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Although Ovid is currently enjoying a new wave of popularity, most critics withhold from his poetry the close word-by-word readings that are necessary for a thorough understanding of it. Ovid twice treated the myth of Persephone, and Hinds's book is at first a historical inquiry--the most extensive yet done--into the double transformation in Metamorphosis 5 and Fasti 4 of the rape of Persephone, one of the great Graeco-Roman myths. The study continues as a critical exploration of Ovid's self-conscious delight in language and in writing manifested in these twin narratives, providing a feast for students of both Latin poetry and narratives in general.
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