The Roman Civilization: Virgil and Petronius' Perspective

Only available on StudyMode
  • Download(s) : 136
  • Published : March 20, 2013
Open Document
Text Preview
Essay 1
How much can a civilization change in under a year? The Roman Civilization changed drastically in roughly one hundred years in the way they view many aspects of their life, including the role of women and the role of the gods in their life. In Virgil’s The Aeneid, he has presented Rome as superior to Greece, being written at the time of Augustus; The Aeneid was used as propaganda for the Romans to make them feel superior after the Trojan War. Petronius wrote about Rome during the reign of Nero, in his novel, it is apparent that by the time Epicureanism had gotten to Rome, they had taken it and formed a twisted version of just how extreme they took Hedonism; as exemplified in Dinner With Trimalchio from the novel The Satyricon. The two authors Virgil and Petronius have described Roman civilization under their perspective through their novels and have not only made contrasts, but comparisons as well in commonly seen themes such as the role of the gods in their everyday life and the role of women. (T)

Although they are roughly a hundred years apart, Virgil's novel, The Aeneid, has presented a very different approach to Rome and its civilization compared to Petronius’ novel, The Satyricon. I think this civilization experienced the drastic shift that it did because of the ruler they had at the moment. The Aeneid was written under the reign of Augustus, who was interested in bettering Rome and its people as seen with his Pax Romana and the construction of roads. The people during the reign of Augustus were very rational and were not fearful of the gods but rather believed that they were in charge of their own fate, thus making them “better” than the Greeks. The Satyricon was written under the reign of Nero, who had very twisted morals due to the lack of philosophy when he was younger. Nero was very cruel and hedonistic, he did not just live for simple pleasure, he lived for extreme pleasure as seen when he literally built himself a pleasure palace while...
tracking img