Quī modo Nāsōnis fuerāmus quīnque libellī,

trēs sumus: hoc illī praetulit auctor opus.

ut iam nulla tibī nōs sit lēgisse voluptās,

at levior demptīs poena duōbus erit.


    Epigram: preface from the author

    The three books of the Amores speak on behalf of their author, named as Naso (in full, Publius Ovidius Naso), explaining that they used to be five. They make a joke at their own expense, in a bit of captatio benevolentiae (bid for good will).

    1–2: modo:  'only recently, just now'.

    3–4: ut iam: "even if." ut can be used, especially with tamen or iam, to introduce a concessive clause (AG §527a); the author is here indulging in some mock modesty.

    Nasō -ōnis m.: Naso

    libellus -i m.: little book

    quīnque: (indecl.) five

    praefero -ferre -tuli -lātum: bear before or in front; prefer

    dēmō dēmere dēmpsī demptum: take away, subtract

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    Suggested Citation

    William Turpin. Ovid: Amores Book 1. Carlisle, Pennsylvania: Dickinson College Commentaries, 2012. ISBN: 978-1-947822-00-9. https://dcc.dickinson.edu/ovid-amores/epigram-0