Authors: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z

96 Ovid Quotes That Give Insight Into Life

Famous As: Poet
Born On: March 20, 43
Died On: 17 AD
Born In: Sulmo, Italy, Roman Republic
Died At Age: 59
Publius Ovidius Naso, renowned by his pen name Ovid was a Roman poet. He is counted among the most influential poets in Latin literature. He was born in 43 BC and worked as a poet of great influence under the rule of Roman Emperor Augustus. Ovid was sent into exile by the Emperor Augustus to the Black Sea and although the reasons might not be known, the poet had himself said that it was due to ‘a poem and a mistake.’ He is most famous for his seminal work ‘Metamorphoses’, a book on mythology that was collected in a total of 15 books and is considered to be one of the most important works of literature in the Latin language. In addition to that, Ovid had also written two hugely popular poems on love, titled ‘Amores’ and ‘Ars Amatoria’, which further enhanced his status as perhaps the greatest Latin poet to have ever lived. Ovid’s work was not only regarded as path breaking but in addition to that, his style went on to influence literature and the arts of the modern age. Ovid’s books, poems and other writings bear some of his noted thoughts which are popolar as his quotations and are frequently quoted by people. Following are some of his sayings and quotes by Ovid that would certainly throw a light on the thought process of one of the greatest poets.
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Let others praise ancient times; I am glad I was born in these.

Let others praise ancient times; I am glad I was born in these.

Ovid
Chance is always powerful. Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish.

Chance is always powerful. Let your hook be always cast; in the pool where you least expect it, there will be a fish.

Ovid
Dripping water hollows out stone, not through force but through persistence.

Dripping water hollows out stone, not through force but through persistence.

Ovid
Perfer et obdura, dolor hic tibi proderit olim. (Be patient and tough; someday this pain will be useful to you.)

Perfer et obdura, dolor hic tibi proderit olim. (Be patient and tough; someday this pain will be useful to you.)

Ovid
I grabbed a pile of dust, and holding it up, foolishly asked for as many birthdays as the grains of dust, I forgot to ask that they be years of youth.

I grabbed a pile of dust, and holding it up, foolishly asked for as many birthdays as the grains of dust, I forgot to ask that they be years of youth.

Ovid
Fas est ab hoste doceri.
One should learn even from one's enemies.

Fas est ab hoste doceri. One should learn even from one's enemies.

Ovid
Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.”

Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.” "Be patient and tough; one day this pain will be useful to you.

Ovid
I am the poet of the poor, because I was poor when I loved; since I could not give gifts, I gave words.

I am the poet of the poor, because I was poor when I loved; since I could not give gifts, I gave words.

Ovid
Happy are those who dare courageously to defend what they love.

Happy are those who dare courageously to defend what they love.

Ovid
Omnia mutantur, nihil interit (everything changes, nothing perishes).

Omnia mutantur, nihil interit (everything changes, nothing perishes).

Ovid
Give me the waters of Lethe that numb the heart, if they exist, I will still not have the power to forget you.

Give me the waters of Lethe that numb the heart, if they exist, I will still not have the power to forget you.

Ovid
We are ever striving after what is forbidden, and coveting what is denied us.

We are ever striving after what is forbidden, and coveting what is denied us.

Ovid
Anything cracked will shatter at a touch.

Anything cracked will shatter at a touch.

Ovid
I am dragged along by a strange new force. Desire and reason are pulling in different directions. I see the right way and approve it, but follow the wrong.

I am dragged along by a strange new force. Desire and reason are pulling in different directions. I see the right way and approve it, but follow the wrong.

Ovid
Love will enter cloaked in friendship's name.

Love will enter cloaked in friendship's name.

Ovid
It's a kindness that the mind can go where it wishes.

It's a kindness that the mind can go where it wishes.

Ovid
If you would be loved, be lovable

If you would be loved, be lovable

Ovid
Dignity and love do not blend well, nor do they continue long together.

Dignity and love do not blend well, nor do they continue long together.

Ovid
A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man's brow.

A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn; it can be stabbed to death by a quip and worried to death by a frown on the right man's brow.

Ovid
Nothing is stronger than habit.

Nothing is stronger than habit.

Ovid
God himself helps those who dare.

God himself helps those who dare.

Ovid
Every lover is a soldier.

Every lover is a soldier.

Ovid
Thus I am not able to exist either with you or without you; and I seem not to know my own wishes.

Thus I am not able to exist either with you or without you; and I seem not to know my own wishes.

Ovid
I flee who chases me and chase who flees me.

I flee who chases me and chase who flees me.

Ovid
Love is the force that leaves you colorless

Love is the force that leaves you colorless

Ovid
Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.

Happy is the man who has broken the chains which hurt the mind, and has given up worrying once and for all.

Ovid
Take rest; a field that has rested gives a beautiful crop.

Take rest; a field that has rested gives a beautiful crop.

Ovid
In our play we reveal what kind of people we are

In our play we reveal what kind of people we are

Ovid
All things change; nothing perishes.

All things change; nothing perishes.

Ovid
Saepe creat molles aspera spina rosas

Saepe creat molles aspera spina rosas" - "Often the prickly thorn produces tender roses

Ovid
Neither can the wave that has passed by be recalled, nor the hour which has passed return again.

Neither can the wave that has passed by be recalled, nor the hour which has passed return again.

Ovid
Eurydice, dying now a second time, uttered no complaint against her husband. What was there to complain of, but that she had been loved?

Eurydice, dying now a second time, uttered no complaint against her husband. What was there to complain of, but that she had been loved?

Ovid
The cause is hidden. The effect is visible to all.

The cause is hidden. The effect is visible to all.

Ovid
Greatly he failed, but he had greatly dared.

Greatly he failed, but he had greatly dared.

Ovid
All right, boy, skewer me. I've dropped my defenses,
 I'm an easy victim. Why, by now
Your arrows practically know their own way to the target
 And feel less at home in their quiver than in me.

All right, boy, skewer me. I've dropped my defenses, I'm an easy victim. Why, by now Your arrows practically know their own way to the target And feel less at home in their quiver than in me.

Ovid
Or that writing a poem you can read to no one
is like dancing in the dark.

Or that writing a poem you can read to no one is like dancing in the dark.

Ovid
Nitimur in vetitum

Nitimur in vetitum" -- "We strive after the forbidden

Ovid
Barbarus hic ego sum, quia non intelligor illis.

(In this place I am a barbarian, because men do not understand me.)

Barbarus hic ego sum, quia non intelligor illis. (In this place I am a barbarian, because men do not understand me.)

Ovid
He who can believe himself well, will be well.

He who can believe himself well, will be well.

Ovid
In the make-up of human beings, intelligence counts for more than our hands, and that is our true strength.

In the make-up of human beings, intelligence counts for more than our hands, and that is our true strength.

Ovid
There is a certain pleasure in weeping

There is a certain pleasure in weeping

Ovid
Not knowing what he sees, he adores the sight; That false face fools and fuels his delight

Not knowing what he sees, he adores the sight; That false face fools and fuels his delight

Ovid
Their useless torches on dry hedges throw,
That catch the flames, and kindle all the row;
So burns the God, consuming in desire,
And feeding in his breast a fruitless fire

Their useless torches on dry hedges throw, That catch the flames, and kindle all the row; So burns the God, consuming in desire, And feeding in his breast a fruitless fire

Ovid
Our native soil draws all of us, by I know not what sweetness, and never allows us to forget.

Our native soil draws all of us, by I know not what sweetness, and never allows us to forget.

Ovid
Someday this pain will be useful to you

Someday this pain will be useful to you

Ovid
Bene vixit, bene qui latuit.

Bene vixit, bene qui latuit." (To live well is to live concealed.)

Ovid
My purpose is to tell of bodies that have been changed into shapes of different kinds.

My purpose is to tell of bodies that have been changed into shapes of different kinds.

Ovid
Qui non est hodie eras minus aptus erit. He who is not prepared today will be less so tomorrow.

Qui non est hodie eras minus aptus erit. He who is not prepared today will be less so tomorrow.

Ovid
When all the other animals, downcast looked upon the earth, he [Prometheus] gave a face raised on high to man, and commanded him to see the sky and raise his high eyes to the stars.

When all the other animals, downcast looked upon the earth, he [Prometheus] gave a face raised on high to man, and commanded him to see the sky and raise his high eyes to the stars.

Ovid
It's right to learn, even from the enemy.

It's right to learn, even from the enemy.

Ovid
Brass shines with constant usage, a beautiful dress needs wearing,
Leave a house empty, it rots.

Brass shines with constant usage, a beautiful dress needs wearing, Leave a house empty, it rots.

Ovid
I am a shipwrecked man who fears every sea.

I am a shipwrecked man who fears every sea.

Ovid
Poetry comes fine spun from a mind at peace.

Poetry comes fine spun from a mind at peace.

Ovid
It is convenient that there be gods, and, as it is convenient, let us believe there are.

It is convenient that there be gods, and, as it is convenient, let us believe there are.

Ovid
Fortune resists half-hearted prayers.

Fortune resists half-hearted prayers.

Ovid
Medicine sometimes snatches away health, sometimes gives it.

Medicine sometimes snatches away health, sometimes gives it.

Ovid
Blemishes are hid by night and every fault forgiven; darkness makes any woman fair.

Blemishes are hid by night and every fault forgiven; darkness makes any woman fair.

Ovid
My vengeance is my guilt

My vengeance is my guilt

Ovid
Darkness makes any woman fair.

Darkness makes any woman fair.

Ovid
Hurry to your goal together. That is full bliss when man and woman lie equally conquered.

Hurry to your goal together. That is full bliss when man and woman lie equally conquered.

Ovid
The burden which is well borne becomes light.

The burden which is well borne becomes light.

Ovid
Right it is to be taught even by the enemy.

Right it is to be taught even by the enemy.

Ovid
You will go most safely by the middle way.

You will go most safely by the middle way.

Ovid
Venus is kind to creatures as young as we;
We know not what we do, and while we’re young
We have the right to live and love like gods.

Venus is kind to creatures as young as we; We know not what we do, and while we’re young We have the right to live and love like gods.

Ovid
By yielding you may obtain victory

By yielding you may obtain victory

Ovid
Today is truly the Golden Age: gold buys hornor, gold procures love

Today is truly the Golden Age: gold buys hornor, gold procures love

Ovid
For no god may undo what another god has done...

For no god may undo what another god has done...

Ovid
The spirited horse, which will try to win the race of its own accord, will run even faster if encouraged.

The spirited horse, which will try to win the race of its own accord, will run even faster if encouraged.

Ovid
What is harder than rock, or softer than water? Yet soft water hollows out hard rock. Persevere.

What is harder than rock, or softer than water? Yet soft water hollows out hard rock. Persevere.

Ovid
Video meliora proboque, deteriora sequor.

Video meliora proboque, deteriora sequor.

Ovid
A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn.

A new idea is delicate. It can be killed by a sneer or a yawn.

Ovid
A prince should be slow to punish, and quick to reward.

A prince should be slow to punish, and quick to reward.

Ovid
My hopes are not always realized, but I always hope.

My hopes are not always realized, but I always hope.

Ovid
The man who has experienced shipwreck shudders even at a calm sea.

The man who has experienced shipwreck shudders even at a calm sea.

Ovid
Even as a cow she was lovely.

Even as a cow she was lovely.

Ovid
He loved a lifeless thing and he was utterly and hopelessly wretched.

He loved a lifeless thing and he was utterly and hopelessly wretched.

Ovid
She made up prayers and said them,
Worshipping unknown gods with unknown singing,
Her customary magic, which would cover
The white moon’s face and darken the sun with cloud.

She made up prayers and said them, Worshipping unknown gods with unknown singing, Her customary magic, which would cover The white moon’s face and darken the sun with cloud.

Ovid
And besides, we lovers fear everything

And besides, we lovers fear everything

Ovid
...et ignotas animum dimittit in artes, naturamque nouat. (to arts unknown he bends his wits, and alters nature.)

...et ignotas animum dimittit in artes, naturamque nouat. (to arts unknown he bends his wits, and alters nature.)

Ovid
And now I have finished the work, which neither the wrath of Jove, nor fire, nor the sword, nor devouring age shall be able to destroy.

And now I have finished the work, which neither the wrath of Jove, nor fire, nor the sword, nor devouring age shall be able to destroy.

Ovid
Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes.
And he sets his mind to unknown arts.

Et ignotas animum dimittit in artes. And he sets his mind to unknown arts.

Ovid
Our native land charms us with inexpressible sweetness, and never, never allows us to forget that we belong to it.

Our native land charms us with inexpressible sweetness, and never, never allows us to forget that we belong to it.

Ovid
And he sets his mind to unknown arts

And he sets his mind to unknown arts

Ovid
Only she is chaste whom none has invited

Only she is chaste whom none has invited

Ovid
A ruler should be slow to punish and swift to reward.

A ruler should be slow to punish and swift to reward.

Ovid
All other creatures look down toward the earth, but man was given a face so that might turn his eyes toward the stars and his gaze upon the sky.

All other creatures look down toward the earth, but man was given a face so that might turn his eyes toward the stars and his gaze upon the sky.

Ovid
Be bold, take courage... and be strong of soul.

Be bold, take courage... and be strong of soul.

Ovid
Her clear conscience mocked rumour’s mendacity, But we are a mob prone to credit sin.

Her clear conscience mocked rumour’s mendacity, But we are a mob prone to credit sin.

Ovid
Agamemnon escaped with his life From land battles and sea storms, then fell to his wife.

Agamemnon escaped with his life From land battles and sea storms, then fell to his wife.

Ovid