Ancient Carthage was a city of heroines and heroes, and the greatest of all was its founder-queen, Dido, who was immortalised (but also killed) in Virgil’s Aeneid. Too often, however, Dido is read through a purely Roman lens for what she can tell us about Roman culture and ideas. This seminar argues that the basic story of Dido’s foundation of Carthage that has survived for us in Greek and Roman accounts is actually a Carthaginian myth, not simply a story told about the Carthaginians. It also makes the case for the particular importance of this story at Carthage in the early Hellenistic period. The seminar concludes by considering what happens to the story in later imaginations as the story transforms from a local colonial myth to a Roman imperial one.

About Classics and Ancient History Seminars

Classics and Ancient History seminars are followed by a wine-and-cheese reception ($2 coin donation per person). Enquiries about the seminars may be made to Associate Professor David Pritchard

The Friends of Antiquity, an alumni organisation of the University, runs its own series of public lectures, which take place on Sunday afternoons. The Friends’ program for 2019 can be found at


Michie Building