The Aeneid

Why did Venus want Dido to fall in love with Aeneas?

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Carthage had been founded by a woman named Dido, and she was still queen at the time of Aeneas' arrival. She was very beautiful, and a widow. As Aeneas was a widower, Juno saw this as a perfect opportunity to have Dido and Aeneas fall in love with each other, thereby keeping Aeneas from ever reaching Italy. However, Venus intervened first, and had Cupid shoot an arrow into Dido. Then Venus disguised herself as a huntress and told Aeneas and his best friend, Achetes to go to Carthage to meet the queen. Venus also clouded them in a mist so that they could reach the queen without being harmed or detained. Upon seeing Aeneas, Dido, known for having a heart of stone, fell deeply in love.