ap latin study guides

5.0 Overview of Unit 5: Vergil, Aeneid, Book IV: The Tragedy of Dido 😪

⏱️  3 min read

written by

Jack Marso

jack marso

September 26, 2020

Overview of Unit 5 😍

Salvete Omnes 🏛️! We’re more than half-way completed in reviewing the AP Latin curriculum (and we hope you have been with us throughout your entire journey.) This unit covers going into Book IV of the Aeneid


In order to prepare for the exam, you’ll be reading Book IV in Latin 🤩. Reading over the unit 5 checklist is important in making sure you understand the correct skill categories each section of lines tackles.

We appreciate your support so far this year, and we hope that you continue using us as a resource for all of your AP® and college-level studies. Let’s get right into, shall we?

Check out the Overview of Unit 5!

Unit Guide at a Glance 👓

As you already know, in AP Latin and other languages, there are no key concepts like there are in other AP subjects 🤨. Instead, we will practice skill categories in the form of different style questions to help you prepare for the exam. Then, we will break down the lines within that particular section of the Book.

Also, there are different themes in the Course Content where students should be able to know, tackle correctly, and understand the focus of each theme. For Unit 5, there are three themes: Literary Style and Genre (LIT), Roman Values (RMV), and Views of Non-Romans (VNR) that students should be aware of throughout the unit. Notice the explanations of each theme below.

Themes of Unit 5

ThemeDescription of Theme
Literary Style and Genre (LIT)1) What should we expect from a Latin epic or commentarii in terms of form and content? 2) How do the authors confirm or challenge our expectations? 3) What are the purposes and effects of Vergil's and Caesar's style? 4) What points of view do Vergil and Caesar take when describing events? 5) How do they represent themselves and for what purposes? 6) What means do the authors use to develop characters in the works? 7) How do the authors portray female characters? 8) How do the authors use characterization to develop key themes?
Roman Values (RMV)1) What values and ideals are portrayed as characteristically Roman? 2) How do these values and ideals differ based on gender, ethnicity, or other criteria? 3) What strengths and weaknesses of character are exemplified by individuals in the works? 4) How do the texts confirm characteristic Roman values? 5) What questions do the texts raise about Roman values?
Views of Non-Romans (VNR)1) In what ways do the authors portray the various non-Roman peoples that appear in the works? 2) What criteria do they use to evaluate these groups? 3) To what extent do the authors reinforce or challenge stereotypes of these groups? 4) How do the authors use these portrayals in their works?

Contextualization 📜

Hold up! I know, I know . . . I said we would get right into it, but understanding what leads up to Book IV is CRUCIAL 🥵. Although Book III isn’t required for the AP exam, it’s important contextualization for required argumentation and textual analysis skills utilized in this book.

I recommend taking a look at the summary and reviewing each pairing of lines for a more in-depth review.

Check out The Aeneid Book 3!

As always, when there is a gap between sections of lines, I would suggest reading the lines in English or sight-right them for extra comprehension and practice! These are great skills to practice in order to prepare for your exam in May!

Review of Unit 3 👏

In Unit 3, we read Book II of the Aeneid. After reading Book IV of Caesar’s Gallic War in Unit 4, it may have been quite some time since your class has discussed the Aeneid, so if you need a refresher (it’s perfectly ok if you do 😁), take a look at our other unit guides.

Ok... that's all over with. Now, what were we doing again? OH yeah, I remember… we’re reviewing Unit 5! Let’s jump into this content 🤑!

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