Roman Civilization Essay
The Aeneid is poetic work written by Virgil in the Latin language during the ending of the 1st century. The entire story revolves around a man known as Aeneas who migrated to Italy. Aeneas later became the roman people ancestor. The contents of the poem are retrieved from aftermath of the war referred to as Trojan whereby the Trojans were overpowered. Virgil lived during the 70 to 19 B.C.E. The writer took ten years to compose the Aeneid until the time he died whereby he left the Aeneid unfinished. He was from the Augustan Rome. Augustus considered himself as the savior of the roman people (Spielvogel, 2008). He talked of the person who filled the roman society with peace after many years of war. He also believed that he was the one who controlled and developed the large Roman Empire. Trojan is depicted to be prince Anchise and goddess Aphrodite’s’ son. Anchises was a far cousin to king of Troy who was known as Priam. Aeneas shifted from Troy and ended up founding the Rome city with the help of his mother Aphrodite. The settings take place in Troy, Italy, Sicily, Carthage and other islands (Virgil, 2006).
The whole Aeneids story is about a conflicting love story composed by a Latin author. Aeneas was among the Trojans who escaped death and enslavement during the Trojan War. Aeneas was ordered by the gods to flee from troy, he gathered other people known as Aeneads. The Aeneads later travelled to Italy. These people later became the great ancestors of the Romans. Juno is an enemy of the Aeneas. He is saved by Venus because of the fact that he was related to him. Junos’ hatred towards the Trojans was due to the fact that she was not chosen as the most fair of all gods (Fagles, 2006).
The Roman citizens took pride in the traditional and practical morality. They also have military, organizational and engineering skills of high degrees. In cultural activities, the Roman citizens observe religious, philosophical and arts that seem to be crapped off from the Greeks. Most of the Roman deities were only incorporated of the borrowed practices but not completely replaced. However the outward appearance of the Roman civilization can be deceiving when compared to their real practices (Virgil, 2006). There are some of the beliefs and cultures that were retained by the Romans as well. Most of the people who strongly withheld the practices are those who were closely related to the gods. The Romans believed that the head of the family is the father the father is known to have control over the gods (Perry, 2008). The authority within the fathers was believed to be from the latter’s genius. The father’s wisdom and his guiding spirit are also factors that contribute towards the fathers’ authority. Sons were expected to inherit the family leadership from their fathers but not women or girls. The leadership was to be exercised wisely and effectively. The memories of the fathers and grandfathers were observed during funerals and religious occasions. Aeneas had a vision about his father during his lifetime under the control of the family genius. After receiving the vision, Aeneas offers a minor offering to the gods. This brings out that Aeneas was a very responsible father not only to his family but also to the whole Trojan society. Through the influence of the gods, Aeneas is on his way towards the establishing a famous kingdom across the whole world. The roman virtues, practices and beliefs have been acknowledged by a historian named Livy. Romans considered their way of life to be exceedingly upright. They regarded it as moral, transparent, and so scared that it was worthy being copied by other communities. When Aeneas arrives at Carthage, he comes across queen Dido. Aeneas falls in love with queen Dido (Fagles, 2006). With some of the persuasions coming from Aeneas’ mother, Queen Venus falls in love with him. This renders Aeneas in a state of confusion whether to stay in Carthage for Dido’s’ love or whether to obey Jupiter’s order and move on towards finding a new kingdom. He chooses moving to Italy and leaves Dido behind, a fact that leads to Dido committing suicide (Anderson, 2005).
In the western world, the greatest empire was the one that was established by the Romans. They developed a reign that lasted for a long time. This led to most of the principles from the Roman Empire being incorporated in most institutions of modern days. Most of the western kingdoms are created through copying of facts from the Roman Empire. An example is the way the United States founders considered the model of the Roman during the structuring of the Washington city. Roman greatness lay beneath its government and law. Most political facts in modern world are so deeply rooted in the laws that dominated the Roman society during the past 1,000 years. A government that wants to expand must put in mind the roman empires political and social thoughts. The Greek government practiced democracy with the main objective of attaining a stable kind of government (Fagles, 2006).
The main founders of the Western culture are the Greeks and the Romans. The Greeks established philosophy, classical and Democracy Theater. From the Greeks, the Romans copied practices and made them more efficient. This helped the Romans to emerge with the best empire that has ever been witnessed in history. Its kingdom included the history of the neighboring countries like the western states of the Europe and the Mediterranean lands (Spielvogel, 2008).
The Roman kind of rule was beneficial. Improvement in infrastructure was witnessed. Improved drainage system, cleared forest, irrigated deserts and developed uncultivated lands was developed. Clean and safe water for the people prolonged their life times and effective drainage system improved their health standards. The Roman Empire is known to have been ruled by five good empires from A.D 96 to A.D 180. Almost all citizens benefited from the rule of the empires. This is the time the empire was at its peak of its power and prosperity. Four of the emperors who ruled had no biological sons and so had to choose who was to succeed them. Conditions for the less privileged in the society improved. Condition of those under slavery also improved (Perry, 2008). This was contributed by the fact that Rome took no part in wars. The position of the roman women improved also. Women in roman society were not secluded in their homes. They could come and go as they wished unlike their Greek counterparts. The roman republic assimilated the Greek achievements and spread it to others who were less informed with the Hellenism. Religion in roman was highly observed. It was very highly tied up in ideas of obligations. Offering of sacrifices to the gods made them pleased and developed liking towards someone. However, they would also develop hatred towards someone and ignore them. They would end up messing with someone’s life (Perry, 2008).
Patriotism was very much common the Romans. The entire Roman Empire was founded by Augustus. Augustus was an empire who reigned from 27BC- AD 14. He was the adopted son of Julius Caesar. His father was murdered during the 44BC. He expressed great prowess in leadership. The roman golden age came to its peak during the reign of Augustus. The Italians were later defeated by Marcus Crassus who rejoiced his victory by crucifying six thousand captured slaves. He crucified them along the Appian Way. This is the road that ran from southern part of Rome towards the Naples bay. Crassus attacked Parthia which is part of the current Iraq and was killed at Carthage. In addition, most of his soldiers were taken to imprisonment (Virgil, 2006).
The Aeneid talks about four major themes in its plot. Fate is among the four themes. Aeneas was destined towards achieving a roman empire and he worked tirelessly and achieved. The gods of the roman society are depicted as being favoring and messing as well. Offering sacrifices to them pleased them a lot. Patriotism is highly depicted in the entire plot of the Aeneid (Virgil, 2006).
Religious rituals and omen as well as prayers are other major themes discussed within the Aeneid. Observing certain rituals like the sacrifices offering are religious rituals. This shows that the Romans were very much religious and responsible. The ancestors of the roman society were very much respected (Anderson, 2005).
The Roman Empire has a history that is the most stable empire to have been established. This led to other kingdoms assimilating facts from the Roman Empire and developing them to theirs. Aeneas together with his Trojans who followed him strolls through the Mediterranean in search of a new home. The Roman Empire was established by Augustus who also instituted new religious cults and also strengthened the Roman Empire. Augustus did not consider himself as a god but he permitted the construction of temples in regard to Julius Caesar who had adopted him. Even in today’s world, most of the countries have political structures that are incorporated of ethics derived from the Roman style of leadership. Most of the countries have highly benefited from this kind of leadership (Perry, 2008).