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Ovid at OLLI 2022

Page history last edited by Thomas M Hayes 1 year, 4 months ago



 Metamorphoses of P. Ovidius Naso


Spring 2023




Tom Hayes, rudedonatus@gmail.com







March 9: Book 8

 Here are two other takes on Ariadne--One by Ovid in his Heroides (abandoned heroines) Ariadne to Theseus (Her.10).doc  and one from the famous Bedspread Poem Of Catullus 64 Ariadne in Catullus 64.doc

     Met. Procne and Itys, Medea and kids.doc  


February 22


February 15: Intro to the workshop and web page; quick overview of the firsts 6 books of the Metamorphoses; even quicker review of Ovid's life, times, and opera;



Fall 2022


October 12: We finished (?) Echo and Narcissus; we will try to get to Cadmus and Harmonia (in Book 4) next time


October 5: Read book 3 as far as the end of the Diana-Actaeon story


September 28: Read to the end of Bk 2--but we may not make it.


September 21: From the flood to Io, Bk 1


September 14: the Introduction, and creation of the world, Bk 1


September 7:An introduction to Ovid:


 We discussed the translations available and the need to keep on eye on the website.

We then saw a very quick overview of Ovid's background, life, and work, ending with a short video of Ovid's influence on Shakespeare. All that is found in this power point--as well as some intercalated art works showing Ovid's pull through time. Lit. up to Ovid his life and work.pptx


For next time, read Book One to the end of the flood. Sorry if said said less during the workshop. Contact me if you have any questions.



Welcome to Ovid's Metamorphoses !


     The Metamorphoses is probably the most influential work from the classical world extant today.  You can find Ovid in medieval manuscripts,


renaissance paintings, almost every author in the western canon. Shakespeare's output would have been very different without it--as would


Picasso's. We will read the first 8 books or so in our time together. I will post on this page what we do in each class and announce what to


prepare for the following week - - the latest installment will always come first.


      All the material that you will need for the workshop will be found on this page as well as articles or pictures that help expand our view.  Below


you will see that there are translations available for free on-line, as well as actual books with or without notes. If you are comfortable with Latin,


you could think about a Loeb Classical Library text (Ovid Volume III) which has the Latin and English on facing pages--although the translation


seeks to be literal rather than beautiful. The Ted Hughes rendering is incomplete and overly inventive so I don't recommend it.




Actors from the Royal Shakespeare Company read and discuss Ovid:




Summary of tales in the first eight books: 


     The Structure of Metamorphoses 1-8.doc




     available on-line:







     books with notes:


               Charles Martin (Norton)


               A.D. Melville (Oxford World Classics)


               David Raeburn (Penguin Classics)


    books with just an index:


               Allen Mandelbaum (Harvest Book, Harcourt Brace)


               Rolfe Humphries (indiana U Press)


               Horace Gregory (numerous editions)


               Stanley Lombardo (Hackett)--also available online (see above)


               David Slavitt (Johns Hopkins Press)--on Amazon costs twice as much as any others.


NO Ted Hughes

He is a fine poet, but not all the tales are in included in his book--and he invokes his poetic license much too frequently.


Map of  Empire under Augustus https://sites.google.com/site/pzaugustus/home-1/map


Gods: https://www.behindthename.com/names/usage/roman-mythology



Ovid's personal and literary background



     b. 20 March 43 BC, Sulmo -- d. AD 17, Tomis




     Amores ('Loves'): 3 books, total of 49 elegies (published first in 5 books sometime after 20 BC; published a second time ca. AD 1 in three books)


     Heroides ('Heroines'): 21 elegiac 'letters' (published 15 BC)


     Medea: tragedy, now entirely lost 


     Ars Amatoria ('Art of Love'): Books 1-2 pub 1 BC or later; Bk. 3 added later


     Medicamina Faciei Femineae ('Cosmetics or the Art of Makeup'): fragment of 100 lines, pub. before Ars Amatoria 3


     Remedia Amoris ('Cures for Love'): no date known


     Metamorphoses: epic in 15 books of hexameters; more or less completed by AD 8


     Ovid's exile to Tomis for carmen et error: 8 AD


     Fasti ('Calendars'): calendar poem planned for 12 books; Books 1-6 completed by AD 8, some revision at Tomi


     Tristia ('Sadnesses'): 5 Books. 1, 3-5: short poems to various addressees, unnamed except for his wife and Augustus. Individual books sent to Rome at intervals during AD 9-12; Bk. 2 a single continuous poem, an apologia for his poetry addressed to Augustus.


     Epistulae ex Ponto ('Letters from Pontus'): short poems to named addresses, 4 books, Bk. 4 being published probably posthumously


     Ibis: short, invective poem (AD 11)





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