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Five Great Greek Tragedies

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3.92  ·  Rating Details ·  50 Ratings  ·  5 Reviews
Five of the greatest Greek tragedies, each in an outstanding translation, include Oedipus Rex and Electra by Sophocles (translated by George Young); Medea and Bacchae by Euripides (translated by Henry Hart Milman); and Prometheus Bound by Aeschylus (translated by George Thomson), a monumental work that examines relations between humans and the gods.
Paperback, 288 pages
Published June 18th 2004 by Dover Publications
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Steven
Jul 20, 2015 Steven rated it really liked it
I stumbled across this book at a thrift store, and it turned out to be a more enjoyable and easy reading experience than I assumed of such daunting writers as Sophocles, Euripides, and Aeschylus. There was a time in my life when I would look at such a book and go, "Uggh. More nonsense about the gods wreaking revenge and smiting people with lightning and such". To my surprise, I instead found a certain amount of wit and humor as well as the as-advertised "tragedy" in abundance. I will sum up the ...more
Roberta
Apr 19, 2015 Roberta rated it liked it
An interesting look on ancient Greek drama. This edition has no additional material - no introduction, no translator's notes except for a few uncommon place/god names, no explanatory notes.

In 'Prometheus Bound' we can see the relationship between gods and humans, which is also one of the two main themes in 'Bacchae' (the other being human pride). It is a fascinating play: there is no actual action, only a long dialogue with varying participants, but it is rich in content, the language is beauti
...more
Ben
Feb 02, 2016 Ben rated it liked it
I had read Prometheus Bound and Oedipus Rex before, but Electra, Medea, and Bacchae, were all new to me. I can't honestly say they (Electra, Medea, and Bacchae) were all that great or nearly as good as Bound or Rex. Electra (the play) I find is more about Orestes (which isn't surprising since Sophocles did a trilogy + on Orestes) and so she is diminished as a character and in importance in the play and is more a mere moaner and basically a "damsel in distress". Medea is..... just..... ehh...... ...more
Brent McCulley
Mar 22, 2015 Brent McCulley rated it liked it
Shelves: plays, classics
After reading much Kierkegaard and Nietzsche, I began to realize how little I understood of the Classics—Kierkegaard as a classicist and Nietzsche as a philologist. Diving into Æschylus, Sophocles, and Euripides has been good for my soul. The climactic tragedy in Œdipus Rex and Medea were especially delightful. This has also given me a better primary source perspective of Nietzsche's criticism of Socrates as the instrument of rationalizing Greek culture, which N saw as its downfall, and not its ...more
J. Alfred
Feb 22, 2013 J. Alfred rated it liked it
These are important! And confusing. As Auden (I think) commented, there are really no right answers for the heroes in these stories. Also, there's a weird connection between Dionysus and Jesus that makes things like The Golden Bough make sense. But, like Lewis says, I wouldn't trust him without Aslan around.
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Aeschylus (525 BC – 456 BC) [Ésquilo in Portuguese, Esquilo in Spanish] was an ancient Greek playwright. He is often recognized as the father or the founder of tragedy, and is the earliest of the three Greek tragedians whose plays survive extant, the others being Sophocles and Euripides. According to Aristotle, he expanded the number of characters in plays to allow for conflict among them; previou ...more
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