Dido (Di´do). A daughter of Belus, King of Tyre. It was this princess who bought a piece of land in Africa as large as could be encompassed by a bullock’s hide, and when the purchase was completed, cut the hide into strips, and so secured a large tract of land. Here she built Carthage; and Virgil tells that when Aeneas was shipwrecked on the neighboring coast she received him with every kindness, and at last fell in love with him. But Aeneas did not reciprocate her affections, and this so grieved her that she stabbed herself. A tale is told in Facetiae Cantabrigienses of Professor Porson, who being one of a set party, the conversation turned on the subject of punning, when Porson observing that he could pun on any subject, a person present defied him to do so on the Latin gerunds, di, do, dum, which, however, he immediately did in the following admirable couplet:

“When Dido found Aeneas would not come,
She mourned in silence, and was Dido dumb.”

Discussion (0)

Be the first to start a discussion about this article by leaving your comment.

You must be logged in to post a comment on this article. Create a free account if you don't have one. Register