II. The Ancient Love Novel and Youth in Fiction
III. Modern Film: Eyes Wide Shut
IV. The Parallel of Xenophon of Ephesus
The scene appears so intensive and the exchange of souls so unnatural to Kerényi that he, and later Merkelbach, connects the embrace of Isis and the dead Osiris with it.  Yet its sense does not necessarily lie in hidden myths and mysteries. It seems more appropriate to take the passage from a love novel at face value, that is, as an expression of love in the course of an erotic plot that all revolves around love and its complications. The tears become first the fluid of exchange that can be drunk and used to wet each other’s hair and garlands. These braided and plaited objects metonymically underline the mutual embrace of the couple, who seek complete union. At the same time, the unio mystica that Kerényi and Merkelbach detect cannot be achieved and is bound to fail.  Anthia reproaches Habrocomes for his narcissistic behavior and is afraid that he might not have completely changed. Because he has delayed and might continue to delay love, she scolds him as “unmanly and coward” (1.9.4). On the other hand, they lock together in their kisses, and through their lips the excessive passions pass from one soul to the other. Achilles Tatius (2.37.6–10) will later reflect on the exchange and union of the souls in even more extreme tones.