Unlike the lightly annotated Heroides and Amores, the Art of Love and Cures for Love attract the reader's sustained interest and the margins are heavily annotated.
The poems teach and exemplify persuasive techniques:
Annotations mark instances of arguments "from examples", "from similarity" and "from experience". They highlight poetic tropes and figures ("apostrophe", etc), as well as proverbial sayings ("Cretans are liars").
They mark passages of historical, geographical and mythological interest and draw attention to fine passages ("an elegant description"; "an elegant beginning"), presumably for the purposes of imitation.
These notes are typical of how Renaissance readers learned to analyse the texts they read in school.
The reader’s search for useful pieces of advice from Ovid "the teacher of love" (praeceptor amoris) is also apparent in his Art of Love annotations. In addition to annotations similar to those above, notes here show him marking the dos and don'ts of successful lovemaking with phrases like "a precept to be noted" ("praeceptum notandum") or "an excellent lesson" ("optima doctrina").
He shows interest in Ovid's description of a method for invisible writing by marking it with a "manicule" (a pointing hand) and the word "Secretum". As had been evident in the annotations on the Phaedra letter in the Heroides, this reader is interested in the language of seduction.
He's also interested in relating Ovid's characterisations of women of ancient Rome to women of his own time. For example, Ovid directs the Roman reader to the Porticos to find women to seduce (1.67-8) and our reader writes: "Even today, in Italy, the colonnades are always crowded with women". In book 3, Ovid mentions the hair-care regimes of Roman women (3.163-6); our reader observes: "this behaviour is still today common with Italian women".
The Art of Love was not a text favoured in the Renaissance classroom, and attracted moral censure while the Cures for Love tended to be viewed as a more suitable text yet the annotator seems quite unconcerned about these morality issues.
Later, in the Cures for love, the annotations take on a more moralising tone, highlighting a "sententia vere christiana", (truly Christian sentiment), where Ovid writes: "A profitable aim it is to extinguish savage flames, and have a heart not enslaved to its own frailty" (53-4).