Free The Aeneid And Its Relatives Essay Sample

Type of paper: Essay

Topic: Shield, Rome, Aeneas, Achilles, The Odyssey, Circle, Empire, Universe

Pages: 2

Words: 550

Published: 2020/11/30

The shield of Achilles, as described in the Iliad by Homer, is a powerful insight into the Greek heroism. Achilles has lost his shield, and the companion whom he lent it to has been killed. Achilles’ mother, Thetis asks the lords to pass judgment and replace her son’s sword. The shield is described with precision by Homer. The shield is supposed to be a layer of circles, each circle representing a particular facet. The imagery is beautifully depicted. The first circle represents the planet Earth, its sky and oceans, the Sun, the moon and the constellations. It represents the whole spectrum between two cities; one where a wedding is taking place, and the other where a war is in headway. The shield encompasses the battle and ambush in the cities. The third circle represents a field being ploughed. The fourth circle represents a king’s fields where the harvest is being reaped. The fifth circle is a vineyard, where grape-pickers are at work. The sixth circle shows a pair of savage lions attacking a bull, and the herdsmen trying to beat off the carnivores. The next layer is a sheep farm. The eight circles show young couples dancing on a dance floor. The last circle is a great stream of ocean. Thus, the shield represents a physical encapsulation of the entire world. The layers represent situations like wars, peace, work and marriage. These are contrasts, and represent the various facets of human civilization.
The Aeneas’ Shield, parallely describes the lineage of the Roman culture. Vulcan, who in the Greek tradition is known as Hephaestus, creates the powerful shield. Vigil wants to surpass the Greeks, and wants to create the strongest Roman Empire. Aeneas takes up the shield because he shoulders the whole responsibility of the Roman kingdom. Aeneas’s shield symbolizes the power of the sea, and the battle of Actium. The shield also represents the star of Julius, shining bright in the sky. The entire cosmic representation of the Roman Empire is depicted in the Aeneas’s shield. The shield emulates several facets of the Roman culture in its layers. The shield represents the Roman kingdom’s future, and Aeneas’ role in creating and maintaining peace. Thus, the Aeneas’ shield is mostly focused on the Roman empire alone. It depicts the Roman Universe.
Comparing and contrasting between the two shields bring out several stark differences between them. In terms of themes and motifs, Achilles’ shield represents a picture of doom. It shows how there is war and suffering in the Universe. Aeneas’ shield, on the other hand, shows the glories and achievements of Rome. It shows how the future of Rome is going to be fruitful and successful for everyone, and how the Roman Empire is going to be the most powerful kingdom ever. Achilles’ shield shows pain and despair, and even the little joys like weddings and festivities are short-lived. Achilles’ shield gives a sorrowful picture of life, and yet, also provides hope.
The Achilles’ shield represents the entire Universe, in its layers. It depicts land, sea, stars, and gradually goes into the intricacies of the human life. The Aeneas’ shield represents only the Roman Universe; it doesn’t concern itself about the rest. The Achilles shield depicts the present. The Aeneas’ shield represents the future.
In their own ways, they are both powerful symbols. They are true representations of their rich heritage and history. Achilles and Aeneas are true depictions of the Greek and Roman worlds respectively.

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WePapers. (2020, November, 30) Free The Aeneid And Its Relatives Essay Sample. Retrieved June 29, 2022, from
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"Free The Aeneid And Its Relatives Essay Sample," Free Essay Examples -, 30-Nov-2020. [Online]. Available: [Accessed: 29-Jun-2022].
Free The Aeneid And Its Relatives Essay Sample. Free Essay Examples - Published Nov 30, 2020. Accessed June 29, 2022.

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