A Companion to Ovid
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A Companion to Ovid is a comprehensive overview of one of the most influential poets of classical antiquity.
  • Features more than 30 newly commissioned chapters by noted scholars writing in their areas of specialization
  • Illuminates various aspects of Ovid's work, such as production, genre, and style
  • Presents interpretive essays on key poems and collections of poems
  • Includes detailed discussions of Ovid's primary literary influences and his reception in English literature
  • Provides a chronology of key literary and historical events during Ovid's lifetime


Peter E. Knox is Professor of Classics at the University of Colorado. His publications include Ovid's Metamorphoses and the Traditions of Augustan Poetry (1986) and Ovid, Heroides: Select Epistles (1995), as well as many articles on a wide range of topics in Greek and Roman literature.


List of Figures viii

Notes on Contributors ix

Preface xiv

List of Abbreviations xv

Chronological Table xvii

Part I Contexts 1

1. A Poet’s Life 3
Peter E. Knox

2. Poetry in Augustan Rome 8
Mario Citroni

3. Rhetoric and Ovid’s Poetry 26
Elaine Fantham

4. Ovid and Religion 45
Julia Dyson Hejduk

Part II Texts 59

5. The Amores: Ovid Making Love 61
Joan Booth

6. The Heroides: Female Elegy? 78
Laurel Fulkerson

7. The Ars Amatoria 90
Roy K. Gibson

8. Remedia Amoris 104
Barbara Weiden Boyd

9. Fasti: The Poet, The Prince, and the Plebs 120
Geraldine Herbert-Brown

10. The Metamorphoses: A Poet’s Poem 140
E. J. Kenney

11. The Metamorphoses: Politics and Narrative 154
Gareth D. Williams

12. Tristia 170
Jo-Marie Claassen

13. Ibis 184
Martin Helzle

14. Epistulae ex Ponto 194
Luigi Galasso

15. Lost and Spurious Works 207
Peter E. Knox

Part III Intertexts 217

16. Ovid and Hellenistic Poetry 219
Jane L. Lightfoot

17. Ovid and Callimachus: Rewriting the Master 236
Benjamin Acosta-Hughes

18. Ovid’s Catullus and the Neoteric Moment in Roman Poetry 252
David Wray

19. Propertius and Ovid 265
S. J. Heyworth

20. Tibullus and Ovid 279
Robert Maltby

21. Ovid’s Reception of Virgil 294
Richard F. Thomas

Part IV Critical and Scholarly Approaches 309

22. Editing Ovid: Immortal Works and Material Texts 311
Mark Possanza

23. Commenting on Ovid 327
Peter E. Knox

24. Ovidian Intertextuality 341
Sergio Casali

25. Sexuality and Gender 355
Alison Keith

26. Ovid’s Generic Transformations 370
Joseph Farrell

27. Theorizing Ovid 381
Efrossini Spentzou

Part V Literary Receptions 395

28. Ovidian Strategies in Early Imperial Literature 397
Charles McNelis

29. The Medieval Ovid 411
John M. Fyler

30. Ovid in Renaissance English Literature 423
Heather James

31. Ovid and Shakespeare 442
Gordon Braden

32. Ovid in the Twentieth Century 455
Theodore Ziolkowski

33. Translating Ovid 469
Christopher Martin

Bibliography 485

Index 516


“The result is something quite extraordinary, a coherent and engaging treatment of the full corpus of Ovid’s writing in just under 130 pages . . . V. has produced an eminently readable, highly engaging introduction to Ovid, one that speaks to exactly the audience she had envisaged, in a voice both accessible and smart.”  (The Classical Review, 1 October 2012)

“Aimed at the general reading public and at newcomers to Ovid, her book is also a delight for experienced Ovidian scholars, providing an engaging, attractive, and thoughtful overview of the poet and his works that shows why his oeuvre remains intellectually valuable as well as an enjoyable read. Fluent and accessible, the volume covers a great deal of ground with lightness of foot. Volk takes a thematic approach that cuts across individual works in productive ways, but the simple titles of the chapters – ‘Work’, ‘Life’, ‘Elegy’, ‘Myth’, ‘Art’, ‘Women’, ‘Rome’, ‘Reception’ – do not adequately convey a sense of the treasures that lie within their pages.”  (Greece & Rome, 1 October 2012)