Metamorphoses

by: Ovid

Key Facts

full title · Metamorphoses

author · Ovid

type of work · Poetry

genre · Epic poetry of various genres: love, didactic, tragic, and comic

language · Latin

time and place written · Rome, a.d.8

date of first publication · a.d.8

narrator · “Ovid,” a fictionalized version of Ovid, is the overarching narrator. However, the books are narrated in various voices.

point of view · Varied

tense · Past

setting (time) · Imperial Rome

setting (place) · Rome

protagonist · Varied

major conflict · Mortals and the gods struggle.

rising action · Rome rises.

climax · Rome is founded.

falling action · Ovid predicts a great future for Rome.

themes · The pervasiveness of metamorphoses; the power of art; the sadness of love

motifs · Storytelling; punishment; reward

symbols · Lost speech

foreshadowing · Pygmalion’s successful creation foreshadows Orpheus’s reunion with Eurydice; Ovid foreshadows the permanence of his own work.