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Ovid’s Metamorphoses

Ovid wrote the poems in Metamorphoses (meaning ‘transformations’ or ‘change’) in CE 8; more than 2000 years ago. The poem is divided into 15 books and is about 12,000 lines long. Ovid wrote Metamorphoses to record and retell his favourite ancient Greek and Roman myths, starting from the creation of the world until Caesar’s time:

Of bodies chang’d to various forms, I sing:
Ye Gods, from whom these miracles did spring,
Inspire my numbers with coelestial heat;
’Till I my long laborious work compleat:
And add perpetual tenour to my rhimes,
Deduc’d from Nature’s birth, to Caesar’s times.

Source: The first lines of ‘The creation of the world’ from the beginning of Ovid’s Metamorphoses,
translated by Sir Samuel Garth, John Dryden et al., 1717. Copyright free.