Pub. Date:
Yale University Press
Virgil's Epic Designs: Ekphrasis in the Aeneid

Virgil's Epic Designs: Ekphrasis in the Aeneid

by Michael C. J. PutnamMichael C. J. Putnam


Current price is , Original price is $60.0. You

Temporarily Out of Stock Online

Please check back later for updated availability.


This book by one of the preeminent Virgil scholars of our day is the first comprehensive study of ekphrasis in Virgil’s final masterpiece, the Aeneid. Virgil uses ekphrasis—a self-contained aside that generates a pause in the narrative to describe a work of art or other object—to tell us something about the grander text in which it is embedded, says Michael C. J. Putnam. Individually and as a group, Virgil’s ekphrases enrich the reader’s understanding of the meaning of the epic. Putnam shows how the descriptions of works of art, and of people, places, and even animals, provide metaphors for the entire poem and reinforce its powerful ambiguities.
Putnam offers insightful analyses of the most extensive and famous ekphrases in the Aeneid—the paintings in Juno’s temples in Carthage, the Daedalus frieze, and the shield of Aeneas. He also considers shorter and less well known examples—the stories of Ganymede, the Trojan shepherd swept into the sky by an amorous Jupiter; the fifty daughters of Danaus, ordered by their father to kill their husbands on their wedding night; and Virgil’s original tale of a domesticated wild stag whose killing sparks a war between Trojans and Italians. These ekphrases incorporate major themes of the Aeneid, an enduring formative text of the Western tradition, and provide a rich variety of interpretive perspectives on the poem.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780300073539
Publisher: Yale University Press
Publication date: 08/11/1998
Pages: 272
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.25(h) x (d)
Age Range: 3 Years

Table of Contents

Preface ix(2)
Acknowledgments xi
Introduction 1(22)
1 Dido's Murals
2 The Cloak of Cloanthus
3 Daedalus' Sculptures
4 Silvia's Stag
5 The Shield of Aeneas
6 The Baldric of Pallas
Conclusion 208(7)
Notes 215(30)
Bibliography 245(8)
Index 253

Customer Reviews