Ovid: a Master Poet By Joey Sweeney, Patrick Coleman, Trevor Horgan, and Zack Koziel.
Introduction Born in 43 BCE, Died in 17-18 CE Wrote a number of famous works, like the Metamorphoses, from which we get most of our information about the Greco-Roman religion. The meters he would most commonly write in are Elegiac Couplets and Dactylic Hexameter. He would often write, in either jest or seriousness, didactic (instructional) poetry. He was exiled from Rome to Tomis by personal decree of Augustus in 8 C.E The causes for Ovid’s exile are not known, but were described by Ovid as “carmen et error (A poem and an error)”
Works Penned • Heroides: TheHeroines. Written in elegiac couplets. One of the first literary works to be written in persona. • Amores: The Loves. A collection of love poems written in elegiac couplets. • Medicamina Faciei Femineae: Women’s Facial Cosmetics. A didactic, or instructional, poem written in elegiac couplets. His first attempt at using elegy in a didactic poem • Ars Amatoria: The Art of Love. One of his most well-known poems. A burlesque, more satirical approach to didactic poetry. Written in elegy. • Remedia Amoris: The Cure for Love. Sequel to the Ars Amatoria. Contains breakup advice. • Metamorphoses: A famous compilation of myths and stories, arguably Ovid’s most famous work. Written in Dactylic Hexameter • Fasti: The Festivals. Written in elegiac couplets, this poem was left unfinished when Ovid was banished to Tomis. • Ibis: A tirade against an unnamed enemy, referred to only as Ibis. Written in elegiac couplets • Tristia: The Lamentations. A collection of mournful letters written in elegiac couplets by Ovid after his exile. • Epistulae ex Ponto: Letters from the Black Sea. His last work, filled with pleas for forgiveness and mercy and descriptions of his exile.
Dates and Places Born March 20, 43 B.C.E in Sulmo Exiled to Tomis in 8 CE, by personal order of Augustus. Died in either 17 or 18 C.E in Tomis.
The Metamorphoses The Metamorphoses, or transformations, are one of Ovid’s most famous works. They are a collection of myths, written in Dactylic Hexameter. Orpheus and Eurydice is one of these myths. The Metamorphoses are one of the most famous pieces of literature ever. Have been used to gain insight into Roman life and religion. Many authors and works of literature have been inspired by the Metamorphoses. For example, William Shakespeare based Romeo and Juliet off of Pyramus and Thisbe.
Orpheus & Eurydice • omniadebemurvobis, paulumquemoratiseriusautcitiussedemproperamus ad unam.tendimushucomnes, haecestdomusultima, vosquehumani generis longissima regna tenetis. 35haecquoque, cum iustosmaturaperegeritannos,iuriseritvestri: pro munereposcimususum;quodsifatanegantveniam pro coniuge, certumestnollerediremihi: letogaudeteduorum.'Talia dicentemnervosque ad verbamoventem 40exsanguesflebantanimae; hancsimul et legemRhodopeiusaccipitheros, 50ne flectat retro sualumina, donecAvernasexieritvalles; autinritadonafutura.carpituradclivis per mutasilentiatrames,arduus, obscurus, caliginedensusopaca,necproculafuerunttellurismarginesummae: 55hic, ne deficeret, metuensavidusquevidendiflexitamansoculos, et protinusillarelapsaest,bracchiaqueintendensprendique et prenderecertansnil nisi cedentesinfelixarripit auras. • “We owe everything to you, having delayed for a little longer sooner or later we all hasten to one house. • We shall all head here, this is the final house, where you shall hold the longest reigns over the human race. • Also, when she reaches her rightful years, • She is yours by rights; we ask for the experience of her as a gift. • But if the fates should deny her boon of a longer life for her spouse, I have resolved that I will not be happy to return; cheer yourselves with the deaths of both of us.” • The pale spirits cried at Orpheus saying such things and moving the strings of his lyre to words. • At the same time the Thracian Orpheus accepted her and the conditions, if he bent his eyes back before he had left the valley of Avernus, the gifts would be voided. • As the ascending path is picked up in the mute silence, • The path was hard, obscured, and thick with opaque darkness, they were not far off from the edge of the highest ground, this one, fearing that she would lose strength and became eager for a peek, • He turned his loving eyes back. And she immediately slipped back, • Her arms stretching out grasping and striving to catch hold of his, • But the unfortunate one not catching anything but the breeze
Orpheus & Eurydice: Worthy of Note Serius aut citius: Adjective phrase, masculine nominative singular, “sooner or later.” Dicentem: Present active participle. Accusative singular, “He is saying” Futura: Perfect passive participle plural, means “Have been” Videndi: Gerund, means “for seeing”
Orpheus + Eurydice nil nisi cedentesinfelixarripit auras