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Snakes on the Beach: Ovid’s Orpheus and Medusa

Lowe, Dunstan (2010) Snakes on the Beach: Ovid’s Orpheus and Medusa. Materiali e Discussioni per l'analisi dei testi classici, 65 (2). pp. 183-186. ISSN 1724-1693. (The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided)

The full text of this publication is not currently available from this repository. You may be able to access a copy if URLs are provided. (Contact us about this Publication)

Abstract

Why, in Ovid's account, is Orpheus' severed head attacked by a snake as it lies on the beach, and why is that snake turned to stone? I argue that this incident, instead of deriving from a lost episode in the Thracian bard's mythic cycle, is invented by Ovid as a rearrangement of elements from the Medusa myth told earlier in the poem. Both heads retain supernatural powers after death, and in Ovid each one provides a coda to a longer story by causing a petrifaction while deposited on a sandy beach.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: P Language and Literature > PA Classical philology
Divisions: Faculties > Humanities > School of European Culture and Languages > Classical and Archaeological Studies
Depositing User: Dunstan Lowe
Date Deposited: 22 Jun 2013 16:03 UTC
Last Modified: 29 May 2019 10:09 UTC
Resource URI: https://kar.kent.ac.uk/id/eprint/33784 (The current URI for this page, for reference purposes)
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