[62], Influential in the course of the poem's manuscript tradition is the 17th-century Dutch scholar Nikolaes Heinsius. English language". That one is suited to my shoulders, since I can hit wild beasts of a certainty, and wound my enemies, and not long ago destroyed with countless arrows the swollen Python that covered many acres with its plague-ridden belly. Wandering birds searched long for some land where they might rest, till their wings grew weary and they fell into the sea. You can see why. Recently the Delian god, exulting at his victory over the serpent, had seen him bending his tightly strung bow and said ‘Impudent boy, what are you doing with a man’s weapons? Götter, seid meinen Vorhaben förderlich – denn ihr habt auch jene verwandelt – und führt das ununterbrochene Gedicht vom ersten Anfang der Welt bis zu meinen Zeiten fort. [3] However, in a way that was typical for writers of the period, Ovid diverged significantly from his models. Segal, C. P. Landscape in Ovid’s Metamorphoses (Wiesbaden, 1969) 45, Solodow, J. When people criticized Sandys back in the day, the usual line was that his Ovid shows the dangers of the word-for-word approach to translation. Bk I:381-415 The human race is re-created. She had often escaped from the satyrs chasing her, and from others of the demi-gods that live in shadowy woods and fertile fields. [33] [19] The ending acts as a declaration that everything except his poetry—even Rome—must give way to change:[20], Now stands my task accomplished, such a work This is the way a sheep runs from the wolf, a deer from the mountain lion, and a dove with fluttering wings flies from the eagle: everything flies from its foes, but it is love that is driving me to follow you! Who would comfort your tears? I quite like “It booted not the foaming boar his crooked tusks to whet; the running hart could in the stream by swiftness nothing get.” (A) it has a ring to it, and (B) it seems much better than anything you would get out of the bare sense: “The lightning stroke of his strong tusk was of no use, then, to the wild boar, nor his swift legs to the stag.”. When they reached the steps of the sanctuary they fell forward together and lay prone on the ground, and kissing the cold rock with trembling lips, said ‘If the gods’ wills soften, appeased by the prayers of the just, if in this way their anger can be deflected, Themis tell us by what art the damage to our race can be repaired, and bring help, most gentle one, to this drowned world!’, The goddess was moved, and uttered oracular speech: ‘Leave the temple and with veiled heads and loosened clothes throw behind you the bones of your great mother!’ For a long time they stand there, dumbfounded. 177-198 Jupiter threatens to destroy humankind, 438-472 Phoebus kills the Python and sees Daphne, 504-524 Phoebus begs Daphne to yield to him, 601-621 Jupiter transforms Io to a heifer, 622-641 Juno claims Io and Argus guards her, 642-667 Inachus finds Io and grieves for her, 668-688 Jupiter sends Mercury to kill Argus, 689-721 Mercury tells the story of Syrinx, 765-779 Phaethon sets out for the Palace of the Sun. This is the place, if I were to be bold, I would not be afraid to call high heaven’s Palatine. Bk I:622-641 Juno claims Io and Argus guards her. 'Till I my long laborious work complete: Laurel, with you my hair will be wreathed, with you my lyre, with you my quiver. You, gods, since you are the ones who alter these, and all other things, inspire my attempt, and spin out a continuous thread of words, from the world's first origins to my own time. He praises her wrists and hands and fingers, and her arms bare to the shoulder: whatever is hidden, he imagines more beautiful. Comprising 11,995 lines, 15 books and over 250 myths, the poem chronicles the history of the world from its creation to the deification of Julius Caesar within a loose mythico-historical framework. And of course birds can’t stay in the air forever, so eventually they plunk down dead into the water. William Caxton produced the first translation of the text on 22 April 1480; set in prose, it is a literal rendering of a French translation known as the Ovide Moralisé. With illustrations by Hendrik Goltzius (The Netherlands, 1558-1617) courtesy of LACMA and the Rijksmuseum. Only Inachus is missing, but hidden in the deepest cave he swells his stream with tears, and in utter misery laments his lost daughter, Io, not knowing if she is alive or among the shades. "[13], The Metamorphoses is comprehensive in its chronology, recounting the creation of the world to the death of Julius Caesar, which had occurred only a year before Ovid's birth;[12] it has been compared to works of universal history, which became important in the 1st century BC. [25] This theme amalgamates the much-explored opposition between the hunter and the hunted[26] and the thematic tension between art and nature. [7], Some of the Metamorphoses derives from earlier literary and poetic treatment of the same myths. Unfortunately Hughes rendered only twenty-four of the passages. Apollo comes in for particular ridicule as Ovid shows how irrational love can confound the god out of reason. Diana’s father granted it to her.’ He yields to that plea, but your beauty itself, Daphne, prevents your wish, and your loveliness opposes your prayer. Ovid took inspiration from the genre of metamorphosis poetry, and some of the Metamorphoses derives from earlier treatment of the same myths; however, he diverged significantly from all of his models. He himself ran in terror, and reaching the silent fields howled aloud, frustrated of speech. Jupiter’s anger is not satisfied with only his own aerial waters: his brother the sea-god helps him, with the ocean waves. In nova fert animus mutatas dicere formas corpora. Since he cannot find her anywhere, he imagines her nowhere, and his heart fears worse than death. [74] It was written in rhyming couplets of iambic heptameter. When the gods had taken their seats in the marble council chamber their king, sitting high above them, leaning on his ivory sceptre, shook his formidable mane three times and then a fourth, disturbing the earth, sea and stars. The stones, and who would believe it if it were not for ancient tradition, began to lose their rigidity and hardness, and after a while softened, and once softened acquired new form. Wolves swam among the flocks, and the waves supported tawny lions, and tigers too. So he set aside the weapons the Cyclopes forged, and resolved on a different punishment, to send down rain from the whole sky and drown humanity beneath the waves. ("Agamemnon", "Hom. Before there was earth or sea or the sky that covers everything, Nature appeared the same throughout the whole world: what we call chaos: a raw confused mass, nothing but inert matter, badly combined discordant atoms of things, confused in the one place. Translated by A. S. Kline © Copyright 2000 All Rights Reserved. Swim in silent wonder into kitchens, Here’s the original Latin, for all the good that’s gonna do anybody: Occupat hic collem, cumba sedet alter adunca Though there was land and sea and air, it was unstable land, unswimmable water, air needing light. the twentieth century. Bk I:722-746 Io is returned to human form. incursant ramis agitataque robora pulsant. My aim is certain, but an arrow truer than mine, has wounded my free heart! Can I amend Jimmy's question? Entstehungsgeschichte. Ovid was aware of the scale and beauty of his achievement, and himself ended the work with a promise of his own literary immortality. Such a wild The transmogrifications We’re just gonna do a simple little comparison. [15] However, the poem "handles the themes and employs the tone of virtually Ovid's There was no fear or punishment: there were no threatening words to be read, fixed in bronze, no crowd of suppliants fearing the judge’s face: they lived safely without protection. Benachrichtigung bei weiteren Kommentaren per E-Mail senden. He even asks, since the reed pipe has only just been invented, how it was invented. and where he lately plowed now strikes his oars. First lines in original Latin and five English translations: In nova fert animus mutatas dicere formas One of the main objections voiced against the above is padding. and early C1st A.D., during the reign of the Emperor Augustus. [16] In spite of its apparently unbroken chronology, scholar Brooks Otis has identified four divisions in the narrative:[18]. But she followed the worship of the Ortygian goddess in staying virgin. But the poem's immense popularity in antiquity and the Middle Ages belies the struggle for survival it faced in late antiquity. Let them all pay the penalty they deserve, and quickly. There are many competent and workmanlike modern English translations of Ovid, but his tone is incredibly difficult to capture, and translators generally (and understandably) fail to convey its peculiar magic.


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