Shakespeare's Venus And Adonis: Summary & Analysis

An error occurred trying to load this video.

Try refreshing the page, or contact customer support.

Coming up next: William Wordsworth's The Solitary Reaper: Summary & Analysis

You're on a roll. Keep up the good work!

Take Quiz Watch Next Lesson
Your next lesson will play in 10 seconds
  • 0:02 Venus and Adonis
  • 0:28 Synopsis
  • 1:58 Lesson Summary
Save Save Save

Want to watch this again later?

Log in or sign up to add this lesson to a Custom Course.

Log in or Sign up

Speed Speed

Recommended Lessons and Courses for You

Lesson Transcript
Instructor: Debbie Notari
Venus and Adonis is a poem written by William Shakespeare. It is a story about the Greek goddess of love and her attraction to a man on Earth. Learn more about the story of Venus and Adonis and test your knowledge with a quiz.

Venus and Adonis

Venus and Adonis is a narrative poem, or a poem that tells a story, written by William Shakespeare from 1592-1593. It consists of 1,194 lines and is based on Ovid's Metamorphoses, a piece with contrasting views about the nature of love. The story is set in ancient Greece during the age of mythology, when the gods and goddesses of Mount Olympus interacted with earthly humans.


When Venus and Adonis begins, Venus, the goddess of love, admires a young man named Adonis. Adonis, however, does not return her affection. Adonis was considered the perfect male; though he was young, he was strong and beautiful with no earthly equal. His beauty was a delight to the sun and wind, but he had no interest in love.

Venus came down to Earth because she was so in love with Adonis. She pleaded with him and carried him in her arms trying to gain his love. She talked to him about what it means to love and told him she could do a number of things for him if he loved her in return. When Adonis looked at her with scorn, Venus fainted and fell to the ground. Adonis was afraid he'd killed her, so he kissed her for forgiveness. She asked him for a second kiss, which he gave her.

Adonis would not agree to meet with Venus the following day because he wanted to go boar hunting. Venus had a vision that Adonis would be killed if he went boar hunting and begged him to meet with her instead. Adonis warned Venus about the difference between heavenly love and earthly lust and left her weeping.

To unlock this lesson you must be a Member.
Create your account

Register to view this lesson

Are you a student or a teacher?

Unlock Your Education

See for yourself why 30 million people use

Become a member and start learning now.
Become a Member  Back
What teachers are saying about
Try it risk-free for 30 days

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 200 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 1,500 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Create an account to start this course today
Try it risk-free for 30 days!
Create an account