La femme voyageuse dans les Héroïdes 10, 12 et 21: lectures intra-ovidiennes

  • Stella Alekou


In this paper, the discussion centres on the portrayal of the female traveller in Ovid’s Heroides 10, 12 and 21. Notwithstanding the predominance of travelling narratives in the collection, most letters tend to focus on the description of the heroes’ journeys as passively attested by the abandoned puellae, whereas the epistles of Ariadne, Medea and Cydippe explicitly address the issue of travelling as – also – a feminine activity. The examination of the travel motif will encourage us to review critically the wellestablished and quite restricted perception of women in Ovid’s Heroides as mere elegiac puellae in love. The paper will tackle the recontextualisation of the travel metaphor from the text of two exiled women to Cydippe’s final words – possibly written during Ovid’s relegatio –, to examine the poet’s plea for survival and commemoration.