In his award-winning translation, Charles Martin combines fidelity to Ovid’s text with verse that catches the speed and liveliness of the original. Ovid’s epic poem—whose theme of change has resonated throughout the ages—is one of the most important texts of Western imagination, an inspiration from Dante’s time to the present, when writers such as Salman Rushdie and Italo Calvino have found a living source in Ovid’s work. The text is accompanied by a preface, A Note on the Translation, and detailed explanatory annotations. “Sources and Backgrounds” includes Seneca’s inspired commentary on Ovid, Charles Martin’s essay on the ways in which pantomimic dancing—an art form popular in Ovid’s time—may have been the model for Metamorphoses, as well as related works by Virgil, Callimachus, Hesiod, and Lucretius, among others. From the enormous body of scholarly writing on Metamorphoses, Charles Martin has chosen six major interpretations by Bernard Knox, J. R. R. Mackail, Norman O. Brown, Italo Calvino, Frederick Ahl, and Diane Middlebrook. A Glossary of Persons, Places, and Personifications in the Metamorphoses and a Chronology and Selected Bibliography are also included.
Literature-Fiction, History-Criticism, Criticism-Theory,