“His juvenile behavior must be shackled with the chains of marriage. He has chosen the girl, robbed her of her virginity, so he must have and hold her.”
(Jupiter to Cupid and Psyche in Apuleius, The Golden Ass, 6:23)

The Golden Ass, an imaginative and humorous work by Apuleius (circa 123–circa 170 A.C.E.), tells how Venus sent Cupid to harm Psyche. Looking upon her he fell in love, and soon Psyche was dwelling in his secret hut in the woods, pregnant with their child. What began as revenge and became calamity, through the intervention of Zeus culminated in the union of Cupid and Psyche. It is a story of desire (Eros being another name for Cupid) and the seat of all human longing, the soul (another name for Psyche), finding fulfillment.
“His juvenile behavior must be shackled with the chains of marriage. He has chosen the girl, robbed her of her virginity, so he must have and hold her.”
(Jupiter to Cupid and Psyche in Apuleius, The Golden Ass, 6:23)

The Golden Ass, an imaginative and humorous work by Apuleius (circa 123–circa 170 A.C.E.), tells how Venus sent Cupid to harm Psyche. Looking upon her he fell in love, and soon Psyche was dwelling in his secret hut in the woods, pregnant with their child. What began as revenge and became calamity, through the intervention of Zeus culminated in the union of Cupid and Psyche. It is a story of desire (Eros being another name for Cupid) and the seat of all human longing, the soul (another name for Psyche), finding fulfillment.

© 2004, CHIN. All Rights Reserved.

Statue of Cupid and Psyche

Cupid and Psyche refused to heed the warnings of their families. Though they stumbled along the way, they were united.

Photo Credit: Corey Chimko

Marble
125.4 cm
MC0408.
© Roma, Musei Capitolini, Archivio Fotografico dei Musei Capitolini.


Learning Objectives

The learner will:

  • Appraise how authors have portrayed romantic love in literary works from ancient times to the 1800’s
  • Explain how the notion of romantic love has been portrayed in different cultures over time
  • Describe how romantic love has been an inspiration that has influenced literature in most cultures through the ages.

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