Publius Ovidius Naso (43 BC – 18 AD). Ovid seems to have believed in art for pleasure’s sake, having no ethical agenda for his writings, unlike his predecessor Virgil, who wrote for the betterment of Romans.

Ovid’s other works include: Medea (a tragedy, no longer extant), Heroides (letters to legendary heroes from their wives; read them here), Amores (poetic essays on love), The Art of Love (advice on how to seduce a woman; scandalous in Augustus’ time, one possible reason for Ovid’s banishment in 8 AD), the Fasti (a poetic calendar of religious festivals). Ovid offered something of an apology for his immoral reputation (Tristia 2:354): “My life is respectable, my Muse is full of jesting. A book is not evidence of one’s soul.”

<Brown, Larry A. Ovid’s Metamorphoses.>