Essay The Metamorphoses By Publius Ovidius Naso

Essay The Metamorphoses By Publius Ovidius Naso

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The Greek Creation Epic, The Metamorphoses by Publius Ovidius Naso (Ovid), describes the formation of the Earth and mankind in ex nihilo, the Latin phrase defined as “out of nothing”. Ovid’s Metamorphoses tells a story of Earth’s creations as a god transforms a natural object Chaos into Earth and then populating it with humans and animals. This famous Greek mythical creation story has its similarities and differences with other creation stories we’ve studied such as Enuma Elish, Gensis 1 & 2, Hesiod’s Theogony. The Metamorphoses relates to some of these stories because of their emphasis the creation of the world being formed from the power of a god rather than being formed from chaos. The Metamorphoses was originally written in Latin by Ovid in Rome, Italy.
In Ovid’s Epic The Metamorphoses, he illustrates the creation of the world and mankind from an natural object called “Chaos”. As he describes what the Chaos is in the opening lines of the Epic as: “Before the seas and lands had been created, before the sky that covers everything, Nature displayed a single aspect only throughout the cosmos; Chaos was its name, a shapeless, unwrought mass of inert bulk and nothing more, with the discordant seeds of disconnected elements all heaped together in anarchic disarray” (Ovid 1077). Chaos was not the only thing in existence as “the land and sea and air were present” (Ovid 1077) while a god gave “Chaos form… he molded earth” (Ovid 1077). Once the transformed Chaos is shaped into the earth, the god than began to send the “waters streaming in all directions” (Ovid 1077) as the Earth is populated with different forms of water. Once these waters are set in place, the god than “order[s the] plains to spread themselves, valleys to sink, the st...


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...s (the bible) is poetic but is not a particular style of poetry. Even though these three creation stories tell a similar story of how the Earth was created they each have their own unique touch in doing so.
Ovid’s Metamorphoses The Creation is a Greek Cosmology that tells us about the first metamorphoses (changes) which is the creation of the Earth. This epic originated in Rome, Italy and was written in Latin, however this story shares many similar themes with other creation stories such as Enuma Elish a Babylonian cosmology and Genesis 1 and 2 a Hebrew cosmology. This myth tells a story of how a god takes an existing being known to us as Chaos and molds this Chaos into the Earth, which then the Earth is populated with life. Ovid’s Metamorphoses as from when it was written to the present day will be remembered as one of the most famous Greek Cosmologies of its time.

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