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Introduction
       The story titled “The Aeneid” written by Virgil has a strong message exhibited by the several themes exhibited in the story. Aeneas and other Trojans sail to Italy where he is destined to found Rome. The story presents Dido as the founder and queen of Carthage and she welcomes Aeneas and other Trojans. The story exhibits Dido as a sympathetic character among the many characters that she possesses. We first see her sympathetic character when she welcomes Aeneas and fellow Trojans after a fierce storm has thrown them off the course and they find themselves in Carthage.Aeneas arrives in Carthage and Dido falls in love with him but he later leaves her to follow up his mission. Dido then suffers from emotional stress that finally causes her death. This paper seeks to describe the sympathetic nature of Dido as a character in the book. 
Thesis statement: Dido’s outstanding sympathetic character can be clearly seen throughout the story.
Dido as a sympathetic character in The Aeneid.
       We first meet Dido at second hand where she disguises herself as a Tyrian hunter when she encounters the Achates and the Trojans in woods. She then welcomes them despite the fact that they are strangers which is her first act of kindness that we first see in the story. The act portrays Dido as a sympathetic character as she welcomes Aeneas and other Trojans to Carthage after they have been affected by the fierce storm.This part is shown in book 1. She welcomes them even after she has had grief over the loss of her husband who was killed by her brother. Venus then wraps the Achates and Aeneas in a cloak of invisibility then brings them to Dido’s city of Carthage. She then sits in front of the temple found in Juno and then receives them in utmost hospitality feeling sorry for them for the predicaments that she has gone through. She gives shelter to her suffering visitors and makes them feel at home. She even helps them in the repair of their boat that had been destroyed. The action clearly shows empathy and compassion. She is also sympathetic in some matters but her hands are so tied to help for the example the failure to protect the visitors because Carthaginian escort was not around to help them.
       She takes responsibility for her ramped up security as she apologizes and promises the visitors that they were free to sail at any time they wanted in company of a Carthaginian escort. She also gives them the option of staying in Carthage as equal citizens if they chose to. Dido is disturbed with the absence of Aeneas then promises to get scouts who will look for him in the coastlines which also reveals her sympathetic nature. She then leads Aeneas into her place where she throws a party for him together with the visitors.  Dido does not know Aeneas too well but ponders to take scouts to look for him probably because she probably fears that something bad might have happened to him. The action clearly depicts the sympathetic nature of Dido. She is well aware of the dangers that Aeneas is exposed to as long as he is missing(4.233-238).
Dido is furious, wishes the Trojans to leave but tells them to wait for better winds which shows her sympathetic nature. She is angry but does not actually want the person who angered her to be harmed in any way or to die. She is deeply troubled by the happenings that include the Trojans refusal to hearken to her advice (1.1021-1026). For instance, the water turns black on her alters then wine turns and becomes blood and there are some voices that seem to emanate from the shrine of her dead husband. Dido then decides that she is going to commit suicide but the ponders again what she should do thinks of following the Trojans but again she is against it and then guild of betraying the memory of her husband starts to haunt him. She partly blames herself thinking that she is part of the cause of the trouble. Her sympathetic nature turns out to be the cause of her death because she commits suicide after she has faced the trouble(4.233-238). Virgil simply talks to the audience to make them understand that being so sympathetic could lead to people facing pain. Dido wishes that all manner of evils befall Aeneas, she even wishes that she killed him when he had the chance to. However she does not take a step to harm her lover who has hurt her. She seems to be deeply concerned about him deep down her heart. She is sympathetic to the extent that she does not want to see Aeneas harmed despite the wrongs that he had done to her. She harms herself instead after thinking that she has no reason to live.
The way Juno and Venus trick Dido also portrays her as a sympathetic character. She is guided by emotions to the point of losing her dignity as a queen. She goes ahead to betray the memory of her husband by falling in love with another man. She brings her own destruction and suffers in the end but in the underworld, she chooses her first love over Aeneas. She snubs Aeneas and does not want anything to do with him. The author shows something that could appear like Dido re-united with her husband in the underworld which is probably the end of her suffering.
Dido as a character in the story arouses the audience of the story to have sympathy for her. Life seems unfair for her as she is used as a pawn in the supremacy battle between Juno and Venus. The battle cause her so much emotional pain and suffering making her to suffer more and eventually commit suicide. The author makes the readers to fall in love with the character of Dido and are deeply saddened by the predicaments that she goes through. The sympathetic emotions that the audience has towards the character makes them to learn the lessons that are shown in the story(4.233-238).
Conclusion
The sympathetic character of Dido is not in doubt something that makes the reader to identify with. All the way in the story the reader can identify with or rather care about Dido. She is mostly a victim of circumstances as she suffers from the supremacy battle that exists between Juno and Venus. The Aeneid is one of the ruthless stories that leaves the reader very sad as the story ends. However, Dido is saved from the readers ridicule because she later reunites with her first love and does not want anything to do with the person that hurt her. Sympathetic characters express the most sensitive themes in the story since the author uses them to pass a message to the audience. The character also serve to make the audience glued to the story and any attempts to hurt them causes the audience to feel sad as well. It is the nature of the audience to fall in love with some characters as well as to hate other characters.
Reference
Virgil. (2013). The Aeneid of Virgil.
 
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