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The Golden Asse

Lucius Apuleius

Book Overview: 

The Metamorphosis, also known as The Golden Ass, is one of the very few novels of the Ancient World that survived to our days; one of the two novels of Roman Literature that we can still read; and the only one preserved in its entirety (the other one being the extremely fragmentary Satyricon).

The story of the Metamorphosis, the tale of a man turned into a donkey that goes through many adventures to become a man again, inspired many other similar ones later on. However, more than just the plot, the style of the Golden Ass also made it famous.

Considered one of the precursors of the picaresque novel, The Metamorphosis was written in a language that can be humorous and energetic, while telling the misadventures of the credulous and curious main character, but also powerfully poetic, in moments such as in the episode of Cupid and Psyche, one of the most famous parts of this book, and of Latin literature as a whole

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .re, and got upon a stone to see this mysterie, and behold incontinently the dead body began to receive spirit, his principall veines did moove, his life came again and he held up his head and spake in this sort: Why doe you call mee backe againe to this transitorie life, that have already tasted of the water of Lethe, and likewise been in the deadly den of Styx? Leave off, I pray, leave off, and let me lie in quiet rest. When these words were uttered by the dead corps, the Prophet drew nigh unto the Biere and sayd, I charge thee to tell before the face of all the people here the occasion of thy death: What, dost thou thinke that I cannot by my conjurations call up the dead, and by my puissance torment thy body? Then the corps moved his head again, and made reverence to the people and sayd, Verily I was poisoned by the meanes of my wicked wife, and so thereby yeelded my bed unto an adulterer. Whereat his wife taking present audacity, and reproving his sayings, with a curse. . . Read More

Community Reviews

997. Metamorphoses = the golden ass, Lucius Apuleius
تاریخ نخستین خوانش: یکی از روزهای ماه آگوست سال 2000 میلادی
عنوان: الاغ طلایی؛ نوشته: لوسیوس آپولیوس؛ برگردان: عبدالحسین شریفیان؛ مشخصات نشر: تهران، اساطیر، 1379، در 316 صفحه، فروست: شناخت اساطیر کتاب دهم، شابک: 9643310450؛ موضوع: اساطیر یونان و...more

من مقتنيات مهرجان الكتب المستعملة

الشكر موصول للغريب الذي ذيله بقلمه، الغريب الذي اشتراه منذ سبع سنوات، وكتب على مقدمته "تحفة " ,بعد أن علّم بداخله بخطوط مستقيمة _تحرج خطوطي المرتبكة_ ارفقها بعلامة تعجب مرسومة بإتقان جميل .
الغريب الذي حفظ الكتاب في حالة جيدة ثم منحه .. لينتهى لدي :)

Picked it up on a whim & what a rollicking ride it turned out to be! 
It could very well be a tale told by the granny - full of magic & adventure (with all the salacious bits cut out of course, but that would make it a very short tale!).

A parable, a road trip, a romance, with diversions, t...more

Golden it is, but not the ass.

For us the novel certainly has the value of gold since it is considered the earliest that has survived complete in the Western literary tradition. Originally called Metamorphoses, it is however far from being an epic like Ovid’s. Written around the middle of 2C by a...more

When you think of ruins left behind by civilizations long past, it is easy to think of stone walls which have crumbled into dust. But there are many worlds lost there, and ruins in another sense, of works of art and literature destroyed and forgotten. This is the only complete novel to survive fr...more

a masterpiece ,so interesting and entertaining as a read. for beneath the humorous and the sharp ironies lay a religious and philosophical thoughtful mind.
Amusing tales within tales, recollections of characters of various misadventures and misfortunes ....
Lucius A wandering spirit Suffering in h...more

If you remember the old toga movies from the '50's--the ones where all the Romans are played by Brits and all the Jews and Christians by Americans--then I am sure you also remember those orgiastic banquet sequences crammed with sweaty wrestlers, kinky dancers, amphora after amphora overflowing wi...more

"إن إلهة الحظ تُعرّضنا لأحكام مريبة، بل خاطئة، فينعم السافل بسمعة الرجل الشريف، ويشقى البريء بصيت الرجل الشرير."

يُقال إن هذه الرواية هي الأولى في التاريخ البشري، وعلى الرغم من قِدمها إلّا أنها تزخر بآيات الجمال والدهشة والإتقان.

تدور أحداث الرواية في مكان ما من الإمبراطورية اليونانية القديمة حول...more

Lucius ( loosely based on the author ) is a very curious young man, interested in black magic, witchcraft, potions and spells, that can cause real damage , even mystery cults, being the mid second century , during the Roman Empire, in ancient Greece, people believe in the supernatural...A travele...more

Les Métamorphoses ou l'âne d'or est le seul roman latin qui nous soit parvenu de l'antiquité sans avoir été mutilé, comme le Satiricon de Pétrone. Écrit au IIème siècle par Apulée, un auteur du sud de la méditerranée, ce roman narre les tribulations de Lucius, un jeune patricien dévoré par une im...more

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