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The hero of Vergil's Aeneid. Aeneas was the son of the mortal Anchises and the goddess Aphrodite. According to Homer, he fought against the Greeks in the Trojan War and, after the sack of Troy, reigned in the Troad. Vergil, however, used another legend, according to which Aeneas carried his father, Anchises, on his shoulders out of the burning city and, with a band of followers, set out to establish a new nation; after wandering for many years, he is said to have arrived in Italy, where he founded the colony from which the Romans traced their origin. The epithet often applied to him is pious, i.e., devoted to the service of the gods and deeply aware of his obligations to his family and his country. See Ascanius.

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Publication:Benet's Reader's Encyclopedia, 3rd ed.
Article Type:Reference Source
Date:Jan 1, 1987
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