Born in Sulmo outside of Rome, Ovid’s legacy is that of the greatest Roman erotic poet. Publius Ovidius Naso (20 March 43 BC – AD 17/18) wrote 3 major collections of erotic poetry: Heroides, Amores, and Ars Amatoria. He is also well known for the Metamorphoses, a mythological hexameter poem.
Ovid’s work didn’t just come to life on the page. His prose and descriptions captured the imaginations of Europeans for centuries, leading many artists to make art depicting the scenes described in the poetry. Ovid is still frequently taught in Latin courses around the world today, and his work remains influential.
Amores is Ovid's first completed book of poetry, written in Elegiac couplets. It was first published in 16 BC in 5 volumes of which 3 now survive. The book is frequently subversive and hilarious with its tropes, exaggerating common motifs and devices to the point of absurdity. The Amores are a poetic first person account of the poet's love affair with an unattainable higher class girl, Corinna. The plot is linear, with a few artistic digressions such as an elegy on the death of Tibullus.