an Age of Gold to Latium, and how Rome will come to rule the world.

Book VII side-

1) King Latinus = old and has only one daughter, namely Lavinia (no
male descendant- had a son that died early in life). Latinus' wife,
Amata, likes Turnus (the best of the Latins) as the best choice as a
suitor for Lavinia.

2) The soothsayer says that Lavinia shouldn't marry a Latin guy,
because these other guys will come from other races and bring this
empire prosperity (the other guys being Aeneas and his people).

3) After Iulus observes that the company had devoured the very tables
they were eating from, Aeneas immediately remembers his father's
prophecy. Anchises once foretold that when Aeneas and his men arrive on
a strange coast and are so hungry as to eat their tables, they will
have found their homeland. Due to Iulus's observation, Aeneas
immediately interprets the omen to mean that THIS land is to be their
new home.

4) When the assembly arrives, Latin boys are outside the city walls
practicing various games (i.e. chariot races, boxing, javelin throwing,
etc). Their purpose in the city is to form an allegiance with King
Latinus and his people by presenting him with gifts.

5) King Latinus gladly accepts the assemblies proposal as he is more
concerned with the fate of his daughter. He tells Illioneus to return to
Aeneas and summon him here so he can meet Lavinia.

6) Juno finally fed up with no God's helping her keep Aeneas from her
fate, decides to make the mortals delay him. She concludes that she
must make another giant war of mortals just to delay the Teucrians from
destiny... She is one very bitter and determined goddess.

7) At Juno's orders, Allecto leaves the underworld and proceeds to the
Latin city where she begins her malicious plans with the Queen Amata.
As the queen sleeps, Allecto takes a snake from her head and uses it to
poison the Queen's soul and mind against the Trojans.

8) Well... Mia and I (Karen) have decided that yes indeed we have no soul.
Sure the incident was not a happy one, but to call it the saddest?
(Then again I find Hitler interesting....hmm maybe that is why I have
no soul?) Anyway, Silvia's stag is shot by little Iulus while he is out
hunting. The mortally wounded stag makes it home to die in a bath of
blood in the arms of his precious mistress, who meanwhile cries out in
anger and pain as she watches the stag she trained from birth die
brutally before her eyes.

Silvia raises her fellow countrymen to arms, driving them to find the
person who killed her precious stag. This of course leads to a full out
fight between the Trojans and Latin countrymen... framing the Trojans
as Ausionian killers. Yep.. not good for Aeneas and Co. Juno has
basically succeeded in creating a major war in the mortal world and now
sits back happily to watch the bloodshed begin.

Hmm.. now looking back on what I wrote I've officially decided that
yeah.. I have no soul... But I made the scene out worse that it
actually was written. I'm sure that knowing the entire history of
Silvia and her stag and their life together would have made the scene
more emotional. On second thought, maybe Mia should have written the
answer to this question because she DOES have a soul.

9) So basically, there are 2 gates, and 100 'brazen bolts' keep these
gates closed. And there's also this guy Janus who never leaves the
gates. In order to open the gates, the king or leader needs to open the
gates in order to declare war. Yet, in this case, Latinus didn't WANT
to declare war, so he didn't open the GATES. Juno had to open the gates
for them.

10) Well Aventinus is pretty cool, and will be a good addition to
Turnus' forces, since he is the son of Hercules.

Michelle said...

Book 6
Vergil Journal

Deiphobe is the sybil that Aeneas consults when he finally reaches Italy. She tells Aeneas his future after he sacrifices bulls and sheep. She tells him of a bloody war he will have to fight and who it will be fought against. Aeneas asks her to guide him to the Underworld, and at first she tries to discourage him, but he is persistent until she tells him what to do to gain access to Hades. After finding the golden branch that will allow him to go beneath the world, he goes back to the sybil’s temple, and Aeneas and Deiphobe travel together into Hades.

Misenus is the trumpeter of the Trojans. He is the one that Aeneas is told he will find dead and his body should be buried.

The mouth of Orcus contains personified tragedies such as Grief, Cares, pale Diseases, sad Age, Dread, Hunger, sordid Want, Death, Toil and Death’s own brother, Sleep. These are all unwanted things that can corrupt or ruin the human body. The jaws of Orcus are before the entrance to Hades. These things come after him, hoping to consume him into their world, but Aeneas has no intention of dying just yet.

Charon is the old boatman who takes the souls of the dead into Hades across the river Acheron. At first, Charon will not take Aeneas across the river because he is not dead, but after Deiphobe shows him the golden branch, he agrees to.

Aeneas sees Dido in the underworld, and immediately starts grappling at her feet, trying to plead his case: “Unlucky Dido, was the story true that had come to me, that you were dead and ended your life by your own hand? Alas, was I the cause of your death? By the stars I swear, by the world above and to what is sacred to the earth below, unwillingly, Queen, I left from your shores.” This is the most pathetic thing Aeneas could have done. He has already caused her enough pain, and now he is only rubbing it in her face. Aeneas must be extremely daft to not realize that of course he was the cause of her death. Much respect for Aeneas was lost on my part after reading this. Aeneas continues this grappling for a few more lines and then Dido becomes fed up and runs away. Suddenly, the roles are changed- Dido is running away and Aeneas is left alone and upset.

There are many punishments that Aeneas sees as he wanders through the Underworld. One of them is a boy, Tityos, whose body is stretched across nine acres a vulture eats his liver, which soon after re-grows itself.
“Some heave a great boulder, or revolve, spreadeagled, hung on wheel-spokes.”

Aeneas’ father shows him the Romans who will be reincarneated and sent back up to the earth in years to come. He shows Aeneas his unborn son, Silvius, who will found the city of Alba Longa. He also tells Aeneas of Romulus, King Numa, and King Tarquin. And he mentions Roman heroes such as Brutus, Camillus, Aemilinus Paulus, the conqueror of Greece, Cato, Scipo, and many others.

bryn said...

1) Deiphobe, or Sibyl, is the messenger. She is the medium for Apollo who tells Aeneas and his men what they (actually Aeneas alone) must do to reach the underworld. It seems as though she does so unwillingly. At one point in the story, the men stop to look at the stories engraved on the door of Apollo’s temple. There, she acts as a guide, hurrying them on. When Aeneas reaches Dis, Sibyl is there to explain to him initially who is who.
2) When Aeneas and his men go to Sybil looking for a way into Dis, she tells them: a) they need the golden branch which serves as the key to the underworld, b) they need to bury their dead friend. None of the men know who they are to bury, so they search for their lost mate and come upon Misenus on the shore. This is a very sad sight for Aeneas and his crew because Misenus was a very loyal soldier and trumpeteer. The young man had first fought with Hector and then Aeneas. Mourning, the men buried Misenus as Sybil had said and then kept on their search for the golden branch.
3) The Jaws of Orcus is “home” to unburied souls. They cannot come to the shore of the underworld until a) their bones are in a grave OR b) they remain there for 100 years. All of the dead there yean to cross to the underworld where they can be at “peace”, but instead they suffer. Aeneas sees Orontes there, his diseased ship captain who was sacrificed by the gods so Aeneas and his men would have a safe journey. Ironically, Orontes doesn’t die from his fall. He is killed by savages when he swims to shore and remains outside of Dis because he has not been buried.
4) In short, Aeneas sees Dido in a part of the underworld where those who are consumed by pitiless love go. Aeneas immediately goes to Dido, realizing that the stories of her death are true. He wants recognition from her that he was not the cause because, of course, he never meant to hurt her. It is apparent that Aeneas actually thinks he can take Dido back with him. However, she does not even speak to him or respond in any way. Instead she turns and leaves with her dead husband, Sychaeus. Personally, I think Aeneas needs to move on. Obviously Dido is not content, but she will never be and he cannot rescue her from that. She is with her husband, and that is the best circumstance she can be in. Aeneas already has a different destiny. He cannot change that.
5) Rhadamanthus sentences souls in many different ways. Tityos’ body was stretched over nine whole acres while an enormous vulture with a hooked beak eats away at his live, forever. That seems a bit overboard if you ask me. He must have done something really wrong. The Lapiths have an interesting sentence. They must sit as luxurious dishes are prepared an laid before them. However, they cannot touch them or they will be burned. They have this punishment because of their greed and selfishness…very fitting. One offender has to forever roll a boulder up a hill. All of these punishments are repetitive and everlasting so the “criminals” never get a moment’s rest. That is what I call “zero-tolerance policy”.
6) I am a bit confused by the Deiphobus episode. From what I understand, when the Greeks came in the Trojan horse, Deiphobus’ wife was a Trojan dancer who betrayed her race to help the Greeks, signaling to them. Then, that night, as Deiphobus lay asleep, his wife took all of the weapons out of his house and snuck Menelaus in. They may have been secret lovers. Ulysses was with them. Deiphobus was mutilated from head to foot and his ears were torn off by his wife.
7) Aeneas is more or less told the future of Rome, the empire he is about to build. The first king, Numa, will build Rome on the base of laws. Then Tullus will rule. He will start a Roman war, ending peace. “Near him”, a man Ancus, will be arrogant and self-centered. Brutus, the avenger, will be in power. When his sons plot war against the city, he will have them killed for his love for Rome. Decii and Drusi will provoke much civil war in Rome. Mummius will come to Rome having killed Achaeans. Paulus will conquer many people including Achilles, avenging the death of his family by the warrior’s hand. The description goes on to tell of other characters of Rome.
8) King Latinus rules of Latium. Vergil makes him seem old and wise, at peace with himself and the world around him. He is among the long line of Saturn’s descendents. Latinus fatefully has one child, a daughter, since one child died in infancy. Latinus’ daughter was at the age fit for being courted for marriage. Apparently, she had many suitors, including a very powerful and handsome Turnus.
9) Basically, the oracle tells Latinus that he sees a stranger coming to take over Latium. He adds that Latinus’ daughter will have glorious days to come, but will bring about a great war. He urges Latinus not to choose a Latin suitor as his daughter’s husband because a stranger from distant lands would come, and their children would rule a great empire. Wow, that is convenient for Aeneas! A warm welcome is in the midst.
10) Iulus realizes that, as the prophecy had said, the men devoured their tables in hunger. He remembers being told to “be mindful of [your home].” Iulus then understands that they have finally arrived at the place destiny had called them to go, that no more searching was needed. He believes the real hardships to be over it seems.
11) When Ilioneus’ assembly arrives in the city, they see boys practicing horsemanship in the fields within. They are pulling bows and throwing javelins, racing and boxing. Perhaps the young men are training for battle/protection. Ilioneus’ assembly of 100 legates to request peace and allied friendship from the king and his people. The gifts they bring are relics from the war at Troy, a symbol of the personal sacrifices they make to this new home.
12) Latinus is obviously in deep thought after he hears Ilioneus tell of their journey. Latinus’ “countenance averted, downcast but turning here and there.” When the king realizes that Aeneas is the stranger from afar that is to marry his daughter, he is elated. He believes so much in the oracles words that he immediately sends the men back with horses and a chariot for Aeneas who he asks to meet. It’s interesting how he is so straightforward about the message. Without even meeting Aeneas, he tells him that he must marry the princess as the prophecy has said.
13) Juno has some serious security issues. She begins her speech frustrated that all the hardships she has set upon Aeneas and his men have not worked in keeping them from Latium. She had sent so many horrible creatures, horrible events, and yet they still comfortably reach the shore. She then goes on to compare here ploy with that of another god, Mars, who was able to kill off a race. She does not understand why his has the power to do so and she does not. Then Juno understands that the prophecy must come true, Aeneas and Lavinia will get married and rule in the new city of Italy with or without her interference. So, she makes a vow to prolong their wait and ultimately lead to the destruction of the people.
14) Allecto, or Fury, slips a snake into Queen Amata’s dress. It wriggles and slithers and breathes its venom in the queen, instilling in her a rage at the fact that Turnus, the suitor of her daughter that she most favors, has been rejected. Through this snake’s venom, Amata tries to convince Latinus that Turnus is, in fact, foreign and thus parallels prophesy. When Latinus is not convinced, Amata rages on her chariot into the forest where she hides Lavinia. Then Allecto unveils herself to Turnus. She explains to him that he must go to battle if he wishes to marry Lavinia. He prepares his army for war. Still hungry for trouble, Allecto flies to the shore of Latium, where Aeneas’ men are. She pores forth frenzy into a beautiful stag of a family nearby and guides Ascanius to kill it, beginning a conflict. The owners stag and then the people of Latium become very angry.
15) The stag serves as the cause of conflict between the Latin people and the Trojans. Juno, in her ploy to delay the marriage of Lavinia and Aeneas, decides to put the two races at war with each other. The entire people rally behind Silvia and her family to avenge the loss of her stag.
16) When citizens began a war in Latium, they open to war gates of Mars’ temple with one hundred bolts locking it shut. Vergil describes the time as one of loyalty and pride in the Latin race. However, the guardian would not open the gates to declare was on Aeneas and his people. Instead Juno did and aroused all the lands to be ready for battle.
17) Turnus’ most interesting ally is Camilla of the Volscian people. She is similar to wonder woman it seems. She rides ahead of the cavalry, a leader and people admire her. In this age, women were respected, but still seen as prizes. Camilla steps out of the mold as this amazing soldier…not to mention the fact that she is very skilled in battle, faster than any other, and tough. She is the epitome of a warrior, a WOMAN!

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