Ovid: Metamorphoses [Transformations]

(4513 words)
  • Mandy Green (University of Durham)

The Metamorphoses is the richest treasury of mythological stories that we have inherited from the ancient world. Ovid gave to many classical myths their definitive form for later generations, creating a convincing imaginative world with a vitality all of its own. Apollo and Daphne, Phaethon, Daedalus and Icarus, Echo and Narcissus, Actaeon, Proserpina, Pygmalion, Philomela and Tereus, Pyramus and Thisbe – these are just a few of the charmed names that are held together in a living system of extraordinary richness.

“Metamorphosis” is a transliteration from the Greek word used to describe the process or action of changing form or substance, so the Latin plural, metamorphoses, can be roughly translated a…

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Green, Mandy. "Metamorphoses". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 30 March 2001
[http://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=3606, accessed 30 November 2015.]