Reading Questions for Ovid Book 1

Here are some focused reading questions for the first section you are reading from Ovid’s Metamorphoses. Remember that you are reading for the narrative as you read for class (rather than “close reading” and that any numbers refer to line numbers of the poem.

Brief Life of Ovid:

  1. What other kinds of writings did Ovid produce?
  2. Why did Ovid get banished (pay attention in particular o the connection to his writings)?

Metamorphoses Book 1

  1. Ovid opens his poem with a statement of its topic (theme), genre, and scope (timeframe). What are these?
  2. How many Creation scenes are described in the first book and how do they differ? How is mankind created (in both versions)? How do these versions fit in to the theme?
  3. What are some recurring themes beyond the idea of transformation?
  4. Some important concepts, events, and names you should understand and remember:
  • The four ages – what they are and what happened during each
  • Who is Astrea and why does she withdraw from the earth (203)
  • Who is Lycaon and why is he transformed?
  • Why is the Python story important?
  • Who is Daphne and how does she get transformed?
  • (Who is Io and how does she get transformed?)