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Vergil's Green ThoughtsPlants, Humans, and the Divine$
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Rebecca Armstrong

Print publication date: 2019

Print ISBN-13: 9780199236688

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: August 2019

DOI: 10.1093/oso/9780199236688.001.0001

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PRINTED FROM OXFORD SCHOLARSHIP ONLINE (oxford.universitypressscholarship.com). (c) Copyright Oxford University Press, 2021. All Rights Reserved. An individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a monograph in OSO for personal use. date: 25 September 2021

Gods’ Special Species

Gods’ Special Species

(p.115) 2 Gods’ Special Species
Vergil's Green Thoughts

Rebecca Armstrong

Oxford University Press

Following the exploration of the divine in wooded, arable, and other cultivated habitats in the first chapter, in this chapter the focus turns to the connections between individual gods and certain species: oak, poplar, pine, olive, laurel, myrtle, cypress, ivy, and a range of medicinal and magical plants. The wider difficulty of maintaining for long any stereotypical association between one particular plant and one god is made clear, and Vergil’s replications and variations of traditionally made connections are examined in detail, with links made to the themes of prophecy, tree-felling, poetic and political symbolism, as well as the blurred edges between ritual, superstition, and rational enquiry.

Keywords:   oak, poplar, pine, olive, laurel, myrtle, cypress, ivy, magic, medicine

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