When a love poet invokes the great epic heroes, the substance and rhetoric of eros is always in play. In a very Ovidian manner, Propertius begins his bit of amorous braggadocio with Zeus's fathering of Heracles:
“Jupiter slept with Alcmene two nights, and for two nights the heavens missed their king. He did not on that account languidly resume his thunderbolt: no lovemaking defrauded him of his virility. When Achilles left the embrace of Briseis, did the Phrygians then flee his missiles less? Did the Mycenaean ships fear the war less because Hector had just come from Andromache’s bed? Hector could have burnt those ships, Achilles could have leveled those walls: in this I am Achilles, in this am I Hector.”Iuppiter Alcmenae geminas requieverat Arctos,et caelum noctu bis sine rege fuit;nec tamen idcirco languens ad fulmina venit:nullus amor vires eripit ipse suas.quid? cum e complexu Briseidos iret Achilles,num fugere minus Thessala tela Phryges?quid? ferus Andromachae lecto cum surgeret Hectorbella Mycenaeae non timuere rates?ille vel hic classis poterant vel perdere muros:hic ego Pelides, hic ferus Hector ego.