Virgil's Aeneid is probably the single most important and influential poem written in the history of western literature and civilization. In the Renaissance, much other Greek and Roman literature was rediscovered and studied, but the Aeneid retained its preeminence. Virgil has been regarded as the perfect teacher, whom all poets should respect and imitate. The Aeneid has offered guidance and inspiration to multitudinous numbers of people. Unlike the Iliad and Odyssey, which are "oral" epics, the Aeneid is a "literary" epic, for it is the product of a settled, highly civilized society. Reading and understanding the Aeneid is one of the richest opportunities that can be offered to any one of its readers. Such poems are intended to communicate a serious philosophical, moral, and patriotic message. One is able to learn about the beauty and mysticism of literature additionally gaining a fuller understanding and appreciation of human life. This can be particularly illustrated by the adventures of Aeneas. The definition of an epic hero is a person of great stature, someone who follows the heroic code, and has great historical or legendary significance. Aeneas From fits this description completely. Aeneas is known far and wide for his many achievements and adventures; Aeneas receives an incredible amount of respect and esteem from many of the important characters throughout this epic story. As far as history and legend goes, Aeneas name comes up in many other epics and other folk tales. Aeneas influences history through his adventures, which are eventually recognized as Rome's national epic, teaching generations to come. Also, Aeneas holds an enormous stake in legends. As a part of legendary literature, Aeneas' adventures come to life, contributing greatly to the legends of today. Aeneas' life .
is strongly influenced by the many, and often opposing, gods. Throughout the story the reader can easily see that Aeneas has the virtues of a Roman hero, he is protected by his mother along his adventures, and is caught up in a tragic love a fare.