From Virgil to Milton by C. M Bowra

By C. M Bowra

1948 Hardcover. No dirt jacket. Musty. moderate Bend In e-book. minimum put on. No markings or highlights in textual content, Tanned pages, foxing on outer edges. Browning on internal covers and endpapers, another way great fresh reproduction.

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The later writers of epic could not and would not laugh at the ideals which they proclaimed. There is no laughter in Tasso, who seems to regard it as particularly pernicious ; for when his knights prepare to rescue Rinaldo from Armida, they are warned against a fountain which makes men laugh : Un fonte sorge in lei che vaghe e monde Ha 1' acque sl che i riguardanti asseta, Ma dentro ai freddi suoi cristalli asconde Di tosco estran malvagita secreta ; Che un picciol sorso di sue lucide onde Inebria 1' alma tosto e Ia fa lieta: lndi a rider uom move ; e tanto il riso S' avanza alfin, ch' ei ne rimane ucciso.

48 VIRGIL AND THE IDEAL OF ROME for killing Pallas ; for that is a legitimate act of war. He is killed because he lives a life of war and inevitably resorts to war when his will is crossed. He represents that heroic world which contains in its ideals the seeds of its own destruction, and in him Virgil shows that he understood the hero~c type and even admired it but knew that it was no longer what the world needed. Tumus is not Virgil's only presentation of a heroic type. With him we may in many ways compare Dido, Virgil's most complete and most successful woman in the Aeneid.

Turnus is a second Achilles, as the Cumaean Sibyl tells Aeneas: alius Latio iam partus Achilles, natus et ipse dea,I (vi, 89-90) and such his actions prove him to be. Like Achilles, he lives for honour and for renown, especially in war. When he hears that the stranger has landed in Latium and is destined to take his affianced bride from him, his immediate impulse is to fight for his rights and his honour. Feeling that his pride has been insulted, he turns furiously to his weapons. Virgil's similes show the strength and energy of Turnus.

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