The Aeneid in Translation


Which sections of the Aeneid did we study, and why?

Book 1 excerpt: Aeneas' Speech "forsan et haec ōlim meminisse iuvābit..."

Aeneas' rousing speech to his crew in spite of adversity is iconic. Many a quote has been pulled from this section, including the classic "forsan et haec ōlim meminisse iuvābit:" one day perhaps we will laugh to have remembered these things. As mentioned in the 'About' section, the Aeneid is known for Vergil's highly styslistic writing, and we selected some of the most beautiful excerpts which show off Vergil's artistry and craft. This is one of those such excerpts, in large due to the way Vergil communicates complex emotions.

Book 2 excerpt: Laocoön "sībila lambēbant linguīs vibrantibus ōra..."

The story of Laocoön and the snakes has influenced art and pop culture in countless ways, from inspiring sculptures, to Renaissance artists, to formation of new words. It is only fitting that we look at this piece, a classic scene from the Aeneid. Furthermore, this is one of the sections most filled with figurative language and sound devices, so we thought this would be a good excerpt to study as we investigate translations of these such structures and devices.

Book 4 excerpt: Anna + Dido "extinxti tē mēque, soror..."

Some of the most human and emotional speeches in the entire epic hail back to the fourth book, when Aeneid leaves Dido, prompting her suicide—which further prompts Anna's anguish. The excerpt we chose to look at was Anna's speech upon discovering her dying sister. Anna's speech, while filled with emotion and beautiful writing, is also quite short, thus accomodating our time constraints. Additionally, this excerpt ends the fourth book, and includes Iris' visit to see Dido and carry her soul to the underworld, which is a prticulalry interesting scene, not only in terms of plot, but also from a mythological standpoint.