As the epic hero of the Aeneid, Aeneas is supposed to be the embodiment of the Roman character. What are the virtues that Aeneas exemplifies in books 1, 2, 4, and 6 of the Aeneid? Discuss at least three virtues and support them with examples.

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Aeneas's trademark quality is virtus—a Latin term that encompasses the virtues of courage, manliness, and excellence. Aeneas is very stoical; when he meets Venus disguised as a huntress, he is inquisitive but demure. He respects her divine status.

However, Aeneas is not an ideal hero. He contemplates killing Helen in book 2 and only decides against it when Venus intervenes. Additionally, Aeneas famously misinterprets the oracle at Delos in book 3, interpreting the origin of the Trojan people as Crete, rather than Italy.

Aeneas is characteristically stalwart in his decision to leave Dido in book 4. His decision can be seen as insensitive to the lovestruck Dido or, alternatively, as devotional to his destiny to found a new city.

These episodes collectively depict Aeneas as a purposeful, righteous, and dedicated (if imperfect) human hero who is loyal to his destiny above all else.

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