The excerpts from Ovid’s poems in “Ars Amatoria” quoted here suggest that women can use jealousy and fear to fuel love affairs.
Ovid, a famous Roman poet who lived between 43 BCE and 17 CE, wrote “Ars Amatoria” (The Art of Love). For centuries, his poetry trilogy “Ars Amatoria” has been a classic text on love affairs among educated and noble readers in many countries. Western scholars of the humanities have read and praised Ovid’s texts of “The Art of Love.”
In his poems, Ovid gave love advice to both Roman men and women. He tells them how to get their lovers’ attention, keep them interested, and keep the relationship going. He also tells them how to use the art of love in their relationships with each other.
Is Ovid’s “Art of Love” Still Applicable?
The Romans lived in a different time than we do and had a different way of life. But I think that educated men and women can learn something interesting and useful about love from Ovid’s poetry. I put excerpts from these books on this website for people who want to learn more about how Romans lived and loved in the past. Some of Ovid’s advice about love and relationships is still useful today.
His poetry collection “Ars Amatoria” gives modern men and women good advice on how to find, attract, and keep a partner in love. In his first two books of poetry, Ovid tells men how to talk to, court, and seduce women in relationships. The third book suggests women learn how to be attractive and enticing, make men seduce them, and keep loving relationships with the men running.
Here Is What I Wrote about The Art of Roman Love in my Other Posts
In earlier blog posts, I talked about how Ovid’s poetry can help men in love affairs. These lovely poems are about many different things, such as “how to search for love while at the theatre,” “at the races or circus,” “around the dinner-table and on the beach,” “how to find her,“ and “what is his task.“ Ovid also teaches a Roman man that “triumphs are good to attract a woman.” He advises a man “how to know her,” “how to win her“, “how to captivate a woman,” “how to be attentive to her,”“how to make promises and deceive,” and “how to seduce her.” Ovid explains “how tears, kisses, and taking the lead help in love affairs”.
Furthermore, the blog articles on this website contain Ovid’s wisdom on love for women “how to keep taste and elegance in hair and dress,” “how to appear,” “how to use makeup,” “How to be modestly expressive,” “how to hide defects in appearance,” and “how to beware of false lovers.”
Here are the poems for girls and women from Book III of Ovid’s “Ars Amatoria.” Ovid explains how effective it is to utilize jealousy and fear of their lovers in their relationships.
Women May Employ Jealousy and Fear of Their Lovers in Love Affairs
“Let all be betrayed: I’ve unbarred the gates to the enemy:
and let my loyalty be to treacherous betrayal.
What’s easily given nourishes love poorly:
mingle the odd rejection with welcome fun.
Let him lie before the door, crying: ‘Cruel entrance!,
pleading very humbly, threatening a lot too.
We can’t stand sweetness: bitterness renews our taste:
often a yacht sinks swamped by a favourable wind:
this is what bitter wives can’t endure:
their husbands can come to them when they wish:
add a closed door and a hard-mouthed janitor,
saying: ‘You can’t,’ and love will touch you too.
Drop the blunted foils now: fight with blades:
no doubt I’ll be attacked with my own weapons.
Also when the lover you’ve just caught falls into the net,
let him think that only he has access to your room.
Later let him sense a rival, the bed’s shared pact: remove these arts, and love grows old.”Kline, A. S. (2001). Translation of Ovid’s Ars Amatoria: The Art of Love.
Ovid then proceeds with more counsel…
“The horse runs swiftly from the starting gate,
when he has others to pass, and others follow.
Wrongs relight the dying fires, as you wish:
See (I confess!), I don’t love unless I’m hurt.
Still, don’t give cause for grief, excessively,
let the anxious man suspect it, rather than know.
Stir him with a dismal watchman, fictitiously set to guard you,
and the excessively irksome care of a harsh husband.
Pleasure that comes with safety’s less enjoyable:
though you’re freer than Thais, pretend fear.
Though the door’s easier, let him in at the window,
and show signs of fear on your face.
A clever maid should leap up and cry: ‘We’re lost!’
You, hide the trembling youth in any hole.
Still safe loving should be mixed with fright, lest he consider you hardly worth a night.”Kline, A. S. (2001). Translation of Ovid’s Ars Amatoria: The Art of Love.