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Barron's Booknotes-The Aeneid by Virgil-Free Book Summary
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1. Discuss whether or not Aeneas did the right thing when he left Dido.

2. What do Aeneas and Dido have in common? How are they different?

3. Compare and contrast Aeneas and Turnus as warriors. Pay particular attention to the killings of Pallas and Lausus.

4. Discuss the relationship between Aeneas and his father, Anchises. Is there a symbolic reason why Anchises dies before the Trojans reach Italy?

5. In Book II, why doesn't Aeneas leave Troy immediately? What does this tell you about his values at this point? Do his values remain the same when he's fighting in Italy?

6. Discuss the parade of great Romans Aeneas sees in the underworld and how it affects him.

7. Give an example of how Aeneas represents Augustus.

8. Give three examples of how Venus helps Aeneas. Does she ever do anything that hurts him?

9. In may ways Aeneas is a sad person. Give three examples of things or events that make him sad and discuss why they have this effect.


1. Give two different explanations for the reason Dido falls love with Aeneas, and explain which you think is correct.

2. Why does Virgil compare Dido to a wounded deer in Book IV?

3. How does Dido's passion affect her ability to rule?

4. At the end of Book IV, when Dido predicts that there will be war between Carthage and Rome, what wars does she refer to? Who is the great avenger?

5. What historical character might Dido represent? What does this suggest about who Aeneas might represent while he is in Carthage? When he leaves?


1. Does Turnus fight for his country or for himself?

2. Give two examples of how Turnus' passion for war always leads to more violence.

3. Why does Virgil compare Turnus to wild animals, like stallions, wolves, and lions (Books IX through XII)? What does that tell you about his character?


1. Give an example of how Juno's scheme to prevent the Trojans from reaching Italy backfires.

2. Discuss why Juno is so angry at the Trojans.

3. Why doesn't Juno succeed in preventing the Trojans from reaching Italy and winning the war there?

4. Give two examples of gods who symbolize human passions, and explain their roles in the Aeneid.

5. Name two gods who represent the forces of order in the world, and give two examples of how they enforce order.


1. Discuss some ways in which the themes that Virgil wrote about in the Aeneid reflect the times in which he lived.

2. Give three examples of how the Aeneid is similar to the Iliad and the Odyssey. Give one example of how it is different.

3. Give two examples of epic similes in the Aeneid. Pick your favorite and discuss what it tells you about the person's character.

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