The Aeneid Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. On what do the gods take oaths that they fear to break?

2. Why do the Trojan women set fire to the Trojan ships in Book V?

3. Whom does Helenus say Aeneas should visit for advice?

4. Of what is Helenus' city a replica?

5. Who does Dido send to plead with Aeneas?

Short Essay Questions

1. Why is it significant that in Latinum, Aeneas and some of his followers eat the wheaten cakes they were using as plates for their meal?

2. Describe the "marriage" between Dido and Aeneas.

3. How does Aeneas demonstrate skill as a leader after the Trojans finally make it to shore?

4. How does Venus use references to the Trojan War when meeting with Jupiter at the beginning of Book X?

5. What does Evander mean when he tells Aeneas that Aeneas must have the courage to shape himself to fit through the low doorway into Evander's humble home, besides the literal fact that Aeneas is too tall to walk through the doorway without stooping a bit?

6. How does Aeneas fare as a leader in Book III? Support your answer with examples from the text.

7. Why would Aeneas' shield be covered with the deeds of his descendants?

8. What instances in Book V reveal how the Trojans feel about burying their dead?

9. What is the problem with Aeneas remaining in Carthage?

10. Why should Aeneas not have tried to found a city in Thrace?

Essay Topics

Essay Topic 1

Compare and contrast the actions of Juno and Venus throughout the story. For what reasons do these two goddesses become entangled in the affairs of humans? At what points do they cross the line and become too involved? At what points does Jupiter intervene and tell them to stop? What techniques and strategies do they use to change the outcomes of events in the world below?

Essay Topic 2

The Roman Emperor Augustus Caesar asked Virgil to write The Aeneid to celebrate his recent victory at the Battle of Actium, in which Augustus (then called Octavian) and his forces beat Mark Antony and the Egyptian ruler Cleopatra. This victory brought peace to the empire, and Octavian/Augustus worked thereafter to rule well. Looking at details in The Aeneid such as the subject matter depicted at the center of Aeneas' shield and all the references Virgil makes to the Rome of his time, discuss what purpose Virgil's work might have served at the time.

Essay Topic 3

How well do you think Aeneas would have been able to fulfill his fate without the help of gods and goddesses? As you answer, take into account the actions of divine beings working against him. If there had been no divine interaction on either side, what might have been the final outcome and why?

(see the answer keys)

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