Week 11: Myth at Play I

 

                        Ovid, Metamorphoses, books 1-3, 6

 

Study questions:

 

1. To what other works that we have read is the Metamorphoses similar?  How is it similar?  How, despite the similarities, is it nonetheless different?

 

2. In particular, what does the Metamorphoses share with Ovid’s Heroides?

 

3. The Metamorphoses is something more than a simple handbook of classical mythology.  To judge from the first three books, what exactly is it?  What is Ovid trying to do with this work as a whole?

 

4. More narrowly, think of each separate story as an independent entity.  What is Ovid trying to do with each story?  Why does he tell each story in the way he does?  How does the way he tells one story differ from the way he tells another?

 

5. How serious is Ovid in the Metamorphoses?  How can you tell?