Horace is often placed at the opposite end of the spectrum to Catullus in discussions on Latin lyric love poetry. In this oversimplified view, the poets represent vastly different interpretations of love and the poetic process, Catullus being the prototype Sturm und Drang poet while Horace embodies calm and selfdetachment. This essay explores contemporary views on Horace’s approach to writing about love, and proposes that an over-emphasis on Horace’s political views and interest in public matters has led to a disregard for his views on love. It is further argued that a comparison between Horace’s love poetry and that of Catullus is an unjust categorisation which does little to acknowledge Horace’s versatile and developmental approach to lyric poetry. Finally, Horace’s self-detachment is seen to be the most effective means through which he succeeds in connecting with the experiences of his reader.
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