Apuleius, Metamorphoses [The Golden Ass]

Sonia Sabnis (Reed College)
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Apuleius’ Metamorphoses (also known as the Golden Ass, Latin Asinus Aureus) is the single complete work of extended Latin prose fiction to survive from antiquity, comparable only to the Satyrica of Petronius, which dates about a century earlier, but is incomplete. Precise dating of the Metamorphoses is uncertain; many scholars think it was probably written after Apuleius’ trial in the 160s or 170s. The Metamorphoses is frequently studied and grouped with the Greek novels, including a Greek version of the same story known as the Onos [the Ass]. This short work is transmitted with the works of Apuleius’ contemporary, Lucian, but authorship is uncertain; most scholars agree that the author (or abridger) of the Onos and Apuleius were drawing on a common source, no longer extant,…

2629 words

Citation: Sabnis, Sonia. "Metamorphoses". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 11 July 2013 [https://www.litencyc.com/php/sworks.php?rec=true&UID=26509, accessed 09 December 2023.]

26509 Metamorphoses 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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