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About the book
  • Published: 1 June 1983
  • ISBN: 9780140443608
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 464
  • RRP: $19.99

The Erotic Poems




This collection of Ovid's poems deals with the whole spectrum of sexual desire, ranging from deeply emotional declarations of eternal devotion to flippant arguments for promiscuity. In the Amores, Ovid addresses himself in a series of elegies to Corinna, his beautiful, elusive mistress. The intimate and vulnerable nature of the poet revealed in these early poems vanishes in the notorious Art of Love, in which he provides a knowing and witty guide to sexual conquest - a work whose alleged obscenity led to Ovid's banishment from Rome in AD 8. This volume also includes the Cures for Love, with instructions on how to terminate a love affair, and On Facial Treatment for Ladies, an incomplete poem on the art of cosmetics.

  • Pub date: 1 June 1983
  • ISBN: 9780140443608
  • Imprint: Penguin Classics
  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 464
  • RRP: $19.99

About the Author

Ovid

Publius Ovidius Naso was born in Italy on 20 March 43 BC. He was educated in Rome and worked as a public official before taking up poetry full-time. His earliest surviving work is the collection of love poems called the Amores, which was followed by the Heroides. The Ars Amatoria (The Art of Love) and the Remedia Amoris (The Cure for Love) were probably written between 2 BC and 2 AD. These were followed by his two epic poems the Fasti and the Metamorphoses. In 8 AD Ovid fell out of favour with the Emperor Augustus due to a 'carmen et error' ('a poem and a mistake') and was banished to what is now Romania. While in exile he wrote Tristia, Ibis and the Epistulae ex Ponto which consists of letters appealing for help in his efforts to be recalled to Rome. Ovid died in exile in 18 AD.

Ovid (43BC-18AD) was born at Sulmo (Sulmona) in central Italy. Coming from a wealthy Roman family and seemingly destined for a career in politics, he held minor official posts before leaving public service to write, becoming the most distinguished poet of his time. His works, all published in Penguin Classics, include Amores, a collection of short love poems; Heroides, verse-letters written by mythological heroines to their lovers; Ars Amatoria, a satirical handbook on love; and Metamorphoses, his epic work that has inspired countless writers and artists through the ages.

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