The Hecuba of Euripides, from the Text, and with a Translation of the Notes, Preface, and Supplement of Porson; ... Illustrations of Idioms; ... Examination Questions; and ... Indexes. By ... J. R. Major
The Greek Tragedy in New Translations series is based on the conviction that only translators who write poetry themselves, or who work in collaboration with poets, can properly re-create the celebrated and timeless tragedies of the great Greek writers. These new translations are more than faithful to the original text, going beyond the literal meaning in order to evoke the poetic intensity and rich metaphorical texture of the Greek language. Euripides was one of the most popular and controversial of all the Greek tragedians, and his plays are marked by an independence of thought, ingenious dramatic devices, and a subtle variety of register and mood. Medea, is a story of betrayal and vengeance. Medea, incensed that her husband Jason would leave her for another after the many sacrifices she has made for him, murders both his new bride and their own children in revenge. It is an excellent example of the prominence and complexity that Euripides gave to female characters. This new translation does full justice to the lyricism of Euripides original work, while a new introduction provides a guide to the play, complete with interesting details about the traditions and social issues that influenced Euripides's world.
The Ancient Greek Euripides wrote the play Hippolytus, a tragedy based on the myth of the son of Theseus, Hippolytus. The gods play a central part in Hippolytus, and Aphrodite and Artemis appear at the start and end respectively. It is thought they were also present throughout, as two statues onstage. The Bacchae, which is also called The Bacchantes is another of Euripides' tragedies. It is based on the myth of King Pentheus of Thebes and his mother Agavë who are punished Dionysus when they refuse to worship him.
The Trojan Women follows the women of Troy after the famous war which devastated their city. It is believed to have been influenced by the capture of Melos, an Aegean Island, and the treatment of its population by the Athenians. These historical events took place the same year the play premiered, 415 BC.
Produced more frequently on the ancient stage than any other tragedy, Orestes retells with striking innovations the story of the young man who kills his mother to avenge her murder of his father. Though eventually exonerated, Orestes becomes a fugitive from the Furies (avenging spirits) of his mother's blood. On the brink of destruction, he is saved in the end by Apollo, who had commanded the matricide. Powerful and gripping, Orestes sweeps us along with a momentum that starting slowly, builds inevitably to one of the most spectacular climaxes in all Greek tragedy.
Written during the long battles with Sparta that were to ultimately destroy ancient Athens, these six plays by Euripides brilliantly utilize traditional legends to illustrate the futility of war. The Children of Heracles holds a mirror up to contemporary Athens, while Andromache considers the position of women in Greek wartime society. In The Suppliant Women, the difference between just and unjust battle is explored, while Phoenician Women describes the brutal rivalry of the sons of King Oedipus, and the compelling Orestes depicts guilt caused by vengeful murder. Finally, Iphigenia in Aulis, Euripides' last play, contemplates religious sacrifice and the insanity of war. Together, the plays offer a moral and political statement that is at once unique to the ancient world, and prophetically relevant to our own.
The youngest of the three great Greek tragedians, following Aeschylus and Sophocles, Euripides (ca. 484–406 B.C.) is reputed to have written ninety-two plays, nineteen of which survive. The Bacchae, a late play staged posthumously, concerns the cult of Dionysus, god of wine, whose worship hinged largely on orgiastic and frenzied nature rites. When Dionysus (in disguise) attempts to spread his cult among the people (especially the women) of Thebes, their king, Pentheus, imprisons Dionysus and tries to suppress his cult. The king's misguided attempt to thwart the will of a god leads to catastrophe. Full of striking scenes, frenzied emotion, and choral songs of great power and beauty, the play is a fine example of Euripides' ability to exploit and manipulate traditional Greek myth to serve his own ends in probing man's psychological makeup and understanding of himself.
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