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Roman Mythology

Ovid and the Metamorphoses

How does Ovid make his poem distinctly Roman at the end?

Books Thirteen through Fifteen are filled with myths of particular importance to Rome. Ovid retells the essential events of Virgil’s Aeneid, and continues the story with that of the apotheosis of Aeneas. His dead body is adorned by his mother Venus with ambrosia and nectar, and the hero is raised up to heaven as a god, thus establishing the principle of the deity of Roman leaders. Ascanius becomes king and later Romulus, who at his death is also raised to heaven as a god. The final apotheosis is that of Julius Caesar, descendant of Aeneas and Ascanius and surrogate father to Augustus, whose future apotheosis as a god Ovid implies.



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