Juturna's Role and Functions in the Aeneid
三田, 祐子高橋, 宏幸
97 , 2015-07-31 , 京都大学西洋古典研究会
Juturna is a unique figure, having personal contact with all the major characters in Book 12: Jupiter, Juno, Turnus, and Aeneas. This paper examines her role and functions through comparing her with each one of them. To Juturna, Jupiter looks like a despot, who robbed her of her virginity, and, in return, gave her the eternal life, only to keep her in the unbearable pain, barring her accompanying Turnus to the underworld. Still, just as Palinurus, Misenus, and Caieta have their names engraved on their burial places for ever, it could be a great honor for Turnus, if she, with her spring, chooses to keep the memory of her brother in eternity. Both Juno and Juturna try to save, or just prolong, Turnus’s life, but their motives and purposes are totally different. The goddess utilizes him as an instrument to delay the fulfilment of the fate, so when she has seen nothing left in him to help her cause, she simply deserts him. To Juturna, there is nothing dearer than her brother’s life, which is why she keeps on standing by him until the last moment when Dira forces her to go. Against her wish, Turnus himself, as a traditional epic hero, thinks that life would be worthless if not for honor and fame. She knows well what he has in mind, but cannot share his view. Aeneas and Juturna have two points in common: deep mourning for the dead and caring will to protect his/her family. In both points, however, we see a difference: Juturna is concerned for nobody but Turnus, whereas Aeneas cares not only for those right around him, but for those countless people coming after him who will commit themselves to founding Rome. In conclusion, Juturna serves to delineate the differences among the major characters in Book 12 in their positions and as to what they deem worthy. And the antithesis between an individual represented by Jurturna and a people as a whole championed by Aeneas, the nymph motivated by her love and pain for her brother and the hero striving to act for the common good, seems highly important, because it obviously pertains to the main theme of the epic: tantae molis erat Romanam condere gentem (1.33).