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1. Book 11/12
About this Lecture
In this module, we think about how the character of Book 11 relates to its position within the epic as a whole. In particular, we think of Aeneas’ dedication of the arms of Mezentius as a kind of spolia opima ritual (and what this implies about Mezentius), the idea of Camilla as an (inadequate) substitute for Turnus, and the sense that there are still some important ethical issues to be sorted out before the poem can come to a satisfactory close.
In this course, Professor Llewelyn Morgan (University of Oxford) explores Book 11 of Virgil’s Aeneid. In the first module, we think about Book 11 in relation to its position within the epic as a whole, focusing in particular on its relation to the end of the poem. After that, we consider the ways in which Virgil enriches his description of the war between the Trojans and the Latins with references to other points in Roman mythic history. In third module, we look in more detail at the figure of Camilla, before turning in the fourth module to the importance of speech and action in Book 11.
Llewelyn Morgan is a Classicist, a Fellow of Brasenose College, Oxford. The focus of most of his research is Roman literature and culture, and he is the author of the well-received study of Roman poetic form, Musa Pedestris: Metre and Meaning in Roman Verse (Oxford, 2010).
But he also has a longstanding fascination for Afghanistan, contemporary and historical, which he traces to his discovery, at an impressionable age, of a Russian samovar inscribed “Candahar 1881”. He has made several visits to Afghanistan in recent years, and his most recent book, The Buddhas of Bamiyan (Profile Books and Harvard University Press, 2012), traces the history of these remarkable monuments from their Buddhist origins 1,400 years ago, through their celebrity in Islamic wonder literature and European travel writing, up until their destruction in 2001.
Morgan is a regular public speaker, on many aspects of Classics and Afghanistan, appears occasionally on BBC Radio 4, and writes slightly less occasionally for the Times Literary Supplement.
Cite this Lecture
Morgan, L. (2019, January 18). Virgil: Aeneid: Book 11 - Book 11/12 [Video]. MASSOLIT. https://www.massolit.io/courses/virgil-aeneid-book-11/book-11-12
Morgan, Llewelyn. "Virgil: Aeneid: Book 11 – Book 11/12." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 18 Jan 2019, https://www.massolit.io/courses/virgil-aeneid-book-11/book-11-12