The Psychomachia (Battle of spirits) by the Late Antique Latin poet Prudentius is probably the first and most influential "pure" medieval allegory, the first in a long tradition of works as diverse as the Romance of the Rose, Everyman, and Piers Plowman.
In slightly less than a thousand lines, the poem describes the conflict of vices and virtues as a battle in the style of Virgil's Aeneid. Christian faith is attacked by and defeats pagan idolatry to be cheered by a thousand Christian martyrs.
- Chastity is assaulted by Lust, but cuts down her enemy with a sword.
- Anger attacks Patience, is unable to defeat her and destroys herself instead.
- Greed is portrayed against Love, but is unable to obtain what it cannot coexist with.
- In a similar manner, various vices fight corresponding virtues and are always defeated. Biblical figures that exemplify these virtues also appear (e.g. Job as an example of patience).
- The Latin original of the poem
- Several medieval illustrations of the battle scenes described
-  (translated to English)
- Psycomachia Vices folio 200v of manuscript Hortus Deliciarum ca. 1170 CE, Strasbourg (online catalog Oberlin College)
- Psycomachia Virtues folio 201r of manuscript Hortus Deliciarum ca. 1170 CE, Strasbourg (online catalog Oberlin College)