The compilers, J.C and M.J. Thornton, have used the translations of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries, which they believe render more faithfully than those of any other age the even clarity of Ovid's style. The volume commences with Marlowe's free translation of The Elegies, which has a youthful zest about it that might well have saved it from oblivion even without Marlowe's later fame. Next comes The Letters of the Heroines, translated by George Turberville, followed by Francis Wolferton's rendering of the three books of The Art of Love, which has had few translators. Wolferston's version is here revised and presented in a way that does not seek to bowdlerize the serious purpose of the book, while retaining the polite urbanity of the original. Arthur Golding's version of The Metamorphoses, which conveys in the swing of the lines and vividness of the language the enthusiasm and enjoyment of the translation, is also included and reminds one that Shakespeare plucked his 'odoriferous flowers of fancy' from its pages. Other selections from this very representative volume include John Gower's translation of The Festivals, Zachary Caitlin's, John Gower's, and Wye Saltonstall's Letters from Exile, and Thomas Underdown's Invective against Ibis.
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