'Times and their reasons, arranged in order through the Latin year, and constellations sunk beneath the earth and risen, I shall sing.' Ovid's poetical calendar of the Roman year is both a day by day account of festivals and observances and their origins, and a delightful retelling of myths and legends associated with particular dates. Written in the late years of the emperor Augustus, and cut short when the emperor sent the poet into exile, the poem's tone ranges from tragedy to farce, and its subject matter from astronomy and obscure ritual to Roman history and Greek mythology. Among the stories Ovid tells at length are those of Arion and the dolphin, the rape of Lucretia, the shield that fell from heaven, the adventures of Dido's sister, the Great Mother's journey to Rome, the killing of Remus, the bloodsucking birds, and the murderous daughter of King Servius. The poem also relates a wealth of customs and beliefs, such as the unluckiness of marrying in May. This new prose translation is lively and accurate, and is accompanied by a contextualizing introduction and helpful notes. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
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A Note on the Text and Translation
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Aeneas Aeneid altar Amulius ancient Anna Anna Perenna Arcadia arms Augustan Augustus Bacchus birds blood brother Caesar calendar called Carmentis carried Ceres constellation daughter divine earth elegiac entrails Fabii Fasti father Faunus festival fire flames flowers Forum gave Germanicus give goddess gods Greek grove hair hand heaven Hercules honour horses husband Hyades Janus Julius Caesar June Juno Jupiter Jupiter’s killed king land Latin Latium Livy look Lupercalia married Mars Maximus Metamorphoses Minerva month mother narrator night nymph Ovid Ovid’s Ovid’s Fasti peace personified as deity Phoebus Pleiades poem poet Priapus Propertius Quirinus reason Remus rites river Roman Rome Romulus Romulus and Remus Sabine sacred Saturn says Servius Servius Tullius sing sister song stars sword Tarquinius temple There’s Tiber Tiberius Troy Tullius twin Venus Vesta virgin waters weapons whence wife wine words worshipped