Ovid and Illyricum


  • Salmedin Mesihović Faculty of Philosophy, University of Sarajevo




Ovid, Illyricum, Bato’s War, Germanicus, Augustus


The famed Roman poet Ovid was banished from Rome, for unknown reasons in 8 CE, by the first emperor Augustus, to the remote town of Tomis on the Black Sea coast, at the then-outmost eastern border of the Roman Empire. Ovid himself emphasised to have been banished for a mistake and a poem, but did not provide more elaborate details as to what the cause had exactly been. That was the period when the Roman Empire fought a difficult war against the Illyrian rebels and their military and political Alliance led by Bato the Daesitiate. For that reason, Ovid was sent to Tomis not through the Adriatic shore but rather through roundabouts, via Greece and Moesia. Ovid was very sad in Tomis, constantly pleading for amnesty. For that reason, he kept sending letters to influential friends and members of the ruling Augustus family, asking them to advocate for his return. In one of the letters to Germanicus, Ovid described in detail the triumphant procession honouring the victory over the rebelled Illyrians, mentioning also the captured Bato the Daesitate and the kind treatment he had received.


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How to Cite

Mesihović, S. (2020). Ovid and Illyricum. Journal of the Faculty of Philosophy in Sarajevo (History, History of Art, Archeology) / Radovi (Historija, Historija Umjetnosti, Arheologija), ISSN 2303-6974 on-Line, 7(2), 45–57. https://doi.org/10.46352/23036974.2020.2.45