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SHORT PLOT SUMMARY (Synopsis)
After the destruction of Troy, Aeneas, his father Anchises and son Iülus lead the other Trojan fugitives to establish another city. Juno tries to thwart their ordained destiny since she hates them. So, as Aeneas and his men set out from Sicily, after the death of his father there, she causes a storm to divert the ships to Carthage. By Joveís decree, Dido the beautiful and efficient Queen gives the Trojans shelter and material to repair their ships. Having fled her own country, Tyre and Sidon (Lebanon) to found a new city, she feels kindly towards the fugitives. But Venus causes her to be enamoured of Aeneas, to ensure the Trojanís safety.
Dido neglects her kingdom and secretly contrives to marry Aeneas and detain him in Carthage. When Jove sends Mercury to bid Aeneas sail away, he obeys despite Didoís pleas and his own desires. Dido kills herself cursing Aeneas that his way will be strewn with blood and death before his city is established. She adds that Carthegians and Romans, Aeneasí new race would be perpetual enemies.
Before reaching the mainland of Italy, Aeneas breaks his voyage at Sicily to celebrate his fatherís death anniversary. Here Juno through Iris instigates the Trojan women to burn the ships. Since four of the ten ships are burnt, many old and travel weary Trojans are left behind and settled by King Acestes of Sicily on his territory. Then Aeneas is required to visit the underworld and see a vision of the descendants of Rome. Here he encounters figures from his past including Dido; Anchises shows him the future. Aeneas and his son Iülus are destined to lay the foundations of a great warrior race. Anchises gives him good advice and tells him of the omens he must attend to.
Finally Aeneas and his fleet after long hungry days, reach the mouth of the River Tiber. There, they are welcomed by King Latinus of Latium who had been warned of their arrival by signals and oracles. The king was told, that he should marry his daughter to the leader of the foreigners. But his queen favors Turnus, a Laurentine prince. Stirred by the Fury Allecto, Queen Amata arouses her people to oppose the marriage. Turnus too is aroused to prepare for war against the Trojan invaders. Consequently a whole group of tribes from all over Italy are gathered to prepare for battle. Aeneas in turn is advised by the spirit of the river Tiber to approach Evander, the Arcadian, who was settled where Rome stands today.
He proceeds to Evanders realm and gets his full support and that of Pallas, his son, who accompanies Aeneas. In the mean time Turnus has besieged the fort where the Trojans have encamped. Two heroic Trojans Nisus and Euryalus attempt to break through the enemy lines to warn Aeneas. However through misfortune they are killed and fighting breaks out.
When Aeneas returns with Arcadian and Etruscan (Tuscan) support, the battle is on. Both sides lose some of their finest warriors, including Evanderís Pallas. A treaty is decided upon but since the Italians breach it, another round of battle follows. Ultimately despite Junoís greatest efforts to save Turnus and destroy the Trojans a single combat between Aeneas and Turnus is arranged. Queen Amataís suicide has further weakened support for a continuing battle. So after a very brave defence Turnus is finally struck down by Aeneas and the Trojans proclaimed victors and Rome on the way to being founded.