Similarities and Differences in the Aeneid and the Odyssey. Essay

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Pages: 6

Both the Odyssey and the Aeneid describe the journeys of the two Greek heroes –Odysseus and Aeneas, as they struggle towards their goal through the crises and deadly situations caused by the wrath of the gods upon them. In the Odyssey, we see that Poseidon (god of the sea/earth shaker) has a grudge against Odysseus while Athena, god of wisdom, aids him throughout his journey. Similarly in the Aeneid, we see that goddess Juno dislikes Aeneas as he is destined to destroy the city of Carthage loved by Juno during his mission to find a new land- Rome, whereas Aeneas’ mother Venus aids him.
In these epics, many points of similarity and differences arise such as the characters of the heroes, how their journeys are delayed by women obsessed with
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Aeneas too spends a year in Carthage in with Dido. Dido’s love wants Aeneas to stay but his mission and destiny to found Rome will not let him stay. Mercury visits Aeneas and reminds him that he should carry on with his journey to find Rome. We see in the Odyssey that Circe helps Odysseus to leave for Ithaca and also warns him about the dangers he will face. Dido tries to stop Aeneas. Dido ends up killing herself as she could not face the situation of Aeneas’ departure. We see that she curses the Trojans and prays to Gods that an avenger should rise against Trojans to take revenge which results in Punic Wars. In the two epics, we see that female sexuality threatens the power of male. We also see that Virgil in the Aeneid has described women as dangerous whenever they appear in disguises and carry weapons.
As seen in the Odyssey, Odysseus travels to the underworld and so does Aeneas in the Aeneid. We can see many differences in the journey of heroes to the underworld. Virgil in the Aeneid has described few things which we do not see in Homer’s Odyssey as Odysseus enters underworld. Aeneas cannot enter the underworld without the golden bough. Virgil gives a more precise description of the midway paradise, where Aeneas father is, and where the souls are waiting to be reborn after a long period of forgetting their previous lives. Aeneas is accompanied by Sibyl into the underworld to meet Anchises, Aeneas’ father. While Homer