Book Series Publications of the Journal of Medieval Latin , vol. 14

Latin Love Elegy and the Dawn of the Ovidian Age

A Study of the Versus Eporedienses and the Latin Classics

Marek Tue Kretschmer

  • Pages: 175 p.
  • Size:178 x 254 mm
  • Language(s):English
  • Publication Year:2020

  • ISBN: 978-2-503-58703-5
  • Paperback
  • Available
  • ISBN: 978-2-503-58704-2
  • E-book
  • Available

First book-length study of the elegiac love poem Versus Eporedienses (ca. 1080)


Marek Thue Kretschmer is Professor of Medieval Latin Literature at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. He is the author of Rewriting Roman History in the Middle Ages (2007), editor of La typologie biblique comme forme de pensée dans l’historiographie médiévale (2014) and has published widely on the reception of the Latin classics, notably on the medieval reception of Ovid.


“(…) exciting banquet of ancient and medieval comparanda that K. has compiled, as thickly woven and as rewarding to read as the operis varii delicie (152) of the VE.” (Cynthia White, in The Classical Review, 70/2, 2020, p. 509)

“Nel complesso, un’indagine magistrale, questa condotta da Kretschmer intorno al testo, al commento e all’interpretazione dei Versus Eporedienses, della quale non potrà non tenere conto, in futuro, chiunque volesse accostarsi non solo al poemetto, ma, più in generale, alla poesia d’amore latina fra i secc. XI e XII.” (Armando Bisanti, in ExClass, 25, 2021, p. 478)


The Versus Eporedienses (Verses from Ivrea), written around the year 1080 and attributed to a certain Wido, is a highly fascinating elegiac love poem celebrating worldly pleasures in an age usually associated with contemptus mundi. One of the poem’s intriguing features, its extensive use of the Latin classics, especially of Ovid, makes it a precursor of the poetry of the so-called twelfth-century renaissance. In this first book-length study of the poem, the author provides a historical contextualisation, an edition and translation, a verse-by-verse commentary, a detailed analysis of the classical sources and a discussion of its similarities with contemporary and later medieval poetry.


• Text and Translation
• Commentary
• Sources of Inspiration
• The Versus Eporedienses and the Dawn of the Twelfth Century
• Similarities and Matches in Twelfth- and Thirteenth-Century Love Poetry
• Bibliography • Index auctorum et carminum • Index locorum similium
• Index locorum similium per ordinem auctorum et carminum digestus