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Ovid and Petronius' Pyramus and Thisbe (Satyricon 131.8-11 and Metamorphoses 4.55-166)

Agócs, Peter; Lightfoot, Jessica; (2023) Ovid and Petronius' Pyramus and Thisbe (Satyricon 131.8-11 and Metamorphoses 4.55-166). Mnemosyne 10.1163/1568525x-bja10163. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Petronius’ engagement with Ovid’s poetry in the Croton episode of the Satyricon is more extensive than has previously been appreciated. As well as drawing upon Ovidian elegiac poetry, especially Amores 3.7, the description of Encolpius’ second failed tryst with Circe at Satyricon 131.8-11 also alludes to Ovid’s narrative of Pyramus and Thisbe at Metamorphoses 4.55-166. This ironic perversion of one of the Metamorphoses’ most innocent and tragic narratives parallels Petronius’ later Ovidian allusion at 135.3-137.12, where the story of the pious couple Philemon and Baucis (Met. 8.616-724) is recalled during Encolpius’ visit to Oenothea’s hut. Petronius’ engagement with the Metamorphoses during Encolpius’ exploits in Croton is thus shown to be deeper than has previously been realised.

Type: Article
Title: Ovid and Petronius' Pyramus and Thisbe (Satyricon 131.8-11 and Metamorphoses 4.55-166)
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1163/1568525x-bja10163
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1163/1568525x-bja10163
Language: English
Additional information: This is an Open Access article published under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International (CC BY 4.0) Licence (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: Petronius; Ovid; Pyramus; Thisbe; Encolpius; Circe
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL SLASH > Faculty of Arts and Humanities > Dept of Greek and Latin
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10165728
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