Ovid Questions and Answers

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Where is the humor in Ovid's writings? What is so funny about or in Ovid's writings?

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litteacher8 eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Ovid's humor is all about wit and irony. If you enjoy sarcasm, you will like Ovid's writing. His writing is both cynical and witty. Some of the humor might be a little bit lost in translation, both literally and in terms of culture, so modern audiences may not find it all funny.

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Robert C. Evans eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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Much of the humor in Ovid's erotic poetry is cynical, ironic, and mocking.  Sometimes, however, in other works, his humor is gentler and more playful, as in the passage from The Metamorphoses in which Peneus tells his daughter Daphne, that he wants her to marry:

Her father often said ‘Girl, you owe me a son-in-law’, and again often  ‘Daughter, you owe me grandsons.’ But, hating the wedding torch as if it smacked of crime she would blush red with shame all over her beautiful face, and clinging to her father’s neck with coaxing arms, she would say ‘ Dearest father, let me be a virgin for ever!’  (A. S. Kline translation)

Here the humor is tender and loving.

For a good discussion of Ovid's humor,...

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Inuk Lee eNotes educator | Certified Educator

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