Aegisthus was a figure in Greek mythology. Aegisthus is known from two primary sources of Greek mythology; the first is Homer's Odyssey, believed to have been first written down by Homer at the end of the 8th century BC, the second from Aeschylus's Oresteia, written in the 5th century, BC. Aegisthus was the son of Thyestes and Thyestes' own daughter Pelopia, an incestuous union motivated by his father's rivalry with the house of Atreus for the throne of Mycenae. Aegisthus murdered Atreus in order to restore his father to power, ruling jointly with him only to be driven from power by Atreus' son Agamemnon. While Agamemnon lay siege to Troy, his estranged queen Clytemnestra took Aegisthus as a lover; the couple killed Agamemnon upon the king's return. Aegisthus ruled for seven more years before his death at the hands of Agamemnon's son Orestes. Thyestes felt he had been deprived of the Mycenean throne unfairly by Atreus; the two battled forth several times. In addition, Thyestes had an affair with Aerope.
In revenge, Atreus served them to him unknowingly. After realizing he had eaten his own sons' corpses, Thyestes asked an oracle how best to gain revenge; the advice was to father a son with his own daughter and that son would kill Atreus. Thyestes raped Pelopia; when Aegisthus was born, his mother abandoned him, ashamed of his origin, he was raised by shepherds and suckled by a goat, hence his name Aegisthus. Atreus, not knowing the baby's origin, raised him as his own son. In the night in which Pelopia had been raped by her father, she had taken from him his sword which she afterwards gave to Aegisthus; when she discovered that the sword belonged to her own father, she realised that her son was the product of incestuous intercourse. In despair, she killed herself. Atreus in his enmity towards his brother sent Aegisthus to kill him. Aegisthus and his father now took possession of their lawful inheritance from which they had been expelled by Atreus. Aegisthus and Thyestes thereafter ruled over Mycenae jointly, exiling Atreus' sons Agamemnon and Menelaus to Sparta, where King Tyndareus gave the pair his daughters and Helen, to take as wives.
Agamemnon and Clytemnestra had four children: one son and three daughters, Iphigenia and Chrysothemis. After the death of Tyndareus, Meneleaus became king of Sparta, he used the Spartan army to drive out Aegisthus and Thyestes from Mycenae and place Agamemnon on the throne. Agamemnon became the most powerful ruler in Greece. After Helen's abduction to Troy, Agamemnon was forced to sacrifice his own daughter Iphigenia in order to appease the gods before setting off for Ilium. While Agamemnon was away fighting in the Trojan War, Clytemnestra turned against her husband and took Aegisthus as a lover. Upon Agamemnon's return to Mycenae and Clytemnestra worked together to kill Agamemnon with certain accounts recording Aegisthus committing the murder while others record Clytemnestra herself exacting revenge on Agamemnon his murder of Iphigenia. Following Agamemnon's death, Aegisthus reigned over Mycenae for seven years, he and Clytemnestra had a son and two daughters and Helen. In the eighth year of his reign Orestes, the son of Agamemnon, returned to Mycenae and avenged the death of his father by killing Aegisthus and Clytemnestra.
The impiety of matricide was such that Orestes was forced to flee from Mycenae, pursued by the Furies. Aletes became king until Orestes returned several years and killed him. Orestes married Aegisthus' daughter Erigone. Homer gives no information about Aegisthus' back-story. We learn from him only that, after the death of Thyestes, Aegisthus ruled as king at Mycenae and took no part in the Trojan expedition. While Agamemnon was absent on his expedition against Troy, Aegisthus seduced Clytemnestra, was so wicked as to offer up thanks to the gods for the success with which his criminal exertions were crowned. In order not to be surprised by the return of Agamemnon, he sent out spies, when Agamemnon came, Aegisthus invited him to a repast at which he had him treacherously murdered. In Aeschylus's Oresteia, Aegisthus is a minor figure. In the first play, Agamemnon, he appears at the end to claim the throne, after Clytemnestra herself has killed Agamemnon and Cassandra. Clytemnestra wields the axe. In The Libation Bearers he is killed by Orestes, who struggles over having to kill his mother.
Aegisthus is referred to as a "weak lion", plotting the murders but having his lover commit the deeds. According to Johanna Leah Braff, he "takes the traditional female role, as one who devises but is passive and does not act." Christopher Collard describes him as the foil to Clytemnestra, his brief speech in Agamemnon revealing him to be "cowardly, weak, full of noisy threats - a typical'tyrant figure' in embryo."Aeschylus's portrayal of Aegisthus as a weak, implicitly feminised figure, influenced writers and artists who depict him as an effeminate or decadent individual, either manipulating or dominated by the more powerful Clytemnestra. He appears in Seneca's Agamemnon. In Richard Strauss's and Hugo von Hofmannsthal's opera, Elektra his voice is "a decidedly high-pitched tenor, punctuated by irrational upward leaps, that rises to high
The Lapiths are a legendary people of Greek mythology, whose home was in Thessaly, in the valley of the Peneus and on the mountain Pelion. They were an Aeolian tribe. Like the Myrmidons and other Thessalian tribes, the Lapiths were natives of Thessaly; the genealogies make them a kindred people with the Centaurs: in one version and Centaurus were said to be twin sons of the god Apollo and the nymph Stilbe, daughter of the river god Peneus. Lapithes was a valiant warrior, but Centaurus was a deformed being who mated with mares from whom the race of half-man, half-horse Centaurs came. Lapithes was the eponymous ancestor of the Lapith people, his descendants include Lapith warriors and kings, such as Ixion, Pirithous and Coronus, the seers Ampycus and his son Mopsus. In the Iliad the Lapiths send forty manned ships to join the Greek fleet in the Trojan War, commanded by Polypoetes and Leonteus; the mother of Pirithous, the Lapith king in the generation before the Trojan War, was Dia, daughter of Eioneus or Deioneus.
Zeus was his immortal father, but the god had to assume a stallion's form to cover Dia for, like their half-horse cousins, the Lapiths were horsemen in the grasslands of Thessaly, famous for its horses. The Lapiths were credited with inventing the bridle's bit; the Lapith King Pirithous was marrying the horsewoman Hippodameia, whose name means "tamer of horses", at the wedding feast that made a war, the Centauromachy, famous. In the Centauromachy, the Lapiths battle with the Centaurs at the wedding feast of Pirithous; the Centaurs had been invited, unused to wine, their wild nature came to the fore. When the bride was presented to greet the guests, the centaur Eurytion leapt up and attempted to abduct her. All the other centaurs were up in a moment, straddling boys. In the battle that ensued, Theseus came to the Lapiths' aid, they threw him out. In the battle the Lapith Caeneus was killed, the defeated Centaurs were expelled from Thessaly to the northwest; the Lapith Caeneus was a girl named Caenis and the favorite of Poseidon, who changed her into a man at her request and made her an invulnerable warrior.
Such warrior women, indistinguishable from men, were familiar among the Scythian horsemen too. In the Centaur battle, Caeneus proved invulnerable, until the Centaurs crushed him with rocks and trunks of trees, he was released as a sandy-headed bird. In contests, the Centaurs were not so beaten. Mythic references explained the presence into historic times of primitive Lapiths in Malea and in the brigand stronghold of Pholoe in Elis as remnants of groups driven there by the Centaurs; some historic Greek cities bore names connected with Lapiths, the Kypselides of Corinth claimed descent from Cæneus, while the Phylaides of Attica claimed for progenitor Koronus the Lapith. As Greek myth became more mediated through philosophy, the battle between Lapiths and Centaurs took on aspects of the interior struggle between civilized and wild behavior, made concrete in the Lapiths' understanding of the right usage of god-given wine, which must be tempered with water and drunk not to excess; the Greek sculptors of the school of Pheidias conceived of the battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs as a struggle between mankind and mischievous monsters, symbolical of the great conflict between the civilized Greeks and "barbarians".
Battles between Lapiths and Centaurs were depicted in the sculptured metopes on the Parthenon, recalling Athenian Theseus' treaty of mutual admiration with Pirithous the Lapith, leader of the Magnetes, on Zeus' temple at Olympia. The Battle of the Lapiths and Centaurs was a familiar symposium theme for the vase-painters. A sonnet vividly evoking the battle by the French poet José María de Heredia was included in his volume Les Trophées. In the Renaissance, the battle became a favorite theme for artists: an excuse to display close-packed bodies in violent confrontation; the young Michelangelo executed a marble bas-relief of the subject in Florence about 1492. Piero di Cosimo's panel Battle of Centaurs and Lapiths, now at the National Gallery, was painted during the following decade. If it was part of a marriage chest, or cassone, it was an uneasy subject for a festive wedding commemoration. A frieze with a Centauromachy was painted by Luca Signorelli in his Virgin Enthroned with Saints, inspired by a Roman sarcophagus found at Cortona, in Tuscany, during the early 15th century.
William Smith, ed. Dictionary of Greek and Roman Biography and Mythology vol.11 p. 721 Ovid Metamorphoses XII passim. 128, 181. 5. 8, 15, xxxvi. 5, 4
Greek mythology is the body of myths told by the ancient Greeks. These stories concern the origin and the nature of the world, the lives and activities of deities and mythological creatures, the origins and significance of the ancient Greeks' own cult and ritual practices. Modern scholars study the myths in an attempt to shed light on the religious and political institutions of ancient Greece and its civilization, to gain understanding of the nature of myth-making itself; the Greek myths were propagated in an oral-poetic tradition most by Minoan and Mycenaean singers starting in the 18th century BC. Two poems by Homer's near contemporary Hesiod, the Theogony and the Works and Days, contain accounts of the genesis of the world, the succession of divine rulers, the succession of human ages, the origin of human woes, the origin of sacrificial practices. Myths are preserved in the Homeric Hymns, in fragments of epic poems of the Epic Cycle, in lyric poems, in the works of the tragedians and comedians of the fifth century BC, in writings of scholars and poets of the Hellenistic Age, in texts from the time of the Roman Empire by writers such as Plutarch and Pausanias.
Aside from this narrative deposit in ancient Greek literature, pictorial representations of gods and mythic episodes featured prominently in ancient vase-paintings and the decoration of votive gifts and many other artifacts. Geometric designs on pottery of the eighth century BC depict scenes from the Trojan cycle as well as the adventures of Heracles. In the succeeding Archaic and Hellenistic periods and various other mythological scenes appear, supplementing the existing literary evidence. Greek mythology has had an extensive influence on the culture and literature of Western civilization and remains part of Western heritage and language. Poets and artists from ancient times to the present have derived inspiration from Greek mythology and have discovered contemporary significance and relevance in the themes. Greek mythology is known today from Greek literature and representations on visual media dating from the Geometric period from c. 900 BC to c. 800 BC onward. In fact and archaeological sources integrate, sometimes mutually supportive and sometimes in conflict.
Mythical narration plays an important role in nearly every genre of Greek literature. The only general mythographical handbook to survive from Greek antiquity was the Library of Pseudo-Apollodorus; this work attempts to reconcile the contradictory tales of the poets and provides a grand summary of traditional Greek mythology and heroic legends. Apollodorus of Athens wrote on many of these topics, his writings may have formed the basis for the collection. Among the earliest literary sources are the Iliad and the Odyssey. Other poets completed the "epic cycle", but these and lesser poems now are lost entirely. Despite their traditional name, the "Homeric Hymns" have no direct connection with Homer, they are choral hymns from the earlier part of the so-called Lyric age. Hesiod, a possible contemporary with Homer, offers in his Theogony the fullest account of the earliest Greek myths, dealing with the creation of the world. Hesiod's Works and Days, a didactic poem about farming life includes the myths of Prometheus and the Five Ages.
The poet gives advice on the best way to succeed in a dangerous world, rendered yet more dangerous by its gods. Lyrical poets took their subjects from myth, but their treatment became less narrative and more allusive. Greek lyric poets, including Pindar and Simonides, bucolic poets such as Theocritus and Bion, relate individual mythological incidents. Additionally, myth was central to classical Athenian drama; the tragic playwrights Aeschylus and Euripides took most of their plots from myths of the age of heroes and the Trojan War. Many of the great tragic stories took on their classic form in these tragedies; the comic playwright Aristophanes used myths, in The Birds and The Frogs. Historians Herodotus and Diodorus Siculus, geographers Pausanias and Strabo, who traveled throughout the Greek world and noted the stories they heard, supplied numerous local myths and legends giving little-known alternative versions. Herodotus in particular, searched the various traditions presented him and found the historical or mythological roots in the confrontation between Greece and the East.
Herodotus attempted to reconcile the blending of differing cultural concepts. The poetry of the Hellenistic and Roman ages was composed as a literary rather than cultic exercise, it contains many important details that would otherwise be lost. This category includes the works of: The Roman poets Ovid, Valerius Flaccus and Virgil with Servius's commentary; the Greek poets of the Late Antique period: Nonnus, Antoninus Liberalis, Quintus Smyrnaeus. The Greek poets of the Hellenistic period: Apollonius of Rhodes, Pseudo-Eratosthenes, Parthenius. Prose writers from the same periods who make reference to myths includ
Falerii was a city in southern Etruria, 50 km northeast of Rome, 34 km from Veii, 16 km form Rome) and about 1.5 km west of the ancient Via Flaminia. It was the main city of the Faliscans, a people whose language was a Latin dialect and was part of the Latino-Faliscan language group; the Ager Faliscus, which included the towns of Capena and Sutrium, was close to the Monti Cimini. According to legend, it was of Argive origin. Strabo's assertion that the population, the Falisci, were of a different race from the Etruscans is supported by the evidence of the inscriptions which have been found here, they were written in a Latin dialect. Most of the surviving inscriptions date back to the second half of the fourth century BC and the first half of the third century BC; the Faliscan language survived "the domination of the Etruscan culture, as well as, for a long time, the expansion of the Romans." Due to Falerii being close to Rome, the Faliscans felt that Rome was a threat to their security. For this reason, they supported the Etruscan cities of Veii and Fidenae in their conflicts with Rome in the fifth century.
Livy noted that: “As these two States were nearest in point of distance, they believed that if Veii fell they would be the next on whom Rome would make war.” There had been a history of on-and-off conflicts between Rome and Veii, which involved Fidenae. The Romans had placed a colony at Fidenae to garrison the city. In 437 BC Fidenae attacked the Roman settlers and sided with Veii. Romans envoys who were sent to Fidenae were killed on the order of the king of Veii; the Romans advanced on Fidenae. The Faliscans sent troops in support; the Veientes and Fidenates wanted to prolong the war. The Romans routed the combined enemy forces. In 436 BC the Romans did not attack the two cities. In 435 BC the Fidenates called in the army of Veii. Falerii did not want to renew the war. In 434 the Romans seized Fidenae; this alarmed Falerii. They sent envoys to the Etruscan League (a council of the twelve major Etruscan cities called the which proclaimed a council for all Etruria. However, the council refused to help Veii.
In 403 BC war broke out between Veii. The Romans begun a siege which lasted until 396 BC when they destroyed this city. In 402 BC Falerii and Capena sent troops to Veii, they attacked the smaller the two Roman camps from the rear. The Veientes attacked; the lack of unity between the Roman commanders led to a rout of the Romans, the capture of the smaller camp. Some Romans escaped to the larger camp and some withdrew to Rome. In 400 BC the Romans recaptured the lost camp, raided the territories of Falerii and Capena, but did not attack the two cities. In 399 BC Falerii and Capena sent troops to relieve Veii; the Romans made a sortie from their camp, put their forces to flight and pursued them killed many of their men. Soon after this a contingent was sent to raid the territory of Capena, it destroyed them. In 398 BC The Romans raided the territories of Falerii and Capena, "carried off huge spoils and left nothing untouched that iron or fire could destroy." Livy mentioned Roman campaigns against Veii, of Falerii, of Capena in 397 BC, but did not give any details.
He wrote. In that year the Etruscan League held a council "where the Capenates and Faliscans proposed that all the nations of Etruria should unite in a common resolution'and design to raise the siege of Veii." However, the request was refused because Veii had not consulted the other Etruscan cities "for advice in so weighty a matter." Moreover, "here was now in the greatest part of Etruria a strange race, new settlers, with whom they were neither securely at peace nor yet certain to have war." This must have been a reference to the Gauls. The council allowed Etruscan men to volunteer to serve in the war and many men did so. In 396 BC two Roman commanders marched against Capena. However, they fell into an ambush. One of them fell and the other withdrew. There was a rumour that Faliscans and Capenates were advancing and getting close to Veii "with the whole military strength of Etruria." This caused panic in Rome. This led to a Roman push at Veii, captured and destroyed. In 395 BC the Romans conducted operations against Capena.
They did not attack the cities. They ravaged the countryside and "despoiled the farmers of their possessions, leaving not one fruit-tree in the land nor any productive plant." Capena sued for peace. 5.24.1-2 In 394 BC the war with Falerii was entrusted to Marcus Furius Camillus. He forced the Faliscans to come out of their town by burning the farmhouses, they encamped only one mile from the town, on a spot which they thought was safe because it was difficult to access. Guided by Faliscan prisoners, Camillus placed himself in a superior position near the camp. Enemy forces which tried to hinder the work were routed and the Faliscans fled back to their city. Camillus proceeded to besiege it; the town had plenty of food supplies and the siege seemed a prolonged affair. The inhabitants carried on with their usual lives and their boys went to school; the Faliscans had adopted the Greek practice o
Publius Ovidius Naso, known as Ovid in the English-speaking world, was a Roman poet who lived during the reign of Augustus. He was a contemporary of the older Virgil and Horace, with whom he is ranked as one of the three canonical poets of Latin literature; the Imperial scholar Quintilian considered him the last of the Latin love elegists. He enjoyed enormous popularity, but, in one of the mysteries of literary history, was sent by Augustus into exile in a remote province on the Black Sea, where he remained until his death. Ovid himself attributes his exile to carmen et error, "a poem and a mistake", but his discretion in discussing the causes has resulted in much speculation among scholars; the first major Roman poet to begin his career during the reign of Augustus, Ovid is today best known for the Metamorphoses, a 15-book continuous mythological narrative written in the meter of epic, for works in elegiac couplets such as Ars Amatoria and Fasti. His poetry was much imitated during Late Antiquity and the Middle Ages, influenced Western art and literature.
The Metamorphoses remains one of the most important sources of classical mythology. Ovid talks more about his own life than most other Roman poets. Information about his biography is drawn from his poetry Tristia 4.10, which gives a long autobiographical account of his life. Other sources include Seneca the Quintilian. Ovid was born in Sulmo, in an Apennine valley east of Rome, to an important equestrian family, on 20 March, 43 BC; that was a significant year in Roman politics. He was educated in rhetoric in Rome under the teachers Arellius Fuscus and Porcius Latro with his brother who excelled at oratory, his father wanted him to study rhetoric toward the practice of law. According to Seneca the Elder, Ovid tended to not the argumentative pole of rhetoric. After the death of his brother at 20 years of age, Ovid renounced law and began travelling to Athens, Asia Minor, Sicily, he held minor public posts, as one of the tresviri capitales, as a member of the Centumviral court and as one of the decemviri litibus iudicandis, but resigned to pursue poetry around 29–25 BC, a decision his father disapproved of.
Ovid's first recitation has been dated to around 25 BC. He was part of the circle centered on the patron Marcus Valerius Messalla Corvinus, seems to have been a friend of poets in the circle of Maecenas. In Trist. 4.10.41–54, Ovid mentions friendships with Macer, Horace and Bassus. He married three times and divorced twice by the time he was thirty years old, he had one daughter, who bore him grandchildren. His last wife was connected in some way to the influential gens Fabia and would help him during his exile in Tomis; the first 25 years of Ovid's literary career were spent writing poetry in elegiac meter with erotic themes. The chronology of these early works is not secure, his earliest extant work is thought to be the Heroides, letters of mythological heroines to their absent lovers, which may have been published in 19 BC, although the date is uncertain as it depends on a notice in Am. 2.18.19–26 that seems to describe the collection as an early published work. The authenticity of some of these poems has been challenged, but this first edition contained the first 14 poems of the collection.
The first five-book collection of the Amores, a series of erotic poems addressed to a lover, Corinna, is thought to have been published in 16–15 BC. 8–3 BC. Between the publications of the two editions of the Amores can be dated the premiere of his tragedy Medea, admired in antiquity but is no longer extant. Ovid's next poem, the Medicamina Faciei, a fragmentary work on women's beauty treatments, preceded the Ars Amatoria, the Art of Love, a parody of didactic poetry and a three-book manual about seduction and intrigue, dated to AD 2. Ovid may identify this work in his exile poetry as the carmen, or song, one cause of his banishment; the Ars Amatoria was followed by the Remedia Amoris in the same year. This corpus of elegiac, erotic poetry earned Ovid a place among the chief Roman elegists Gallus and Propertius, of whom he saw himself as the fourth member. By AD 8, he had completed his most ambitious work, the Metamorphoses, a hexameter epic poem in 15 books; the work encyclopedically catalogues transformations in Greek and Roman mythology, from the emergence of the cosmos to the apotheosis of Julius Caesar.
The stories follow each other in the telling of human beings transformed to new bodies: trees, animals, constellations etc. At the same time, he worked on the Fasti, a six-book poem in elegiac couplets on the theme of the calendar of Roman festivals and astronomy; the composition of this poem was interrupted by Ovid's exile, it is thought that Ovid abandoned work on the piece in Tomis. It is in this period, if they are indeed by Ovid, that the double letters in the Heroides were composed. In AD 8, Ovid was banished to Tomis, on the Black Sea, by the exclusive intervention of the Emperor Augustus, without any participation of the Senate or of any Roman judge; this event shaped all his following poetry. Ovid wrote that the reason for his exile was carmen et error – "a poem and a mistake", claiming that his crime was
The Aeneid is a Latin epic poem, written by Virgil between 29 and 19 BC, that tells the legendary story of Aeneas, a Trojan who travelled to Italy, where he became the ancestor of the Romans. It comprises 9,896 lines in dactylic hexameter; the first six of the poem's twelve books tell the story of Aeneas's wanderings from Troy to Italy, the poem's second half tells of the Trojans' victorious war upon the Latins, under whose name Aeneas and his Trojan followers are destined to be subsumed. The hero Aeneas was known to Greco-Roman legend and myth, having been a character in the Iliad. Virgil took the disconnected tales of Aeneas's wanderings, his vague association with the foundation of Rome and his description as a personage of no fixed characteristics other than a scrupulous pietas, fashioned the Aeneid into a compelling founding myth or national epic that tied Rome to the legends of Troy, explained the Punic Wars, glorified traditional Roman virtues, legitimized the Julio-Claudian dynasty as descendants of the founders and gods of Rome and Troy.
The Aeneid is regarded as Virgil's masterpiece and one of the greatest works of Latin literature. The Aeneid can be divided into two halves based on the disparate subject matter of Books 1–6 and Books 7–12; these two halves are regarded as reflecting Virgil's ambition to rival Homer by treating both the Odyssey's wandering theme and the Iliad's warfare themes. This is, however, a rough correspondence, the limitations of which should be borne in mind. Virgil begins his poem with a statement of his theme and an invocation to the Muse, falling some seven lines after the poem's inception, he explains the reason for the principal conflict in the story: the resentment held by the goddess Juno against the Trojan people. This is consistent with her role throughout the Homeric epics. In the manner of Homer, the story proper begins in medias res, with the Trojan fleet in the eastern Mediterranean, heading in the direction of Italy; the fleet, led by Aeneas, is on a voyage to find a second home. It has been foretold that in Italy he will give rise to a race both noble and courageous, a race which will become known to all nations.
Juno is wrathful, because she had not been chosen in the judgment of Paris, because her favorite city, will be destroyed by Aeneas's descendants. Ganymede, a Trojan prince, was chosen to be the cupbearer to her husband, Jupiter—replacing Juno's daughter, Hebe. Juno proceeds to Aeolus, King of the Winds, asks that he release the winds to stir up a storm in exchange for a bribe. Aeolus agrees to carry out Juno's orders. Neptune takes notice: although he himself is no friend of the Trojans, he is infuriated by Juno's intrusion into his domain, stills the winds and calms the waters, after making sure that the winds would not bother the Trojans again, lest they be punished more harshly than they were this time; the fleet takes shelter on the coast of Africa, where Aeneas rouses the spirits of his men, reassuring them that they have been through worse situations before. There, Aeneas's mother, Venus, in the form of a huntress similar to the goddess Diana, encourages him and recounts to him the history of Carthage.
Aeneas ventures into the city, in the temple of Juno he seeks and gains the favor of Dido, queen of the city. The city has only been founded by refugees from Tyre and will become a great imperial rival and enemy to Rome. Meanwhile, Venus has her own plans, she goes to her son, Aeneas's half-brother Cupid, tells him to imitate Ascanius. Disguised as such, Cupid offers the gifts expected from a guest. With Dido's motherly love revived as she cradles the boy during a banquet given in honour of the Trojans, Cupid secretly weakens her sworn fidelity to the soul of her late husband, murdered by her brother, Pygmalion. In books 2 and 3, Aeneas recounts the events, he begins the tale shortly after the war described in the Iliad. Cunning Ulysses devised a way for Greek warriors to gain entry into the walled city of Troy by hiding in a large wooden horse; the Greeks pretended to sail away, leaving a warrior, Sinon, to mislead the Trojans into believing that the horse was an offering and that if it were taken into the city, the Trojans would be able to conquer Greece.
The Trojan priest Laocoön saw through the Greek plot and urged the horse's destruction, but his protests fell on deaf ears, so he hurled his spear at the horse. In what would be seen by the Trojans as punishment from the gods, two serpents emerged from the sea and devoured Laocoön, along with his two sons; the Trojans took the horse inside the fortified walls, after nightfall the armed Greeks emerged from it, opening the city's gates to allow the returned Greek army to slaughter the Trojans. In a dream, the fallen Trojan prince, advised Aeneas to flee with his family. Aeneas saw with horror what was happening to his beloved city. At first he tried to fight the enemy, but soon he lost his comrades and was left alone to fend off the Greeks, he witnessed the murder of Priam by Achilles' son Pyrrhus. His mother, appeared to him and led him back to his house. Aeneas tells of his escape with his son, his wife Creusa, his father, after the occurrence
Civita Castellana is a town and comune in the province of Viterbo, 65 kilometres north of Rome. Mount Soracte lies about 10 kilometres to the south-east. Civita Castellana was settled during the Iron Age by the Italic people of the Falisci, who called it "Falerii." After the Faliscan defeat against the Romans, a new city was built by the latter, about 5 kilometres away, called "Falerii Novi." The abandoned city was repopulated beginning in the early Middle Ages, with the new name of Civita Castellana mentioned first in 994. In the following centuries the city was a flourishing independent commune contended by the Pope and the Holy Roman Empire. Captured by Pope Paschal II at the beginning of the 12th century, the city was given as fief to the Savelli by Gregory XIV. Sixtus IV assigned the city to Cardinal Rodrigo Borgia, the future Pope Alexander VI, who started the construction of the Rocca, completed under Julius II. Civita Castellana became an important road hub with the connection to the Via Flaminia and the construction of Ponte Clementino sometime after the Battle of Civita Castellana, a French Army victory against a Neapolitan Army here on December 5, 1798 while this community was still part of the 1798-1799 Roman Republic after the fall of the 754-1798 Papal States but before the return of the 1799-1809 Papal States.
Santa Maria di Pozzano: the cathedral of the town, it possesses a fine portico, erected in 1210 by Laurentius Romanus, his son Jacobus and his grandson Cosmas, in the Cosmatesque style, with ancient columns and mosaic decorations. The interior was modernized in the 18th century, but has some fragments of Cosmatesque ornamentation; the high altar is made out of a Paleo-Christian sarcophagus of the 4th century. The ancient crypt and the old sacristy are home to examples of central Italian medieval art. Santa Chiara: church with Renaissance portal from 1529 Santa Maria del Carmine: church with small belltower from the 12th century, including ancient Roman spolia. San Francesco - Church rebuilt in 18th century Rocca was erected by Pope Alexander VI from the designs of Antonio da Sangallo the Elder, over pre-existing fortifications, enlarged by Julius II and Leo X. Ponte Clementino, the bridge by which the town is approached, dates to the 18th century; the town contains the ruins of the Castle of Paterno, where, on 23 January 1002, Emperor Otto III died at the age of 22.
The National Museum of the Faliscan Countryside contains findings from the ancient Falerii and the surrounding areas. Scalimoli Boscolo, Luca Creti, Consuelo Mastelloni Il pavimento cosmatesco della Cattedrale di Civita Castellana. Biblioteca e società 23; this article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Chisholm, Hugh, ed.. "Civita Castellana". Encyclopædia Britannica. 6. Cambridge University Press. P. 416. This article incorporates text from a publication now in the public domain: Herbermann, Charles, ed.. "Diocese of Cività Castellana and Gallese". Catholic Encyclopedia. New York: Robert Appleton. De Lucia Brolli, Maria Anna, Jacopo Tabolli. 2013. "The Faliscans and the Etruscans." In The Etruscan World, edited by Jean MacIntosh Turfa, 259–80. Abingdon: Routledge. Tabolli and Jean MacIntosh Turfa. 2014. "Discovered Anew: A Faliscan Tomb-Group from Falerii-Celle in Philadelphia." Etruscan Studies 17: 28–62. Civita Castellana travel guide from Wikivoyage