Law and Love: Legal Terminology in Roman Elegy

Caitlynn Cummings


This paper analyses the use of legal terminology in Roman love elegy of the 1st century BCE.  Catullus, Tibullus, and Ovid all employ this seemingly strange vocabulary in their love poetry for different ends, while also sharing some specific similarities.  This legal vocabulary does not make these love poems stilted, dry, nor unemotional, but is used deftly and rather indicates an interesting layer of Roman concern and preoccupation.

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