What is Virgil's view of the Romans and humanity in the Georgics book 1? 

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readerofbooks eNotes educator| Certified Educator

This is a a difficult question, because the Georgics of Virgil are hard to understand. The end of book one describes the many portents that took place at the murder of Julius Caesar. If we take this as Virgil's view of humanity and the Romans, we can say that in many ways the Georgics has a bleak view of humanity. This is confirmed by the function of portents and the allusion Virgil makes to Hesiod's Works and Days

When it comes to portents and prodigies, the point is that the gods are not pleased with the behavior of people. A part of this is their morality. From Virgil's historical stand point this makes sense, as Rome has been ravaged (and the countryside) by civil conflict starting from Gracchi. 

When it comes to the allusion to Hesiod, we can say that there is a declension of man based on the passing of the ages. In a word, things get worse. 

With this said, we should also say that Virgil also believes that Octavian will be a savior figure. So, from this perspective, he is hopeful. 

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