Virgil's masterpiece, the Aeneid, composed during the last decade of his life (29 BCE-19 BCE), is a long continuous narrative poem in twelve books. The epic tells the story of the Trojan hero Aeneas and his struggle to fulfil his divinely-imposed mission, to leave the ruins of Troy and sail west to Italy where, after overcoming Italian resistance, he is to marry an Italian princess and establish a settlement that would eventually lead to the foundation of Rome. Although set in the remote heroic world, the narrative continually looks forward to the Augustan age as the culminating point of Rome's divinely-ordained destiny. The epic closes with the death of Turnus and the collapse of Italian resistance, but its true end is the future greatness of Rome under Augustus.
In the ancient world the
Citation: Green, Mandy. "The Aeneid". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 25 October 2002 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=1633, accessed 03 December 2023.]