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Compare the love of Jason and Medea, Argonautica with the love of Aeneas and Dido, Aeneid - Book Report/Review Example

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Compare the love of Jason and Medea, Argonautica with the love of Aeneas and Dido, Aeneid

Specially, taking into account that Virgil, Aeneid's author, based his narration of Aeneas and Dido love on Jason and Medea love. Disgracefully the versions of Argonautica that have survived (one by Apollonius Rhodius and another by Gaius Valerius Flaccus) were writer many years after Virgil's Aeneid.
As it has been stated before, Argonautica and Aeneid have in common the love of their main protagonists; a deep love that will end in tragedy in both cases. Medea and Dido are proud women whose common sense is obliterated by the intense love they feel towards Jason and Aeneas; love that is symbolized with flames, fire, etc; as can be seen in the following examples:
"--- and the flame waxing wondrous great from the small brand consumes all the twigs together; so, coiling round her heart, burnt secretly Love the destroyer; and the hue of her soft cheeks went and came, now pale, now red, in her soul's distraction" (275-298. Book III. Apollonius)
Both Medea and Dido succumb to this passion and marry their loved ones in spite of the problems that their union with the heroes arises. Medea, after a long fight with herself, finally accepts her love for Jason, especially after having been convinced by her sister Chalciope to help the strangers to pass the tasks her father has set upon them. "But go, bury my kindness in silence, so that I may carry out my promise unknown to my parents; and at dawn I will bring Hecate's temple charms to cast a spell on the bulls". (724-739, Book III. Apollonius). Dido, on the contrary, is easily convinced by her sister Ana to pursue her love; so she decides to make a sacrifice to the gods in order to win their good will. But, in spite of some of the bad omens she receives from her sacrifices, she lets the flame consume her common sense: "Sick with desire, and seeking him she loves, / From street to street the raving Dido roves" (89-90. Book IV, Virgil)
This love proves to be destructive in both cases as Medea and Dido dishonour themselves and bring shame upon their families. Medea, for having helped Jason, brings her father wrath towards herself; from now she is considered a traitor and she must flee from her own country to save her life. "Save me, the hapless one, my friends, from Aeetes, and yourselves too, for all is brought to light, nor doth any remedy come." (83-91, Book IV. Apollonius). Dido, on her part, makes her people feel ashamed of her behaviour and lustful actions.
"She fills the people's ears with Dido's name,
Who, lost to honour and the sense of shame,
Admits in her throne and nuptial bed
A wand'ring guest, who from his country fled."
(269-272. Book IV, Virgil)
Those women, who become more violent in their love, are in reality pawns of the goddesses. Both are used by the goddesses as a means to achieve a goal: help the hero or retain the hero. Medea is made to fall in love with Jason by Eros, who had been previously convinced by his mother to help Hera. With Medea in love with Jason, Hera has a way to help her favourite without being too obvious.
"Come, let us go to Cypris, let both of us accost her and urge her to bid her son (if only he will obey) speed his shaft at the daughter of ...Show more


Argonautica and Aeneid are considered part of the classical literature for different reasons: their influence in future works, their complexity, etc. Both narrate the adventures of mythological heroes, Jason and Aeneas, and how they fulfil their destiny with the help of gods…
Author : schulistjordi
Compare the love of Jason and Medea, Argonautica with the love of Aeneas and Dido, Aeneid essay example
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