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Euripides I: Alcestis/The Medea/The Heracleidae/Hippolytus

4.07  ·  Rating Details  ·  4,324 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
This volume contains the following tragedies by Euripides:

1. Alcestis, translated by Richmond Lattimore
2. The Medea, translated by Rex Warner
3. The Heracleidae, translated by Ralph Gladstone
4. Hippolytus, translated by David Grene

In nine paperback volumes, the Grene and Lattimore editions offer the most comprehensive selection of the Greek tragedies available in English. O
Paperback, 221 pages
Published February 15th 1955 by University of Chicago Press
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Daniel Chaikin
Jul 11, 2016 Daniel Chaikin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
43. Euripides I : Alcestis, The Medea, The Heracleidae, Hippolytus (The Complete Greek Tragedies)
published: 1955 (my copy is a 26th printing from 1993)
format: 224 page Paperback
acquired: May 30 from a Half-Price Books
read: July 5-9
rating: 4 stars

Each play had a different translator

Alcestis (481 bce) - translated by Lattimore, Richard c1955
The Medea (431 bce) - translated by David Grene c1944
The Heracleidae (circa 430 bce) - translated by Rex Warner c1955
Hippolytus (by 428 bce) - translated by Ra
Oct 29, 2011 Michael rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: greek-tragedy, incest
This is Euripides I, from the University of Chicago Press, which published "The Complete Greek Tragedies." I have a soft spot in my heart for these, regardless of how well or ill one judges the translations -- and you'd have to be a better scholar than I to have a serious opinion on that score. My soft spot owes to recollections of my undergraduate days, when I read this same edition as a freshman. What a great awakening -- no, that's a bit too pat; what an intriguing alternative to the Ozzie &a ...more
Faith Bradham
Apr 12, 2011 Faith Bradham rated it really liked it
(read Hippolytus and Medea)

I kind of adore Greek tragedy. The writing (at least, the writing in translation) is so beautiful! And everything is always so gory and hopeless!
Feb 21, 2012 Debby rated it it was amazing
I loved it! I read a couple of the plays from this book back in the fall semester of school, and I've just reread the entire thing. It gets better with each reading.
Ariel Lynn
Aug 23, 2014 Ariel Lynn rated it it was ok
The stories themselves were a little bland, & the editors' explanations prior to each play spoiled it for me; instead of reacting to the play without bias, the introduction told me what to expect &, perhaps, influenced my reading due to the editors' thoughts on the work.

I liked a lot of the quotes (judging by all the page markers I stuck to particular lines I want to copy down later into my journal, which I keep for just these inspirational readings I come across), but the work lacked so
bridget trinkaus
Mar 06, 2008 bridget trinkaus rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to bridget by: mary lou vredenburg
Shelves: for-school
i love Euripides he is really funny even though he is classified as a tragedian.
Alcestis is a woman who takes her husband, Admetus' place in death. He knows that death is coming and Apollo tells him that if he finds someone to take his place he doesn't have to go. Apollo is the servant of Admetus. who doesn't want a god to be your servant? Ademtus asks his parents and they say no but his wife agrees. She tells him on her death bed that there are some rules she wants him to follow after her deat
Apr 26, 2015 Maria rated it really liked it
Shelves: plays, classics
OK, so I only re-read"The Medea". I was being considered for a role in a modern version and wanted to refresh myself before the audition (which never happened). Reading it this time, I am struck by the line load. Many more monologues than I am accustomed to in modern plays. I wonder if this is stylistic, or if it actually reflects a slower, more erudite way of speaking in Euripides' time. Wish I remembered more of my Greek. I wonder if it would come back to me if I started working on it again... ...more
Sep 29, 2015 Taka rated it liked it
Solid tragedies--

There is no question about it. Euripides is a genius. Having read the plays of Aeschylus and Sophocles, I have to say Euripides takes it to the next level with all those fascinating characters whose psychologies are revealed on stage to great effect. Maybe it has to do with the near doing away of the annoying chorus that sings about fate and woe and gods and all the poetic drivel that stanches the flow of the narrative and ruins it more often than not (in my humble opinion). Eur
Stephen Bird
Jan 13, 2012 Stephen Bird rated it really liked it
Most of this collection made sense to me. "The Medea" is the best known of the four plays in this collection, and while I clearly knew what was going on in that play--As well as in "Hippolytus" and for the most part in "Alcestis"--"The Heracleidae" was so confusing, long-winded and ultimately baffling that I actually put this collection aside for a few weeks before I could resume it. In spite of that--Overall I continue to be impressed with the modernity of Euripides' writing ("..... Euripides m ...more
Brian Willis
Jul 06, 2015 Brian Willis rated it really liked it
Of the Greek tragedians, Euripides is the one I think would be most fascinating to perform as an actor. The Medea is clearly an all time great play with an outstanding part for an actress (and a quite good role in Jason for a male), but the tragedy of Hippolytus would also be powerful in the right hands. Euripides has a good sense of dialogue and dramatic situations and it appears that he was ahead of his time based on his low placings at the dramatic festivals (Medea placed third!). This volume ...more
Elyse Cantor
Feb 16, 2015 Elyse Cantor rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Laurel L. Perez
Aug 30, 2015 Laurel L. Perez rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
There is something special about reading plays based on information (myths, real people etc), in which the audience was expected to know certain information. Plays which are so incredibly mythological, it's hard not to get caught up. Tales of betrayal, tales unlike any others, an intriguing collection.
Ronald Morton
Feb 24, 2016 Ronald Morton rated it really liked it
I might fill in more stuff later but:

Alcestis - 3 Stars
The Medea - 5 Stars
The Heracleidae - 3 Stars
Hippolytus - 4 Stars

Though I will say that "The Medea" contains one of the all-time biggest literary overreactions ever.
Apr 16, 2016 Derek rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A few were decent -- "Hippolytus" and "Medea" being my favorites -- but I didn't get as excited reading Euripides for the first time compared to Sophocles or even Aeschylus's Orestes trilogy. I will continue to devour the Greek tragedies of Euripides regardless, primarily due to the fact that I enjoy the reworking of the myths.
Oct 22, 2010 Thomas rated it really liked it
Shelves: western-canon
The simplicity of Greek in translation is often misleading, but there really is no other way to do it. Reading more drama into Euripides than is already there would be like adding more gore to a slasher movie. Here four reliable translators turn in four conservative translations that are restrained enough to be true to the original language but open enough to suggest the subtleties. (I especially liked Lattimore's Alcestis and Ralph Gladstones' Heracleidae -- maybe because I hadn't read these be ...more
C. Michael
Feb 23, 2015 C. Michael rated it really liked it
Classic translations. I've sometimes thought that more critical material should be offered in these volumes, but they remain standards as the decades pass.
May 22, 2015 h rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
lattimore's translation is the best of the bunch. euripides has his weaknesses, but i enjoy the complications of these plays.
Rebekah Morgan
Feb 04, 2016 Rebekah Morgan rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016
This would have been a four star review If The Heracleidae hadn't been in this volume. Not a great work by Euripides anyway, the clunky translation by Gladstone made this short play a slough. The other three plays, however, were wonderful in every way, particularly the Rex Warner translation of The Medea.
Mike Moore
Aug 17, 2012 Mike Moore rated it really liked it
These are not the strongest of plays, and there are moments where difficulties of translation are evident. Nevertheless, these four together construct a remarkable mosaic of the apprehensions that beset the Greeks and that still resonate today. In particular, these four plays are deeply concerned with and revealing of relations between the sexes (each play has a representative man and a representative woman whose interaction drives the plot, though in one case, The Heracleidae, that interaction ...more
Pretty wooden translations. Introductory essays are short but informative.
Feb 04, 2013 Marc rated it it was ok
Shelves: ancient-greece
Gelezen in het Nederlands (Ambo-uitgave)
Alkestis, het oudst bewaarde stuk van Euripides, is niet zo'n hoogvlieger: zwakke actie en geen psychologische uitdieping, wel prachtige vader-zoon-dialoog.
In Medea is de psychologische uitdieping uiteraard veel verder gaand. Een echte tragedie, Medea is een vrouw die gedreven wordt door het kwade (niet de goden), ze is er het hulpeloos slachtoffer van en beseft dat ook, maar desondanks gaat ze ermee door. Jason is een beklagenswaardige mens, maar in feit
Nov 29, 2014 Julio rated it really liked it
Fun read but bitch is crazy
Mar 24, 2016 Wilbur rated it it was amazing
Apr 08, 2016 Jim added it
Shelves: greek-tragedy
This is volume one in a series of five volumes of the plays of Euripides, edited by David Grene and Richard Lattimore.

Alcestis - translated by Richard Lattimore - three stars
The Medea - translated by Rex Warner - four stars
The Heracleidae - translated by Ralph Gladstone - three stars
Hippolytus - translated by David Grene - five stars
Oct 04, 2011 Claire rated it really liked it
Read: The Medea

I guess I'm a lover of tragedies, because I really enjoyed this one. This would be my second time reading it, though I don't remember anything from freshman year of high school so it doesn't really count. This one is striking because at first I sympathize with Medea and I think Jason is an asshole, but then the heinousness of her violence is just so awful that I have trouble feeling like she was justified.
Dec 30, 2007 RandomAnthony rated it really liked it
Grene's a great translator, and this might be my favorite of his Euripides series. That Medea...whew, she was angry, eh? I've hung more than a few quotes from these four plays on my office wall. This is a great book for those initially intimidated by the classics, by the way, because it reads quickly and it's not that long. Essentially, Euripides created brilliant dramatic meditations on everyday life. Give him a shot.
Oct 19, 2008 Eric rated it it was amazing
The Medea and Hippolytus are both great plays. Certainly two of my favorite from Euripides, and ones that I would recommend to somebody interested in reading some Greek Tragedy. In both, women are at their best/worst exploiting both the fears of men and showing their own power. The Medea is particularly exceptional as a play, and the translation presented here is a good one that makes the play come frighteningly alive.
Logan Dalton
Jul 27, 2012 Logan Dalton rated it really liked it
Medea and Hippolytus are excellent Aristotelian tragedies. Alcestis brings up some hard questions, like what kind of man would let his wife die for him? Heracles is a disjointed tragedy but is a moving portrait of an aging hero stricken with misfortune. Cyclops has some funny bits and is the only extant satyr play. The Heracleidae and Iphigenia in Tauris were merely average.
Sep 28, 2012 Cameron rated it really liked it
A solid collection of four tragedies from the master ancient playwright. More than the other great tragedians of classical Greece, Euripides' genius laid in the psychological realism of his character studies. For that reason, and many others, Euripides' work continues to seem the most immediately relevant to our time.
Apr 25, 2008 Fred rated it it was amazing
Having just made my way through Aeschylus and Sophocles, I think I found more depth to the characters in Euripides plays. Its been fun seeing the evolution of style from playwright to playwright. The resolution of Hippolytus seemed reminiscent of the ending to the original Star Wars trilogy to me :)
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Goodreads Librari...: Euripides 1 and 2 - title change 2 14 Nov 10, 2015 08:44AM  
  • Sophocles II: Ajax/Women of Trachis/Electra/Philoctetes (Complete Greek Tragedies 4)
  • Aeschylus II: The Suppliant Maidens, The Persians, Seven against Thebes, and Prometheus Bound (The Complete Greek Tragedies)
  • Four Plays: The Clouds/The Birds/Lysistrata/The Frogs
  • The Complete Odes and Epodes
  • Greek Tragedies, Vol. 1: Aeschylus: Agamemnon, Prometheus Bound; Sophocles: Oedipus the King, Antigone; Euripides: Hippolytus
  • Jason and the Golden Fleece (The Argonautica)
  • Theogony/Works and Days (World's Classics)
  • Four Tragedies and Octavia
  • Homeric Hymns
  • Sappho: A New Translation
  • The Odes of Pindar
  • Heroides
  • Greek Lyrics
  • The Complete Poems
(Greek: Ευριπίδης )
Euripides (Ancient Greek: Εὐριπίδης) (ca. 480 BC–406 BC) was the last of the three great tragedians of classical Athens (the other two being Aeschylus and Sophocles). Ancient scholars thought that Euripides had written ninety-five plays, although four of those were probably written by Critias. Eighteen of Euripides' plays have survived complete. It is now widely believed that wh
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