Dante’s Ovid in the context of the medieval literary tradition Cover Image

Owidiusz u Dantego na tle średniowiecznej tradycji literackiej
Dante’s Ovid in the context of the medieval literary tradition

Author(s): Maria Maślanka-Soro
Subject(s): Literary Texts
Published by: Wydawnictwo Uniwersytetu Jagiellońskiego
Keywords: Dante; Ovid; Ovidian literary tradition; medieval Romanic literature; intertextuality

Summary/Abstract: The aim of this paper is to present the position and role of the poetry of Ovid, primarily the Metamorphoses, the product of a great poetic talent (ingenium) and an equally great poetic art (ars), in the work of Dante. The author’s point of departure in an analytical and interpretative approach is a synthetic overview of the Ovidian literary tradition in the medieval Romanic culture. The original and creative allusions Dante makes to Ovid in The Divine Comedy, which is the main focus of this paper’s intertextual analysis, stand out more clearly against this background. A distinct evolution may be observed in the way Dante assimilated the work of Ovid. In his early work, the Rime and Vita Nuova, Dante treated Ovid as an authority and referred to him to corroborate his own ideas, or tended to imitate the Ovidian style in his erotic lyrics. In the spirit of his times Dante resorted to the allegorical potential of the Metamorphoses in his prose treatises such as the Convivio. But it was not until the Divina Commedia that he embarked on an intertextual dialogue with his mentor, occasionally adopting a polemical stance and endeavouring to stress the superiority of his own ideas. The paper employs the motif of metamorphosis to illustrate the aspect of aemulatio which superseded Dante’s earlier imitatio approach to Ovid.

  • Issue Year: 2011
  • Issue No: 6
  • Page Range: 131-142
  • Page Count: 12
  • Language: Polish