In the latest article here on RSB, classicist A.T. Reyes describes the background to his C.S. Lewis's Lost Aeneid: Arms and the Exile:

I have no doubt that, like a sort of tutelary divinity, the spirit of Virgil was present at meetings of the Inklings literary circle in Oxford. In 1936, J.R.R. Tolkien delivered the Israel Gollancz Memorial Lecture to the British Academy on the subject of Beowulf, which considered, in part, the similarities and differences between that Anglo-Saxon epic and the Aeneid. When he joined the Inklings in 1939, Charles Williams had already published a small volume re-telling the adventures of Aeneas, and in his Arthurian poems, Virgil appears as a central symbol of civilisation. But it was C.S. Lewis whose thoughts and writings were most deeply affected by Virgil's masterpiece. His correspondence and writings make clear that he had begun a translation of the Aeneid in 1933, the very year, according to the biographer Humphrey Carpenter, that the Inklings came into being. Lewis is known to have read out portions of his translation during meetings in 1943 and 1944, and in 1962, he wrote that the Aeneid was one of 10 books that had done the most to shape his "vocational attitude and philosophy of life."

Read the whole article.

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