Publius Vergilius Maro (70-19 B.C.), known as Virgil, was born near Mantua in the last days of the Roman Republic. In his comparatively short life he became the supreme poet of his age, whose Aeneid gave the Romans a great national epic equal to the Greeks’, celebrating their city’s origins and the creation of their empire. Virgil is also credited with authoring two other major works of Latin literature, the Eclogues and the Georgics.
Kimberly Johnson is a poet and a scholar of Renaissance literature. She is the author of two collections of poetry and the recipient of a National Endowment for the Arts Creative Writing Fellowship. Her poems, essays and translations have appeared in numerous publications, including The New Yorker.
Cy Twombly is a well-known American artist, whose paintings are both graffiti-like and beautifully subtle. He lives in Lexington, Virginia, and Italy.