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CHLOE EFFRON // WIKIMEDIA COMMONS (OVID), UNICODE (BACKGROUND)
CHLOE EFFRON // WIKIMEDIA COMMONS (OVID), UNICODE (BACKGROUND)

11 Tips From Ovid for How to Get Over a Breakup

CHLOE EFFRON // WIKIMEDIA COMMONS (OVID), UNICODE (BACKGROUND)
CHLOE EFFRON // WIKIMEDIA COMMONS (OVID), UNICODE (BACKGROUND)

If you’ve had a rough time dating recently and are nursing a broken heart, look no further.

Around 2 CE, the ancient Roman poet Ovid wrote Ars Amatoria (The Art of Love), instructing men and women on how to find and keep a romantic partner. But not long afterward Ovid also wrote Remedia Amoris (The Cure for Love), a Latin poetry manual for how to navigate a breakup. If you feel betrayed by love, as Ovid writes in Remedia Amoris, he can help: “Learn how to be cured, from him who taught you how to love: the one hand brings the wound and the relief.”

1. STAY BUSY—DON’T BE IDLE. 

Ovid’s first piece of advice to handle a breakup is to stay busy. So how should you keep yourself occupied? Ovid suggests that you hang out at court (you can defend any friends who might be on trial), engage in war, or study agriculture in the countryside. As he writes in Remedia Amoris:

“Give your vacant mind work to occupy it. There are the courts, the laws, the friends you might defend: make your way through the splendid camp of city togas. Or admire the youthful service of blood-drenched Mars … Country matters too delight the spirit, and the study of agriculture.” 

2. TIRE YOURSELF OUT BY HUNTING AND TRAVELING.

If you’ve already spent time at court, fought, and studied farming, you should also learn to hunt. Hunting hares, deer, and boars will tire you out, so you’ll sleep better at night without thinking of your ex. Travel, too, can help, since the change of scenery will give you solace and heal your heartbreak.

“Or you can cultivate the art of hunting … Sleep at night, not desire for girls, welcomes the weary man, and the limbs will be restored by calm rest … You only need to journey far, though strong chains hold you back, and start to travel distant ways: you’ll cry, and your lost girl’s name will oppose it, and your feet will often stop you on the road: but the less you wish to go, the more you should go … the long road, give you a hundred solaces for your cares.” 

3. SURROUND YOURSELF WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY.

When you’re nursing a breakup, you may want to stay inside, cry, and not talk to anyone. It’s more important than ever, though, to surround yourself with other people. According to Ovid, if you spend time alone you’ll be sad as you reminisce about your ex—and nights will be the hardest to get through:

“You who love, beware lonely places, lonely places are harmful! Why flee? You can be safer in a crowd. You don’t need secrecy (secrecy nurtures passion): in future it’s the crowd that will assist you. If you’re alone, you’ll be sad, and the form of the girl you’ve left will be there before your eyes, so like herself. Because of that, night’s sadder than the daylight: your crowd of friends missing, who might ease the gloom. Don’t shun conversation, or let your door be closed, don’t hide your tearful face in the shadows.” 

4. DON’T EAT ONIONS.

Because onions are an aphrodisiac, according to Ovid, don’t eat them! All types of onions will do you harm, whether they’re from Italy, North Africa, or Greece. You should also avoid another aphrodisiac, arugula (a.k.a. “that lustful garden rocket”). From Remedia Amoris:

“Behold, there’s still your diet, to complete all the doctor’s duties, I’ll give you what to swallow and avoid. Italian onions, or the ones they send you, from the shores of Libya, or the ones that come from Megara, every one will do you harm. It’s no less fitting to avoid that lustful garden rocket, and whatever readies these bodies of ours for making love.” 

5. THINK ABOUT ALL THE BAD QUALITIES OF YOUR EX.

If you’re feeling down about not having your ex in your life anymore, don’t get stuck idealizing your former partner. Instead, think of all the things you didn’t like about him or her. Perhaps she was greedy, she liked other people, or she rejected your love. Even if your ex’s legs were beautiful, think about them as if they were ugly. If that doesn’t work, sneak over to her house to see her when she’s not wearing any makeup or jewelry (maybe don’t actually do this one). As Ovid explains: 

“Tell yourself often what your wicked girl has done, and before your eyes place every hurt you’ve had … Let all this embitter your every feeling: recall it, look here for the seeds of your dislike ... It helped to continually dwell on my friend’s faults, and it often was the thing that made me better. ‘How ugly,’ I’d say ‘my girl’s legs are!’ and yet they weren’t, if the truth be told … And appear suddenly, when she’s applied no make-up to herself, having hastened your steps to your lady in the dawn. We’re carried away by adornment: in gold and gems all’s hidden: the least part of it’s the girl herself.” 

6. AVOID CONTACT WITH YOUR EX.

According to Ovid, recent heartbreak is like a fragile wound. Even if your scar has scabbed over, spending time with your ex will rip the scab right off and open the wound. To avoid running into your ex, don’t go for walks near where she lives, don’t stay friends with her family, and definitely don’t talk to her maid to fish for information about how she’s doing.

“If you love, but don’t wish to, avoid making contact … Another man was already cured: being near harmed him: he couldn’t bear any meeting with his mistress. The wound, poorly healed, reopened at the old scar … Don’t take your walks in the colonnade where she’s accustomed to: and don’t adorn the same functions … Say goodbye to mother, sister, and the nurse who’s in the know, and whoever plays any part in your girl’s life. Don’t let her slave come by, or her maid, with lying tears, humbly saying: ‘Greetings!’ in their mistress’s name. And if you want to know what she’s doing, still, don’t ask: endure! It will profit you to hold your tongue.”

7. DON’T WASTE YOUR TIME WITH WITCHCRAFT AND SPELLS.

Ovid doesn’t put much stock in herbs, magic arts, wicked spells, and charms. He strongly advises against using witchcraft to make your ex fall back in love with you. From Remedia Amoris

“Harmful herbs, and magic arts … With me in charge no spirits will be ordered from their graves, no witch, with wicked spells, will split the ground … No pains will be charmed away to ease the heart, conquering love won’t be put to flight by burning sulphur … So whoever you are who call for help from my art, put no faith in witchcraft and incantations.”

8. LET YOUR EX KEEP THE GIFTS YOU GAVE HER.

Although you should think about your ex’s negative qualities and avoid seeing her, don’t let yourself hate her. After all, as Ovid points out, you shouldn’t hate someone that you once loved. Instead, be indifferent towards her, and let her keep any gifts you gave her during your relationship. 

“But it’s wrong to hate the girl you loved, in any way: that conclusion suits uncivilized natures. It’s enough not to care: who ends his love by hating, is either still in love, or finds it hard to leave off being sorry. Shame for a man and woman, once joined, now to be enemies … Tell her to keep the gifts you gave her, without any ruling: small losses are usually a major gain.”

9. IF YOU SEE YOUR EX, PRETEND THAT YOU’RE HAPPY. 

It’s bound to happen sooner or later—the inevitable run-in with your ex. Even if you’re deeply grieving and heartbroken, put on a happy face so your ex thinks that you’re doing fine. And definitely don’t cry in front of her. If you act as if you’re not hurting, eventually you’ll feel better for real.

“Make it seem to your girl that you’re chillier than ice: and if you’re grieving deeply, look happy, lest she see it, and laugh, when tears come to you … Pretend to what is not, and that the passion’s over, so you’ll become, in truth, what you are studying to be … he who can imagine he’s well, will be well … The new day will dawn: lose your words of grievance, and show no signs of suffering in your face.” 

10. THROW OUT ALL REMINDERS OF HIM OR HER. 

If you reminisce about the good times you had with your ex, your heart will hurt even more because your passion will be reignited. Even though you won’t want to, Ovid suggests that you burn all the love letters from your ex. You also should avoid visiting places that will evoke strong memories of the times you spent together.

“Don’t re-read the letters you’ve kept from your sweet girl: re-reading letters shakes the steadfast heart. Put them all in the fierce flames (you’ll hate to do it), and say: ‘Let this be the funeral pyre for my passion.’… And often places hurt you: flee the places where you slept guiltily together: they’re a cause of grief … Remembering reopens love, the wound’s newly re-opened: trifling errors damage the weak-minded.”

11. DON’T GO TO THE THEATRE OR READ POETRY.

Ovid reluctantly—he is a poet, after all—urges heartbroken people to temporarily avoid the arts. Theatre and poetry will soften your heart and remind you of your lost love. In short, the arts will do nothing for your recovery. As he writes in Remedia Amoris:

“But there’s value in not indulging in the theatre, till love’s truly vanished from your empty heart, The zithers, and lutes and lyres unman you, and the sound and waving limbs of the troupe. There lovers’ parts are danced, continually: the actor, with art shows, what delights: and what you must avoid. I speak unwillingly now: don’t touch the tender poets! Disloyally I banish even my own gifts.”

All photos provided by iStock.

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12 Solid Facts About New Hampshire's Old Man of the Mountain
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iStock

On May 3, 2003, the craggy rock face known as New Hampshire's Old Man of the Mountain tumbled to the ground in spectacular fashion. For a landmark that had been in the state's DNA for generations, its collapse was like a death in the family to some. The day after it fell, people left flowers at the base of Cannon Mountain in Franconia Notch State Park as a sort of funeral tribute, and plans were immediately launched to create a longer-lasting memorial. So what was so great about the Old Man of the Mountain, pre- and post-crumble? Read on for the stone-cold facts.

1. THANKS TO NATHANIEL HAWTHORNE, THE OLD MAN WAS ALSO KNOWN AS “THE GREAT STONE FACE.”

Although not explicitly named, it’s widely believed Hawthorne based his 1850 short story "The Great Stone Face"—which was set in an anonymous state that happens to look like New Hampshire—on the Old Man. At that time, the mountainous figure was already a tourist draw to the Granite State. Hawthorne described it as an “enormous giant, or a Titan,” with a “broad arch of the forehead,” a long-bridged nose, and having “vast lips.” Eventually Hawthorne’s nickname stuck, along with other loving titles like “Old Man” and “the Profile.”

2. THE "FACE" WAS ACTUALLY A SERIES OF LEDGES.

These granite cliff ledges, 40 feet tall and 25 feet wide, when viewed from the north at certain angles looked like a jagged face. Hawthorne corroborated this, writing in “The Great Stone Face”: “If the spectator approached too near, he lost the outline of the gigantic visage, and could discern only a heap of ponderous and gigantic rocks ... Retracing his steps, however, the wondrous features would again be seen; and the farther he withdrew from them, the more like a human face, with all its original divinity intact, did they appear."

3. HE COULD HAVE BEEN 12,000 YEARS OLD.

An 1856 postcard of The Old Man of the Mountain
Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

The Old Man was first discovered and recorded in 1805 by road surveyors Francis Whitcomb and Luke Brooks, which put the landmark at nearly 200 years old by the time it fell. But it likely first formed when water inside cracks in the granite bedrock froze and thawed following the retreat of glaciers about 12,000 years ago. (This freezing and thawing process was what hastened its eventual collapse.) According to geologist Brian Fowler in a research report by the Old Man of the Mountain Legacy Fund, the lower ledge—or chin—of the Old Man is assumed to have fallen first. Once that support was gone, the rest of the rock fell in formation.

4. CANNON MOUNTAIN WAS SO NAMED BECAUSE IT LOOKS LIKE ANTIQUE ARTILLERY.

The Old Man jutted from a cliff in Cannon Mountain in New Hampshire’s White Mountains, within Franconia Notch State Park. Originally named Profile Mountain, it took on a new name since its granite dome resembles a cannon from select vantage points. There are even three sub-peaks, nicknamed “The Cannon Balls.”

5. SOME OF THE STRONGEST SURFACE WINDS EVER IN THE U.S. WERE RECORDED ON TOP OF CANNON MOUNTAIN.

The gusts measured 199.5 mph on April 2, 1973. While impressive, they were likely even higher since 199.5 mph was the limit of what the researchers' instruments could record at the time. The highest surface wind gust in the U.S. still belongs in-state, though, with New Hampshire's Mount Washington recording 231 mph winds in 1934.

6. A SERIES OF TURNBUCKLES AND IRON TIES WERE PLACED WITHIN ITS FACE TO KEEP IT TOGETHER.

By 1916, as it became clear the Old Man might not live forever, the first efforts to protect the rock formation were made. By the 1920s, a crack in the Old Man’s "forehead" was clearly noticeable, and residents who were worried about its safety used chains, turnbuckles, and iron ties to keep the crack from separating. Many of those metal rods used to hold the Old Man together were still attached to the mountain years later.

7. THE STATE EVENTUALLY SPENT A SMALL FORTUNE TRYING TO SAVE IT.


Julius Hall, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

In 1957, the New Hampshire state legislature passed a $25,000 appropriation for the necessary repairs to slow the Old Man's deterioration. These steps included quick-drying cement and steel rods meant to fill in and fortify cracks. The rocky Band-Aids were maintained every summer.

8. THE CARETAKERS’ MAINTENANCE ROUTINES WERE METICULOUS.

One longtime caretaker, Niels Nielsen, took great pains to keep the Old Man clean since 1965. Nielsen would spray bleach on the rock face and in its cracks, then carefully remove moss and lichen in an effort to prevent cracks from spreading further. He would even clean out the Old Man’s ear with a garden hoe. When Nielsen retired, he passed the job on to his son, David. The face continued to be groomed until its collapse.

9. NIELS NIELSEN SAW THE OLD MAN AS A GIFT FROM GOD.

According to Yankee Magazine, Nielsen was rather enchanted by the rock formation. “I had sailed around the world as a merchant seaman, yet I had never seen anything like the Old Man," he said. "I don’t believe anyone can be up there and not feel the presence of God."

10. BUT EVEN NIELSEN KNEW IT MIGHT FALL SOME DAY.

Nielsen was asked by Yankee what would happen if the Old Man ever fell. “The Lord put him here, and the Lord will take him down," Nielsen replied. Research concluded its collapse was natural—that the freezing-thawing process and subsequent erosion over time caused its downfall.

11. YOU CAN STILL "SEE" THE OLD MAN.


Rob Gallagher, Public Domain, Wikimedia Commons

The image of the Old Man has lived on as a state emblem since 1945, appearing on highway signs, on the back of drivers licenses, and on the reverse of the state quarter. But residents weren’t done with honoring the now-deceased rock face. At Old Man of the Mountain Profile Plaza and Historic Site in Franconia, special viewfinders and steel “profilers” at vantage points near Profile Lake offer a glimpse of what the formation used to look like.

12. THERE’S EVEN AN OLD MAN OF THE MOUNTAIN FLOWER.

Old-Man-of-the-Mountain, or tetraneuris grandiflora, is found in the Intermountain Regions and Rocky Mountains in states like Wyoming, Montana, Utah, Colorado, and Idaho. It’s sometimes called an alpine sunflower and got its common name from the wooly hairs that cover its leaves.

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Stones, Bones, and Wrecks
Take a Closer Look at the $17 Billion 'Holy Grail of Shipwrecks'

Feast your eyes on these new images of the treasure among the wreckage of the Spanish ship San José, often called the "holy grail of shipwrecks." When it sank on June 8, 1708, it was carrying gold, silver, jewels, and other precious cargo worth roughly $17 billion today. Now, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution (WHOI) is revealing the major role it played in the 2015 expedition to find the San José.

The three-masted, 62-gun Spanish galleon exploded and sank at the hands of the British during the War of the Spanish Succession. It was carrying its riches to the Colombian city of Cartegena to finance the war. Archaeologists had been trying to find the San José for decades before it was finally located on November 27, 2015, during an expedition organized by Colombia, Maritime Archaeology Consultants (MAC), and WHOI. The multibillion-dollar treasure, which still sits nearly 2000 feet below the surface of the ocean near Cartegena, is just now being revealed.

WHOI's autonomous underwater vehicle REMUS 6000 was responsible for finding the elusive wreck. REMUS has been with the project since the beginning: The machine created the first side-scan sonar images of the site. After that, REMUS journeyed to a point 30 feet above the site and captured high-resolution photos of the ship's distinctive bronze cannons, which are engraved with dolphins. REMUS's documentation of this defining feature allowed scientists to positively identify the wreck as the fabled San José. (Thanks to whoever had the idea to put dolphins on the cannon in the first place.)

WHOI also released REMUS's photos of the wreckage, which show details of the horde, including ceramics and those famous cannons. "This constitutes one of the greatest—if not the biggest, as some say—discoveries of submerged patrimony in the history of mankind,” Colombian president Juan Manuel Santos said back when the treasure was discovered.

The San José's treasure is the subject of a legal battle for ownership between Colombia and U.S. salvage company Sea Search Armada, which helped look for the wreck. In 2011, four years before the San José was even found, the court ruled that the booty belongs to Colombia, but the dispute is ongoing. Because of the legal drama, the exact location of the wreck remains a government secret.

Below, check out the newly released pictures for a closer look at cannons, teacups, and other ceramics.

cannons from the San Jose
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

pots from the San Jose
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

teacups from the San Jose
Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

REMUS 6000
REMUS 6000
Mike Purcell, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution


A mosaic of images taken by the REMUS 6000 depicts the whole site.
A mosaic of images taken by the REMUS 6000 depicts the whole site.
Jeff Kaeli, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution

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