That the story of Cupid and Psyche in Apuleius' Metamorphoses is a version of a common world-wide folk-tale has long been recognized. Scholarly debate has concentrated on the conclusions to be drawn from this with regard to the significance of the story—mythological, religious, allegorical, and so on. With the additional information provided by Swahn's comprehensive monograph on the subject an attempt can now be made to study some of the aspects of literary technique involved in the adaptation of the folk-tale. (...) In what follows I have tried to avoid making any assumptions about a possible literary source of Apuleius' tale. I am concerned with the ways in which the literary version which we possess modifies the folk material, and not with the author of this modification. (shrink)
The setting of this epigram is the komos sequence explored by Copley in his important book. The speaker is about to set forth in the dark, since he requires some means of lighting his way. A companion offers him a torch. It is refused as unnecessary because of the flame of love which burns in his breast.